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    Exclamation Leo doesn't notice food? I need help!


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    UPDATE: SUCCESS! I found that if i put him in a black box (temporarily of course) and add his food in with him, he notices it fast and eats aggressively! Could be because of the contrast of the black or maybe the lack of distractions!

    This is my first post so I apologize in advance if I am doing anything wrong. Also, this is my first time owning a reptile of any sort.

    I have a leopard gecko who's about 4-5 months old, I've had them for 4 months now.
    My issue is that he seems to not "see" his food. I have been hand feeding, or placing his food directly in front of him as that seems to be the only way for him to notice his food. When he sees the food, he perks up and eats it efficiently. Unless it doesn't move much, then he smells it and turns away. HOWEVER, this only happens rarely. Nowadays I can only get him to "see" 3-5 mealworms before I give up because I've been trying for an hour. The food can be directly in front of him, to the side of him, etc. And moving intensely but he just stares elsewhere, or starts walking in another direction. I do not think he is blind. His pupils dilate properly and he moves around with ease.

    I am not sure if he's just not hungry. I think he should be, because at this time he is about the size where he should be eating 10-15 crickets or mealworms a day.

    Some background info and setup and care info:

    He used to eat crickets super well when he was younger, until I fed him a few mealworms. Then he decided to never eat crickets again and to only eat mealworms. There have been off times where I can get him to eat crickets to vary his diet a bit. I know mealworms aren't entirely ideal but they're all he wants to eat most of the time. Also, crickets tend to dart away before he has the chance to realize they're there.

    What I've tried:
    -Feeding him in a separate container or space where there is no clutter or other movement
    -Assisted feeding (gentle "force" feeding)
    -feeding later in the night
    -holding the food directly in front of his eyes
    -manually moving the insects to create more movement
    -not dusting in case he doesn't like the taste or smell

    His care and setup:
    -large tank, lots of clutter, two hides (an additional humid hide when he shows signs of shed), no loose substrate
    -daytime heat lamp, red light which is only used briefly for night time viewing or when it is way too cold. I know red lights aren't ideal, I use it rarely.
    -constant water supply
    -insects dusted in calcium and d3
    -temp range around 29-31 during day, 20-25 at night (Celsius)
    -tank has temperature gradient
    -tank spot cleaned daily, deep cleaned monthly

    He is not impacted, no signs of impaction visibly and he eats when he can see food, and poops daily.

    He is also very active. In the evening he climbs all over his tank and loves to come out and hang out with me.

    Do you guys think he's just not hungry? There are some days where he will eat a proper amount, but most days it goes like this lately.
    Should I try feeding him in the daytime? I have tried this once and he ate but I'm not sure if this is ideal.
    Please help. Any advice is welcome.

    In addition, he is just a regular morph.
    Also, I cannot try feeding him dubia roaches due to them being illegal In Canada.

    I'm not sure how yet, but if anyone wants I can attach a video of him being "blind" to his food.
    Last edited by Cravker; 09-22-2021 at 01:42 AM. Reason: Issue solved
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    I should add that he is not visibly losing any weight or acting any different.

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    I would get a meal worm dish, place some 5 - 10 meal worms. A number you will remember and see next morning if he is eating.

    Pictures of your gecko will help, one possible issue could be the light. Especially if they are an albino morph.
    Another thing could be feeding time, or not feeling safe enough to eat. Make sure they have some privacy while they are eating. They may not want to eat if something is above them, you know ?
    3.5.2 Leopard Geckos
    0.0.10 Crested Geckos
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    Another thing to try is to give him about an hour each evening in a part of his cage where you remove all the "furniture" (you can temporarily block off a section of the cage for this), and put in the mealworms and/or crickets in low light so there are no distractions and nothing to do but eat. Give it some time and don't worry if it takes a few days for this to work. These guys can go without food for longer than you'd think with no ill effects.

    Aliza
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    UPDATE: SUCCESS! I found that if i put him in a black box (temporarily of course) and add his food in with him, he notices it fast and eats aggressively! Could be because of the contrast of the black or maybe the lack of distractions!
    Thanks so much for updating your initial post, Cravker!!!

    Perhaps covering the sides and back of his enclosure with something like brown paper from paper bags might work too? How about using black weed blocker cloth?

    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 09-23-2021 at 06:49 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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