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    Default Crocodile Gecko Shedding Issues


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    So I have a crocodile gecko. I got her last year probably in September. The guy who had her had no idea what he was doing, and she had several minor issues, but she's been healthy since. She's always eaten and shed fine (except one spot on her head that developed scar tissue from an infected cut she had when I got her).

    Unfortunately, winter hit all of a sudden here, and the humidity in her enclosure dropped just enough for her to have one bad shed. The only part I couldn't get off was over her eye. The local vet wasn't able to get it off after two visits, so it was suggested to continue giving the ointment he prescribed and hope it would come off on its own. One person I talked to said they'd had a similar issue, and after continuing with the ointment they got for a while, it finally just popped off. She shed again after the first bad shed and it all came off fine (except the retained shed on the eye). BUT she just shed again, and now it's on the other eye too - and I have no idea why, since her humidity has been fine and she gets a calcium + vitamin supplement, so I don't think a vitamin A deficiency should be an issue. She has an appointment at a well-respected animal hospital/university on Thursday, but I was wondering if there might be any people here who would have any ideas about why this is happening or had any experience with it or had any suggestions how to prevent it. Sorry for the novel by the way.

    ~Maggot

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    NEVER try to remove old shed on eyes yourself, you would probably cause cornea ulcerations.
    Taking your animal to the vet again and again is not a bad idea, though it certainly causes stress. The vet has to explore the causes, particularly nutritional issues such as the lack or overdose of certain vitamins. Vitamin A can be found as an unguent and works great on "sick" eyes- just ask for it from any chemists shop.
    I would give this gecko lukewarm baths (85F or so) for 30 minutes/day. Tip: add a camomile tea bag, this helps remove old shed skin. Then the problem might solve by itself
    "Thorr Geckos" private breeder in Normandy.

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    Okay, so the vet removed most of the stuck spectacles but wanted to err on the side of caution and leave a little instead of removing too much. I was instructed to keep applying the ointment 3-4 times a day to help loosen what is left.

    Now the issue: I think we figured out why this happened. She's in a tall 33 gallon with a light at the top (as they do bask sometimes and I can't use a UTH on this type of enclosure). The humidity down near the ground is fine, but up by the light, it's too dry, and she's recently taken to climbing up the front or sides and hanging out near the top. (This hasn't been an issue before because winter just hit a few weeks ago, being very cold and very dry.) I covered all parts of the top that didn't have the light with very wet paper towels for now, and that's raised humidity a good bit, but it's still just a bit too dry. I do have a stronger light I could use in hopes that the gecko would stay down lower in the enclosure, but that might dry things out even more. So...suggestions? I'm kind of at a loss. =/

    ~Maggot

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    I am a bit surprised, since these geckos live in dry to very dry places in the wild. Which vitamin supplement are you using? I suspect it might be a dietary issue. Do you use UVB lights? If so, what % of UVB?
    "Thorr Geckos" private breeder in Normandy.

    Ptenopus kochi + garrulus garrulus, various Uroplatus species, Pachydactylus and Hemidactylus species, Ch. angulifer & turneri , Gehyra marginata, Afroedura loveridgei, Ptyodactylus ragazzi, H. caudicinctus, , Paroedura picta...

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    Quote Originally Posted by thorrshamri View Post
    I am a bit surprised, since these geckos live in dry to very dry places in the wild. Which vitamin supplement are you using? I suspect it might be a dietary issue. Do you use UVB lights? If so, what % of UVB?
    From what I've read, they do best at 50-60% humidity, and up at the top it was about 32%, which would probably be enough to cause the issues. I use Repashy Leopard Gecko Calcium Plus for her and my leo, which has vitamin A acetate (I had considered a vitamin A deficiency being an issue). No UVB either considering they're nocturnal. The vet asked about both and decided the supplementation and a lack of UVB was okay. I think I'm going to add the higher wattage bulb until the weather stops being cruel and unusual. I do have a desert UVB strip (I think 10%?) that I could put on if you felt it necessary?

    ~Maggot

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    10% UVB will likely hurt the eyes of your gecko, I would not give it a try.
    Now your supplement contains 200K IU/kg provitamin A. This is simply huge, and definitely too much. Overdosing vitamin A may result in the same issues, or even worse, than a deficiency in the same vitamin. That is a common problem with marketed supplements, by containing a lot, not to say way too much vitamin quantities, it gives the consumer the false impression he/she is purchasing a great product. FYI, 10k IU/kg is enough for geckos. You can use Nekton Rep if you can find it where you live.
    "Thorr Geckos" private breeder in Normandy.

    Ptenopus kochi + garrulus garrulus, various Uroplatus species, Pachydactylus and Hemidactylus species, Ch. angulifer & turneri , Gehyra marginata, Afroedura loveridgei, Ptyodactylus ragazzi, H. caudicinctus, , Paroedura picta...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Embrace Calamity View Post
    From what I've read, they do best at 50-60% humidity, and up at the top it was about 32%
    Relative air humidity in their homelands, for example Southern Spain, Sicily, North Africa is certainly below 50% except in the cooler months. I really don't think the problem comes from a lack of humidity. As an example, I keep various Pachydactylus and Chondrodactylus species, all coming from similar dry climates- the climate of South Africa is not that far from the one around Mediterranean shores- and I have never have any shedding issue with them so far, I just use small water dishes in each enclosure and give an occasional light spraying, and that's it
    "Thorr Geckos" private breeder in Normandy.

    Ptenopus kochi + garrulus garrulus, various Uroplatus species, Pachydactylus and Hemidactylus species, Ch. angulifer & turneri , Gehyra marginata, Afroedura loveridgei, Ptyodactylus ragazzi, H. caudicinctus, , Paroedura picta...

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    Quote Originally Posted by thorrshamri View Post
    10% UVB will likely hurt the eyes of your gecko, I would not give it a try.
    Now your supplement contains 200K IU/kg provitamin A. This is simply huge, and definitely too much. Overdosing vitamin A may result in the same issues, or even worse, than a deficiency in the same vitamin. That is a common problem with marketed supplements, by containing a lot, not to say way too much vitamin quantities, it gives the consumer the false impression he/she is purchasing a great product. FYI, 10k IU/kg is enough for geckos. You can use Nekton Rep if you can find it where you live.
    What are the symptoms of hypervitaminosis A? From what I can find (which isn't much), it doesn't really seem to match, but I will contact the vet and see what they have to say on the matter and if a test can be conducted.
    Quote Originally Posted by thorrshamri View Post
    Relative air humidity in their homelands, for example Southern Spain, Sicily, North Africa is certainly below 50% except in the cooler months. I really don't think the problem comes from a lack of humidity. As an example, I keep various Pachydactylus and Chondrodactylus species, all coming from similar dry climates- the climate of South Africa is not that far from the one around Mediterranean shores- and I have never have any shedding issue with them so far, I just use small water dishes in each enclosure and give an occasional light spraying, and that's it
    Do you know the relative humidities of the exact places where they spend most of their time, not just the countries?

    ~Maggot
    Last edited by Embrace Calamity; 02-02-2013 at 09:23 PM.

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    Hypervitaminosis A - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Have a look here- even if it applies for humans, "Excessive skin dryness/peeling" is one of the effects. This, on reptiles, can lead to bad shed issues

    Living in Europe and having visited quite a lot of places where crocodile geckos live, I can tell you they will use basking sites such as house walls, old stone piles, tiles in roofs (they are well-known in some places where they gather in numbers on roofs to make rambling noises!) directly exposed to the sun, so it implies a rather low air humidity. Such surfaces are very good heat conductors and if you simulate the same conditions in captivity, a 30-45% humidity range is probably what is close to the reality of their micro-habitats. Hope that answers your question.
    "Thorr Geckos" private breeder in Normandy.

    Ptenopus kochi + garrulus garrulus, various Uroplatus species, Pachydactylus and Hemidactylus species, Ch. angulifer & turneri , Gehyra marginata, Afroedura loveridgei, Ptyodactylus ragazzi, H. caudicinctus, , Paroedura picta...

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    Quote Originally Posted by thorrshamri View Post
    Hypervitaminosis A - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Have a look here- even if it applies for humans, "Excessive skin dryness/peeling" is one of the effects. This, on reptiles, can lead to bad shed issues

    Living in Europe and having visited quite a lot of places where crocodile geckos live, I can tell you they will use basking sites such as house walls, old stone piles, tiles in roofs (they are well-known in some places where they gather in numbers on roofs to make rambling noises!) directly exposed to the sun, so it implies a rather low air humidity. Such surfaces are very good heat conductors and if you simulate the same conditions in captivity, a 30-45% humidity range is probably what is close to the reality of their micro-habitats. Hope that answers your question.
    I guess? Where would the 50-60% have come from then? (One place that breeds them suggested 65%.)

    ~Maggot

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