How to get sand out of bearded dragons nose

How to get sand out of bearded dragon’s nose?

Bearded dragons are one of the most popular reptile pets in the United States. They can make wonderful companions for both adults and children; however, they require special care to ensure their health and wellbeing. One common issue with bearded dragons is sand stuck in their noses, which can be a worrying problem for pet owners.

Sand in the nose of a bearded dragon not only causes discomfort but also leads to respiratory issues that could potentially cause serious illness or even death if left untreated.

Fortunately, there are steps that can be taken to help remove sand from a bearded dragon’s nose before it becomes a more serious issue. It is important to understand how sand gets into their noses and what steps should be taken if your pet has this problem.

How sand can get stuck in a bearded dragon’s nose?

Bearded Dragon
Credit: Northampton Reptile Centre

Bearded dragons are known for their love of digging and burrowing, often using their snouts to push around sand and other substrates. Unfortunately, this behavior can lead to particles of sand becoming lodged in their nostrils. This can happen when they breathe in or when they sneeze, causing the sand to become trapped inside.

Why this can cause respiratory problems and other health issues

When sand becomes stuck in a bearded dragon’s nose, it can cause irritation and inflammation of the nasal passages. This can lead to respiratory problems such as difficulty breathing or wheezing.

If left untreated, it can also result in infections that may spread throughout the respiratory system and even the rest of the body. In severe cases, it may even lead to pneumonia or other life-threatening conditions.

Signs of sand in a bearded dragon’s nose

Jo's Bearded Dragon 2
Credit: Kevin

If a bearded dragon has sand in its nose, it can be a cause for concern as sand can cause impaction and respiratory issues. Here are some signs that may indicate sand in a bearded dragon’s nose:

  1. Sneezing: If you notice your bearded dragon sneezing frequently, it could be a sign that there is sand in its nose.
  2. Nasal discharge: Sand particles in the nose can cause irritation and lead to nasal discharge.
  3. Rubbing or scratching at the nose: Bearded dragons may exhibit behavior such as rubbing or scratching at their nose if they have sand particles lodged in their nostrils.

If you suspect that your bearded dragon has sand in its nose, it is best to consult a veterinarian or reptile specialist. They can perform a procedure to safely remove the sand from the bearded dragon’s nose. It is important to avoid using sand as a substrate in the enclosure to prevent such issues in the first place.

Steps to Remove Sand from a Bearded Dragon’s Nose


Before attempting to remove sand from your bearded dragon’s nose, it is important to gather the necessary supplies and create a comfortable environment for your pet. You will need tweezers, saline solution, and cotton swabs. Make sure that these supplies are within reach and that you have them at hand before starting the process.

It is also critical that your bearded dragon is calm and comfortable before commencing the procedure. You can do this by placing them in a warm spot with a comfortable temperature, providing them with their favorite food or treats, and dimming the lights.

Removing the Sand:

Gently holding your bearded dragon’s head still, use tweezers carefully to remove any visible grains of sand from their nostrils. Be extremely cautious not to cause any injury or discomfort to your pet during this process.

If some particles of sand remain in their nose, soak cotton swabs with saline solution and gently wipe around their nostrils to loosen any remaining particles of sand without hurting or irritating them.


After removing the sand from your bearded dragon’s nose, monitor it closely for any signs of discomfort or respiratory problems throughout the day. This includes checking for labored breathing, wheezing sounds when breathing, or lethargy.

Providing plenty of clean water can also help ensure that they stay hydrated properly which can avoid further complications such as dehydration.


Sand getting stuck in a bearded dragon’s nose can lead to significant respiratory issues if not addressed immediately. Removing it is a delicate process that requires immense care so as not to cause harm or irritation to the pet.

The above steps should guide you on how best to remove sand from your bearded dragon’s nose smoothly as well as provide aftercare tips to ensure they stay healthy. It is crucial that you monitor your pet for any signs of distress or respiratory problems and seek the help of a veterinarian if necessary.