Making a moist hide for a leopard gecko requires a container 2-3 times the size of the reptile and a substrate that retains moisture without getting moldy. Place the substrate and container on the warmer side of the tank (where applicable) and let your pet enjoy.
Hides are an essential part of any leopard geckos habitat, and they dont take much to set up. These dont take much effort to make on your own, and doing it yourself may save quite a bit of money.
This is why we made this guide on how to make a moist hide for a leopard gecko. For more details and answers to related questions, check out the rest of the post. Make it out of a recycled sour cream or margarine container!
When picking one, the two main things you need to consider are the size and ability to handle the heat. Your standard substrate of pea gravel or reptile carpet works just fine for the rest of the tank, but in this case, it wont provide the humidity retention and moist hide needs. Out of these, we recommend coconut fiber bedding for most situations, but in this case, sphagnum moss is the best choice.
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you. It retains moisture, resists mold, and leopard geckos respond well to it. Youll only need enough to cover the ground inside the hide.
It doesnt have to be scissors; a knife will also work as long as the object can cleanly cut through the containers material. This section covers all you need to know about making a moist hide for your pet. This gives the leopard gecko a place to rest if it gets too cool.
Placing directly under a light may make the interior of the moist hide too hot for the leopard gecko, and it wont use it. Theres no hard and fast rule for how much to spray, but most owners agree the substrate should look wet yet not show any standing water. Nothing actively wrong will happen if its too dry, though it needs to be damp to raise the humidity.
For some containers, youll need to take scissors or a box cutter and cut a hole for the leopard gecko to use as an entrance. The entrance should be twice as tall and wide as the gecko for it to enter and exit easily. Youve made your moist hide for your leopard gecko and probably saved some money while doing it.
As long as you make sure you use the proper substrate in the warm spot with a suitable container 2-3 times the size of the leopard gecko, the moist hide will work, and your pet will have a little bit of a better life. If you start spraying down the tank 3-5 times per day when you notice signs of shedding, you shouldnt have any problems. As mentioned above, the moist hide needs to go on the warmer side of the tank (where there is one) and not directly beneath any heating lights.
While nothing terrible is likely to happen, consistent high humidity may give them respiratory issues. Leopard geckos will look for more humid hides during the hottest parts of the day and year, but they dont need to be sprayed down. If you follow our recommendations, youll only spray down the gecko when you see signs of shedding.
The change in light will signal that its time to come out (remember, leopard geckos are nocturnal). Now you know how to save money and make a moist hide for a leopard gecko.
Do leopard geckos need a moist hide?
A leopard gecko kept as a pet needs a moist hide to shed properly and to lay its eggs. When your leopard gecko needs to shed its skin, it will go to the moist hide because the humidity will help soften the skin for easy shedding.
Why is my leopard gecko staying in his humid hide?
Your Leopard Gecko is in Its Moist Hide Because It is Shedding. When Leopard Geckos shed, it is perfectly normal for them to have a reduced appetite and spend more time in their hide. If you notice that your Leopard Gecko is staying in its moist hide, a shed is very likely near.
What can I use for a moist hide for leopard gecko?
Sphagnum moss is definitely one of the best substrates for a leopard gecko’s moist hide. This is because sphagnum moss is naturally antimicrobial and holds the moisture very well. Both of these factors are very important because it will help keep the humidity stable for longer, and prevent growth of harmful bacteria.
What is a moist hide?
A humidity hide box can serve as a way to boost humidity for reptiles, provide a more natural environment, minimize stress, and can help with shedding problems. … Your reptile enclosure should always include a humidity hide.
Leopard geckos are one of the most popular reptile pets. Not only because of their cute appearance but also because they are pretty easy to take care of. However, that does not mean that you can go and buy a Leopard gecko and everything will fall in place.
If you are reading this article you are one of those awesome people who actually do their research, because you really care about your pet and want it to be happy. Leopard geckos come from Asia, you can find them in Iraq, Iran, India and in a couple of more countries.
If you place it directly under the basking spot, the moist substrate will dry out quickly and it wont be a wet box anymore. Some people just use a cricket box or something similar as Leopard gecko humid hide, however, that is way too small. This micro climate cave (click here) is absolutely perfect as humidity box for a Leopard gecko.
On top of that, you can open this little cave easily and check if your gecko is okay or if it even laid eggs. It fits perfectly into a natural habitat and you can get it in two sizes, so if you have a giant Leopard gecko breed you can use this cave as well. This cave has an incredibly high rating on Amazon at the moment and most people use it for their Leopard geckos.
As I told you before, female Leopard geckos lay eggs in those caves and before they do that, they dig off a little bit of substrate.
The hides in your leopard gecko tank are an essential part of their environment. This is where your gecko will go to find shelter from anything that scares them, too much light or even to hide from the heat.
A hide can be any shape and design, as long as it provides the security and comfort your gecko needs. Leopard geckos cannot regulate their own body temperature, which means when they get hot, they need to find a way to cool themselves down.
This should be on the coolest side of your tank, offering a secure hideaway for your gecko where they can cool down. When it comes to sizing, you need to ensure it is large enough for your gecko to get in and out in comfort, while being able to move around their hide with ease. In addition to this, it is very important that you note if there are any sharp edges and sides to the hide, which could potentially injure your reptile.
Your gecko is going to spend a lot of time in their moist hide and therefore the substrate you choose is imperative. While you may find some information online recommending you use wet kitchen roll in the hide, this is not the best option. Made from a natural material, the SunGrow Raw Coconut Husk Hut with Ladder is perfect for not just leopard geckos but also other small arboreal reptiles, small birds, hermit crabs, and pocket pets.
You can add some moss as the bedding inside the hide to increase the humidity level. This hide helps to reduce stress and can be added with confidence to your tank design. The gecko cave offers a secure hiding spot to help reduce stress and ensure the best health for your reptile.
This gecko cave has a natural look with a sturdy design, reducing the risk of it tipping over. Simply soak, clean in anti bacterial cleaner, rinse and dry. A wonderful natural hide for your leopard gecko to reduce stress and relieve pressure.
Remember this is a natural coconut shell and therefore the sizes may vary slightly from the five inches expected. The coconut shell is a natural product which can be more appealing to your gecko, offering a safe place to hide, play and grow. Before use you will need to give the hide a clean with some mild soapy water, rinse and dry thoroughly before including it in the tank.
This reptile shelter offers a fantastic security hide for your leopard gecko and comes in a choice of sizes. It is a very durable product made from resin, making it quick and easy to clean. The Exo Terra Reptile Cave is a natural looking hide that can easily be incorporated into your enclosure design to prevent stress.
Made from food grade resin, it offers a realistic rock design. The Exo Terra Glow Mushroom Hideout provides your leopard gecko with a secure hiding place that looks natural, so it works with any enclosure design. The Zilla Reptile Habitat Decor Hideouts Bark Bends is the ideal choice for leopard geckos who are seeking privacy.
The hide is made from a non porous exterior which reduces the risk of bacterial growth, while offering an easy to clean product that simply requires soapy water, a rinse and dry off before being returned to the enclosure. The design is to provide the security and privacy your reptile needs to become more confident and well rested. This is an easy to clean product that comes with a 100% satisfaction guarantee, for additional peace of mind.
You can soak the hide and decorations in a bucket of warm water and anti bacterial cleaner . The ground temperature needs to be checked to ensure your gecko isnt overheating when using the warm hide. Maybe you have just brought your leopard gecko home and he hasnt settled in yet, which means he is nervous and stressed.
If the gecko doesnt eat within ten days, seek expert assistance.
Are you among those people who do thorough homework before bringing a cute little reptile home as a pet? If yes, then you are in the right place. People are fond of keeping these friendly little creatures as their pets but often assume that the job is done by simply buying one and bringing them home.
If you are planning to build a moist hide for your leopard gecko then always keep in mind that it should not be too small. The size should be adequate enough to provide ample space for your leopard gecko to move freely.
Do not use hard plastic containers like lunchboxes as you will have to cut various holes in it which will have sharp edges and can end up hurting your leopard gecko. You can use different types of substrates to build a leopard gecko moist hide at home for your pet. You can use either coconut fiber, paper towels, or sphagnum moss as a substrate for making a big moist hideout for your leopard gecko.
It is good to use paper towels as a substrate for young leopard geckos as there is no risk of impaction with them. The alternative to this is a moist cloth towel which can be used to create a hideout with adequate humidity for your leopard gecko. It is suitable for female leopard geckos who are about to lay eggs and is also easy for digging and burrowing.
They are comparatively more natural options to build a leopard gecko moist hide within the tank but do have certain drawbacks. The biggest drawback of using coconut or coco fiber as a substrate is that it becomes dusty when it gets dry as a result your pet might end up inhaling it or swallowing it. Sphagnum Moss as Substrate: This is certainly the best option to be used when building a moist hideout for your leopard gecko as it holds moisture for a longer duration owing to its antimicrobial properties.
Also, it is one of the most natural ways to build a hideout home compared to the other two options mentioned earlier in the article. You can create a hideout by placing sphagnum moss or about 2 inches in the tank and make it moist by spraying water on it. The method and the frequency of cleaning the leopard gecko moist hide depend on the material used in creating it.
You can buy a hideout from the market or build one at the ease of your home depending on your own preferences and budget.
Pick A Spot In Your Tank
Before doing anything, you must pick the right spot for your moist hide.To start, you need to figure out if your tank has a warm side or a cool side.For those using a large cover heating mat, you may not, and this is OK.But your heating mat should stay a little more to one side or the other.This gives the leopard gecko a place to rest if it gets too cool.When you have a warmer and cooler side in your tank, pick a spot on the tank’s warmer side, not directly under any lights.Placing directly under a light may make the interior of the moist hide too hot for the leopard gecko, and it won’t use it.However, if you keep the substrate wet (as we’ll mention later) but place the hide on the cool side, you’ll increase the risk of respiratory and breathing problems.
Spread Out The Substrate
Once you find a spot, look at how much space the hide will take up.You need to spread out your substrate of choice to cover the whole area.Those whose tank uses a reptile carpet or other liner put the humid substrate over the carpet.An inch would be enough.If you use a real substrate such as pea gravel, move it out of the way where the hide will go and replace it with the moss or other moist substrate.Make sure the depth of the substrate matches your original.
Wet Down The Substrate
Take a spray bottle of water and lightly spray/dampen the substrate.There’s no hard and fast rule for how much to spray, but most owners agree the substrate should look wet yet not show any standing water.We recommend erring on the side of dry instead of sopping wet.Too much water will increase the risk of mold and bacteria growth.Nothing actively wrong will happen if it’s too dry, though it needs to be damp to raise the humidity.
Place The Container
With a proper container and substrate down in the right spot, you’re ready to put it down.Place it in your chosen spot.Push the container down a little into the substrate or use substrate (or small rocks) to hold the edges down.Once this is done, you’re good to go!You’ve made your moist hide for your leopard gecko and probably saved some money while doing it.For those who would like another way to look at the process, check out the following video.Remember, there are many ways to do this, so get creative.As long as you make sure you use the proper substrate in the warm spot with a suitable container 2-3 times the size of the leopard gecko, the moist hide will work, and your pet will have a little bit of a better life.Speaking of size, we have a post on how big leopard geckos get for those interested.
The Best Leopard Gecko Humid Hide Box
I tested some things as humid hides for my geckos. For example lunchboxes or Tupperware containers. The problem with that was that I always had to cut holes in it, which sometimes had sharp edges.Then I had to make sure that those edges would not hurt my geckos … hah, it was just annoying. Half coconuts or other “hide halfs” that you can buy from a pet store did not really do the job since it was hard to keep the humidity high.This micro – climate cave (click here) is absolutely perfect as humidity box for a Leopard gecko. You can easily fill it with substrate and keep the humidity high in there. On top of that, you can open this little cave easily and check if your gecko is okay or if it even laid eggs.It fits perfectly into a natural habitat and you can get it in two sizes, so if you have a giant Leopard gecko breed you can use this cave as well. This cave has an incredibly high rating on Amazon at the moment and most people use it for their Leopard geckos.So a lot of Leopard gecko owners are very happy with it, it is not just me :). There are a lot of costumer images on Amazon where you can see their Leopard geckos in this cave. Click here to see those images – simply scroll down till you see “Customer images” on the right.
The Right Leopard Gecko Moist Hide Substrate
You definitely need substrate inside of this cave. As I told you before, female Leopard geckos lay eggs in those caves and before they do that, they dig off a little bit of substrate.Some people use kitchen roll inside a humid hide, which is a very bad idea. A lot of geckos do not lie their eggs then, which increases the risk of egg binding.The best Leopard gecko moist hide substrate is coco hummus (click here) or sphagnum moss (click here). Those substrates are normally used for Toads. Both are very easy to keep moist.Leopard geckos really seem to like this kind of substrate, not only for egg deposition, but also for just hanging out. Many Leopard gecko owners told me that their Leopard geckos were more often in their hide after the owners started to use this substrate.Just be careful that you do not mist it too much. This kind of substrate can get mold, so let it dry out from time to time or replace it with new substrate.Ah, did I mention that there is no risk of impaction when using this substrate?I am sure you are happy to hear that :)If you need information about substrate for your entire tank as well, read my Leo Substrate Guide!