Do you want to ensure your lizard is eating right and living healthy? Leopard gecko feeding isn’t supposed to be hard but if you are new to the whole business of taking care of these living jewels, you may need some help. So, without further ado, here are some helpful tips for a healthy lizard diet.
The leopard gecko feeds on insects, making it an insectivore. Crickets are a staple food for these creatures so you may have to take the time to find some live crickets to keep your pet happy. Live food is the way to go as you’d want to duplicate some of the conditions in the wild to keep your pet active. It won’t enjoy food it doesn’t have to hunt as much as the ones that give it some sort of a challenge.
Be warned though… crickets have a downside. They do bring about certain problems. The first one would be escaping the lizard. The uneaten crickets will run around the tank and cause unwanted stress and agitation for your pet. They can also bite the lizard and possibly injure it. The second problem it causes comes from the fact that crickets can carry parasites. Anything the cricket eats, the lizard eats, so if the cricket comes into contact with any parasites, your lizard may be in danger as well.
It’s best to buy crickets from reliable sources. You increase the chance of your crickets carrying parasites if you buy them from unofficial sources. Also, you can powder your crickets with vitamins and supplements to give your lizard some extra diet helpers. Gut loading, the practice of feeding your crickets healthy foods like fruits and vegetables 24 hours before giving them to the lizard, is also recommended.
Try to start small. Around 4 crickets will probably do to start but you’ll have to estimate how much your pet can actually eat. If he can finish off the four without a hitch, try increasing it. A diet of 8 crickets a day would still be normal. However, if you find that your pet is having difficulty with the crickets, then try to remove some of the extras. It may take some time but it’s worth it to prevent the stress and other problems they can cause.
You can also go for some alternative foods like meal worms or silkworms. These won’t scurry around the tank as much as the crickets and you can actually keep them in a bowl so that your pet won’t have to chase them. This reduces the chance of any escape but your pet may not be as happy with them… they won’t give him as much of a challenge! They can still cause problems if they get out of the bowl as they can burrow through sand or similar material, if you’re using such material for substrate.
Some foods are considered treats in the lizard world. Pinky mice and wax worms are good examples. Just remember that these are meant as treats and not as staple food. Treat them like chocolate… it’s nice to have a few bites every once in a while but you can’t expect to live a healthy life just on chocolates alone.