How Long Can Leopard Geckos Go Without Food? All You Need To Know

Many times, we wanted to go for a vacation but were in doubt how long can leopard geckos go without food? Because of the fat reserves in their tails, many adult leopard geckos may survive for ten to two weeks without eating for a single meal. It is totally typical for leopard geckos to go for extended periods of time without consuming food. Reptiles, in contrast to mammals, do not require food on a daily basis to survive, which is especially important during the winter. Geckos may travel long distances in the wild.

This other time, my friend had to go back to her house for the vacation, and she was skeptical about leaving her leopard gecko behind with food. She was worried that the food would be over before she came back and had one constant question in her mind – How long can Leopard Geckos go without food?

We did a lot of research and came up with the possible answers to many related questions as well. Let us take a look at it.

How long can leopard geckos go without food?

The average adult leopard gecko can survive for 10 to 14 days without food, relying on fat that is stored in a leopard gecko’s tails.

At the same time, baby geckos can only live for ten days without food because, unlike adult geckos, the babies lack as much fat in their tails as adults.

how long can leopard geckos go without food

It is common for leopard geckos to go for long periods without eating. This is one of the primary advantages of being cold-blooded.

Cold-blooded creatures do not need to consume as much as warm-blooded animals since they do not rely on food to create body heat as mammals do. This is why reptiles may go for months without feeding, especially during the winter.

My friend did try it, and she successfully went on her vacation, leaving behind her beloved Leopard Gecko. She came after nine days, and the gecko was healthy and fit, just like she had left him.

How long can leopard geckos go without food and water?

This is another prominent issue that my friend was facing. She was not sure what to do about the water. After all, how long could a leopard gecko go without water?

We researched and found that Leopard geckos are a sort of reptile that must be kept hydrated at all times.

leopard gecko macro

They require drinking water as well as access to a humid environment in their cages. If you must leave the house for a few days, provide a water dish for your pet.

Adult reptiles may withstand a couple of days without water, but don’t spend more than three days without water, or your leopard gecko will dehydrate and die.

So what my friend did was that she left behind a lot of water. She bought one of those bottles which do not leak and only fill the bowl when it is empty. It was a great buy.

How Long Can a Leopard Gecko Go Without Eating?

Trust me when I say that it is only natural for us to be worried about our beloved pets. As pet parents, it takes a toll on us when they refuse to eat because of any reason—more than often, there is an underlying reason why our pets refuse to eat.

Things are a little more complicated for a leopard gecko, as geckos can swear off food for at least a week or two. And that worries a lot of owners.

Although, we can assure you that you do not need to worry as your beloved gecko is going through something they are refusing to eat.

There are several natural reasons why a leopard gecko would not eat. Shedding and brumation can lead a Leopard Gecko to go for up to two weeks without eating. Surprisingly, some people have lasted for more than two weeks without consuming anything.

This lizard has an extremely fat tail that it uses as a reserve energy source. Leopard geckos begin to survive off the fats in their tail after they cease eating. Rapid weight loss indicates that they are ill and unhealthy.

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An underlying health condition (e.g., impaction or parasites) might be causing weight loss and loss of appetite.

How long can a baby leopard geckos go without food?

This is more or less a trick question. It is so because baby leopard geckos are too young to be swearing off food. Because they are at a growing age, they require a good healthy diet.

Leopard Gecko

However, a baby leopard gecko can go without food for around a week—no more than that. If your young leopard gecko has stopped eating but is still active, there are several things you may do at home before bringing him to the clinic.

The most common reason that newborn leopard geckos quit feeding is that they are too chilly.

If your young leopard gecko recently suffered a cold from a draught or saw a drop in its surrounding temperature, it might be suffering from a respiratory illness that has led them to stop feeding.

Your beloved pet leopard gecko may stop eating if it has a wound or is in discomfort as a result of an injury.

Is It Normal For A Leopard Gecko To Not Eat?

To be honest, it is heart wrecking when your beloved pet refuses to eat. I remember my friend being worried sick whenever her gecko refused to eat.

She would take frequent trips to the emergency room because her gecko would not eat. We thought we needed to know if it is normal for a leopard gecko not to eat?

Close-Up Shot of a Person Holding a Leopard Gecko

It is usual for a leopard gecko not to eat from time to time, although there is often an underlying reason behind it. There are several reasons why a leopard gecko will not eat. Some of these explanations are common and normal, while others are not.

The four most prevalent causes of a loss of appetite are:

  • Shedding.
  • Temperatures in the cold tank (i.e., lack of belly heat).
  • Seasonal variations (i.e. brumation).
  • Stress.

The majority of the explanations are connected to the enclosure’s layout and location in the house.

Some of the more significant reasons a Leo could not be eating include: not taking a calcium supplement, utilizing the incorrect UVB illumination, impaction, parasites, or a poor diet. Meal variety is essential for a balanced diet!

To induce a leopard gecko to eat again, try feeding high-fat food such as butter worms, wax worms, or super worms.

How many times can you feed a Leopard Gecko?

As a new pet parent, you will face dilemmas such as how much and how often to feed your gecko. You might also find yourself worried about questions like are you overfeeding or underfeeding your leopard gecko.

Leopard Gecko, Pet, Pets, Animal

If you think about bringing a leopard gecko into your house, you will quickly learn that a meal plan is essential for properly caring for your new pet.

Every other day, an adult leopard gecko should be fed. To ensure they obtain the necessary nutrients, they must be fed adequately sized insects at each meal.

Leopard geckos need to eat every day as youngsters and hatchlings but miss a day at least once a week to wean them onto the every other day pattern they will have as adults.

It is a good idea to construct a feeding routine based on these timings to maintain your leopard gecko healthy.

To keep your leopard gecko healthy, design a feeding routine based on these timings.

We all experience crazy from time to time, and establishing a routine is simply another reminder to you to pause and remain on track with your pet.

A written schedule will help you track when you need to feed the leopard gecko, what sort of insects you need to offer them, and precisely what they need to have a well-balanced and nutritious diet.

Why Is My Leopard Gecko Not Eating?

One of the terrifying things for any pet owner is when their pet becomes ill. A change in behavior, such as refusing to eat, is one of the first symptoms that your pet is unwell.

There is no doubt that the leopard gecko is infamous for its hunger strikes, and there are various factors other than an illness that might prevent your pet from eating.

If your leopard gecko refuses to eat, keep reading to learn why and what you can do to persuade your pet to eat again.

Reasons Why Your Leopard Gecko Is Not Eating

We should now learn about the most common reasons why your leopard gecko isn’t eating.

It’s not well

As previously said, one of the first indications of a sick pet is frequently a loss of appetite. The loss of interest in food can be caused by various conditions, including metabolic bone disease, kidney failure, and liver failure.

How to Reintroduce Food to Your Leopard Gecko

If your pet is becoming older, the disease is more likely to be the cause. If your leopard gecko’s lack of feeding is followed by other symptoms, such as a loss of movement, you should take it to the doctor right once.

It’s chilly outside.

One of the most common reasons leopard geckos quit eating is because it is too chilly outside. If the terrarium temperature is too low, the leopard gecko’s biological functions will stall, and it will not ingest food.

How to Reintroduce Food to Your Leopard Gecko

Keep the terrarium temperature between 94 and 97 degrees Fahrenheit using a halogen light or other heating device to get your leopard gecko to eat again.

If you have one of these bulbs installed, make sure it is working correctly and replace it every six months because the bulb loses its capacity to produce UV light long before it burns out.

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The most convenient approach to check the temperature is to use a thermometer terrarium thermometer and make changes as needed.

Rehoming

If you have only recently brought your leopard gecko home, your pet may still be getting acclimated to its new surroundings. It might typically take several days for your pet to adjust to a new environment.

How to Reintroduce Food to Your Leopard Gecko

Leopard geckos that have been rehomed will usually resume eating on their own with no interference. Some geckos eat in a matter of days, while others need weeks.

The leopard gecko can go without food for a long time, but we recommend sending your pet to the clinic if it lasts more than three weeks.

Feces With Impact

Impacted feces might develop if your leopard gecko consumes an excessive amount of hard-shell bugs. The chitlin in them obstructs the intestines, causing your pet to refuse to eat.

How to Reintroduce Eating to Your Leopard Gecko

A diet rich in mealworms and crickets is ideal for reducing the danger of fecal compaction. Ensuring your pet is well-hydrated is also crucial, so make sure the habitat has a clean water source.

You may also try to release the impaction by giving your warm pet baths regularly. While washing, gently stroking the tummy can also help break up the feces. If this particular condition persists for more than three weeks, you must take your pet to the veterinarian.

Injury

Scratches, scrapes, and other wounds can cause discomfort in your pet, and it may refuse to eat if it is in agony.

How to Reintroduce Food to Your Leopard Gecko

Some wounds take a long time to heal, so you must be patient. When your pet is feeling better, they should resume regular eating habits. To help restore what was lost, cover the insects with a vitamin-rich calcium powder.

Vision Issues

Your pet’s vision may be preventing it from seeing its food. The poor idea is more prevalent in elderly or damaged leopard geckos, although it can afflict any of them.

How to Reintroduce Eating to Your Leopard Gecko

Whether you feel your leopard gecko is suffering vision problems, take it to the clinic to check if it can be repaired. Geckos with low vision will be unable to capture crickets. Thus they will require a diet of mealworms delivered near to their mouth.

An incomplete shed is a typical cause of temporary blindness in geckos. The skin above the eyes might become stuck if there is insufficient humidity in the tank. Make sure your terrarium has a well-set-up wet hide so it can be shed correctly.

Overfeeding

It’s possible that your leopard gecko isn’t eating because you’ve previously fed it enough, and it’s no longer hungry. Insisting on additional food for your pet may result in indigestion, upset stomach, and vomiting.

How to Reintroduce Food to Your Leopard Gecko

When your pet feels hungry, it should start eating again in a few days or weeks, and you will not have to do anything else.

Pay great attention to the portion to avoid the repetition of this from happening. If you can feed them smaller insects, then it may aid in getting them to eat again.

Stress

Your leopard gecko may stop eating due to stress. A tank buddy is the most prevalent source of anxiety for leopard geckos.

If you just bought a companion for your pet, a refusal to eat might indicate that your pet is rejecting the new acquaintance. Loud noises and bright lighting can also increase stress.

How to Reintroduce Food to Your Leopard Gecko

If you believe your gecko is upset because of another tank mate, be patient and wait for fifteen to twenty-five days for your pet to accept it.

If it takes more than three weeks, you’ll have to separate them so your pet can resume eating. If anything else is causing the anxiety, try moving the terrarium to a different room in your house to see if it starts decaying.

Season of Reproduction

During the mating season, geckos may also cease eating. Males will get preoccupied and may fail to eat for several weeks. Females frequently opt not to eat.

How to Reintroduce Eating to Your Leopard Gecko

During the mating season, leopard geckos often stop eating. The greatest thing you can do is to be patient and wait till the season is done. You may provide modest quantities of food to see if they would eat it, but don’t get too excited.

Dubia roaches are an excellent source of sustenance for a leopard gecko. These geckos are enthralled by the prospect of tracking down and devouring roaches. Make sure you keep enough supply of dubia roaches on hand to keep them healthy.

What should leopard geckos drink to hydrate properly?

As a leopard gecko owner, it’s critical to understand your reptile’s requirements.

Leopard geckos are native to arid areas, so you may be wondering what their water requirements are. Even though your leopard gecko comes from a dry environment, it needs water.

Leopard Gecko, Gecko, Reptile, Reptiles

The majority of the moisture your pet consumes comes from the food it consumes. Some insects contain more water than others, allowing them to meet their moisture needs.

Yes, they drink water, but not as frequently as your other pets. You must give fresh, clean drinking water in your leopard gecko’s habitat to aid hydration and shedding. Leopard geckos require water to live.

How to prevent obesity in leopard geckos?

Obesity is a significant health crisis, not just for humans but also for animals. As pet parents, it is our responsibility to ensure that our pets are in the best shape and healthy.

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If your leopard gecko is overweight, begin its diet gradually. Adult leopard geckos require 2-3 meals each week, yet some owners only feed their leopard geckos once a week.

Don’t leave your leopard gecko hungry for a single day; instead, restrict the number of feeder insects you supply that day. Reduce the number of feeder insects by 1-2 at a time if you feed three times a week, for example.

Maintain the same serving size for two feedings before reducing it further. Also, purchase kitchen or jewelry scales that weigh to the closest 0.1 gram, such as these, and keep track of her weight.

Furthermore, keep fatty worms out of your leopard gecko’s diet until it loses weight. Offer no super worms, butter worms, waxworms, or mealworms. Mealworms have around 14% fat, whereas super worms, butter worms, and waxworms have 20-28 percent fat.

Even mealworms are somewhat fatty for an overweight leopard gecko when compared to crickets (6 percent fat), silkworms (8-10 percent fat), hornworms (3 percent fat), Dubia roaches (7 percent fat), and Phoenix worms (10 percent fat).

Once your leopard gecko has lost weight, you can begin feeding fatty worms 1-2 times per month (1-2 per feeding). Mealworms can be provided to healthy and fit leopard geckos once a week.

What Is the Best Time Of Day For Feeding Leopard Geckos?

The ideal time to feed a leopard gecko is during the early hours of the evening, from around 7 pm to 9 pm. This is because the leopard geckos are active during this hour from having woken up from an excellent long day nap.

My friend initially used to try and feed her gecko in the morning hours without much success; however, when she switched to this new schedule of feeding her beloved leopard gecko during the evening hours, she and her gecko are so happy.

What Kind Of Food Should I Be Providing To My Leopard Gecko?

This is a very commonly asked question. It is usual for a pet parent to want to feed its pet the best food out there. Undoubtedly we all want our beloved pets to live a long, healthy, and happy life.

When it comes to Leopard Geckos, one first needs to understand these fantastic animals to understand their food requirements.

Leopard geckos are found in arid regions of Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan, and portions of India. They are nocturnal lizards that have been kept as pets since the late 1970s. Leopard Geckos consume just insects. Thus no greens are necessary.

Every other day, Leopard Geckos should be fed two adequately sized insects for every inch of their entire length. Mealworms of appropriate size should be served in a small dish; crickets do not require a plate. To avoid choking, do not serve excessive amounts of food.

Every day, feed 5-7 little crickets or mealworms to baby Leopard Geckos until they reach around 4 inches in length. More extensive food should be provided every other day until they reach total growth, taking approximately 10-12 months.

Adults should be fed 6-7 big crickets or mealworms twice a week. When supplementing with waxworms or Calciworms, Leopard Geckos should be given 3 to 5 worms three times each week.

Waxworms are designed to be used sparingly to supplement a geckos’ diet or as a reward. Leopard Geckos quickly grow spoilt on waxworms and may refuse other meals, so use them sparingly.

Conclusion

The simplest method to deal with a leopard gecko’s loss of appetite is to examine your pet’s environment, behavior, and unique characteristics and make a guess about what’s wrong.

Of course, your gecko might have stopped eating for reasons other than those listed above, but if you’ve exhausted the pointers mentioned by us previously and still haven’t figured it out, make an appointment with your exotics doctor.

FAQ

How do I make sure that my leopard gecko is eating enough?

A fat tail is the most visible indicator that a leopard gecko is eating enough. Other indicators include:
A desire to eat and drink.
Bodily plumping.
Basking in the heat.
Having healthy-looking skin.

When should I stop feeding my leopard gecko every day?

Leopard Geckos under that are younger than a year must be given good food every day. Whereas, once the gecko is grown up and is an adult, it should be fed every other day if they are healthy. Sick geckos should be fed once each day until they recover.

What to do if my leopard gecko is not eaten?

A leopard gecko that isn’t eating should be fed high-fat prey to get it to start eating again. This can also aid in the replenishment of fat reserves in their tails. Feeding options include butter worms, wax worms, and super worms.

Should I feed my leopard gecko during day or night?

One should be feeding their adult leopard gecko every other day if they are healthy. Sick geckos should be fed once each day until they recover. Food should be supplied late in the day or early in the evening, as this is when Leopard Geckos in the wild will begin hunting.

Is it okay if my leopard gecko doesn’t eat for a day?

It is okay if your leopard gecko does not eat for a day. Because of the fat stored in their tails, many adult leopard geckos can survive without food for ten days to two weeks. It is pretty typical for leopard geckos to go for extended periods without eating. Reptiles, unlike mammals, do not need to eat every day to survive, especially during the winter.

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Gulshan
Hi, I am Gulshan, a pet blogger, and author. I've been working with the local pet groups for the past five years. I have been fascinated by our pets and am here to share that wonder with you.