Ever been caring for your crested gecko, only to find that he is squeaking up a storm? There is a reason behind this, and today you’re about to find out!
Here is why your crested gecko is squeaking. Crested geckos squeak as a way of saying, “I am afraid,” or “Leave me alone.” This is a response meant to act as a distraction to a predator. By and large, Crested geckos do not care to be handled often, and will illicit this response.
Now you know that your crested gecko does this because he or she feels afraid or threatened. In order to learn more and handle your gecko with care, keep on reading.
Table of Contents
Crested Geckos at Home
Mostly found in earthy tones of red, green and brown in the wild, the crested gecko has been kept enough in captivity that there are many colors and markings to choose from when you pick them up.
Cresties are lovely reptiles and are great for family members of all ages to learn about and enjoy as pets. They are rather docile when it comes to their personality and are calm, too.
The crests that run along the heads of these creatures are soft, despite the fact that they remind us somewhat of cactus needles.
The soft feel of a gecko’s skin is quite enjoyable, and the eyes are also a source of wonder, having no lids but instead a brille to keep them protected.
Indeed, the natural traits of the gecko makes it a wonder in and of itself. Even though they (presumably) have no predators in your home, they still retain all their amazing survival traits.
They will climb vertical surfaces thanks to the lamellae on their toes. They never close their eyes. And, they even look like they have a smile on their faces.
When Your Gecko Gets Upset
It’s important to watch out for signs your crestie is upset.
Here are some you can watch out for:
- Squeaking and swishing of the tail
- Refusal to eat/heightened appetite
- Aggression when being fed
- Jumping at the glass when you approach
- Biting (We show you how to stop your Crestie from biting in this article)
- Following your hands as you move
As you can see, the first bullet point says it all: Your crested gecko could be upset. Now we will talk about ways you can remedy this and make them calm again.
Your crestie may not be used to you. Imagine you have been put into a container and shipped across the country, only to be brought to a new home where you know NOBODY. You can’t possibly feel happy or calm!
It will take about 10-20 days for your reptile to become acclimated. Make sure your gecko is all by themselves, and also be sure you cover the tank sides with cloth or cardboard if they need help staying calm.
Work up to handling your gecko slowly but surely. After one week, put your hand in the tank to show you are not a threat.
Put some food on your finger and allow him to come lick it off. In the meantime, don’t attempt to handle the gecko. He has to get used to you first.
Watch Those Tank Objects
Your crested gecko may begin squeaking because they do not like an object in their tank. If you find that they get aggressive or when you bring a certain object whether inside or outside of your tank close to them, they are upset. It can be anything-boxes, figurines, necklaces, and more.
Things inside the tank might be things like high humidity, a bright light, or a tank accessory.
Food Is A Big Deal
Some cresties really love to eat bugs and they will get excited before and after the feeding times. They may get aggressive and try to bite fingers when catching the bugs.
Avoid being bitten by not handling your crested gecko during periods of bug feeding. They may confuse your fingers for moving bugs.
Hunting is normal in crested geckos, so don’t fear that it is due to them not liking your or some other reason.
You may also find that your crested gecko gets frustrated and upset if you get rid of bugs or other food insects from their daily diet.
Geckos are natural hunters, and the removal of this from their day can lead them to feel frustrated. They may run around looking for bugs to hunt.
Conversely, if you don’t offer ANY live bugs, your gecko may still become aggressive. After all, the hunting instincts are hard-wired in these little reptiles, so make sure you provide them the chance to use them.
Safe Handling of Crested Geckos
One reason your gecko might feel upset and begin squeaking is if they are being handled in such a way that makes them nervous or scared.
You can employ techniques from the moment you bring your gecko home that will get him or her used to being handled.
Geckos are big jumpers, so sit down on the ground when you begin this process. The goal is to get your gecko to walk from one of your hands to the other.
This is why it is so important that you stay seated while doing this. They can be safe and run along your hands, safely and at the same time get used to being handled.
It is very important that you handle your gecko with care so that they are not dropped. If they are dropped, there is a risk that their tails will come off. Your gecko will NOT regrow his tail if dropped.
Most crested geckos you find out in the wild do not have tails. One cool technique of the crested gecko is to leave behind the tail to move around and distract the predator while the reptile flees to a safer place.
If you hold your gecko too lightly or startle them, they may become threatened and drop their tails as a result.
This is not to say they cannot live happy and healthy without their tails, nor are they any less cute and fun as pets. However, it’s best to always handle your crestie in the safest way possible.
Handling Them Incorrectly
Your gecko can become aggressive and upset if handled incorrectly. This can result in the squeaking sounds you wondered about. Jerky or fast movements will make them upset. If you put your hand over your gecko, they won’t be able to see, and thus will feel very vulnerable.
Crested geckos weighing under 8 grams should be not handled at all. They can drop their tails at this weight and are quite fragile at this stage. They are easy to crush at this age, too-so it’s best to let them grow before handling them.
Also, make sure you handle your gecko only at the nighttime hours-never the daytime or the morning. Remember that your crestie is a crepuscular creature and he gets active toward the close of the day and the night.
Now you know why crested geckos tend to squeak every now and then. While it may sound cute, the reality is that they are feeling nervous or threatened.
As a responsible gecko owner, take steps to handle them carefully and allow them time to rest if they feel upset-you and your gecko will both be happier.