Leopard geckos are amazing beginner pets with their docile temperaments. However, there is a difference between caring for mammals and reptiles. This is why many beginner hobbyists wonder if it is necessary to give leopard geckos water.
Leopard geckos need water, but they don’t drink water too often. This is because leopard geckos get a lot of their moisture from the insects they eat and the environment. However, you need to keep fresh water readily available in their enclosure so they can easily drink whenever they want.
In this article, you will get an insight into how often leopard geckos drink water, why your leopard gecko is not drinking water, and how often you can mist your leopard geckos enclosure.
Do Leopard Geckos Drink Water?
Yes, leopard geckos do drink water.
Although leopard geckos originate from dry desert regions, they need water for their survival.
A responsible leopard gecko owner needs to make a bowl of fresh water available for them at all times.
How Often Do Leopard Geckos Drink Water?
Although leopard geckos need water, they do not drink water too often. They can easily live without water for one or two days.
Leopard geckos do not drink water as often as a mammal pet. This is because they receive lots of their daily moisture requirement from the bodies of the insects that they eat.
However, it is best to keep a dish of freshwater inside their enclosure or mist their enclosure a few times a week to fulfill their water requirements.
Do You Need A Bowl?
As stated above, it is best to place a water bowl in your leopard gecko’s enclosure. You can place a rock in the bowl so that the insects that wind up in the water can easily get out without drowning and fouling the water.
Your leos can also climb into the water bowl to sit or soak. They do this to regulate their body temperature. However, you need to ensure that their water bowl is shallow enough not to drown your gecko, and it should be easy for your gecko to get in and out of the bowl.
The best place to place a water bowl is on the cool side of your leopard gecko enclosure. This will ensure the water will not evaporate quickly.
Why Do You Need To Give Your Gecko Water?
Although leopard gecko does not drink water too often as they get their moisture from the insects they eat, there are times when they may wish to drink water.
During the period when your leopard geckos are not eating to fulfill their moisture requirement like shedding, they will drink water. This is why it is advisable to have water readily available in their enclosure.
How To Offer Water To Leopard Geckos?
There are usually two ways that you can give your leopard geckos water to drink. The first way is by placing a dish or small bowl with clean water in their enclosure. Your gecko can then drink water from the dish whenever they want.
The second way is by misting their enclosure. Misting of your gecko enclosure means spraying water in your Leo’s enclosure to maintain the ideal humidity suitable for your gecko. The ideal humidity for your leopard gecko should be between 30-40%.
During the misting process, your leopard geckos will drink the sprayed water drops needed for their daily water needs. Furthermore, if you do not place a water bowl in their tank, you will need to mist their tank once a day for the wellbeing of your leo.
Things To Keep In Mind When Offering Water To Leopard Geckos
Leopard geckos are small reptile animals, and they need less water for their survival. Some of the safety measures that you can follow when offering your leopard geckos water are stated below.
You need to ensure that you give your leopard gecko water that is chlorine-free. Another thing is to provide your leopard geckos water in a bowl that is not too deep.
This is because leopard geckos can get stuck in the water or drown in the bowl. It is best to use a water dish that is not deep but wide to reduce water-related harm to your geckos.
You can also place a rock in the water bowl so that the insects that you feed your gecko do not drown in the bowl.
Another thing to keep in mind is to ensure you give your gecko fresh and clean water without insects.
Some of the other things to keep in mind when offering water to your leopard geckos are:
- Ensure you refill your gecko water dish with cold water every day or on consecutive days to avoid contamination
- If your gecko water dish or bowl looks dirty, wash before filling it with fresh water.
- Ensure you place the water dish in a cool area in your gecko’s enclosure to avoid evaporation by the warmth in their enclosure.
Why Is My Leopard Gecko Not Drinking?
You should not be surprised if you did not see your leopard geckos drinking from the water bowl. This is because they get most of their needed moisture content from the insects they eat. Furthermore, they are most active at night, and you may not be there when they drink.
If you mist their tank to provide some extra moisture, they may not drink directly from the water bowl. You may see your leopard gecko licking water off rocks, hides, or branches in their enclosure.
However, you can trust that they drink from the water bowl you provided for them.
Another benefit of placing a water dish in your leopard geckos tank is that it aids shedding. This is because your gecko will trample on the water in the dish, which helps keep their toe skin moisturized, which helps to shed and maintain nice skin.
Placing water in your leopard gecko’s tank also helps to maintain the humidity level in their enclosure. Your gecko can also soak inside the water dish whenever they feel too hot or warm.
How Long Can A Leopard Gecko Go Without Drinking?
Although leopard geckos need daily water for their health and survival. However, there are times when you may not be able to replace their water at all. The best thing is that leopard geckos can go for a day or two without water.
But going for more than 2-3 days can be harmful to your pet and can even lead to dehydration and death. You can keep your leo health at an optimal level by placing a shallow water dish with chlorine-free water every day.
Can I Force Drink My Leopard Gecko?
Just like feeding your leopard gecko, you should avoid forcing a drink on your leopard gecko.
This can lead to asphyxiation to their lungs and can even cause their death. The alternative methods that you can use to give your gecko drinks are stated below.
Offer a Drink
- Mix a pediatric electrolyte beverage with an equal amount of lukewarm sterile water.
- Fill the diluted electrolytes in an eyedropper.
- Use the eyedropper to place a drop of diluted electrolyte on your gecko’s snout.
- Wait for your gecko to lick it up before you drop a few drops on its tongue as it is licking it. However, if your gecko does not lick the drop on its snout, then you may need to give it a soak or force it to take the liquid.
- Hold your gecko’s head steady, and level then open its mouth gently by pulling down the loose flap of skin under his chin.
- Place a few drops of electrolyte solution on its tongue.
- Gently rub its throat and the head to help the gecko swallow the liquid.
- Repeat the steps until it has ingested the proper amount of fluid.
Note: it is best to take your gecko to a vet to help with forcing your gecko to take the liquid.
- Mix equal parts of pediatric electrolyte beverage and sterile water in a saucepan. Ensure it is enough for use in a plastic container or dishpan.
- Gently heat the solution to be lukewarm.
- Place a plastic container on a folded towel.
- Fill the container with a lukewarm electrolyte solution to a shallow depth that will be comfortable for your gecko.
- Place your gecko in the container and allow it to soak.
- Remove your gecko from the solution before it gets cool.
- Rinse the solution from your gecko’s body with fresh lukewarm water.
How Often Should I Mist My Leopard Gecko?
Although leopard geckos originate from the arid region, they enjoy misting to keep their body cool. However, it is best to mist adult leopard geckos twice a week or when they are ready to shed. If you have humidity or moist boxes in your gecko’s tank, you do not need to mist adult leos.
You will need to mist hatchlings and baby leopard geckos daily even if you place a humidity or moist box in their enclosure. This is because baby leopard geckos shed frequently and need to be moist to ease the shedding process.
The best time to mist your leopard gecko is during the shedding process. However, ensure that it is only a little bit of spray as it will evaporate quickly without harming your leos. You can mist your geckos and their habitats to avoid issues like stuck or partial shedding.
Fully understanding your leopard gecko will help you better take care of them. As a suggestion, we would recommend you to get a good leopard gecko book. Not to become an expert on leopard gecko care but will help you avoid the common mistake in new pet lizard owners.
Last update on 2020-09-11 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Although leopard geckos get most of their needed moisture content from the insects they eat, they will also drink water but in small quantities. It is best to place a shallow water bowl or dish in their enclosure so your gecko can drink water anytime that they want.