Bearded Dragons Make Excellent Pets

By Robin McArthur, September 8th 2021

Not sure what reptile would make a good first pet?  Introducing the bearded dragon. Bearded dragons are very friendly and docile lizards that make an excellent first-time reptile pet.   They adapt easily to their environment.

Bearded dragons, or  "Beardies," as enthusiasts call them, are native to Australia.  They can be found living in trees or on the ground.  Their wide-open smiles make them enduring to pet owners (and it is a way for them to cool down).

Bearded dragons are very easy to care for.  They love leafy vegetables and insects.  In captivity, you can observe them basking in the light or enjoying the shade.  They tolerate being handled very well and are a trendy reptile companion.

Bearded dragons are rather large, reaching from snout to tail to about 15-20 inches.  They have spines along the sides of their bodies that run the length of their tail.

Bearded dragons are not nocturnal, so that they can provide companionship and entertainment during the day.

Although bearded dragons make excellent pets for beginners, they are relatively large and require a fairly large habitat to remain happy and healthy.  Their lifespan is between seven to twelve years if kept under ideal conditions.

Here are some tips for creating the ideal habitat for your new pet:

Their enclosure should be relatively roomy.  The minimal size should be 4ft by 2ft by 2ft.  Bigger is always better to give them optimal space.   There should be both UVB and infrared lighting.  Their basking area should reach a temperature of 95-105 degrees. 

A glass tank with a screen top is the ideal home for the dragon.  Rocks and branches should be a part of their environment for privacy and as a means to cool down.  Because they are awake during the day, they should receive 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of darkness.

Feeding a bearded dragon is not difficult. They should be offered plenty of green leafy vegetables and crickets or super worms.   Water should be offered in a shallow dish and changed every day,

Although bathing your dragon is optional, placing it in lukewarm water several times a week assists the dragon to defecate. 

Dragons do shed their skin, usually in spring and summer. 

Keeping their habitat clean is essential.  It would be best to clean the tank with soap and water every two weeks, and the substrate changed.

Bearded dragons will challenge each other over food.  They do this in captivity as well.  They are also territorial.  It is best not to have more than one dragon in the same enclosure.

Dragons are friendly toward humans.  They are intelligent lizards and can recognize their owners, and they will bond with them eventually. They tolerate handling very well.  They may even sit on your shoulder.  They can also be trained.  With patience, they can be trained to come when called,  navigate to their feeding area, and can be trained to walk on a leash.

Bearded dragons are easy to take care of. They are intelligent, make excellent playtime pets. They are capable of building a strong bond with their owner.  They make unique pets and will be around for a long time with proper care.  Consider a bearded dragon if you are thinking of getting a reptile for a pet.  You will have a friend for life.



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