If anyone has advice, please share! My boyfriend's 14-year-old leopard gecko has refused food for the last few days, and today is lying under her heat lamp, breathing heavily with her mouth open/tongue protruding. She is also yawning quite often.
She's been hard to feed for the better part of a year now, and I suspect she's in her final decline, but is there anything we can do for her, even if it's just to make her comfortable? He's had her since she was a baby and it's breaking my heart to see him sitting next to her cage today.
so sorry to be reading a sad story like this,i have kept leos before,and lost also.
you say she is sitting under her heat lamp ? so she's out during the day ?
what temp is her tank at ?
would you mind if i ask you a couple of other things without offending you ?
has she a heat pad,and if so is it attached to a thermostat ?
what is the substrate she is on,what food does she eat and is it dusted with vitamins.
moist boxes provided at hot and cool end of viv.?
any other leo as company ?
has she layed eggs before ?
have you bathed her at all
when was last shed and was it completed.
Yeah, it's not unusual for her to be out during the day lately. Generally she cat-naps under the lamp or inside her warm hide.
The tank is about 84F on the warm side. She has a UTH with a thermostat, I'd have to ask him what it's set at. She's on ReptiBark substrate, I think it's cypress? Since she started refusing crickets earlier this year, he's been hand feeding her dusted superworms to try to keep her weight up. She's got moist areas, and is at least still drinking water.
She lives alone, she's never laid eggs. I don't think she's ever even seen a male leo. Boyfriend gave her a sponge bath yesterday, actually, and let her walk around in some shallow warm water. She shed last...I think it must have been about a week and a half ago, with no problems getting it all off, though it did take her longer than normal.
We're not offended at all! We're just grateful for any advice or help. He got her when he was in middle school, and we're in our mid-twenties now, so he's been through a long learning process with her. Right now she seems to be resting comfortably. She just had a drink (boyfriend dabbing water on her nose for her to lick) and isn't breathing quite as hard.
then to be on the safe side i'd suggest to you the vet,sounds like
you're doing a fab job with her care…
sorry i meant to ask about her poop…lol not the nicest of topics however
anyone reading this who is squeamish look away now…….
coz i'm going to ask anyway….
is it runny…and if so what colour
is it dark with white in it.
has she actually been at all. ?
She pooped a day or two ago. White and runny. She hasn't been eating very much. It can take an hour to get her to eat one worm; she just ignores food... boyfriend has been dabbing vanilla Ensure on her nose today to try to get a few calories into her.
She can stand now, and is responding a little more, but she has a very hard time walking, stumbles like she's drunk. The nearest exotics vet is over an hour away, unfortunately and I worry about making the drive with her when it's so cold out. :(
I have a 13 year old leo. I know how attached you can get to an animal that lives so long and has so much personality. I can't find my book on leopard gecko care that has a section on diseases and treatment, of course, but I will check with the person I lent it to tomorrow to see if they still have it.
You may want to give the exotic vet a call and just see what they think. Ideally you would be able to have them do a fecal smear to rule out parasites. You may be able to have them do that without actually taking the lizard, but not having ever done it I'm not sure.
I have more questions to add... Hope you don't mind but the more info the better-
Are her hip bones showing?
Have you always dusted her food? What brand/specific type of powder do you use?
Any contact with other reptiles in he last year?
Any wild caught food fed in the last year?
One thing you can try is finding a leopard gecko or reptile specific forum with breeders or experienced people who might be able to help... I am not a member of any so I can't vouch for any or whether or not it will help but it might.
My suggestion is to keep giving her gentle, warm, baths and whatever other means to keep her hydrated, keep trying to feed her, and keep a small dish, like a (clean) bottle cap of the calcium powder available in her enclosure.
Her hip bones aren't showing, bur her tail is thin. She went off her feed several months ago, and her appetite never recovered to what it used to be.
Her food's always been dusted with ZooMed Repticalcium and gut loaded with orange cubes. She hasn't had any contact with another reptile in over a decade (she doesn't play well with others) and all her food is store-bought or from our cricket tank.
She seemed to like her bath yesterday, so we'll keep doing that, and she's been good about licking up the drops of water and pedialyte we've been dabbing on her nose. I'll set up a dish of powder for her.
I'll call around and see what the closest vets think. If I can just bring them a stool sample that would be ideal, since I hate to drag her on an hour-or-more car ride in the middle of winter. I wish we had a vet in town...