Overweight or Obese Leopard Gecko

An overweight or obese leopard gecko can face several health problems, including a shortened lifespan, organ stress, and reduced mobility. Here’s how to recognize, manage, and prevent obesity in leopard geckos:

Symptoms of Overweight or Obesity

  • Thick Tail: While a plump tail is healthy, an overly thick and bulbous tail can indicate obesity.
  • Large Fat Pockets: Visible fat deposits around the armpits, sides, and abdomen.
  • Reduced Mobility: Difficulty moving, climbing, or sluggishness.
  • Round Body: The body appears rounder and bulkier than normal.

Causes of Obesity

  1. Overfeeding:
    • Feeding too frequently or offering excessive amounts of food.
  2. High-Fat Diet:
    • Feeding too many high-fat insects such as waxworms and superworms.
  3. Lack of Exercise:
    • Limited space or opportunities to move and explore.
  4. Improper Temperature:
    • Incorrect temperature gradients can affect metabolism.

Treatment and Management

  1. Adjust Feeding Schedule:
    • Adults (1+ years): Feed every other day or 3-4 times a week.
    • Juveniles (up to 1 year): Feed daily, but monitor portions carefully.
  2. Balanced Diet:
    • Focus on nutritionally balanced insects like crickets, mealworms, and dubia roaches.
    • Limit high-fat insects to occasional treats.
  3. Portion Control:
    • Offer appropriately sized prey items (no larger than the width between the gecko’s eyes).
    • Avoid feeding too many insects at once.
  4. Encourage Exercise:
    • Provide a spacious enclosure with climbing structures and hides.
    • Stimulate activity by rearranging the habitat or adding new items to explore.
  5. Maintain Proper Temperatures:
    • Ensure the temperature gradient is correct: 88-92°F on the warm side and 75-80°F on the cool side.


  1. Regular Monitoring:
    • Keep track of your gecko’s weight and body condition regularly.
    • Adjust diet and feeding frequency based on the gecko’s body condition and activity level.
  2. Appropriate Habitat:
    • Provide a stimulating environment that encourages natural behaviors and movement.
  3. Health Check-Ups:
    • Schedule regular visits to a reptile veterinarian to ensure your gecko’s overall health.

When to Consult a Veterinarian

  • If your gecko shows signs of severe obesity or related health issues such as lethargy, difficulty moving, or abnormal swelling, consult a reptile veterinarian. The vet can provide tailored advice and check for any underlying health conditions.

By carefully managing diet, providing a stimulating environment, and monitoring your leopard gecko’s health, you can prevent obesity and promote a healthy, active life for your pet.

Leave a Comment