PROPER PROCEDURE FOR RECIEVING AND UNPACKING SHIPPED GECKOS
As many breeders do, Darling Geckos ships all across the USA using FedEx Priority Overnight, very frequently throughout the year. We also ship internationally to select countries.
"How are the geckos packed? How and when will they arrive to me? What do I do!!!"
It's an experience that brings a lot of questions and sometimes stress to a new owner or breeder, but the entire process is really very safe for the animals, when done properly - otherwise it wouldn't be allowed. Here I'll briefly touch on what I do to ensure the geckos' safety, but mostly, what YOU should do when you're expecting your new arrival.
A juvenile Inferno in an appropriately sized shipping container. A deli cup with holes punched around the outside to allow for air flow, and a paper towel to cling to and catch feces and urate.
"Poor thing looks so cramped in there!" :(
YES! Precisely. Your gecko is inside a small cupped space so that it does not get tossed around easily when the box is moved around. This gecko has a nice cozy place to cling, and will be safe this way. A gecko placed in too large of a container is at risk for broken bones, sloughed skin, and other injuries.
They will also be fine without food and water during shipping. We have FedEx pick up the package, and it gets delivered to you the next morning, so they are inside there for only a short time!
We will send you the tracking information for your gecko's package before it leaves here. You can use that to keep tabs on where your little guy or gal is, until they get to your home! First they will go to our local facility, then depart and catch a flight to one of the major sort facilities in the USA. Afterwards they will catch another flight to your own local FedEx location, and depart from there in the morning to your home (or stay at the hub for pickup if that is an option you have chosen during check-out).
Live Arrival Guaranteed (USA) when your package is recieved by 10:30 AM and on the first attempt!
Always be ready to recieve your gecko in the morning after we have shipped it! The gecko needs to be put away immediately, and not left outside on your porch or doorstep, exposed to the elements and possible extreme temperatures. We always recommend being prepared and ready to wait for FedEx in the morning, and take the box right from the driver's hands.
Please let us know when your package arrives and when you've opened it to see your gecko(s)! It is important for us to know the status of your gecko(s) upon arrival, no matter what. Open up the cup, and inspect your gecko thoroughly. You can email, message on Facebook, however you'd like to contact us to let us know how they are. This step is especially important. We must be informed if something is wrong with the gecko, like an injury, or (worst case) if it is deceased. We will be ready to help you!
To this date though, all of our geckos have arrived to their new homes alive and without injury, so there is no need to worry. Proper packing means everything!
Here's an idea: Many people get into the habit of making unboxing videos, starting from the moment before they cut the box open. It can be a great social media opportunity, as well as providing ample information about the geckos' status to send to your breeder and share with your friends!
A Black Night female before being shipped to her new home.
Do NOT leave your gecko in the cup, for any extended period of time, to go to do something else instead.
It is a shame that I have to point that out, but I have seen it happen before, and hopefully this post can help curb that behavior. Please unpack your gecko(s) IMMEDIATELY after inspecting them and informing us of their status (whether they are OK or NOT OK). We will be in touch with you to confirm very shortly after you've contacted us. Your gecko will want to relax, be alone, warm up, and get a drink, so putting it into its enclosure and leaving it alone is the best plan of action.
IF FOR ANY REASON your gecko is NOT OK, please take photos and videos, as soon as possible, preferably during immediate inspection as you are unpacking them. Send these to us ASAP. We allow a 2-hour window to provide us with this evidence (which is a little overly generous). If you wait any longer than that, it will be considered negligent on your part, and your LAG will be voided. We will want to help you as soon as you find if anything is wrong! The animal's needs always come first, so please do not hesitate to reach out.
You should follow these procedures no matter who you buy from!!
1. The gecko's well-being is ALWAYS the most important thing, and should come first above all else. NOT whether your lunch will be made in time, NOT that you need to run to the mall quick to meet up with someone, and NOT that you are late for work.... Animals come first, always. Don't be cruel to them! Make sure your gecko is healthy, and put them away into their enclosure. Everything else can come later.
2. The breeder you purchased from ALWAYS deserves to know when the package arrived and how the gecko is. It reflects good on you, as the buyer, and will keep you safe and covered in most Live Arrival Guarantee's. It is a very good habit to get into.
The only time your gecko should be handled after recieving it, is when putting it away into its enclosure.
New geckos have a LOT of adjusting to do in their new home. It is unfamiliar to them, in ALL ways. Please refrain from handling your gecko unnecessarily, until it begins eating regularly. DO NOT EVER FORCE FEED YOUR GECKO (I will touch on this in another blog topic). Geckos usually take up to a week or two to begin eating on a normal schedule, so don't worry! They are built to go for a period between meals.
Reduced handling and interference = reduced stress = an easier transition! Just remember to be patient, and enjoy your gecko when they are ready to accept you and their new home!