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My crestie won't let me handle it.

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  • My crestie won't let me handle it.

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ID:	1093939My 4 month old crestie won't let me handle it. It's been in its current 12x12x18 terrarium for about a month and a half now (the whole time I have owned it) and every time I put my hand through the terrarium doors and slowly move them towards it, it either moves its head away or goes to the top of the terrarium at the back.

    I personally think it is from a distrust of some sorts. On the first night of having Detto, his/her tail fell off when the terrarium doors closed on it (long story short, the door creaked when i was closing it and it moved into the door.)

    Does anybody know what I can do to help this? I am attempting to do it about 4 hours into its night cycle (when it is "fired up"). I have only handled it once or twice since in order for it to get used to its habitat.

  • #2
    I'm sorry to hear about your situation. I moved my Slider from one enclosure to another causing a tail drop. For a while after, he was very anxious and skittish whenever I approached his enclosure. (I ended up returning him to his old enclosure to let his butt heal, poor thing). It took months of rehab to get him back on track. This is what I did:

    Step 1: I quietly sat next to his enclosure every night so he'd get used to me again.
    Step 2: After a week or so, I'd edge closer to the enclosure and sometimes touch it.
    Step 3: Once Slider was okay with seeing me and touching his home, I'd put my hand in the enclosure to get him used to seeing my hand. If this provoked some panic response, I'd remove my hand and try again the next day or the day after.
    Step 4: I'd introduce my hand for longer and long periods until he was comfortable with me sharing his space.
    Step 5: To pick him up, I'd make sure he could see my hand slide under him. No surprises or grasping from above. Then, I'd hold him inside the enclosure.
    Step 6: Once Slider transitioned well from Step 5, I would try and remove him from his enclosure. If he displayed any signs of skittishness at all, I'd stop.

    I'm still working on this; Slider is coming along though. He is by far my most sensitive gecko. Good thing he's cute!
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    4.24.0 Crested Geckos
    0.2.0 Leopard Gecko

    FB: Geckos by Design

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    • #3
      Thank you so much, I will have to try this tomorrow night and onwards. How often did you sit next to his enclosure each night?

      Also, Slider is absolutely gorgeous. How old is he? Looks like a fine juvenile to me!

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      • #4
        Try handling him little by little. Also keep in mind that geckos have different personalities. Some are friendly and inquisitive and some are the complete opposite and just will never want to be handled ever. 2 of my geckos are like this and instead of bothering them trying to tame them I just let them be and only take them out when cleaning.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Damon Jordan Marrison View Post
          Thank you so much, I will have to try this tomorrow night and onwards. How often did you sit next to his enclosure each night?

          Also, Slider is absolutely gorgeous. How old is he? Looks like a fine juvenile to me!
          I'm not sure maybe 1/2 hour or more? I'd read something while I was there. Slider is now a 3 year old adult. He is still quite inquisitive and a bit of a ham, as you can see. The photo shows him at his juvie stage, fired down. He is a very dark grey fired up with creamy dorsal and laterals. Thanks for the compliment.
          4.24.0 Crested Geckos
          0.2.0 Leopard Gecko

          FB: Geckos by Design

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          • #6
            What's your tank look like? Providing more cover usually will help them feel secure and settle in faster.

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            • #7
              You might try handling the gecko during the day when they are more likely to be sleepy. It just takes time for them to stop worrying you are a giant hungry hawk.

              Rachodactylus Ciliatus

              2.2.5.2
              MUNKEY, PEACHES, MORROW, THIMBLE, KILI, GOLLUM, FALCOR, CHEECH & VALENTINE

              Rachodactylus Auriculatus
              1.2.1 KEKO, ARRO, PEBBLES & FALCOR

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              • #8
                I hope you don't mind me mentioning a few suggestions after noticing your setup. Here is a photo of a naturalistic tank I setup for Marley during quarantine. If you are able to add more leafy large leaved plants and horizontal perches to break sight lines, that will help your little one to feel more secure. Here is a naturalistic tank filled with artificial plants that I used for Marley while I readied his live vivarium:
                Attached Files
                4.24.0 Crested Geckos
                0.2.0 Leopard Gecko

                FB: Geckos by Design

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