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  1. #1
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    Default Emaciated Gold Dust Help Needed


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    Hi all,

    A wild gold dust lives in my condo. He had lost its tail somewhere and a new one was growing out. He would normally bask in the sun on the side of some cabinets and would venture onto our coffee table while we were there, to look for treats or crumbs or other stuff. He was around for about a month.

    One day I found him stuck in a weevil trap. We're not sure how long he was stuck there but I would say up to 3 days max (since we hadn't spotted him for a few days). I was able to free him using olive oil and a q-tip to massage him very gently. After i freed him he stayed over night in a box and took water from a dropper and ate some jellies and mashed fruits. he left a poop in the box so i think his internals are ok. The next day he left the box and started hanging out in our kitchen hanging from various things and drinking water and eating fruit we would leave out.

    Over the next week he would change hides a few times. The last couple of weeks he now lives on the ground and has lost weight. I think he doesn't have the strength to climb. We've been leaving food out daily for him such as papaya and honey. I bought some zoo med tropical meal but he doesn't touch it. His hides have been away from direct sunlight so I'm concerned he's malnourished and vitamin deficient.

    This morning I saw him walking and then rolling to one side and then the other, as if having a seizure (or trying to take shed off). I spent the whole morning researching and found that he may be vitamin deficient. Today I mixed some zoo med calcium/D3 with papaya and he ate some of it. Not enough to fill his stomach. I tried feeding him mealworms and he was very interested, chasing and following them around, but they were too big for him to eat. As soon as I cut it into smaller pieces, he lost interest and walked away. I'm planning on buying small crickets when the store gets them in stock and try to get him to eat something.

    Just today I found him away from the darker areas and back in his original sunny basking spot, albeit on the ground versus climbing. He also made a yellow pee.

    What I needed advice on was whether I can rehab him with him living in the condo or if I should catch him and put him into a terrarium. He has lost weight and his spine is showing more. Since he's wild, I don't want to stress him even further than he probably is right now. He goes through moods of tolerating our presence or being very timid. The last week has been very timid.

    Thank you,
    John

  2. #2
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    This morning I saw him walking and then rolling to one side and then the other, as if having a seizure (or trying to take shed off). I spent the whole morning researching and found that he may be vitamin deficient. Today I mixed some zoo med calcium/D3 with papaya and he ate some of it. Not enough to fill his stomach. I tried feeding him mealworms and he was very interested, chasing and following them around, but they were too big for him to eat. As soon as I cut it into smaller pieces, he lost interest and walked away. I'm planning on buying small crickets when the store gets them in stock and try to get him to eat something.

    Just today I found him away from the darker areas and back in his original sunny basking spot, albeit on the ground versus climbing. He also made a yellow pee.

    What I needed advice on was whether I can rehab him with him living in the condo or if I should catch him and put him into a terrarium. He has lost weight and his spine is showing more. Since he's wild, I don't want to stress him even further than he probably is right now. He goes through moods of tolerating our presence or being very timid. The last week has been very timid.
    Welcome to Geckos Unlimited! I recommend rehabbing him in a terrarium.

    Please post a picture of your wild gold dust gecko. I wonder if he can still climb. Does he seem fully grown? Have you googled Phelsuma laticauda?

    Good job, so far, with Zoo Med's Repti Calcium with D3! For the first week or so I recommend this D3 powder @ 2 feedings per week. After his seizures have settled down, use D3 at only one feeding per week. D3 is fat soluble. It sticks around in the body and is metabolized with calcium all week long. If you're dusting a second time per week, use Zoo Med's Repti Calcium without D3.

    I recommend buying some Pangea with Insects. That's an all-in-one powder you mix with water. Another food option is ordering some fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) for his meals.
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 10-09-2020 at 01:59 PM.
    "If you can hear crickets, it's still summer." ;)

    "May the peace that
    You find at the beach
    Follow you home"

    Click: Leo Care Sheet's Table of Contents

    ===> No plain calcium, calcium with D3, or multivitamins inside an enclosure <===

    Oedura castelnaui ~ Lepidodactylus lugubris ~ Phelsuma barbouri ~ Ptychozoon kuhli ~ Cyrtodactylus peguensis zebraicus ~ Phyllurus platurus ~ Eublepharis macularius ~ Correlophus ciliatus ~ (L kimhowelli) ~ (P tigrinus) ~ (P klemmeri) ~ (H garnotii)

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    Thank you.

    I don’t believe he can climb. Too weak or not enough coordination. He doesn’t seem fully grown to me.

    Are you saying that I should feed him daily but only twice per week with the calcium and D3? Now that he’s in direct sunlight, will his body produce it?

    Also, would something be causing him not to eat till he’s full? I’ve only seen him lick up a little fruit. This morning I mixed some zoo med gecko mix into his papaya and he was licking some of it. I’ll try and up the concentration of the powder to get more protein in his fruit.

    31950F2C-8F75-4BF1-A6A7-8CD2F85AF04C.jpg
    Last edited by Fallingspeaker; 10-09-2020 at 02:36 PM.

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    Ah some not so good news today. When I came home from work another GDG was in my house in the same basking spot as the other ones favorite. The other one must have been stressed out and chased away. I found him near a other window. Gave him food but he didn’t hang around for long. Went somewhere to hide.

    I was able to catch the other new one and release him on the property in a lot of bushes with a nice 4 ft rock that faces the morning sun.

    I really feel bad and want to help the other one recover. Store still doesn’t have small crickets in stock.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fallingspeaker View Post
    Thank you.

    I don’t believe he can climb. Too weak or not enough coordination. He doesn’t seem fully grown to me.

    Are you saying that I should feed him daily but only twice per week with the calcium and D3? Now that he’s in direct sunlight, will his body produce it?


    Also, would something be causing him not to eat till he’s full? I’ve only seen him lick up a little fruit. This morning I mixed some zoo med gecko mix into his papaya and he was licking some of it. I’ll try and up the concentration of the powder to get more protein in his fruit.

    31950F2C-8F75-4BF1-A6A7-8CD2F85AF04C.jpg
    You're welcome. Window glass filters direct sunlight.

    Yes, I am saying that! Vitamin D3 has a fairly wide safety margin. Please don't depend upon sunlight to supply his D3/calcium needs at this time. Inside he probably needs additional heat to digest his food. A 15 or a 25 watt incandescent bulb in an overhead dome might be sufficient. This wee gecko isn't accustomed to eating inside. He also needs to regain his climbing ability to survive outside.

    By "Zoo Med Gecko Mix" do you mean powdered gecko food from Zoo Med? If you're using that, please check the label re protein, D3, and calcium. What are the levels? Once he's reliably eating that, you could probably reduce any powdered Repti Calcium.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fallingspeaker View Post
    Ah some not so good news today. When I came home from work another GDG was in my house in the same basking spot as the other ones favorite. The other one must have been stressed out and chased away. I found him near a other window. Gave him food but he didn’t hang around for long. Went somewhere to hide.

    I was able to catch the other new one and release him on the property in a lot of bushes with a nice 4 ft rock that faces the morning sun.

    I really feel bad and want to help the other one recover. Store still doesn’t have small crickets in stock.
    It sounds as if your home is a Haven for Wayward GDGs!

    I believe you'll have an excellent feeding responses to Drosophila melanogaster. Starter cultures come pre-made. Some Petcos stock these. Also Rainbow Mealworms. I think your rescued GDG will feast until his tummy is full.
    Just let the culture begin hatching, dump some flies into the terrarium, and cover the terrarium with any loosely woven cloth like a bandana or dish towel to contain the flies. Your rescued GDG should gobble them up. For the 1st week dust these flies only 2x with Zoo Med's Repti Calcium with D3. Do NOT dust more than that. That's because vitamin D3 is fat soluble and sticks around in the gecko's body. After the first week, and if you have seen no further seizures, lightly dust the flies:
    1x per week with Repti Calcium with D3
    1x per week with Repti Calcium withOUT D3

    1. Click: https://www.petco.com/shop/en/petcos...er-culture-kit
    2. Click: [From Rainbow Mealworms, Josh's Frogs, or Amazon] https://www.amazon.com/Deluxe-Flight.../dp/B073YP3G19
    3. Click: [Powdered food you mix with water -- for GDGs too] https://www.amazon.com/Zoo-Med-Crest...0771PLM2X?th=1


    @acpart What terrarium temperature do you recommend for this member's recovering gold dust gecko?
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 10-10-2020 at 03:26 AM.
    "If you can hear crickets, it's still summer." ;)

    "May the peace that
    You find at the beach
    Follow you home"

    Click: Leo Care Sheet's Table of Contents

    ===> No plain calcium, calcium with D3, or multivitamins inside an enclosure <===

    Oedura castelnaui ~ Lepidodactylus lugubris ~ Phelsuma barbouri ~ Ptychozoon kuhli ~ Cyrtodactylus peguensis zebraicus ~ Phyllurus platurus ~ Eublepharis macularius ~ Correlophus ciliatus ~ (L kimhowelli) ~ (P tigrinus) ~ (P klemmeri) ~ (H garnotii)

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    Thanks again.

    The zoo med is the crested gecko food. Contains about 22% protein, 2.5% calcium and a little of cholecalciferol. But again he doesn’t eat this directly. I have to mix some into to fresh papaya.

    It’s about mid eighties during day inside house and usually humidity is 60% or higher (real humid this past week). I’m going to have to buy and outfit a tank. I also don’t know how I’m going to catch him. He’s very skittish and I actually don’t know where his new hide is today after being chased out of his previous one. Maybe I’ll have to use a mealworm Tied on a string to attract him and drop a Tupperware over him. Worked for the fat intruder today (absolutely beautiful and funny intruder with giant blue eyes)

    Our guy is really in rough Shape. What is the type of furnishings recommended for now in a tank? I’ve heard paper towel ground is good and sterile for weakened geckos. Also I know no climbing hides will work right now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fallingspeaker View Post
    Thanks again.

    The zoo med is the crested gecko food. Contains about 22% protein, 2.5% calcium and a little of cholecalciferol. But again he doesn’t eat this directly. I have to mix some into to fresh papaya.

    It’s about mid eighties during day inside house and usually humidity is 60% or higher (real humid this past week). I’m going to have to buy and outfit a tank. I also don’t know how I’m going to catch him. He’s very skittish and I actually don’t know where his new hide is today after being chased out of his previous one. Maybe I’ll have to use a mealworm Tied on a string to attract him and drop a Tupperware over him. Worked for the fat intruder today (absolutely beautiful and funny intruder with giant blue eyes)

    Our guy is really in rough Shape. What is the type of furnishings recommended for now in a tank? I’ve heard paper towel ground is good and sterile for weakened geckos. Also I know no climbing hides will work right now.
    You're welcome, John! Do you think he'd be unable to catch fruit flies? The flies will hang out on sphagnum moss and twisty vines too. Twisty vines have textured surfaces. They are rough like sandpaper.

    A horizontal 10 gallon enclosure with a fine mesh screen top should work for your GDG. Place paper towels on the ground. Cover most open space with sphagnum moss. Add Exo Terra twisty vines to climb and diagonally slanted wood or thick sticks. The twisty vines have textured surfaces like sandpaper, so even he might be able to climb and catch those fruit flies. Add a small pothos or other plant. That will help with humidity.
    1. Horizontal 10 gallon
    2. Fine mesh screen top
    3. ***Vestigial-winged fruit flies Drosophila melanogaster
    4. ***Exo Terra twisty vines
    5. Mister for water
    6. Lots of sphagnum moss
    7. Paper towels
    8. Small plant like a pothos to help with humidity
    9. Thick rough sticks slanted diagonally + some driftwood.

    Any place that's sheltered/private will give him a place to hide.

    I too am concerned he's not eating much. Some GDGs would eat that crested gecko powdered food just mixed with water. Can you try a different brand like Repashy or Pangea?
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 10-10-2020 at 03:11 PM.
    "If you can hear crickets, it's still summer." ;)

    "May the peace that
    You find at the beach
    Follow you home"

    Click: Leo Care Sheet's Table of Contents

    ===> No plain calcium, calcium with D3, or multivitamins inside an enclosure <===

    Oedura castelnaui ~ Lepidodactylus lugubris ~ Phelsuma barbouri ~ Ptychozoon kuhli ~ Cyrtodactylus peguensis zebraicus ~ Phyllurus platurus ~ Eublepharis macularius ~ Correlophus ciliatus ~ (L kimhowelli) ~ (P tigrinus) ~ (P klemmeri) ~ (H garnotii)
    Thanks Fallingspeaker thanked for this post

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    Thank you Elizabeth. I might buy a full kit terrarium for him maybe. I really want to try feed him some real bugs first before catching him. . I’m very frustrated though, no one on the island sells fruit flies, and all stores are out of crickets. The island is supplied by one cricket guy and he’s days behind schedule. Everyday they say it’ll be tomorrow. I’ll have to over night live bugs but being a holiday might not get them till next week Wednesday.

    Also I just saw another GDG outside on my lanai. Possible it’s the same one who walked 40ft to the building and climbed up 6 stories.
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    If you can get it into the terrarium, use a florescent tube with UVB (ZooMed 10.0 will be good). Add a small incandescent light for basking. I use the round puck lights that have xenon or halogen 20w bulbs for my gold dust (which is captive bred but came from a colony from Hawaii). This should result in appropriate temperatures. Use pieces of bamboo to provide perches near the basking light. You can also add native plants, either by having a soil substrate or by putting the plants in pots (you can read about setting up a vivarium here: https://www.blackjungleterrariumsupp...101_ep_50.html)

    Aliza
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    Thank you Aliza. If I get a terrarium I would get a 18x18x24 so if I’m able to save him he’ll have a nice home. What type of light would I need to warm down to the floor since he can’t climb yet?

    Another question. How much powdered food does a GDG eat? I just saw a video of someone mixing a toothpicks amount. I mixed a little bit of zoo med gecko diet powder with papaya this morning and he licked the juices over 600 times. Not sure how much nutrition that equates to.
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