When it comes to pets, owners want to make sure they are treating them right and that their little companions are happy. You may think that this is a hard thing to do with a leopard gecko, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.
These cute, little, scaly sidekicks have their methods of letting their feelings be seen. It just takes a little more work and knowledge. In this article, we will look at how to tell if your leopard gecko is happy or not. We hope this guide can give you some insight into your gecko’s emotional wellbeing. So without further ado, let’s take a look at how to tell if your leopard gecko is happy.
Is Your Gecko Happy? Signs To Look For
Spotting whether your little guy is happy or not is a lot easier than you think it is. Here are a few of the key signs to look for when determining if your lizard is happy:
- If your little friend has bright eyes and is alert, then it is probably happy. Does it show interest in everything in and out of its tank? If so, then it is probably feeling good!
- Is it eating well? A healthy appetite is a sure sign that it is in good health and feeling the love.
- How does it move? Is it moving around easily without any laboring? If it is, then chances are that it is smiling – you just can’t see it.
- When you reach in to touch your lizard, does it react? This is another good sign of his happiness level.
- When your little friend sees you, does it approach the glass?
- Does your lizard run around and explore its tank?
- Does your lizard spend equal amounts of time in cool and warm spots in its tank so that its body temp is regulated?
How to Tell If It Is Unhappy
Though understanding if your gecko is happy in its tank and with you is important, there may be something that is more important. Knowing if your leopard gecko is unhappy has more impact on the reptile’s overall health, so here are a few things to look for to tell if your lizard is unhappy.
- Lethargy – This may be hard to determine, as the little guys sleep a lot, but if the lizard doesn’t move much or does so slowly, it may be unhappy. Also, if it isn’t responsive to touch or movements in and out of its cage, this could be a problem.
- Not Eating – If you notice that even when you feed it, it seems to not be very hungry, this could be a sign that something is wrong. It could be that your gecko is not feeling good, has been injured, or even that the tank is too cold. If you notice this, watch your gecko and see if it goes to the bathroom. Maybe give it a warm bath. If you still don’t see any bathroom activity, the gecko may be blocked up. In this case, you will want to take your leopard gecko to a vet.
- Eyes Closed – This is one of the signs of lack of energy, but it can also be caused by the lights of the tank being too bright, which may make the little gecko unhappy.
- Quick & Erratic Movement – This can mean that the gecko is afraid. When a gecko experiences fear, it is also under a lot of stress. If it is out and about, and this begins to happen, you should get it back to its tank as soon as possible.
- Waving of the Tail – This body signal is designed to tell you that you need to back off. If this happens when you are handling your lizard, you will want to put it back in its tank, as it is becoming agitated and very unhappy.
My Gecko Is Sleeping a lot, Is That a Problem?
Many people think that too much sleeping is a sign that their pets are unhappy. With some, this may be true, but because the leopard gecko is a crepuscular animal, this is not something to be worried about. The gecko is only active for a short period of time, and the rest of the time is spent sleeping.
The trick is knowing what its regular sleep pattern is and when there is something that you need to check out. When you are feeding and touching it, if it shows alertness and activity, you should be fine. However, if the opposite is the case, you should be aware that this probably means that it is unhappy or even ill.
Stressed Out Gecko? What Stresses It Out?
Just like in humans, stress is a sign of situations that are unfavorable or frightening. This is true in the animal kingdom, as well. There are some sure signs that your leopard gecko is feeling a little stressed out or anxious.
Quick rapid movements, tail wagging, glass surfing, and even vocalization are all signs. Some geckos will also refuse to eat. These are signs of stress, and that inevitably leads to an unhappy leopard gecko.
Does being alone stress it out? This is another concern when it comes to stressing your gecko out, but the leopard gecko is actually a bit of a loner in the first place. Don’t worry about loneliness creating stress or even bothering it. Since they are loners, cohabitation with other lizards, even leopard geckos, is not a great idea.
There you have it – an answer to how to tell if your leopard gecko is unhappy. Staying alert and keeping an eye out for the signs of happiness and unhappiness can help you keep your little friend healthy and your relationship with it good.
Even with them being loners, they can still be great pets and can bring a lot to your life. Hopefully, this quick guide was full of insight into your gecko’s emotional needs and what you can do to ensure it is always happy and healthy.