REPTILE / new pets
A Set-up Guide for Your New Crocodile Gecko
Tips for home, health to fun
Six things to know about your crocodile gecko
- Crocodile geckos live up to eight years
- They grow up to 6 inches
- They may resemble crocodiles, but the two are not related.
- They’re very territorial
- They enjoy climbing
- They’re best for experienced reptile pet parents
Your crocodile gecko’s home
Crocodile geckos should live alone in a terrarium of at least 20 gallons. Because geckos are climbers, the terrarium should be relatively tall with a screened lid.
What to put in a crocodile gecko’s habitat
- Line the bottom of the terrarium with 2 to 3 inches of bark bedding or calcium sand. The bedding you use will depend on whether the terrarium has too little or too much humidity. Ask a PetSmart associate for details.
- Scoop the poop at least once a week and change out the bedding completely once a month.
- Add a hiding place on one side of the terrarium (this will become the habitat’s cool side).
- Provide lots of branches, either live or artificial, for fun and in case your crocodile gecko wishes to climb closer to the heat lamp.
Heat & lights
- Geckos need about 12 hours of lighting that mimics daylight and 12 hours of lighting that mimics nighttime, daily. If their habitat is in a dim room, light the terrarium during the day with a fluorescent bulb.
- At night, switch to a night-specific bulb so you can watch your nocturnal pet minimum disturbance.
- Your crocodile gecko’s terrarium should have a warm side and a cool side. By day, the temperature should range between 90 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit on the warm side, and between 75 F and 80 F on the cool side. At night, the whole tank should be 65 F to 75 F.
- A heat bulb or ceramic heat emitter will keep the warm side at the right temperature. Use a thermometer on each side to help you regulate the habitat overall.
- The habitat humidity should be between 40% and 60%. Use a hygrometer — a device that measures humidity — to keep track.
Help keep your crocodile gecko healthy
Geckos need an adequate Vitamin D supply in their diet.Shop gecko vitamin supplements
Try not to handle new geckos for three or four days to give them a chance to get acclimated to their new surroundings. Whether your gecko is new or settled-in, be sure to contact a vet if you notice any of these symptoms of illness or distress:
- More time spent hiding
- Eating or drinking less; weight loss
- Discolored skin
- Swollen joints
- Discharge from the eyes, nose or mouth
- Runny droppings for more than two days
Pets purchased at PetSmart are part of our exclusive Vet Assured™ program, designed by PetSmart veterinarians to help improve the health and well-being of our pets. Our vendors meet a high standard in caring for pets and screening them for common illnesses. This program also includes specific standards for in-store pet care.
The PetSmart Promise: If your pet becomes ill during the initial 14-day period, or if you’re not satisfied for any reason, PetSmart will gladly replace the pet or refund the purchase price.