Your Gecko Escaped, Huh?
Keeping positive about finding it is a must. Think about it like this: you do not have to find a lost gecko, simply find its hiding place. They can go a good while without food and water. Most are found quickly but I’ve heard of one appearing eight months later.
While you are in the hunt for your gecko you can also be assessing how the escape took place. Did you leave the key to its condo in the door lock? Supply a natural ladder that you spent hours of time on for them to climb? Or didn’t know you had a “carpenter morph” and left tools and a couple of two by fours in the tank…….… Seriously, figure out how the gecko may have gotten out so it doesn’t happen again when you finally find it.
Some tips: your gecko is looking for its #1 need — SECURITY. This means a hidden spot where it feels safe and where the temperature feels right. Whether the gecko seeks a warm or cool spot can depend on the surrounding temperatures of where it was housed when lost and of the floor near where it’s kept. For example:
in a warm house with a carpeted floor the gecko may move about seeking other warm spots. In a house with cooler conditions, perhaps with vinyl floor covering or a concrete slab floor, it may be satisfied to hide in more of a brumation safe-spot tightly tucked away.
Here are some quick and easy places to look for a missing gecko. See if it’s still in its tank. If the tank has carpet, look underneath the carpet. Make sure it’s not in another gecko’s tank. Lift up loose rugs or throw-rugs and look under them. Check your bed coverings……geckos can jump up and climb the spreads, blankets, etc. Your gecko might even be under your pillow! You’ve gotta take it apart piece by piece; you can’t just glance at it. Look under ALL furniture and use a flashlight. Remember that it can be on the move so one check is not good enough until it is found. Any shoes on the floors or in closets? Shake them out because many have been found in the toe of shoes or house slippers.
Moisture in a nearby bath or shower area may attract your gecko. Check the shower curtain as one of mine was found in the folds of the curtain.
Check heat coming from a fridge floor area. Many have been found under the fridge. You may have to roll it out to check underneath. SO BE CAREFUL ! Don’t run it over or you have wasted your time finding it. Other warm places to check are the gas water heater area and the laundry room, especially the dryer area.
The first place to look is the room it’s housed in. If you have searched the room, and still have not spotted it, you now need to expand the search. With flashlight in hand look under every piece of furniture in the home. In the case of arboreal geckos, look upwards on the walls and windows.
When you search a cluttered floor area really well, such as your closet, and you shake out the toe end of shoes, etc., be sure to set all those things up someplace else so you know the gecko hasn’t re-entered after your search.
Once you’re sure your gecko is not in a particular area, you can set up an attractive spot for them there and try to attract them to it. For example, when a floor area, say a closet, has been searched well get an empty shoe box or something similar to make into a humid hide. Cut a hole in each end and one in the front, place moist paper towels in it and set it against a wall so it has a chance to be entered from 3 directions. Check it often!!! If the floor is empty it makes it easier to find the gecko, but if not do it anyway.
Sure, meal worms can be added, if you want. Put a slice of carrot in with the worms so they will remain healthy. REMEMBER: check often.
Your gecko can go a pretty good while without food or water. Its first priority will be to search for a protective spot, hot or cool (so it can be changing spots to find the temperature needed). Once it gets an opportunity or begins to feel safer with the surroundings it will search for water and food.
Remember, your gecko escaped while under your care. You are responsible for its safety. You are responsible to find it. So you should look everywhere if you have an escapee, even in the least likely of places, because it just might be there. Look and look again, and then again, until it’s found. And you will probably find it.
My cat found one of mine..… Ozzie sat looking at it on the floor until I got up to see what he was looking at. No harm to my gecko or Ozzie. Ozzie can be rented for $100 per day, airfare, room and board. plus a bonus when the gecko is found (and a minimum fee does apply for searches outside the USA). 🙂
May the ” Finding of the Gecko Force be with You “