Can Leopard Geckos Live Together? Cohabitation Explained

By Frank Miller •  Updated: 09/17/23 • 

The cohabitation of leopard geckos is a controversial subject often debated among keepers. If you own more than two leopard geckos, keeping them in one enclosure can save you space. However, this is not recommended in some cases because it can lead to violent fights among your leos.

In this article, I’ll explain when leopard geckos can live together and when you should not try it at all. Remember, keeping your leopard geckos safe and healthy should be your priority.

Two Leopard Geckos Face to Face

Male and Male Leopard Gecko Living Together

Male leopard geckos are very notorious for being territorial. In the wild, to protect their turf, they usually fight violently. Before an attack, the gecko usually prepares for an attack by bobbing his foe’s head. This is intended to warn the opponent to retreat without a fight. However, if the opponent does not react, a violent fight ensues to determine the superior Leo.

Pictured below is male leopard gecko with a foot bitten off and belly ripped open after cohabiting with another male leopard gecko for five years.  Even after all these years of no fighting, these types of injuries can end in the death of one or both leopard geckos.

Male Leopard Gecko Bitten Off Foot By Another Male

Male Leopard Gecko Bitten Off Foot By Another Male

For male leopard geckos, their fights are usually a result of the gecko’s mating instincts. By fighting for his territory, a male leopard gecko protects his right to mate with many females in the area. In captivity, this instinct to breed is still there, so male leopard geckos will still fight whether a female is present or not.

As a result, I would not recommend keeping two male leopard geckos in the same enclosure. It will lead to stress and serious injuries to both leopard geckos.

> Recommended Reading: Leopard Gecko Stress Signs & Causes

Male and Female Leopard Geckos Living Together

Even in the wild, leopard geckos are not social animals and usually live separately. If you’re planning to breed your male and female leopard geckos, I only advise you cohabit them when the right time comes. However, permanently keeping your male and female geckos together is not advisable.

A male and female gecko living together is always detrimental to the female’s health. Because leopard geckos also compete for food, the female will always be outclassed by his male companion. This can be very detrimental to its health, considering breeding females need more food and vital nutrients to sustain themselves.

Female and Female Leopard Gecko Living Together

While females are not territorial over mating rights, they should also not be housed together. Female leopard geckos are known to be also territorial, which is driven by an instinct to have access to the best food supply.

The dominant female will bully, fight, and compete for food when housed together. This can cause the other female leopard gecko’s health to decline slowly. With time, when being constantly bullied and outcompeted for food, the female leopard gecko will become emaciated and extremely malnourished.

A Thin Leopard Gecko Outcompeted for Food

A Thin Leopard Gecko Outcompeted for Food

The cohabitation of female leopard geckos can seem fine for several years without major incidents. However, it’s just a matter of time before something happens, and the geckos end up hurting each other. Although some people advise on cohabiting females, I do recommend this as it always ends up bad.

Wrapping Up

Leopard geckos are not social animals and should never be made to live together. The territoriality of the species and competition for resources will always drive them to bully and fight to defend their turf. In captivity, keeping them together is only possible when breeding, but after that, you should keep them separately.

If you can’t keep each leopard gecko in its enclosure, getting more is unnecessary. This will ensure your leopard geckos live healthy and happy.

Frank Miller

Frank Miller is the Founder of Lizard Advisor and owns several pet lizards, from leopard geckos, bearded dragons, crested geckos, chameleons, and others. The mission of this website is to make owning a pet lizard very easy for everyone, but mostly beginners. And each year, he continues to help more people learn more about lizard care and much more.