30 Questions Which Should Be Considered Before Getting A Bearded Dragon Pet
If you’re looking for a reptile pet, few are a better option than the bearded dragon. Gorgeous, social, and unique in many ways, the bearded dragon is one of our favorite cold-blooded pets.
Is it the right pet for you, however? What if you’ve never owned a lizard before – is the Beardie beginner-friendly? We’ll explore those and the other 28 of the main 30 questions which should be considered before getting a bearded dragon pet below.
1. Where do bearded dragons come from?
These lizards are native to Australia. However, the country has strict laws against exporting Beardies so most pets you can get are captive-bred outside of Australia.
2. What is the personality of bearded dragons?
Bearded dragons are pretty docile and even social for a lizard. Males can be a bit more aggressive than females so proper socialization is still recommended – check out this video for a few cool tips.
3. Is the bearded dragon a good pet?
Bearded dragons are quite good-natured which makes them a very cool pet. However, as with most reptiles, they do need a certain amount of preparation and maintenance.
4. Is a bearded dragon an easy pet to look after?
Generally, yes, Beardies are recommended for rookie reptile owners. They are much safer than most other reptile pets you can get, as well as simpler to look after. That is, once you’ve made the initial investment in their environment.
5. How can you get a bearded dragon?
As Australia has severely restricted the export of bearded dragons, you can’t get native wild-caught dragons. Then again, captive-bred reptiles are always better anyway and those should be easy to get wherever you live. If your local pet stores don’t have Beardies, you can contact breeders online and arrange a delivery.
6. How much does a bearded dragon cost?
The prices of these lizards can vary a lot, depending on where you live. On average, in the US Beardies cost somewhere between $60 and $100. In the UK, on the other hand, their price can vary anywhere between 40 and 200 pounds.
7. How big is an adult bearded dragon?
An adult bearded dragon can grow to about 16 to 24 inches. That is 2 feet or 60 cm with the tail. Granted, the tail is quite long and can make up about a third or even a half of the body. So, Beardies are pretty mid-sized and manageable reptiles.
8. Are bearded dragons healthy?
Like most other pet reptiles, Beardies are fairly healthy. One of the few things to watch out for, however, is a metabolic bone disease , usually due to an improper calcium to potassium ratio in the diet. You should also watch out for respiratory infections which can be identified by a wheezy breading or the presence of mucus around the nose. Also, watch out for digestive problems if you feed your Beardie too many crunchy bugs – more on the diet below.
9. Do bearded dragons get attached to their owners?
Beardies are known to very easily attach to their owners and even other pets. These lizards have very good facial recognition skills as well as decent memory and comprehension.
10. Are bearded dragons high maintenance?
Beardies can be called “high maintenance” if you compare them to more standard pets such as cats and dogs. However, they really aren’t that different from other exotic pets and other reptiles in particular.
11. How long does a Beardie live on average?
The standard life expectancy of a bearded dragon is 6 to 10 years, however, they can easily reach even more than that with good care and a bit of luck. Beardies are known to live up to 15 years quite often.
12. Do bearded dragons like to be handled?
Bearded dragons tolerate handling much more than other reptiles. A Beardie that’s used to you will even enjoy perching on your shoulders as you wander around your home. Here’s a good video on handling bearded dragons.
13. Do bearded dragons bite?
A properly socialized and well-handled Beardie shouldn’t bite. However, if the reptile feels unease and/or gets startled, it may bite. The bite itself will be painful but shouldn’t be too traumatic. Beardies do have venom but it’s not toxic to humans. Still – wash the would well to prevent infection.
14. Do bearded dragons lick you?
Yes, bearded dragons love to lick people as well as objects. They do that when they are happy but also when they are exploring a new place or environment. They can also lick when they are hungry.
15. Do Beardies like baths?
Bearded dragons both love and need baths. This can be done easily by just placing a large water bowl in their enclosure. This will help tremendously with their hygiene.
16. Can I kiss my bearded dragon?
This isn’t a good idea. Beardies may be cute but kissing them is an easy way to get salmonella. Additionally – keep your Beardie away from food items and always wash your hands after handling your pet.
17. Do Beardies like music?
Bearded dragons don’t really recognize music the way we do. However, loud and aggressive music will stress them out. That’s only because it’s loud, however.
18. Where should you house a bearded dragon?
For an adult Beardie, a 55 to 75 gallon tank is recommended. Make sure the top is secured with a nice fine mesh. These dragons can climb so be certain that the top is secure.
19. Can you keep two or more bearded dragons in the same tank?
You can but the tank should be even larger. Also, avoid placing two males in the same tank as they can get territorial and aggressive. Pick females if you want more than one Beardie.
20. What temperature does a Beardie need?
80 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit (27-29.5o C) is the standard heat range for these reptiles. However, there should be a 95 to 105o F (35-40.5o C) basking spot in the tank too. Nighttime temperature can be as low as 65 to 70o F (18-21o C).
21. What’s the right lighting for a Beardie’s tank?
In addition to a basking heat light, your Beardie should also have a fluorescent UV light bulb in the tank. Just make sure to turn the lights off at night to provide a proper day/night cycle. Sunlight is also good during the day if you can place the tank near a window.
22. The correct humidity levels for a bearded dragon?
35% to 40% relative humidity is ideal for these Australian lizards. Use a hygrometer to make sure you’re not getting above or below that.
23. Do Beardies live on trees?
Bearded dragons are semi-arboreal which means that they live both on the ground and on tree branches. They are good climbers so a good tank decoration should include rocks and tree branches.
24. What substrate is right for a Beardie?
Reptile carpets work great as substrates for Beardies. Avoid all substrates that may be swallowed such as fine sand, corn cob, wood shavings, or walnut shell. Larger sad can be ok for adult Beardies.
25. How do I know if my Beardie is happy?
The lack of aggression is more than enough sign to show that a Beardie is happy. If the dragon isn’t biting, hissing, puffing his beard, or bobbing his head at you – that’s a happy lizard.
26. Are bearded dragons active during the day?
This is a daytime reptile which means that feeding and handling should be done during the day. These lizards will prefer to rest after dark.
27. Why does my Beardie stare at me?
Beardies love to stare so that’s not something to worry about. As long as the Bardie isn’t bobbing its head or hissing, of course.
28. What should you feed a bearded dragon?
Beardies should be fed once a day every day. They prefer a diet of insects and vegetables. Consult with a vet for the exact amount as it depends on the size and age of the lizard. Proper insects include waxworms, butterworms, red worms, mealworms, and others. They should be gut-loaded and dusted with Vitamin D and calcium – here’s a good instructional video on gut-loading.
For veggies – go with leafy greens and a mixture of chopped fruits and salad vegetables such as cucumbers and tomatoes.
29. How should you give your Beardie water?
Beardies will need to soak in water not just for hygiene but for hydration too. This is even more reason to provide a nice shallow dish of clean water in your Beardie's tank.
30. Can your bearded dragon sleep with you?
Definitely not – this would be safe neither for you nor for the lizard!
As you can see, bearded dragons certainly make for an awesome pet. They do have quite a few quirks and are generally considered a high-maintenance pet. However, they are also fairly beginner-friendly if you’re willing to commit to looking after one of those adorable lizards.
Are you wondering if a bearded dragon is the right pet for you? Here we’ll explore the 30 most important questions about bearded dragons.