Offering your gecko the wrong food could cause serious health problems. In general, do not feed your gecko plant-based food or insects caught in the wild, as they have negative effects on your gecko.
My Gecko is NOT Eating!
Your Gecko may not be eating because its tank is too cold: The first thing to check here is the temperature in your gecko’s tank. Geckos are reptiles, and as such are dependent on external ways to help regulate their body’s temperature.
Your Gecko needs heat to digest its food, so if its tank is too cold, it will go in a food strike. The persistent cold will affect your gecko’s immune system. Do remember, though, that stress can also be a reason for your gecko’s strike.
A change in the environment will stress out your gecko – this is what causes your gecko to avoid food intake. An enclosure with abundant hide to retreat itself is the best way to overcome this issue.
Your gecko may be dehydrated: another important to ensure that your gecko has enough water in its enclosure, as dehydration may also cause it to stop eating. Dehydration and loss of appetite are associated issues.
After inspecting all the possible reasons, still, your gecko continues to refuse to eat, then take your gecko immediately to the veterinarian.
The Dangers of Feeding Live Animals to Your Gecko
Bacteria are commonly found in live meat, particularly in the bodies of rodents. Pre-killed food which is stored in the freezer for 3 days can be the secured food. Offering a living rodent to your gecko will be harmful.
Your gecko cannot hunt for itself since it is in an artificial environment. Live food will harm your gecko, this may end up with injuries caused by foreign animals.
Feeding Herbivorous Geckos
Avoid iceberg lettuce, as they have very little nutritional value. A herbivorous gecko can be fed with dark leafy vegetables. However, kale, cabbage, broccoli, spinach, and romaine lettuce must be avoided, as they have a protein that makes reptiles less absorbent of calcium.
Feeding Insectivorous and Omnivorous Geckos
To an insectivorous gecko, avoid offering fireflies, centipedes, scorpions, and spiders. Keep a keen eye on the fireflies, especially, as they are extremely toxic to your gecko.
One firefly can kill a small gecko. If your gecko is not native to the area you live in, your local insects may not be safe to eat. Consult their veterinarian before offering such native bugs.
To an omnivorous gecko, follow the suggestion for herbivores and carnivores. The majority of the geckos require a monitored and customized diet. Before customizing such diets, have a word with their veterinarian.
Can Geckos Eat Lettuce?
No. Geckos cannot digest lettuce, vegetables, or plants. Geckos do not have digestive enzymes to simply break down cellulose, a protein that plants consist of.
While lettuce may be a healthy part of a bearded dragon or iguana’s diet, and even if your gecko shows interest in lettuce, please remember that they cannot digest it.
Can Geckos Eat Fruit?
No. Just like lettuce or any other plants, geckos do not eat and cannot properly digest plant matter. While fresh fruits are tasty items for some geckos, your gecko will likely have no interest in fruit. You should not feed your gecko vegetables or any kind of plant. But some species of geckos are frugivorous.
Can Geckos Eat Vegetables?
While they may be a staple in the diets of lizards like bearded dragons and iguanas, vegetables and greens should NOT be offered to geckos.
Don’t provide veggies like carrots and potatoes directly, give them to gut loads feeder insects like crickets and mealworms, then offer these feeder insects to the geckos. Your gecko will acquire the required nutrients from these insects.
Can a Gecko Eat Wild Insects?
Technically, they can, though you should not offer your pet gecko wild insects. Insects you catch may carry parasites, diseases, or pesticides that can harm your gecko. You don’t know what these insects may have been creeping in or around (fertilizer, oil spills, etc.) or what they may have ingested.
If you don’t have a pet store near you that sells insects for reptiles, you can order mealworms, super worms, crickets, Dubai roaches, and more online. Also, you can easily breed the insects which you would like to offer your gecko.
Can Geckos Eat Ants?
Ants are not a good source of food for your gecko, as they can pull out the food bowls. Also, ants will injure or bite the gecko. Especially, hatchling or juveniles will suffer from the bites.
Can a Gecko Eat Stink Bugs?
No. Naturally, stink bugs do not have natural predators, because of their disgusting smell. If you provide stink bugs to your gecko, then your gecko may go a food strike. They neither taste good nor smell any better.
Can a Gecko Eat Spiders?
No. Avoid offering wild-caught insects to your geckos. Even a house spider may transmit the parasite infection to your gecko.
Can a Gecko Eat Beetles?
No. Sometimes, if you missed a mealworm in the enclosure, you may notice a pupate or a beetle, these beetles will not hurt your gecko much, as geckos are not interested in beetles. Beetles have proteinous chitin in their exoskeleton, which is harder for a gecko to digest. Also, avoid catching beetles from your backyard.
Do Not Offer Food Items That are too Large
Even if you choose the right insects, you need to make sure that your gecko doesn’t bite off more than it can chew, so to speak. This is mandatory for juveniles and hatchlings.
If you feed them an insect that is too large, your gecko may not be able to properly digest it and may cause impaction. This means their digestive system becomes obstructed. Always remember a general rule: insect offerings should not be larger than the size between the eyes of the geckos.