Can Leopard Geckos Learn Their Name? [100 Name Ideas]

When was the last time you called any of your pets by the name of their species? Well, we guess never. Clearly, there’s a need to name them as it’s mostly a gesture of love. But that goes for dogs and cats. What about leopard geckos? Can they learn their name like cats and dogs do?

Leopard geckos can recognize or learn their own names. But making them do it is quite tough. Actually, more than the name, they can relate to the tone of voice or sounds. You’ll see them respond positively if you can manage to make the same noise in front of them again and again.

By the way, when an animal reacts to certain words or sounds, they’re considered smart. So, does that mean Leopard geckos are smart too – at least compared to other reptiles? And if they are, how are going to teach them to react to their name? Well, finding that out shouldn’t be a problem if you can keep scrolling.

Are Leopard Geckos Smart?

When an animal manages to recognize their name, anyone would count it as a sign of intelligence. Actually, everything they do to learn new things is known as intelligence. The same goes for the ability to adapt to situations that are beyond their comfort zone.

On the other hand, most of the animals basically run on their instinct. It’s something they’re hardwired to do. Now the question is, what about leopard geckos? Are they intelligent or what?

Well, it’s a bit tough to call them intelligent, seeing how they behave in certain circumstances. For example, if they fail to scale one of the rocks in their enclosure, they’ll try the same path again and again. This means they’re not getting the point and failing to figure out an alternative route.

But if it were an actual intelligent animal, like a cat or dog, it would’ve found a different path to reach where they want to reach. So, clearly, leopard geckos aren’t exactly intelligent or smart.

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In fact, leopard geckos got no great ability to learn or solve a problem. They mostly depend on their instinct to survive rather than their intelligence, and the credit goes to their low brain-to-body mass ratio. Clearly, this affects the learning of their new name. The kind of sluggish learner they are, it might take ages for them to learn their own name.

How Good Leopard Geckos Are With Their Memories?

What is the most important thing when it comes to training an animal? Exactly, their memories. The good news is geckos have shown some signs of having a decent memory. So, it plays in favor of geckos getting trained on their names.

There’s even an interesting study on that one. Once, some researchers decided to introduce a male gecko to a few females of the same species over the span of a week. As a part of its usual behavior, the reptile approached every one of those females. Some rejected him in the first place.

But later on, when those females were brought in front of the lizard again, he decided not to approach them anymore as he was rejected before. But when a new female gecko was brought in front of him again, he showed equal enthusiasm in flirting, just like before.

This is clear proof that geckos got a memory sharp enough to recognize female geckos over the span of days. Now the question is, what about their owners? Can a gecko recognize them too? Well, some of the sources have spoken in favor of them. There are even videos that show how excited a gecko can become after seeing its owner after a long gap.

We know lots of us will go against this opinion, and that totally okay. The prime fact here is, whether geckos can recognize their owners or not, they can recognize their name and respond to it, after tons of effort from their owner, though.

How Can You Teach A Leopard Gecko Their Name?

No, leopard geckos are not so dumb that they can’t learn anything. You can surely teach them, but you need to be very patient as that’s going to take a long time. Also, how you’re trying to teach them also matters a lot. So, when it comes to training your gecko to learn its name, you need to try out the following steps first.

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Step 1: Having A Reward System

If you’ve already trained pets earlier on certain things, then you know how effective a reward system is in such cases. After all, they need something to feel motivated, and a reward can easily do the trick. Even for humans, this is a perfect way to teach anything.

The most important thing is figuring out which treat is the favorite of your gecko. Once you find that out, making it useful for training your lizard shouldn’t be a problem. What you need to do here is, rather than letting them have it like a free feed, take them through a system to get it.

For example, when you’re giving your gecko a bug, make sure that you’re making a recognizable sound. This can be anything like a crisp word, such as ‘good’ or a knock on the table. The aim here is all about making your gecko associate with the sound you’re making so that it can get a treat. Let’s just call it positive reinforcement.

While dealing with your gecko, remember that it’s going to be a super slow process, especially when it’s not a frequent eater. But once you get done with the process, the result is going to be worth watching.

Step 2: Sticking To An Easy Name

Do you like longer names? Well, if you do, forget that for your gecko, at least. Try to stick to a shorter name if you really want to train it up with the name. You already know that animals can’t understand or react to language the way we do. So, the shorter names you’ll start with, the easier it’ll be for the geckos to recognize them.

When you’re picking a name, make sure that you’re using a certain tone to say it. You’ve got purposes here. One, uttering the word faster, and two, using a tone that the reptile can pick easily. You’ll have to later repeat this act hundreds of times till you see the lizard is responding positively to it.

Now the question is, what if you’ve picked up a long name already and got comfortable with it already? Well, in that case, you better cut it short and turn it into a nickname. This way, you can repeat the process we’ve mentioned before in order to train the reptile.

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Step 3: Teaching The Gecko Its Name

Once you’re done with the reward system and the short name, you need to step into the next phase – The Training. Start with trying to grab their attention with the name you’ve picked. Once they start responding to that, reward them with a treat. This method is known as the scan and capture, where you’ll have to wait till your lizard gaze at your and enforce the behavior.

Here, you’ll have to utter the name of the gecko once or twice. When it looks at you, and you give it a treat, there’s a high chance of it being more attentive the next time you’d give it a call. Don’t forget that it’s going to be a long process, but surely is a useful one. Even the expert animal trainers have agreed to that.

Sep 4: Staying Consistent

Consistency is the key to reaching somewhere any kind of training, and that’s what you need to do while training your gecko. As we said before, it’s going to take time. So, here the word consistency doesn’t mean that staying consistent for a month will do the trick. You might have to keep repeating it for months. 

At a certain stage, the gecko will start responding to their name and will look forward to getting a treat in exchange for that. Once they start doing that, you can be sure that whether you’re giving it any treat or not, it’ll respond every single time.

100 Leopard Gecko Name Ideas

Male NamesFemale Names

Feel free to choose any name from the list or mix and match to find the perfect name for your pet leopard gecko!

Before We Go…

Do you know when pets become more responsive than ever? When they truly like you. But understanding whether a dog or cat likes you or not is kind of easy. The challenge pops up when you try to figure out if your leopard gecko likes you or what.

Well, we thought of easing that up with our blog – How To Tell If Your Leopard Gecko Likes You? Just click it and find it out in like 5 minutes.

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Muntaseer Rahman

About Author

Hello, I’m Muntaseer Rahman, the owner of I’m passionate about aquarium pets like shrimps, snails, crabs, and crayfish. I’ve created this website to share my expertise and help you provide better care for these amazing pets.


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