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    Default Female Leo losing nails/skin problems


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    Hey folks,

    Thanks in advance for reading this rather lengthy post and providing any help/advice you may have on the matter.

    I've been noticing a slow degradation of the health of one of my females. Although it doesn't appear to be life threatening at the moment, I want to make sure it doesn't get there. Here's the situation:
    20200220_222323.jpg (Btw the lighting is a bit wonky here so her colors aren't actually this scary looking)

    Over the past couples months of so I've been noticing her skin get a bit pale and slightly blotchy, generally not as healthy looking. Although her behavior has not been lethargic - on the contrary, she seems a bit more alert and on edge. The past couple days, I've noticed some missing nails, which is not a result of a bad shed - I've been careful to remove any left over skin on the toes. It even appears as if the skin of one of the digits of her front right foot is receding/has come off for some reason, exposing more of the nail than normal. Picture follows:
    RecNail.jpg


    She lost a nail last night and another one tonight. Both were bleeding at the time and were obviously fresh. I have not seen her biting at her toes, does not appear as if she is doing it herself:
    NailHang.jpg

    A picture of her terrarium:
    20200220_220918.jpg

    Specifically, she lives in a 20 gallon tank with 2 warm hides (Redundant I know, there was an extra) and a cool, moist hide. Flooring is stone slabs with very light dusting of sand and coco fibre (not nearly enough that impaction would be an issue). The warm side is heated with a heating mat under the cage and a heat lamp. It's winter here in MA so the temps and humidity are on the lower side but I'd say they don't drop below 68 degrees and 20%, respectively, in her cage. I spray down her cage once to twice a day to bring the humidity back up. Currently her diet consists of 5-6 gut loaded and dusted mealworms every other day, occasionally a waxworm as well. 10 Crickets once a week or once every two weeks.

    Tonight I did notice one of her recent stools had bubbles on it, which could be a cause for concern:
    20200220_221701.jpg

    Lastly, she's around 4 or 5 years so old age isn't a factor. I just changed the flooring to paper towels and cleaned her cage/everything in it just to eliminate any potential hazards in her environment. Are these symptoms familiar to anybody? Might they be of a certain illness or condition? Will be taking her to a herp soon but wanted to get some insight from the community.

    Thanks again!
    Thanks Elizabeth Freer thanked for this post

  2. #2
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    Specifically, she lives in a 20 gallon tank with 2 warm hides (Redundant I know, there was an extra) and a cool, moist hide. Flooring is stone slabs with very light dusting of sand and coco fibre (not nearly enough that impaction would be an issue). The warm side is heated with a heating mat under the cage and a heat lamp. It's winter here in MA so the temps and humidity are on the lower side but I'd say they don't drop below 68 degrees and 20%, respectively, in her cage. I spray down her cage once to twice a day to bring the humidity back up. Currently her diet consists of 5-6 gut loaded and dusted mealworms every other day, occasionally a waxworm as well. 10 Crickets once a week or once every two weeks.
    Hello!

    Your leo's problems may be related to a vitamin A acetate deficiency in her diet.

    1. What supplements are you giving this leo? Please share brand, exact name, and frequency.
    2. What is the ground temp underneath her warm dry hide?
    3. About how much of the ground does her heat mat occupy: 1/4, 1/3, or 1/2 of the ground?
    4. Her moist hide should rest totally on top of the heat mat, just like her warm dry hide. Please relocate it from the cool end to the warm end right away. A cool damp leo is prone to Upper Respiratory Tract infections like pneumonia.
    5. What do you feed her mealworms and crickets?
    6. Is her heat mat plugged into a thermostat?
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 02-21-2020 at 10:13 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)
    Thanks Brucey thanked for this post

  3. #3
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    Hey Elizabeth, thanks for the quick reply!

    1. I don't have the supplements off hand (will edit to include brand when I'm back home). I dust all feeder insects with a Calcium w D3 supp. as well as a multivitamin dust.
    2. I'm not exactly sure about INSIDE the hide (need to get a point and shoot temp gauge) but just outside the warm hide is Low 80's during the day, around 70 during the night.
    3. Mat takes up probably around 1/3 of the cage.
    4. Will do
    5. She is on a diet of mealworms, waxworms (occasionally), and crickets. Frequency and details in post
    6. The heat mat is not plugged to a thermostat

    It also may be worth mentioning that I've had her for about 3.5 years now under very similar conditions and this is a recent issue.

  4. #4
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    Thanks! I'll await your edit.

    5. (cont.) What food are you feeding her mealworms and crickets prior to them being fed to your leos? Do the feeders have full or empty stomachs?

    7. How often do you feed this leo?

    Petco carries yellow Zoo Med digital thermometers with a probe for ~$10. That probe accurately measures ground temps.

    Are you meeting these temps?
    Temperatures - A temperature gradient from warm to cool maintains your leo's health. Here's a temperature guide for all leopard geckos as measured with the probe of a digital thermometer or a temp gun (and controlled by a thermostat set at 91*F/32.8*C).

    Place the thermostat's probe and a digital thermometer's probe together right on top of the substrate underneath the warm dry hide. If you use a UTH + a CHE you'll need 2 separate thermostats, because ground and air temperatures are substantially different.
    • Warm end ground temperature: 88-92 F (31.1-33.3 C) inside a leo's warm dry hide and his moist hide too!
    • Cool end ground temperature: 70ish-75 F (21.1-23.9 C) Usually the cool end ground temperature matches the room temperature where the enclosure sits.
    • no greater than 82ish F (27.8ish C) air temperature - 4 inches (10 cm) above ground on the warm end
    • no greater than 75 F (23.9 C) air temperature - 4 inches (10 cm) above ground on the cool end

    Leave the heat mat/UTH on 24/7. If you wish, during the night turn off overhead lighting/heating (~12 hours on and ~12 hours off) unless ambient room temperatures drop lower than 67ish*F (19.4*C).
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 02-21-2020 at 12:04 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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    So these are the supplements I'm currently using:
    repvits.jpg
    - Rep-Cal: Herptivite - Multivitamins
    - ZooMed: Repti Calcium with D3

    The feeders are being given either sweet potato, carrots or both. I leave them in with veggies for a day or two then prep for feeding. Which entails putting about a teaspoon of both Rep-Cal and ZooMed each in a jar, placing the feeders in and swirling them around until they are covered. The teaspoon of each in the jar lasts multiple feedings.

    At the moment she is being fed about 5-6 large mealworms every other day, with a waxworm or two thrown in every other feeding. I will add that, before I was more educated on the subject, she was being fed about 10 - 15 crickets a week, dusted with just the ZooMed Calcium and D3. This was happening for about 3 years until I recently started reading more on the matter. Ironically her health seems to be declining now.

    Also a recent update, my other female started to display skin issues as well: scales cracking and lifting on her nose, skin seems to be turning paler. Her toes and nails seem fine, however. I have a newer male that, at the moment, seems to be unaffected by health issues.

    As far as temps go, I need to get thermostats for the heat mats but I do have probes just outside the warm hides that read low 80's during the day, low 70's during the night. I'm assuming these are slightly higher within the hides themselves
    Last edited by Brucey; 02-22-2020 at 08:24 AM.
    Thanks Elizabeth Freer thanked for this post

  6. #6
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    As far as temps go, I need to get thermostats for the heat mats but I do have probes just outside the warm hides that read low 80's during the day, low 70's during the night. I'm assuming these are slightly higher within the hides themselves.
    Let's do 1 thing per post. Please scroll back to post 4 where I shared a temperature chart. "Slightly higher than the low 80s" is too cool for inside the warm hides!

    Please place one temperature probe inside on the floor of the warm dry hide. What is the actual temperature? The heat mat should produce enough heat to get temps from 88-92*F inside that hide.

    The temps on that chart are vital to meet. With low temps (like those you describe), your leo will have trouble digesting her prey.
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 02-22-2020 at 05:28 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)

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brucey View Post
    So these are the supplements I'm currently using:
    repvits.jpg
    - Rep-Cal: Herptivite - Multivitamins
    - ZooMed: Repti Calcium with D3

    The feeders are being given either sweet potato, carrots or both. I leave them in with veggies for a day or two then prep for feeding. Which entails putting about a teaspoon of both Rep-Cal and ZooMed each in a jar, placing the feeders in and swirling them around until they are covered. The teaspoon of each in the jar lasts multiple feedings.

    At the moment she is being fed about 5-6 large mealworms every other day, with a waxworm or two thrown in every other feeding. I will add that, before I was more educated on the subject, she was being fed about 10 - 15 crickets a week, dusted with just the ZooMed Calcium and D3. This was happening for about 3 years until I recently started reading more on the matter. Ironically her health seems to be declining now.

    Also a recent update, my other female started to display skin issues as well: scales cracking and lifting on her nose, skin seems to be turning paler. Her toes and nails seem fine, however. I have a newer male that, at the moment, seems to be unaffiliated by health issues.

    . . . . . .
    A GU member (who's now a vet and inactive) once mentioned that waxworms are high in vitamin C. A couple waxworms per month is all he recommends.

    A lack of vitamin A acetate (retinol) in the diet can be responsible for skin issues. Rep-Cal's multivitamin Herptivite only contains vitamin A (beta carotene). Instead I recommend switching to Zoo Med's Reptivite multivitamins withOUT D3. I suggest using each supplement separately -- not mixed. Lightly dust insects and worms just like this schedule recommends, not any more.

    For your 4-5 yo leo you'll also need
    Zoo Med's Reptivite multivitamins withOUT D3

    Supplement powder sticks better to crickets than to mealworms. I suggest feeding crickets on the supplement days.

    Weekly Schedule 126 for Leopard Geckos 18 months old +
    (withOUT UVB)
    Early stage metabolic bone disease (MBD) problems include uneven (lopsided) gait, bowed limbs, belly dragging, and an underbite.
    The Reptile Supply Company based in Sacramento, California stocks Zoo Med's ReptiVite multivitamins withOUT D3.
    • Crickets or dubia >> Monday - lightly dusted with Zoo Med's Repti Calcium with D3
    • Crickets or dubia >> Thursday - lightly dusted with Zoo Med's ReptiVite multivitamins withOUT D3
    • Optional: Mealworms or Black Soldier Fly Larvae (Phoenix worms) >> Saturday - no dusting
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 02-22-2020 at 02:55 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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    With the probe on the warm hide floor, the temps are actually on the higher side, stopping at 95*. Could you recommend any specific thermostats?

    As far as feeding and supplements go, I'll adjust and see how things go over the next week or so.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brucey View Post
    With the probe on the warm hide floor, the temps are actually on the higher side, stopping at 95*. Could you recommend any specific thermostats?

    As far as feeding and supplements go, I'll adjust and see how things go over the next week or so.
    I've used Hydrofarm's Jump Start digital thermostat for 7 years. I like it. Then there are Inkbird, iPower, and maybe still Apollo thermostats.

    You may be able to use features of Inkbird models since you're looking for more than 1 thermostat.
    Inkbird Thermostats: Inkbird manufactures 2 similar models that only control HEAT (no cooling). Both are rated to 1,200 watts. Both models have 2 sockets for controlling two separate heat mats or two separate CHE dome fixtures set at the same temperature. Each model has only 1 probe.

    18 April 2018: Savannah shares: "Now is there an attachment you can buy where another probe plugs in."

    Model #1: INK306T

    Model #2: Inkbird ITC-306T
    • Click: https://www.amazon.com/Inkbird-Elect...words=itc-306t
    • Inkbird's ITC-306T Digital 2-Outlet Heat Temperature Controller/thermostat has a built-in ultra-capacitor. When the ultra-capacitor is fully charged, this thermostat will work for more than 20 days without electricity.
    • blondebrown coat states: "I love it! It keeps very true temps, has a max/min customizable threshold, day and night temp settings, and an alarm if temps get out of whack."
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 02-22-2020 at 06:55 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)

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brucey View Post
    Hey folks,

    Thanks in advance for reading this rather lengthy post and providing any help/advice you may have on the matter.

    . . . . . .

    Tonight I did notice one of her recent stools had bubbles on it, which could be a cause for concern:
    20200220_221701.jpg

    . . . . .

    Thanks again!
    I don't know what might cause "bubbles" on/near the stools you picture. I wonder whether it's excess calcium.

    A healthy feces is brown and well-formed. The urate (white part) is usually half the length of the feces. Then there is urine.
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 02-22-2020 at 05:17 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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