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Old 16-03-2013, 02:45 PM
Egg
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Question Rescued fat tail gecko

Hi, please can anyone help me, I have rescued a fat tail gecko who is very skinny and doesn't seem very happy. I have had a boa in the past but have no experiance with any lizards. I tried feeding him crickets that were recommended but with no sucess I have managed to get a few wax worms in him and his bones seem okay so I guess he has had enough calcium up until now. His viv is very bare and has beach wood chip in, which I know is not recommended. I have so far purchased 2 hides 1 with damp moss in and some wood for him to climb on but I am wondering if anyone can recommend which substrate to use and any other advice would be greatfully received as I feel if I'm going to rescue this poor animal I want to do it right but have no idea where to start! Thank you.
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Old 16-03-2013, 02:58 PM
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Right now I would keep him on something simple such as kitchen roll, newspaper or repti-carpet (basically something that can't be swallowed and easy to clean).

Get tonnes of decor (fake plants, wood, stones) and as many hides as you can (even an old butter tub with a hole cut out). The more secure they feel, the more likely he'll feed. You'll also want a bottle cap full of calci-dust (no D3) in the tank 24/7 to allow him to self-supplement.

Do you have heating in his tank? If so what source, if it's on a thermostat and what temperatures are you getting? My fatties do best between 90-95F (depending on the individual). You also might want to consider getting a small UVB light, this will help with calcium absorption.

If you don't already, you'll need some kind of multi-vitamin (Repashy Calcium Plus is good) to dust his food with. Try to offer a variety of livefood, one of mine loves crickets and cockroaches but the other will only touch mealworms (again it's down to the individual and their requirements). Remember to gut load any food you give him.

Edit: His thinness could be caused by many things - incorrect heating, not enough food, but also illness and parasites. Correct conditions may only be so much help for him. When you're able to, I would strongly advise getting a faecal test (http://www.palsvetlab.co.uk/ These guys offer a very reliable, cheap and quick service - highly recommend them!), this will tell you if he has any fungal/bacterial infections but also parasites which often cause weight loss. Then get anything treated by the vet. I would also edge on the side of caution when it comes to judging his calcium levels - provide him plenty of calcium (and to a lesser extent D3) as bendy bones and disfigured limbs really are later stages of MBD and the likes.
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Old 16-03-2013, 03:45 PM
Egg
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THANK YOU!! It has a heat pad and bulb I'm keeping it at 90 at one end do you think I should up this to 95?
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Old 16-03-2013, 04:00 PM
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I wouldn't up it quite yet, if you give them higher temperatures their metabolism increases - if he's already thin and not eating that could make him lose weight faster. Are they statted? And how are you measuring the temperatures (using a thermostat, dial or digital thermometer)?

The key thing at the moment is to leave him alone as much as you can to let him settle in.

Something I forgot to mention is the humidity. As well as a humid hide you can also give the tank a light spray (I spray the leaves mostly), however not all owners do this. It increases the humidity and helps to keep them hydrated without the stress of a bath, they also may lick the water off the decor. I've found that, if I don't spray mine for a few days, they quickly become dehydrated and lose their appetite.

It may also be worth getting some reptoboost or avipro and putting it in the drinking water. This should give him a boost and help to stimulate his appetite.
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Old 16-03-2013, 04:30 PM
Egg
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Okay thank you, my husbands in the shop right now, I'll get him to pick some up
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Old 16-03-2013, 04:32 PM
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I hope he picks up for you! Fatties are very hardy and can bounce back quite well given the right care
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Old 16-03-2013, 04:33 PM
Egg
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The pad is on a habistat and the temperature is a digital readout with a probe thing that goes into the tank but I don't have a clue so I guess that's a digital thermometer??
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Old 16-03-2013, 04:37 PM
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Yeah that sounds like a digital thermometer, check that both the probes are on the floor where the heat mat is. Also make sure that the tank won't overheat if the light isn't on a stat (allow if it's a low wattage it won't make a huge amount of difference).
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Old 16-03-2013, 04:39 PM
Egg
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Sorry to ask so many questions!! I've also had conflicting advice on bulbs, he has a heat bulb in his tank but if I turn it on the temperature jumps way too high does he need a heat bulb or normal bulb or none at all, sorry feel so useless but I just want him to be happy bless him. :-/
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Old 16-03-2013, 04:55 PM
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Ask all the questions you need to!

There's a lot of conflicting advice as people do things differently - as long as you get good results, stick to it. Most people just use a heat mat mixed with daylight in the room for a day/night cycle. Others use a combination of heat mats and lights, and some just use lights.

I use just heat mats with no problems at all. The main thing is that you're getting the required temperatures on the floor of the tank. If there's no stat on the light and it's overheating the tank, I wouldn't use the bulb at all for the moment.

Hope that answered your question (in a round-about way!)
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