Leopard geckos are a popular choice for reptile enthusiasts due to their docile nature and relatively easy care requirements. As with any pet, it’s important to ensure they are receiving the proper nutrition to maintain their health. One common question among leopard gecko owners is whether or not they can eat dusted crickets.

Can Leopard Geckos Eat Dusted Crickets

Dusting crickets with supplements is a common practice among reptile keepers to ensure their pets are receiving the necessary vitamins and minerals. However, it’s important to know if this is appropriate for leopard geckos. In this article, we will explore whether or not leopard geckos can eat dusted crickets and if it’s necessary for their overall health.

Nutritional Benefits of Dusted Crickets

Can Leopard Geckos Eat Dusted Crickets

When it comes to feeding leopard geckos, dusted crickets are a popular choice among many owners. This is because crickets are a great source of nutrition for these reptiles, especially when they are dusted with supplements. Here are some of the nutritional benefits of feeding dusted crickets to your leopard gecko:

Protein Content

Leopard geckos are carnivorous reptiles that require a diet high in protein. Dusted crickets are an excellent source of protein, with a single cricket containing around 20-25% protein. This makes them an ideal food for leopard geckos, as they need a diet that is at least 40% protein.

Calcium to Phosphorus Ratio

Leopard geckos also require a diet that is high in calcium and low in phosphorus. Dusted crickets are an excellent source of calcium, with a single cricket containing around 50-60mg of calcium. However, they are also high in phosphorus, with a ratio of around 1:9. This is why it’s important to dust crickets with calcium supplements before feeding them to your leopard gecko.

Vitamin Supplementation

In addition to calcium, leopard geckos also require a variety of vitamins to stay healthy. Dusted crickets can be supplemented with vitamins such as D3, A, and E, which are essential for maintaining good health. These vitamins can be added to the dusting powder used to coat the crickets before feeding them to your leopard gecko.

Overall, dusted crickets are an excellent source of nutrition for leopard geckos, providing them with the protein, calcium, and vitamins they need to stay healthy. However, it’s important to ensure that the crickets are dusted with the appropriate supplements before feeding them to your gecko to ensure they receive the right balance of nutrients.

Preparing Dusted Crickets for Feeding

Can Leopard Geckos Eat Dusted Crickets

When it comes to feeding leopard geckos, dusted crickets are a popular choice due to their high nutritional value. However, it is important to properly prepare the crickets before feeding them to your gecko. In this section, we will discuss the steps to take when preparing dusted crickets for feeding.

Selecting Quality Crickets

The first step in preparing dusted crickets for feeding is to select high-quality crickets. Look for crickets that are active and healthy, with no signs of injury or illness. It is also important to choose crickets that are the appropriate size for your gecko. A good rule of thumb is to choose crickets that are no larger than the width of your gecko’s head.

Dusting Techniques

Once you have selected your crickets, it is time to dust them with the appropriate supplements. Dusting crickets is important because it adds essential vitamins and minerals to your gecko’s diet. To dust your crickets, place them in a plastic bag or container with a small amount of supplement powder. Shake the bag or container gently to coat the crickets evenly.

It is important to note that not all supplements are created equal. Be sure to choose a high-quality supplement that is specifically formulated for leopard geckos. Some common supplements include calcium powder, multivitamin powder, and gut-loading supplements.

Feeding Frequency and Quantity

The frequency and quantity of dusted crickets you feed your gecko will depend on their age, size, and activity level. As a general rule, juvenile geckos should be fed daily, while adult geckos can be fed every other day. The number of crickets you feed your gecko will also depend on their size and appetite. A good starting point is to feed your gecko 2-3 appropriately sized crickets per feeding.

It is important to monitor your gecko’s weight and adjust their feeding schedule accordingly. Overfeeding can lead to obesity and other health issues, while underfeeding can result in malnutrition.

In conclusion, preparing dusted crickets for feeding requires selecting quality crickets, dusting them with appropriate supplements, and feeding them in the appropriate frequency and quantity. By following these steps, you can ensure that your leopard gecko receives the essential nutrients they need to thrive.

Potential Risks of Feeding Dusted Crickets

Can Leopard Geckos Eat Dusted Crickets

When it comes to feeding leopard geckos, dusted crickets are a popular choice due to their high protein content and convenience. However, there are some potential risks associated with feeding dusted crickets that every gecko owner should be aware of.


While it’s important for leopard geckos to receive essential vitamins and minerals, over-supplementation can be harmful. Dusted crickets are often coated in a powdered supplement to ensure that the gecko is receiving the necessary nutrients. However, if too much supplement is added or if the gecko is fed dusted crickets too frequently, it can lead to an excess of certain vitamins and minerals. This can cause health problems such as bone deformities, organ damage, and even death.

Impaction Risks

Another potential risk of feeding dusted crickets is the risk of impaction. Geckos may accidentally ingest the substrate or bedding that the crickets are housed in, leading to a blockage in their digestive system. This can cause serious health issues and may require veterinary intervention.

Allergic Reactions

Some geckos may be allergic to certain supplements or additives that are used to dust crickets. This can lead to symptoms such as swelling, itching, and difficulty breathing. If you notice any of these symptoms after feeding your gecko dusted crickets, it’s important to discontinue use immediately and seek veterinary care if necessary.

In conclusion, while dusted crickets can be a nutritious and convenient food source for leopard geckos, there are potential risks that should be taken into consideration. It’s important to monitor your gecko’s diet and health closely and make adjustments as necessary to ensure their well-being.

Leopard Gecko Feeding Behavior

Leopard geckos are known for their unique feeding behavior. They are nocturnal and prefer to hunt at night. In the wild, they hunt for insects such as crickets, mealworms, and roaches. In captivity, they are fed a variety of insects, including dusted crickets.

Hunting and Feeding Instincts

Leopard geckos have a strong hunting instinct and will actively pursue their prey. They use their keen sense of smell to locate their prey and then pounce on it with incredible speed and accuracy. Once they have caught their prey, they will swallow it whole. They do not chew their food, but rather rely on strong stomach acids to break it down.

Live Prey Preference

Leopard geckos prefer live prey over dead or frozen prey. This is because live prey provides a more natural hunting experience and stimulates their natural instincts. Live prey also provides a source of hydration for the gecko as they consume the fluids from their prey.

When feeding leopard geckos, it is important to provide a variety of live insects to ensure they receive a balanced diet. Dusting their food with calcium and other supplements can also help prevent nutritional deficiencies. Overall, understanding the feeding behavior of leopard geckos can help ensure their health and well-being in captivity.

Alternative Feeder Insects

If you’re looking to diversify your leopard gecko’s diet, there are many alternative feeder insects to consider. Here are a few options that can provide your gecko with a balanced diet:


Mealworms are a popular choice as they are easy to find and affordable. They are high in protein and fat, making them a great supplement to your gecko’s diet. However, they should be fed in moderation as they have a hard exoskeleton that can be difficult to digest.

Dubia Roaches

Dubia roaches are becoming increasingly popular as a feeder insect due to their high protein content and low fat content. They are also easy to digest and have a soft exoskeleton, making them a great choice for geckos of all ages. They can be a bit more expensive than other feeder insects, but they are worth the investment.


Waxworms are a treat for leopard geckos as they are high in fat and low in protein. They should only be fed as an occasional treat as too many can lead to obesity. Waxworms are also a good source of hydration as they are high in moisture.

Overall, it’s important to offer your leopard gecko a variety of feeder insects to ensure they are getting a balanced diet. By including some of these alternative feeder insects in their diet, you can provide them with the nutrients they need to thrive.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the nutritional value of dusted crickets for leopard geckos?

Dusted crickets are a great source of protein, calcium, and other essential nutrients for leopard geckos. The dusting process involves coating the crickets with a powdered supplement before feeding them to the geckos. This ensures that the geckos receive the necessary vitamins and minerals that may be lacking in their regular diet.

How often should leopard geckos be fed dusted crickets?

Leopard geckos should be fed dusted crickets 2-3 times a week, depending on their age and size. Juvenile geckos require more frequent feedings than adults, but it’s important not to overfeed them as this can lead to obesity.

Is there a risk of impaction from feeding leopard geckos dusted crickets?

There is a risk of impaction if the gecko ingests too much substrate along with the crickets. It’s important to provide a clean and safe feeding environment to minimize this risk. Additionally, feeding appropriately sized crickets and monitoring the gecko’s digestion can help prevent impaction.

Can juvenile leopard geckos digest dusted crickets easily?

Juvenile leopard geckos have a higher metabolism and require more frequent feedings than adults. They can digest dusted crickets easily as long as the crickets are appropriately sized for their age and size. It’s important to monitor their digestion and adjust feeding frequency accordingly.

What vitamins and minerals should be used for dusting crickets for leopard geckos?

The most common supplements used for dusting crickets for leopard geckos are calcium, vitamin D3, and multivitamins. It’s important to use high-quality supplements and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for dosing.

How do dusted crickets benefit the health of leopard geckos compared to other insects?

Dusted crickets are a popular choice for feeding leopard geckos because they are easy to digest and provide a good balance of protein and essential nutrients. However, it’s important to offer a variety of insects in the gecko’s diet to ensure they receive a diverse range of nutrients.