I just got a small leopard gecko last week. This is my first one. He only comes out of his rock house at night. Nobody has seen him outside but he has eaten mealworms and leaves tracks in the sand. He seems to sleep all day. Is this normal?
Also the tank is starting to smell bad. I picked out the little pieces of poop that I could see. Cleaned and refilled his water. But the stench is nauseating. Is this also normal? Do I need to change the sand very often? It can be expensive. The bag of sand, good for one tank full, is of the lizard safe kind and cost five bucks.
Thanks,
Dave
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I just got a small leopard gecko last week. This is my first one. He only comes out of his ... bag of sand, good for one tank full, is of the lizard safe kind and cost five bucks. Thanks, Dave

FIRST!!! LOSE THE SAND!!! Small leos have a tendency of eating the substrate with the worms. They will get impaction, paper towels until it is bigger or always. easy to clean no danger for the leo.

It is normal for them to sleep all day they are nocturnal lizards. How much research did you do before you bought the leo?
if you want to read some care sheets you can find a link for caresheets here.
http://www.casadelgecko.com/gecko links.htm
I just got a small leopard gecko last week. This is my first one. Heonly comes out of his rock ... but he has eaten mealworms and leaves tracks in the sand. He seems to sleep all day. Is this normal?

yes they are nocturnal.
Also the tank is starting to smell bad. I picked out the little pieces of poop that I could see. ... expensive. The bag of sand, good for one tank full, is of the lizard safe kind and cost five bucks.

Thats not normal. i have loads and even with all the poo for a short while it doesnt smell. it could be damp? glue or paint?
He seems to sleep all day. Is this normal?

Yes, it's normal, they're nocturnal.
And as for the stench, my leopard gecko's tank never smelt and all I did was the same as you. Refilled the water daily and removed the poop (little fellow used to poop in the same corner all the time, clean lil bugger)

I kept him on woodchips, not sand though.
I lost him to colitis last Tuesday, he's buried in the back garden
Thanks Brian. Even though the sand is "lizard safe" I'll take it out, clean the tank and line it with paper towels. It's actually my little boy's gecko. All of his friends have them but as usual, it's up to the parent to make sure they don't die. I did not know how I would deal with this gecko but I really like it. My boy had been begging for one for a long time and finally I caved in.
DaveL
Thanks Julian. The only dampness is the water bowl and the shedbox which has wet moss in it. There's no glue or paint smell. It a poop smell. I'm going to replace the sand with paper towels and try to raise the level of overall hygiene of the tank.
DaveL
Thanks Julian. The only dampness is the water bowl and the shedbox which has wet moss in it. There's no ... to replace the sand with paper towels and try to raise the level of overall hygiene of the tank. DaveL

As the Rev says lose the sad, while its young nayway, in the wild they rarley live on sand as we know, more scrub or rocks. I have never had a gex die from sand impaction but i have known of it esp in young reptiles.

Lots of people use chinchilla? sand, i use a cheap sand from my herp shop not the branded expensive stuff.
Cant help on the smell, never come accross it unless something has died.
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I just got a small leopard gecko last week. This is my first one. He only comes out of his ... but he has eaten mealworms and leaves tracks in the sand. He seems to sleep all day. Is this normal?

Sounds like me - Up all night.
You could get one of those cut-away hiding rocks and face it towards your view to see him more often - Or just get some other kind of obstruction that doesn't hide him so well.
I got coconut shells (with a little doorway of course) and another hide rock, but both my geckos prefer to hang out by this little sand stone carving thing I got at Petsmart, where they are pretty visible. (think it was in the fish section).
Also the tank is starting to smell bad. I picked out the little pieces of poop that I could see. ... expensive. The bag of sand, good for one tank full, is of the lizard safe kind and cost five bucks.

No that don't sound normal at all.
You sure there ain't a cat shtting behind the tank or somethin ? Sounds like you may need to be concerned about temperature also. Is there any artificial heat source, and do you monitor the temp with a thermometer ?
Sounds like you may need to be concerned about temperature also. Is there any artificial heat source, and do you monitor the temp with a thermometer ?

Yes. I have an under the tank heating pad made by Zoo-med. And I also use a lamp for 12 hours a day. At first I used a regular 60 watt house bulb. It did not get warm enough. So I put in a 50 watt plant grow bulb and that increased the heat. I have a hot side on the right. The thermometer is mount on the tank wall about in the middle. It usually hovers in the 75f range. But I know the hot side is hotter. I may change the placement of the thermometer to the hot side because that is where he(she) spends most of his time.
DaveL
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