As a new leo owner, you’re probably wondering how you can keep him hydrated and comfortable. You provide him with water and make sure the temperature within the habitat is adequate.
You’re wondering whether your leopard gecko could also do with a little misting, especially during sweltering weather conditions. Is misting necessary, though?
Do leopard geckos need misting? Yes, leopard geckos need misting occasionally to help keep them hydrated and aid shedding. Misting also increases the humidity and moisture levels in the habitat to ease arduous shedding. Misting devices are also available in both a manual and an automatic system.
Your leopard gecko’s moisture needs should be fulfilled with infrequent bursts of mist either directly on the body or within the habitat. He will be able to lick little droplets of water running down his head to help with hydration and getting out of his old skin.
Keep reading to learn more about misting your leopard gecko.
Table of Contents
1. Do Leopard Geckos Need Misting?
Leopard geckos originate from arid or non-tropical terrain; however, they do enjoy a little misting to keep cool and content. It is recommended to mist adult geckos twice a week or when they are preparing to shed. Humidity or moist boxes eliminate the need to mist adult leopard geckos.
Hatchlings and baby leos up to three months old require daily misting even with a humidity or moist box. As baby leos’ skin sheds frequently, it is crucial to keep them moist to ease shedding.
A baby leo may not necessarily go into a humidity or moist box to shed their skin at that stage. It happens especially when they are sharing the habitat with a hostile habitat mate. To help them, along with the shedding process, misting is required.
A great time to gently mist your leopard gecko is when they are just about to shed. Bear in mind that only a little bit of spray is required. The gentle mist tends to evaporate quickly and will not harm your leopard gecko.
To avoid common issues such as stuck or partial shedding, owners usually mist their leopard geckos and their habitats.
2. Shedding Issues
Shedding issues can result in leopard geckos losing their toes. Shedding stuck around the toes will dry up, and the skin will start tightening and constrict the toes.
The blood supply to the toes is obstructed, and an inadequate supply of oxygen is carried by the blood to the toes. The toes then start decaying, fall off, and often results in an infection.
When the skin starts turning dull, the shedding process is being initiated and can be helped by gentle misting of the habitat and directly misting the leopard gecko.
Professional help should be sought if shedding issues occur, and there is skin stuck to the body. An experienced veterinarian should evaluate the leopard gecko and determine the method of treatment.
The underlying cause and complications should be treated as well as the remaining skin removed.
Leopard gecko shedding problems are largely related to the humidity levels. Low humidity occurs when the habitat is too dry, and therefore old skin cannot loosen up adequately. Old skin remains stuck on the body, which is not an ideal situation for your leopard gecko.
Dry skin and shedding issues will stress your leopard gecko; misting will help to avoid this situation.
3. Misting the Habitat
Misting is vital when maintaining the right environment within your leopard gecko’s habitat and meeting their daily moisture requirements.
Skin shedding is promoted, and humidity levels are perfectly maintained with misting. Your leopard gecko can also enjoy lapping up water droplets to remain hydrated.
The following points are important to note when misting your leopard gecko’s habitat:
- Mist the habitat daily, especially when there is no source of water in the habitat. Leopard geckos need water to survive and live healthily even though they originate from a dry environment. Water and moisture are also required for skin shedding.
- The appropriate humidity level should be maintained when misting your leopard gecko’s habitat. Humidity levels should be maintained at 40% or lower. High humidity levels, including fogging, is a result of too much misting if the ventilation is poor.
- Leopard geckos can experience complications with shedding when the humidity levels are kept below 20%. On the other extreme, when humidity levels are too high, exceeding 40% will increase their susceptibility to numerous infections.
- The habitat should ideally be misted at least several times a week, and baby leopard geckos misted occasionally.
- The primary purpose of misting the habitat is to maintain the humidity levels of the habitat and provide your leopard gecko with the required moisture. Watering and misting the habitat should not be confused.
- Misting allows for the substrate within the habitat to contain the sprayed water, and as a result, watering the habitat is hardly ever necessary.
Two methods are available for misting your habitat and your leopard gecko. You could either manually mist by using a spray bottle or provide for an automated system within the habitat.
4. Automated Misting
The automated misting system offers convenience, and you avoid the risk of potentially forgetting to mist.
Automated misters are ideal, especially if you are not able to routinely mist your leopard gecko’s habitat and your leo. It also protects your leopard gecko from potential issues that may arise from not carrying out routine misting.
If you mistakenly forget to mist your leopard gecko and their habitat and they are in a situation where they require misting, your leopard gecko could face health issues.
A habitat without any moisture in the air could result in various issues for your leopard gecko, including them possibly losing their life.
Life can become busy with all the demands expected from work or school, and it is likely to forget misting your leopard gecko and their habitat. Leopard geckos are also crepuscular creatures who wake at night, and this may pose a potential inconvenience when misting is required.
An automated misting system is also ideal for controlling humidity levels within the habitat at night when levels tend to drop.
To prevent your leopard gecko against extremely dry or hot air at night and provide them with the humidity levels required for shedding successfully, it is recommended to install an automated misting system.
Owners of leopard geckos who cannot maintain consistent humidity levels at 20% to 40% within the habitat should install an automated misting system.
5. Manual Misting
Manually misting the habitat is simply achieved with an inexpensive spray bottle and is recommended when you do not lead a busy lifestyle with a ton of responsibility. Humidifying the habitat and keeping your leopard gecko cool can be effectively completed using a spray bottle.
6. Avoid Excessive Misting
Excessively misting your leopard gecko and his habitat results in high levels of humidity, and in turn, potentially causing respiratory issues.
A leopard gecko’s ability to properly breathe is strained if they are inhaling very thick, hot, and humid air. It will adversely affect their bodies as they have very small lungs. As a result of this, misting should be done once a day or when required.
Decreasing humidity levels can become a challenge, and to avoid removing items retaining moisture from the habitat, spray the habitat once a day and once in the evening before you bid your gecko goodnight.
Monitoring the hygrometer after spraying in the evening is important to make sure that humidity levels drop to between 20% and 40% before going to bed. People living in extremely humid environments may have problems with the humidity dropping.
Respiratory infections for your leopard gecko will not be an ideal situation and requires special treatment and antibiotics to resolve, so it’s best not to mist the habitat numerous times a day excessively.
7. Misting with Purified Water
Contaminated water could negatively affect the health of leopard gecko. Using purified water for misting is crucial as some leopard geckos enjoy licking water droplets off the sides of the habitat or items placed within the habitat.
Regular tap water and bottled water contain harmful chemicals that could put your leopard gecko’s health at risk. Protect the health of your leopard gecko and avoid exposing them to water potentially harmful to their health by only using purified water for misting.
Bottled water still contains trace contaminants and is not a much better option than tap water. Purifying water before misting or offering them water to drink is vital if you would like to best protect your leopard gecko.
Our leopard geckos are much more susceptible to experiencing issues from drinking contaminated water.
Our bodies are stronger at flushing out toxins found in water, but that doesn’t mean we should be consuming unpurified water. It is detrimental to our health and poses an even higher risk to our leopard geckos.
Purifying water before offering it to your leopard gecko is pertinent for longevity and leading a healthful life. Purifying water allows you to get rid of most, if not all, of the chemicals found in tap and bottled water.
It would be of great benefit to look into purifying options available for not only yourself but other members of your family, including your beloved leopard gecko!
Leopard geckos require moderate misting as it helps them to keep cool and satisfied. It also eases the shedding process and helps them to drink water.
An automated misting system will assist in keeping your leopard gecko right on track, offer you the convenience you need to keep him hydrated and aid with his shedding.
Remember to avoid excessive misting and only use purified water to ensure that your leopard gecko leads a long and healthy life!