Geckos are one of the durable reptiles, but if you notice sunken eyes, abnormal stools, starving, laziness, or a sudden weight loss in a shorter period, it can be a sign that your gecko dying.
Poor husbandry is not always the reason for its weight loss. When a gecko’s weight suddenly drops in a short period of time, it may be suffering from any of what is mentioned below and nearing its death:
- A poor diet
- Bacterial or parasitic infections
- An obstruction
- Kidney disease
A normal adult male gecko weighs from 60 – 90 grams and a female weighs 45 grams. If you notice a reduction in this weight, take your gecko to the veterinarian immediately.
Lack Of Appetite
Lack of appetite, abnormal weight loss, and a reduced sequence of activity can be observed in a sick gecko. Lack of appetite is considered due to environmental disturbances, so remove it before your gecko dies from it.
Maintain the proper temperature of the cage and ensure their hydration; if your gecko does not respond to any of these, then take it to their veterinarian. A food strike should not be ignored. To monitor their eating habit, wait until it completes its meal.
Abnormal Or No Droppings
Dropping is the intimate way to understand your gecko’s health. Abnormal dropping is a symptom of impaction, which is the reason for the sudden death. Lesser dropping is an indication of less food intake.
Sunken eyes are a symptom of dehydration. Dehydration is always associated with a decrease in appetite. The appearance of sticky mucus in the mouth of the gecko and abnormal droppings are the other signs of it. Always provide clean and fresh water in the enclosure.
Also, check for the humidity level in the enclosure. When the humidity level increases, your gecko suffers from a respiratory infection and some skin problems.
Active and curiosity are the sign of a healthy gecko. A normal gecko usually explores its enclosure, spends time at its resting rock, and hunts its prey. On the other hand, a lazy gecko can be an indication of sickness. The gecko may be extremely weak to lift itself. Consult your veterinarian immediately if you notice this kind of laziness.
Old-Age and Natural Causes
Among all the reptiles, geckos have a long lifespan. With good care, a gecko lives up to 20 years, sometimes even more. When your gecko loses its weight and goes on a food strike without any reason, it may indicate old age.
Just to be sure, have a session with their veterinarian to make sure there is no other reason. If your gecko is old and is starting to die, provide proper care as usual, as there is no other way to go about it other than ensuring they are comfortable.
Reasons Behind a Geckos Sudden Death
If you have recently lost your gecko but didn’t notice any of these signs, you might be curious about what happened. There is a variety of reasons, but some of the most common include:
- High Temperature In The Environment
- Parasitic Infection Like Crypto
- A Bad Roommate-Bad pairing with another leopard gecko in their tank
- Tainted Food
It is very important to be watchful and knowledgeable about the possibilities when you own a gecko, but even then, some things are just out of your control.
Impaction is the biggest nightmare to a gecko owner. When your gecko eats something that it shouldn’t have, whatever it consumed will get stuck in its stomach or digestive system. The obstruction can be a substrate, pebble, or even their own shredded skin.
Due to this, improper digestion takes place, and your gecko can also undergo other internal problems. The symptoms of impactions are:
- Lack or loss of droppings
- Lack or loss of appetite
But, in the majority of the cases, the gecko dies without any symptoms. Early diagnosis of impaction leads to earlier treatment (like gentle massaging and a warm bath) that can help save your gecko.
Most often, the impactions are severe without any symptoms. You’ll often be denied of a chance to treat or call their veterinarian.
Temperature maintenance is mandatory for ensuring a healthy gecko. If your gecko suddenly dies and you noticed symptoms of impaction (and infection is not the reason), then it is because of inappropriate temperature.
An increased temperature will boil your gecko even if it may have adequate hide or sufficient water. Maintain a consistent temperature in the enclosure. Also, ensure that the temperature outside the enclosure matches the temperature inside it.
Parasitic or Bacterial Infection
Cryptosporidiosis is a common parasite infection in geckos that affects their gastrointestinal system. Laziness, loss of appetite, and diarrhea are the symptoms of crypto.
It is harder to diagnose this infection since they are tiny. You must take your gecko to their veterinarian for further screening. The treatment of crypto is usually just survival, and it is quite a long process.
Another common disease is salmonella, a bacterial infection. This can be deadly, as this can be transmitted from gecko to gecko. Cleanliness will not support your gecko in such a situation. But the good thing is you can recover your gecko completely from the infection.
Signs of a Sick Gecko
Geckos are able to pretend to be healthy unless they are extremely sick. They are good at hiding the signs, however, you can notice minor changes in their appetite, feces, and breathing. Some other signs of geckos experiencing illnesses include weight reduction, behavioral change, skin coloration, discharge from the nose or eyes, and shedding issues.
How to Prevent Your Gecko from Getting Sick
Between the scary situations, there are few ways to avoid your geckos getting sick:
- A clean cage! Remove the shed regularly and clean the cage consistently.
- A significant diet! Provide your gecko all the required foods, offer variety of insects bought from genuine source.
- Be hygienic while handling the gecko! Wash your hands properly before touching your gecko to avoid parasite or bacterial infections.
- Quarantine your gecko if you suspect he or she is sick; of course, this only applies if you have multiple gecko’s in the same cage.