Do Geckos Carry Salmonella?
Geckos are small, harmless lizards that make great pets for both kids and adults. But, is there cause for concern if you keep a gecko in your home? Can geckos carry salmonella and other harmful bacteria?
What is Salmonella?
Salmonella is a type of bacteria that can cause food poisoning. Symptoms of salmonella include abdominal cramps, vomiting, and diarrhea. It can be serious if not treated properly.
Can Geckos Carry Salmonella?
The short answer here is yes. Like other reptiles, geckos can be carriers of salmonella. However, the risk here is quite low. A study conducted in 2013 found that the prevalence of salmonella in wild caught geckos was approximately 0.9%.
Reducing the Risk of Salmonella with Geckos
Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to reduce the risk of salmonella when keeping geckos. Here are some tips:
- Keep the enclosure and your hands clean. Always wash your hands before and after handling your gecko and its enclosure.
- Don’t feed live insects. Feeding live insects or other animals to your gecko may increase the risk of salmonella.
- Don’t keep your gecko in humid environments. Humid environments are more conducive to bacteria, so it’s best to avoid them.
If you’re still concerned about salmonella, you can even purchase a salmonella test kit to test your gecko periodically.
Ultimately, the risk of salmonella with geckos is quite small. With the right precautions, you’ll be able to enjoy your gecko and keep them healthy.