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Thread: Cresties, College, and Other Newbie Questions

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    Question Cresties, College, and Other Newbie Questions

    Hello all! Sorry if this post gets a little long, but I have several questions about keeping crested geckos.
    First of all, a little about myself. I'm going into my sophomore year of college, and will be taking about 15 credit hours a semester. I've been obsessed with cresties ever since meeting one in a pet store a year or two ago. I have had one leopard gecko before so this won't be the first reptile I've owned. I'm going to move into an apartment this fall, and will be staying there for at least the next year. Technically they don't allow pets, but I've heard of people keeping small animals such as geckos there hidden, or paying a fine if found out. I'm planning on feeding my crestie either Pangea or Repashy, haven't decided which yet, and switching it up yearly, as well as dusted crickets either weekly or every other week.

    I'd like to ask, about how much time on average does everyone spend caring for their geckos daily? Are there any other college students who can share their schedule with me? My biggest concern is time, but I do think I'll be able to balance care and school. I plan on paying close attention to whether or not that's true over the upcoming fall semester, and it would help a lot to have a general schedule to sort of picture myself going about day by day. If all goes well, there's a reptile expo near me in November, and I plan on getting my gecko there.

    My next concern is salmonella. Is it likely that I'll catch it from my gecko? Should I worry about my gecko crawling on surfaces, say a couch, and then someone possibly getting salmonella from that?

    Next, aging. How quickly do crested geckos generally grow? Say I got one between 6-12 months, and I got a smaller 12x12x18. Could an adult still be fine in that size cage? If not, how soon would I need to move it to a larger tank? Could I go ahead and start it in the larger tank so that I wouldn't need to get a new one?

    And finally, one last question. Is there much of a difference between the genders? I think I would prefer a male, as I think a complication with eggs is what killed my leo. I heard somewhere though that males have a sort of musk, is that true? If so, is it strong?

    Thanks so much to anyone who reads this through. Any help is greatly appreciated!

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    I can answer some.

    I would stick to whichever brand food you decide on, and just switch out flavors. Many people prefer the Pangea, but that is a personal preference, and one might be easier for you to get than the other.

    Question to consider - IF your apartment manager finds out and decides that you CANNOT KEEP your crestie, do you have alternate plans for it?

    Crickets are noisy and messy. You might want to consider dubia roaches as supplements.

    Daily care is not much - basically, I mist every day, I change the food every other day, and I do a thorough tank cleaning every two weeks. That takes me about an hour per gecko. (I have fake plants and paper towels, not a bioactive tank. Others will have to advise you for daily care of bioactive, if you decide to go that route.) I chose cresties because they are pretty low-maintenance and easy care.

    I don't have any experience with salmonella, but from what I have read here, it is rare. Basic cleanliness before and after handling your gecko should eliminate most chance of contracting it, even if you let your gecko roam.

    If I were you, I'd suggest an adult male, and keep it in an 18x18x24. Then you don't have to worry about switching tanks, and if you can get an adult that is used to handling, so much the better. A 12x12x18 is "OK" for an adult, but not ideal. It should move to a larger tank at around 15-20 grams. You have to go more by size than age, as they all grow at different rates.

    I got a male for the same reason you were thinking about complications with eggs. Just didn't want the hassle. I love my male. He is 6 years old and has no odor.
    Eileen
    TAD (Tiny Ancient Dinosaur) - Yellow flame dash pinstripe crestie 1.0.0
    Hygge, aka TBD (Tiny Badass Dragon) - Brown reticulated gargoyle 0.0.1
    Rody Jane - Cattledog/stinkwad mix 0.1.0
    Dixie Moonpie - Rattledog 0.1.0
    Ancient barn cats - 3.0.0

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    Rekos (07-06-2017)

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    Thanks for your response!

    Good to know on the food. For crickets, there's a pet store pretty close to my apartment, so I was planning on just buying them as needed.

    Also good thing to keep in mind on the backup plan. I have a couple ideas, but nothing completely solid, so I'll make sure to have that ready before I get him.

    You also brought up something else I forgot to ask about, substrate. Do you think I should go for paper towel, moss, or a bioactive? I've heard moss holds moisture better, although I'm not too worried about humidity as I live in a humid climate. I like the poop-dissolving feature of the bioactive set up, but what kind of care does that need? I've also heard about repti carpets, what are your thoughts on those? I used them for my Leo, and they seemed to work pretty well.

    From what you're saying, adult male it is.

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    Hi. Welcome.

    Apartment- if the landlord found out,What would happen? You could loose the apartment, or have to sell the gecko. I'd talk with him/her and explian. The gecko will be in a tank. No smell. Won't poop/pee everywhere. No additional heat. No noise.

    I prefer Pangea, but it's your choice. Instead of switching brands, just do flavors. crickets are smelly, noisy, and just flat out blah. However if you buy as needed, you'll be fine. But I do suggest Dubai roaches, less chance of parasites.

    I have theee geckos- as little as 5 minutes on some days, and at most as 30min/1 hour each gecko on the other days. Some days all I have to do is mist, while another day I feed. But the otheday I clean out cages etc.

    I've never heard of someone getting salmonella from a gecko. Rule of thumb is to wash hands before and after handing, but I don't. I let mine crawl around on couch etc. but I'm not saying it won't happen to you.

    They all grow comepletely different. One of mine went from 5g-24g in a mater of 8ish months. While my other one went from 30g to 35g in 8ish months. I would get an older one to keep in the big tank.

    I don't think there is a difference. Definitely no musk smell to males(unless you put your nose in their poo). I would get a female, if it was me. Females have a chance of getting bound, yes. But males can get mean in breeding season/trying to mate with your hand. They can also have problems with their Hemipenis. You could also "winter-ise" it so she thinks it's winter. She might still lay, but not as much. But she won't eat as much either... I say just go with an open mind and find one that you fall in love with. Whether it's a male or female. But if you get a seced one, it might be older.

    I'd use paper towels for the first 90 days, just to monitor everything on your new gecko. After that, a loose (gecko safe) substrate is fine. I would not use repti carpet. It holds molds and bacteria too easily. Also with misting every day, probably isn't good for it eaither.

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    The misting just depends on your humidity level, so if you live in a humid area, you may not have to mist every day. Make sure you get a good digital thermometer/hygrometer to keep tabs on that.

    I agree on nixing the Repti-Carpet.
    Eileen
    TAD (Tiny Ancient Dinosaur) - Yellow flame dash pinstripe crestie 1.0.0
    Hygge, aka TBD (Tiny Badass Dragon) - Brown reticulated gargoyle 0.0.1
    Rody Jane - Cattledog/stinkwad mix 0.1.0
    Dixie Moonpie - Rattledog 0.1.0
    Ancient barn cats - 3.0.0

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    Hello! I just wanted to chime in since I have a crestie and I know all about apartments with strict pet policies.
    Ive been going to school full time and working and have had no problems keeping up with my cresties needs! Everyones schedule is different of course, just make sure you mist before you go to class in the morning and also when you get home in the evening. One thing that has saved some time for me is to premake enough food for the week in a small squirt bottle that i store in the fridge (which youll need to rinse and make more every week). I keep my bottle caps in a ziplock on the fridge door so I can just grab the food bottle and the cap i use for its bowl and streamline the process. Also make sure you take some study breaks to hold the little guy of course

    BUT in regard to the apartment: I would really REALLY reconsider going against the pet policy of the apartment. i know it sucks, but coming from someone who has lived in a couple student apartments, people can stop by all the time with little warning. Now that I have my crestie and my bearded dragon, the first thing I ask when looking for an apartment is if reptiles are allowed, if not I cross it off my list. With apartments and pets, I've learned that its best to be up front about it. But if you've already signed with the apartment, make sure you have a backup plan! Things like what do I do if I get a notice saying that maintenance is going to be entering or if they will be spraying for bugs and you and your geckos will have to leave for a few hours.

    Oh also! If youre worried about salmonella keep a bottle of hand sanitizer by your geckos tank! (and always make sure you wash or sanitize when between holding different animals)

    Hope that wasn't too ramble-y!
    Best of luck!

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    @TAD- you still need to mist everyday, how else is the gecko supposed to drink?

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    I have a water dish in my tanks as well, but I do mist every day (twice, in fact), as my tank dries out quite a bit during the day. I guess I assumed that the person asking also had a water dish, and they said they lived in a humid area. If it dries out too much, there can be shedding problems, and if it's too humid, then possible mold, etc., and either extreme can cause respiratory problems...that's why it's a good idea to have the hygrometer.
    Eileen
    TAD (Tiny Ancient Dinosaur) - Yellow flame dash pinstripe crestie 1.0.0
    Hygge, aka TBD (Tiny Badass Dragon) - Brown reticulated gargoyle 0.0.1
    Rody Jane - Cattledog/stinkwad mix 0.1.0
    Dixie Moonpie - Rattledog 0.1.0
    Ancient barn cats - 3.0.0

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    Yeah I agree, but it's *rare* for a gecko to use water dishes. Not saying they won't though.

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    I keep water dishes in my tanks and change the water daily, but honestly have never seen them used. I do mist twice a day, light in the morning, heavier at night. You're right - they should be misted once a day, at least. I didn't state it very well in my other post. Misting only takes seconds, so as far as time-consuming daily care, it's really not! (At least for a single gecko!)
    Eileen
    TAD (Tiny Ancient Dinosaur) - Yellow flame dash pinstripe crestie 1.0.0
    Hygge, aka TBD (Tiny Badass Dragon) - Brown reticulated gargoyle 0.0.1
    Rody Jane - Cattledog/stinkwad mix 0.1.0
    Dixie Moonpie - Rattledog 0.1.0
    Ancient barn cats - 3.0.0

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