What is the Best Substrate for Leopard Geckos?
Leopard geckos are one of the most popular pet lizards, and for a good reason! They are easy to house, low maintenance, and generally calm. With the correct environment, leopard geckos can make an interesting and rewarding pet.
What Is Substrate?
Substrate is the material that lines the bottom of a leopard gecko’s habitat, offering them a safe and comfortable place to rest. Substrates also help to control humidity and maintain temperatures.
Types of Substrate
When deciding which substrate to use for your leopard gecko, there are a few options to consider:
- Cedar/Aspen Shavings: These materials may be acidic, and can cause irritation to your gecko if ingested. Additionally, the dust created by these materials is known to cause respiratory issues.
- Reptile Carpet: With a reptile carpet, you will have to regularly check and clean it, as bacteria can grow on the carpet.
- Calci-Sand: This type of substrate contains small grains, which can be attractive to geckos. Unfortunately, if ingested, it can cause a dangerous blockage in the intestines, so this is not recommended.
- Paper Towels and Newspaper: These are unscented and safe for your leopard gecko; however, they tend to be not as visually pleasing.
The Best Option
The best substrate to use for a leopard gecko is a soil-based mix, like Zoo Med Forest Floor or Exo Terra Coco Husk. These are safe and will allow you and your gecko to enjoy the natural look of the habitat, while still being easy to monitor and clean.
To ensure the safety of your leopard gecko, change the substrate every two weeks and maintain proper humidity and temperature levels. With the best substrate and regular maintenance, you and your leopard gecko will be happy and healthy!