Do Crested Geckos Like to be Held: Petting African Fat-Tailed Geckos

Navigating the dos and don’ts of petting an African fat-tailed or holding a Crested gecko can either break or enforce the bond between you and your Geckos. But, do Crested Geckos like to be held at all?

African Fat-tailed Geckos love to snuggle, and they’re typically responsive to being held if you introduce them to being petted gradually. The best way to approach your Crested or Fat-tailed African Gecko for snuggles is to start with a gentle rub on their head before you carefully pick her up for hand feeding. Be sure to carefully secure all four of her legs so that they don’t dangle and scratch you with their sharp crawls.

Holding the gecko also helps to build trust between you and the gecko. Before you start handling your gecko, you need to give them time so that they can adapt to the new environment.

The first few weeks of getting your crested gecko, handling them may not be easy because they are not used to the environment. Therefore, you will need to give your crested gecko time so that it can adjust to the climate as well as the new environment.

Once your crested gecko has acclimated, you can now try handling it, after some time it will become comfortable with the handling. Also keep in mind that if the gecko is too young, its better to not handle if for sometime until it has grown since such geckos are very jumpy and handling them can be quite challenging.

Once your gecko is comfortable with handling, you can handle it three times every week. If handled every day, make sure that you do it for a few minutes so that you do not overwhelm or stress the gecko.

Within the first month, you should handle him for short periods of time and not very frequently. Once the gecko gets used to the handling then the time for holding him can be increased.

Geckos can be very jumpy and active, so, when handling them always make sure to put their safety at the top so that they do not get injured.

Handling the crested gecko correctly allows them to enjoy the handling. Because of this reason it is essential to know the things that you need to do to make your crested gecko feel safe and comfortable around you.

1) Handling your gecko close to the ground

When handling your gecko, make sure that you handle her as much closer to the ground as possible. This can be near a table so that they should not get injured if they fall from your hands. Handling them close to the ground ensures their safety if anything were to happen. You should also avoid pressing your hands on its body when handling it.

2) Crested geckos’ tail should be on your mind

Crested geckos are known to lose their tail when they feel frightened or scared. Therefore, when handling your crested gecko, you should always remember this. They can also easily lose their tail if you hold them by the tail, therefore this should always be avoided. Do not make your gecko feel frightened or scared. Avoid making any sudden movements that cause your gecko to feel scared and lose their tail.

3) Do not put stress on your crested gecko

Make sure that your crested gecko is not overwhelmed or stressed in any way. Handle your gecko in a place that is not noisy because this can cause nervousness or stress. Noises and loud sounds can also affect the health of your gecko.

4) Be mindful of the time you handle your gecko

You should know the time that your gecko likes to be handled so that it is happy. Handling it at the wrong time can cause it to become unhappy and dislike the handling.

When you first bring them into your home, do not handle them right then and there, instead you should give your gecko some time so that it becomes comfortable with the environment that it is in. You should also give them the proper care. Give your gecko food so that it stays healthy.

Giving your gecko food also helps you to earn its trust. You should also be there when your gecko is eating and try to hand feed it until it gets very comfortable with handfeeding. When you start handling the crested gecko, you should start out slow first, then slowly increase the session time as your gecko starts to get a little comfortable.

5) Avoid forced handling

Your crested gecko can easily be scared off even by small things. When it does not want to be held, do not force the gecko. This can make your gecko feel scared or fear you, and will not be comfortable around. When it is scared you can see some signs like heavy breathing and sometimes tail wiggling. In such cases it better to put your crested gecko back into the tank.

6) Approach your gecko properly

Always ensure that you approach your gecko in a gentle and caring manner. Do not approach it in a threatening way. Avoid towering over your gecko and reaching for it in a harsh way. Rather, make sure you do everything calmly and in a gentle way. It is even better to approach your gecko from the front so that it sees you approaching. Your hand should not be kept over the gecko because this can make it feel threatened. You should lower it gently when you want the gecko to climb on your hand.

7) Take note of Squeaking and heavy breathing

Squeaking can be a way of your gecko telling you that it is uncomfortable, this is usually the case when the squeaking and the heavy breathing happen at the same time. Therefore, whenever you notice your crested gecko squeaking and breathing heavily you should put it back in the tank.

When your crested gecko is wiggling its tail, it can mean that the gecko feels uncomfortable or frighten, if you don’t want your gecko to lose its tail, then it is better to put it inside the terrarium.

The benefits of holding the gecko correctly

The gecko is very easy to handle. Handling your gecko properly is one of the things that will determine the kind of bond that you and your gecko have. The following are some of the benefits of handling your crested gecko correctly.

Holding the geckos gives them a chance to spend time with you and know you better. As time goes by, they become really comfortable with you.

Holding the crested gecko is one of the ways to help them improve in hand walking. Your gecko can easily be helped by holding them.

You can use both of your hands to help your gecko move forward, this can be done by placing one hand in front of the other so that your gecko moves with your hands. This is very important for the crested gecko because it improves their comfortability and keeps them calm around you.

Holding the crested gecko can help improve your geckos jumping. Crested geckos are naturally good jumpers. Holding them can be very helpful for them to practice their jumping and this can make them very happy.

What to do if the crested gecko does not like to be handled

Your gecko will not feel comfortable around you just like that. They need to get used and feel comfortable around you for them to like being handled by you. When your gecko does not like being held by you, it will try to run away or do things to avoid being held by you.

When the gecko is uncomfortable around you, you can notice its nervousness and fear through signs like heavy breathing.

However, you don’t have to give up. With patience and determination, you can easily get your gecko to trust you. The first thing that you need to is to make sure that your crested gecko is comfortable. Don’t expect your gecko to trust you if it’s in a place that is uncomfortable fir it.

Geckos do well in tanks that are vertical and have some height. Leaves and tree branches should also be included in the tank since geckos are used to living in trees, this makes it feel homey. You can also include some hiding places in the tank to make it more comfortable for the gecko.

Food is another way to make your gecko love handling. You can place some food on your palm so that your gecko climbs to you hand and have the food. When placing your hand in the tank do it calmly so that you gecko climbs on it.

If your gecko seems not to like the handling, try to handle it when it is not active. Do it in the morning or in the evening because this is the time that your gecko is less active than the rest of the day.


Crested geckos enjoy being held by their owners. This is a great way that you can build up trust and a good relationship between you and your crested gecko. It is essential that you first let your gecko adapt to the new environment before you start holding them.

To make your crested gecko enjoy being held you need to avoid keeping it overwhelmed. Instead ensure that it is comfortable and not stressed, this way it will love being handled by you.

Eddie Mcfarren

Eddie Mc Farren has been proudly advocating for pets and animal welfare for countless years and he's been doing so with passion and commitment to excellence. Because of that commitment, he helps Pet maintain a completely friendly support team who help you navigate the complex choices you have to make for your pet food, best dog travel beds, skincare products for your pet and many more. Being on the constant hunt for 100% best pet supplies and service satisfaction for your pet is a task we approach with unprecedented intensity. Eddie also helps with the selection of our partners of choice and are carefully vetted to make sure that you get the best results possible for your pet.

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