If you have a leopard gecko, you need to know as much as possible about it, including what leopard gecko pee looks like and how often you are likely to see it.
Being aware of this will help you to detect when there is a problem, and let you know when you don’t need to worry.
A leopard gecko does not pee like a human or like most other animals, so it’s really important to know what to look out for and understand how this process works.
Leopard geckos are fantastic pets that many people love keeping, and they are also easy to care for and full of interesting quirks.
They are very beautiful and unusual creatures, but like any animal, they need to pass waste out of their bodies in the form of urine – and yet you won’t see your leopard gecko pee the way that a cat or dog does, and they don’t pass liquid urine.
Instead, they eject a solid substance full of uric acid, which you may see around your leopard gecko’s enclosure.
Understanding this process helps you prepare for owning a leopard gecko, and ensures that you know what to expect so you don’t panic if you never see your leopard gecko pee. The more research you do, the better prepared you will be!
What Does Leopard Gecko Pee Look Like?
Leopard gecko pee is generally released in the form of urates, and it can be released alone or alongside feces, so you should look out for both forms.
The urates will appear like a kind of white feces, and they tend to be slightly elongated and a little textured. They are powdery, which makes it much easier for the leopard gecko to pass them out of its body whenever it needs to.
You will often see urates in your leopard gecko’s enclosure; they are usually deposited alongside the brown droppings, but sometimes they will be on their own, away from the feces.
Apart from the color and the texture, they are generally similar in size and shape to feces, but the whiteness makes it obvious what is urates and what is not. You aren’t likely to get the two substances mixed up, even if they are side by side; they are quite distinctive from each other.
The reason that leopard geckos pee solid is that their native environment is very dry and they need to conserve as much water as possible.
If they waste water when getting rid of the uric buildup, they are more likely to die of dehydration, because they cannot find much to drink.
Although water may be abundant in their captive conditions, they still conserve it because they have evolved to do so, and so they produce solid, white urates instead of liquid urine.
How Often Do Leopard Geckos Pee?
How often your leopard gecko will pee depends on a few factors, including its age and conditions. It will often excrete urates with feces, and a baby leopard gecko may do this several times in a day, while an adult will probably only do it every couple of days.
This can vary between individuals, however, so you may see it more or less frequently; it’s a good idea to find out what is normal for your particular leopard gecko, and use this as your guide going forward.
If your leopard gecko hasn’t passed feces or urates for several days, you might want to check that its environment is suitable for it and it isn’t missing anything it needs.
Leopard geckos may struggle to excrete waste if the temperature is wrong (it should be around 90 degrees F in the warm end of the tank and 80 degrees F in the cold end), or if the gecko is dehydrated.
Make sure you provide water for your gecko, and plenty of moisture-rich insects for it to eat, as it will get most of the moisture it needs from its food.
In general, if your leopard gecko is over 18 months old, it should poop every 2-3 days or a little more or less often. If it does not urate during this time, you should be concerned and check whether it is getting enough moisture and whether its enclosure is suitable.
Why Is My Leopard Gecko Peeing Liquid?
Usually, if your leopard gecko produces liquid pee, it is a sign that the gecko is feeling very stressed, possibly because of unsuitable tank conditions or because you are handling it too much.
This is not necessarily an issue if it happens once or twice, but if you find your leopard gecko is often peeing liquid, you should check whether its environment is suitable and whether anything is going wrong that could be causing high stress levels.
If you handle your leopard gecko a lot, you might need to spend some time getting it more acclimatized to you.
Sometimes, your leopard gecko will produce a small amount of liquid alongside the feces and urates, creating a small damp area on the substrate surrounding the waste.
This is not something that you need to worry about; your gecko does it because the liquid makes it easier for the gecko to excrete the waste, so this is a fairly common part of their behavior.
You only really need to be concerned if your gecko is producing large amounts of liquids, because it shouldn’t be doing this, and it’s a sign that something is wrong.
As a species that comes from arid places where water is in short supply, they should be preserving the water and not excreting it from their bodies, so this does indicate that their stress levels are high.
Is Leopard Gecko Urine Poisonous?
Leopard gecko urine is not poisonous, but it is possible that it could irritate your hands if you have sensitive skin and you touch it, because it contains a solid form of acid, and this acid may react with your skin.
If you are generally sensitive to this sort of thing, you should wear gloves or use a scoop to remove the urates from the leopard gecko’s enclosure, as you don’t want to irritate your skin.
Always wash your hands thoroughly after cleaning out the enclosure, even if you don’t think you have touched anything.
Leopard gecko urine does need to be removed from your pet’s habitat as soon as possible, because although it isn’t poisonous, it will provide an environment that encourages the growth of bacteria and parasites, and these will attack your leopard gecko and make it sick.
Keeping the enclosure clean and free from feces and urates is critical if you want to ensure that your pet is happy and healthy.
If you do touch leopard gecko feces or urine at any time, make sure that you wash your hands thoroughly, and don’t touch your face.
Neither the feces nor urine will contain anything that is considered poisonous, but they may contain bacteria, and you could make yourself sick if you transfer this to your mouth by mistake.
How Often Should You Clean Leopard Gecko Pee Crystals Out Of A Vivarium?
You should aim to clean the enclosure every couple of days to four days, depending on your gecko’s habits.
Some geckos will need cleaning out more regularly than others, but you don’t want waste to sit in the tank for longer than a day, so keep on top of this.
Remember that urine and feces can be breeding grounds for bacteria and parasites, so to keep your gecko healthy, you should keep the tank as clean as possible.
The substrate that you choose for your gecko can make it easier or harder to spot the urates; a light colored substrate, such as kitchen towel, will make them harder to see than a dark substrate, which the urates will show up against nicely.
On the other hand, gecko feces will be less visible on a dark substrate, while they would be very visible against a light substrate. You should also think about cost, ease of cleaning, and other factors when choosing your substrate.
If you use paper towels in your vivarium, you can simply remove the paper towel that has the feces or urates on it; if you use another substance, you may need to remove it using a small scoop, or you might have to wipe down the area. Leopard gecko pee is generally very easy to clean up.
Leopard gecko pee is solid, which many people find surprising when they learn it for the first time; most animals have liquid urine and seeing it in solid form is quite strange. The solidity is due to the gecko’s natural environment; they are used to having very limited access to water, and thus they tend to conserve their water and not excrete it as liquid urine. They therefore create white, powdery urates as a means of getting rid of uric acid, and while these sometimes do contain a small amount of water, they are usually very dry and easy to clean up.