Wondering what’s the best size terrarium for a leopard gecko? This guide is for you!
Bigger leopard gecko tanks are always better than smaller ones. This is because larger tanks give your leopard gecko room to move around and explore.
However, the really big tanks do not have any added advantage. They won’t elongate your leopard gecko’s life, for instance.
The best size terrarium for your leopard gecko tank is one that makes him feel safe and comfortable. At the barest minimum, this is a 20-gallon tank. However, you can get a smaller tank if you’re dealing with a baby leo. For example, a 10-gallon tank would be good enough for a couple of baby leopard geckos below 2 months.
That said, seasoned keepers find it unwise to start with a 10-gallon tank because they know they’ll have to upgrade it at some point – once the leopard gecko becomes an adult.
As such, consider starting with a 20-gallon tank from the onset.
What’s the Best Leopard Gecko Tank Size?
Before bringing a leopard gecko into your home, you must decide how best to house him. The best size leopard gecko tank depends on the age of the lizard you want to start with.
For example, if you plan to start with two babies, a 10-gallon tank would suffice. But, you should remember that you’ll have to upgrade this tank as the babies grow into juveniles and later adults.
If you are starting with a grown-up or a juvenile, you should go for the 20-gallon tank. The 20-gallon tank is also sufficient for about 4 or 5 baby leopard geckos.
You’ll need a bigger tank if you plan to start with one adult male and a number of females.
Here’s a summary of your tank size requirements:
- Starting with a couple of baby leos – 10 gallons.
- Starting with a juvenile leo – 10 to 15 gallons.
- Starting with one adult – 10 gallons.
- Starting with 2 adults – 25 gallons.
- Starting with 3 adults – 30 gallons.
- Starting with 4 adults – 35 gallons.
- Starting with 5 adults – 40 gallons.
How to Tell Your Leopard Gecko Tank is Adequate
Your leopard gecko’s living conditions need to be safe and comfortable. As such, you need a tank that’s big enough to accommodate the equipment to make this possible.
You must bear in mind that these lizards have lots of space in the wild. Therefore, they are not used to being confined, and their movements curtailed.
Obviously, you want to make your leopard gecko happy and healthy. In that case, you should try to simulate the conditions in the wild as closely as possible.
Provide your pet with ample space to roam about and explore their world. Make the tank enjoyable so that your pet is not bored.
This calls on you to get the appropriate-sized tank. Research has shown that a 20-gallon tank is adequate for your leopard gecko.
It has the space to include all the necessary equipment and devices to monitor and control temperature and humidity.
A 20-gallon tank is also big enough to accommodate live or synthetic plants, and adequate dry and humid hides for your pet.
Your leo will be able to roam and explore in this tank without feeling cramped and confined. However, it’s better if you can afford to install a 50-gallon tank (in terms of space and money).
The downside to such a big tank is that it will require more effort and equipment to monitor and maintain the proper tank parameters.
You’ll have to build more hides to make your pet feel safe wherever he is in the enclosure.
Also, a big tank doesn’t have an added advantage – apart from giving your pet tons of space to play and explore.
Some leopard gecko keepers prefer to start with a 10-gallon tank for their baby gecko. This tank is big enough for this purpose.
Actually, it can accommodate even two babies if they are months or less. However, as the reptiles grow and become bigger, the keepers are forced to transfer them to a bigger tank.
It would cause no harm to start with a 20-gallon tank, even if your leopard gecko is small. Remember, a tiny hatchling in the wild has lots of space but still thrives.
A young hatchling or baby leo will do equally well in a 20-gallon terrarium. The advantage of this is that you don’t have to keep changing tanks as your pet grows.
What Are the Dangers of Using the Wrong Terrarium Size?
Making your leopard gecko live in a small space is counterproductive. It interferes with your pet’s overall growth and progress.
Leopard geckos that live in cramped spaces tend to be moody and unpredictable. As a result, they are prone to losing their appetite, which affects their growth and progress.
Giving your leopard gecko enough space encourages him to grow unhindered. As a result, this animal enjoys life to the maximum, as seen in how fast it grows.
Bringing a leopard gecko to your home means you intend him to have a good life. You want this animal to be happy, healthy, and vibrant.
However, if you subject your pet to a small tank, he will be far from happy. You’ll realize that all’s not well with your leopard gecko because his behavior will drastically change.
For example, he will spend more time in his hide, brooding because of the miserable life he’s been subjected to.
He may also chirp, hiss, and bark a lot to express his discontent.
Irritability and Anxiety
A leopard gecko confined to a cramped space is highly irritable. He gets easily anxious about any slight changes taking place in his life.
This animal is likely to be more aggressive toward you and his counterparts. For example, if you have more than one leopard gecko in a small tank, they will constantly fight over space and resources.
Leopard gecko fights can be pretty nasty. They can cause severe injuries and even death.
Keeping your leopard gecko in the wrong terrarium size makes your pet lose focus. As a result, he doesn’t sleep or carry out his activities when he’s supposed to.
This signifies that your leopard gecko is stressed. If the conditions are not improved, the heightened stress levels lead to health complications.
His immunity gets compromised, and it won’t be long before opportunistic infections and diseases attack him.
Can I Use Tanks Bigger Than 20 Gallons for My Leopard Gecko?
It’s okay to use a tank bigger than 20 gallons if you have the space and can afford it. However, a larger tank has advantages that make some keepers go for it.
For example, it gives your leopard gecko more room to explore. Leopard geckos are, by nature, inquisitive creatures.
They quickly get bored if their environment is limiting. This will not happen with a terrarium bigger than 20 gallons.
Also, a large tank gives you the leeway to add more decorations. This is further good news for your leopard gecko. He’ll have more items to interact with, making life more enjoyable.
A tank larger than 20 gallons is also advantageous if you’re thinking of cohabiting or breeding leopard geckos.
With this kind of space, you’ll create enough hides and other facilities to adequately cater to the needs of each reptile.
The only challenge with large tanks is keeping the humidity and temperatures stable. You need to install the right number and size of equipment to get the job done.
Remember, at the end of the day, your core mandate is to ensure your pet is safe and comfortable.
You’re good to go if you have found the best way to keep the conditions stable in such a tank.
A 40-gallon tank is perfect for housing 4 to 5 adults together. But, at the back of your mind, you should know that leopard geckos sometimes don’t like living together.
This means you should have a backup plan if things don’t work out.
For example, if one of the tank mates starts bullying the others, you may have to remove them and put them in a 20-gallon tank of their own.
What Type of Leopard Gecko Tank is Best?
The type of vivarium you install for your leopard ranks in importance as much as the size. You need to select a tank made of the appropriate material.
For good reasons, most of the highest-selling tanks are made of glass. Glass tanks are long-lasting, attractive, and support the conditions you create for your pet.
It’s easy to create the correct temperature gradient with a glass tank. Also, many keepers prefer glass tanks because they are easily set up.
This is a big advantage for first-time keepers still trying to learn how to create the best life for their leopard geckos.
Glass is not the only material used to construct leopard gecko tanks. A good number of other types are available, and you may consider them.
However, never house your leopard gecko in a wire cage because of the injury risks involved. It’s also possible for your pet to escape from a wire cage.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What’s the Best Small Leopard Gecko Tank?
A 10-gallon leopard gecko would suffice for your baby lizard. However, only a baby gecko can be housed in this size of a tank.
For an adult, you need at least a 20-gallon tank. Anything smaller than this would not give your adult lizard the space it needs to play and explore its world.
Why is a 10-Gallon Tank Not Appropriate for a Leopard Gecko?
A 10-gallon tank is too cramped for a grown-up leopard gecko. This reptile needs at least 20 gallons. In addition, a smaller tank will make your pet stressed, which is an avenue for diseases and infections.
Also, your leopard gecko cannot eat, hide, and explore comfortably in a 10-gallon tank.
Is a 20-Gallon Tank Too Big for My Leopard Gecko?
A 20-gallon tank is just the right size for your leopard gecko. In addition, this tank has adequate space for your pet to thrive.
Ensure this tank is well decorated and equipped to create the right conditions for your leopard gecko.
At the same time, use a tank made of suitable material, such as glass.
Is a 50-Gallon Tank Too Big for My Leopard Gecko?
For an adult leopard gecko, tank size does not really matter. However, you need to be careful about going too big because of the logistics involved.
An adult leopard gecko would do well in a 20 to 40-gallon tank, if he’s alone. If you must stretch it, you can go to 50 gallons.
But, this is as far as you should go because of the strain involved in monitoring and maintaining the proper conditions in extra-large tanks.
Can Leopard Geckos Be Housed Together?
Your first experience with a leopard gecko may be so fulfilling that you consider bringing second and third ones.
Indeed, leopard geckos may make our lives happier and more enjoyable. However, before bringing more of these reptiles, consider the logistics involved.
Would you like to house them together or separately? Are the new leos males or females? Do you intend to add a combination of both?
It is fairly easy to house two or more female leopard geckos together, as long as the tank is big enough.
However, male leopard geckos cannot live in the same tank, even if it is 100 gallons big. As long as they see each other and their paths cross, they will keep up with their centuries-old territorial fight.
Male leopard geckos are known to fight to the death. As such, you should never consider housing them together.
But you can keep one male with a number of females, especially for breeding purposes.
Keep your eyes peeled when your pets live together. This is because some may be tempted to bully others.
The disadvantaged leopard gecko may suffer from stress, opening the door to a raft of many health issues.
The best leopard gecko tank size is 20 gallons. This tank can accommodate a fully-grown leopard gecko comfortably.
It can also be a good home for about 3 baby geckos. However, as soon as these babies become big, you’ll have to house them in a bigger terrarium.
If you decide to keep your baby leopard gecko in a 10-gallon tank, you should have plans to upgrade it soon.