Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD) is one of the most common illnesses that Leopard Gecko owners come across.
What is MBD?
Simply put, MBD starts from an improper calcium to phosphorus ratio in your Leopard Gecko. Most feed stuffs that Leopard Geckos eat contain relatively high levels of phosphorus compared to calcium. To counter this, Calcium powder is given to Leopard geckos to help them keep their calcium levels up. However, simply feeding calcium powder is not enough. A Leopard Gecko can’t metabolise / use the calcium it eats without Vitamin D3 being present in it’s body. Vitamin D3 is found in most nutritional powder additives for Leopard geckos and is essential to enabling calcium usage. Leopard geckos can “manufacture” their own Vitamin D3 by using sunlight. It’s worth noting that most Vivarium and house window glass blocks 90%+ of the ultra violet part of sunlight which enables Leopard Geckos to produce their own Vitamin D3 so, it’s extremely important to suppliment this in their diet.
What Effect Does MBD Have on a Leopard Gecko?
Visually, the signs of MBD include:
- Bent leg bones
- mis-aligned bottom jaw
- kinks in the spine
Internally, not on view, a Leopard Gecko with MBD can begin to suffer organ failure. Eventually this can cause death.
What To Do If You Think Your Leopard Gecko Has MBD
If in any doubt – take your Leopard Gecko to a good Reptile Vet. They can provide you with special high-dose calcium liquids for syringe feeding by mouth to your Leopard Gecko to try and help recover the Calcium levels to something more normal.