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  1. #1
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    Default First Leo - rescue situation


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    Recently I took in this leopard gecko to nurse back to health. Although this is my first time caring for a leopard gecko, I have been researching their care over the past few years (out of interest in possibly getting one someday). I also have crested geckos and a cave gecko, so I felt comfortable helping out with this rescue.

    IMG_20191014_173937.jpg

    So I was told the gecko has had shedding problems with his past owner, which led to swollen back feet. He also has a small sore underneath his tail. He has been to the vet and needs diluted chlorhexidine soaks and Neosporin treatment. And because he has little appetite, he's been started on Repta Boost. Since I've had him in the past few days, the swelling has gone down and his overall color looks better. He will eat the Repta Boost but won't take insects quite yet. He's not fond of me right now because he associates me with the soaks, so I'll have to win his trust back when the treatment is over. 🙂

    IMG_20191012_185619.jpg

    I'm not sure of his age, but he weighs in at 35 grams, so I'm assuming he's still quite young? I set him up in a sterile environment while still giving him a warm hide, moist hide (on warm side) and cold hide, and he is using all three. I'm planning to get him a Deep Heat Projector, too. I've heard a lot of good things about it, but this is the first time I've had an animal that needed temps above room temperature. I'd love to hear from anyone here who uses the DHP for Leos! I already use the Shadedweller lighting for my crested geckos, so I may add a light for him, too.

    I welcome any other tips for helping this guy heal. 🙂 The vet said he could lose some toes before it's all said and done, but I'm hoping to avoid that!

    MVIMG_20191012_114922.jpg

  2. #2
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    I don't have any leo experience, so am not really able to help with your questions. But I do want to say thank you for helping this little soul, and I'm sure he will thrive in your care! Please keep us posted.
    Eileen and Repti-Friends
    TAD (Tiny Ancient Dinosaur) - Crested Gecko 1.0.0
    Hidey - Gargoyle Gecko 0.1.0
    OhGee (Office Gecko) - Bauer's Chameleon Gecko 1.0.0
    TBD (Tiny Badass Dragon) - Western Bearded Anole 1.0.0

  3. #3
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    Given what he's been through he doesn't look so bad. Most of us use under tank heaters to provide belly heat, but I've heard good things about the DHP (and hope one day to have a GeckoTime article about it)

    Aliza
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    After four days, he's looking better! I did notice that his tail rounds off all the end, so he probably had a past injury there at one point.

    IMG_20191015_170927.jpg
    IMG_20191015_173401.jpg

    I'll try out the DHP after we finish treatment and see how it goes. 🙂

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    I use the DHP (Deep Heat Projector) from Arcadia and I only have good things to say about it. Our Leo loves to bask under it sometimes and based on the research I have done on this product it is a very well engineered, well thought out item created by the brilliant minds at Arcadia. It provides a deeper more penetrating natural heat like what the sun provides as opposed to a Ceramic Bulb that is better at heating the air. It is crucial to have a thick piece of slate or two under it to reflect the heat back into the environment and to bring up the ambient heat if that is what is required.

    I have no affiliation with them and am just a user so this is only my opinion. I am hoping to move to the Shade Dweller lighting at some point in the future as well. Currently I am using the Zoo Med 10.0 Mini UVB bulb which also seems to be working well for us.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marillion View Post
    I use the DHP (Deep Heat Projector) from Arcadia and I only have good things to say about it. Our Leo loves to bask under it sometimes and based on the research I have done on this product it is a very well engineered, well thought out item created by the brilliant minds at Arcadia. It provides a deeper more penetrating natural heat like what the sun provides as opposed to a Ceramic Bulb that is better at heating the air. It is crucial to have a thick piece of slate or two under it to reflect the heat back into the environment and to bring up the ambient heat if that is what is required.

    I have no affiliation with them and am just a user so this is only my opinion. I am hoping to move to the Shade Dweller lighting at some point in the future as well. Currently I am using the Zoo Med 10.0 Mini UVB bulb which also seems to be working well for us.
    So I did buy a DHP and a dimming thermostat. I set it up in the 20 gallon long that I'm planning to move this guy into when his treatment/quarantine is over. Problem is, I can't seem to get the basking spot (where the thermostat probe is) to heat up much passed 80 F. I set it up with fake slate-like resin pieces though, so it might be that I need to get some real slate in there. What kind of fixture do you use with yours, or is it mounted inside the tank?

    The gecko is healing well. The swelling is going down slowly. Still not eating insects, but given all the stress he's been through, I can't say I'm surprised by that. I'll just keeping leaving some out for him until he's ready. I'm working on picking a name for him.

    IMG_201910_194256.jpg
    (The back foot in this photo is the better of the two - the other one is more swollen.)
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    I was told by John at Arcadia that there is a short "burn in" period where the lamp is getting more efficient at heating. But definitely getting some real slate rocks underneath the lamp would be very beneficial for increasing the ambient air temp. I have my lamp resting on the mesh screen above the enclosure. I also have textured ceramic tile in my enclosure which helps to reflect some of the heat. These lamps are different than the ceramic light bulbs that are better at warming the air temp. This is more of a directed, usable heat that is more penetrating in a local area. Having natural stone store and reflect the heat will warm your environment more. Depending on your air temperature in the house, sometimes it is recommended to supplement with a ceramic bulb in the winter if things are particularly cold where you live.
    Click here for Elizabeth Freer's excellent Leopard Gecko care database.
    Thanks starnaito thanked for this post

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    Thanks! I'll give it some time and definitely add some better surfaces in the enclosure.

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    Last update --

    After around three or four days of running the DHP, the temperature gradient is now perfect. I added a basking area with thick slate, and I'm using slate tiles on about half the tank. It also helped to cover part of the screen top (glass enclosures aren't great at holding in heat). I sometimes catch the gecko sprawled out on the warm tiles/slate near the heat source.

    As far as his health goes, he had his first shed in my care a few days ago, and it was PERFECT. He left nothing behind, and all his wounds/swollen areas are almost back to normal. He's pretty much enjoying being a normal gecko now.

    Also, I've named him Littlefoot.

    IMG_20191021_093850.jpg
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  10. #10
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    Fabulous! Thanks for the update. It sounds like you have everything well in hand!

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