How to take care of a Bearded Dragon?

Bearded dragons are one of the most popular pet lizards in the world. They are hardy, easily tamed, and make great companions. With the proper care, Bearded Dragons can live up to 10-12 years.

In order to ensure a long and healthy life for your Bearded Dragon, here are a few tips on how to take care of them.

  • Provide a suitable habitat: Ensure a secure, well-ventilated enclosure made from a solid material that’s easy to clean.
  • Maintain proper temperature and lighting: Bearded dragons need a basking bulb for high temperatures and a 10-12% fluorescent UV tube to prevent metabolic bone disease.
  • Offer a balanced diet: Feed them a mix of live insects and vegetables, along with the correct supplements.
  • Keep humidity low: Use a hygrometer to measure humidity at the cool end of the enclosure.
  • Hygiene: Clean and disinfect water and food bowls daily, and spot-clean the habitat to remove droppings and discarded food.
  • Bathing: Give your bearded dragon showers or soaks in warm water two to three times a week for 10-15 minutes each time.
  • Nail trimming: Trim their nails every few weeks, either at home or with the help of a professional.
  • Veterinary care: Ensure regular check-ups and annual bloodwork to monitor calcium levels and overall health.
  • Hand washing: Always wash your hands before and after handling your bearded dragon or its habitat.

Importance of proper care for baby bearded dragons

A Bearded Dragon
Credit: Andrew Reilly

Providing proper care for baby bearded dragons is crucial as it sets the foundation for their future growth and health. It is essential that you purchase your dragon from a reputable breeder to ensure its quality since this reptile has become so popular nowadays.

It’s important to note that baby bearded dragons need more attention than adults since they’re not fully developed yet, which means they need more frequent meals throughout the day (around three times) compared to once per day when they’re grownups.

Overall, it’s essential to understand that baby bearded dragons need appropriate housing, nutrition, and proper care to ensure that they grow up healthy and thrive in their environment. By providing the necessary care for your baby bearded dragon, you can enjoy years of companionship with this fascinating pet.

Housing and Environment

Size and type of enclosure needed for a baby bearded dragon

Baby bearded dragons need sufficient space to grow, move around, and explore their surroundings. A 20-gallon tank is the minimum recommended size for a baby bearded dragon, but larger enclosures are always better.

A 40-gallon tank or terrarium will provide more space for climbing, basking, and exploring. Keep in mind that once your beardie grows to around 18-20 inches in length, you will need a much larger enclosure so that it can continue to thrive.

Temperature and lighting requirements

Curious Bearded Dragon
Credit: Bill Amidon

Bearded dragons require specific temperature ranges in order to digest food properly and maintain their overall health. During the day, the basking spot should be between 95-110°F and the cooler end of the enclosure should range from 75-85°F.

At night, temperatures can drop slightly down to around 70°F. Adequate lighting is also essential for your beardie’s health as they require UVB rays in order to synthesize vitamin D3 which aids in calcium absorption.

Substrate options

Substrates such as reptile carpets or paper towels are safe choices because they do not pose a risk of impaction if ingested by your pet accidentally while eating; however, they may not look as aesthetically pleasing as other options. Sand substrates are not recommended as they can cause serious health problems if ingested by your pet.

Decorations and hiding spots

Adding decorations like rocks, branches or logs can provide stimulation for your baby bearded dragon while also offering hiding spots when needed. Be sure that any decorations you add do not have sharp edges that could harm your pet.

If you decide to use a water dish, choose one that is shallow and heavy enough that it cannot be easily tipped over. Adding a few plants or greenery can also help create a more naturalistic environment.

Feeding and Nutrition

Types of food to feed a baby bearded dragon

Bearded Dragon, Fire and Ice
Credit: Laura Thomson

One of the most important aspects of caring for a baby bearded dragon is providing proper nutrition. Bearded dragons are omnivores, which means they require a balanced diet consisting of both plant and animal matter.

For baby bearded dragons, it is recommended to feed them insects that are smaller in size and easier to digest, such as pinhead crickets or small mealworms.

As they grow, you can gradually increase the size of the insects. In addition to insects, baby bearded dragons should also be fed a variety of vegetables and fruits.

Some good options include collard greens, mustard greens, dandelion greens, butternut squash, and strawberries. It’s important to offer a variety of foods to ensure your beardie is getting all the necessary nutrients.

Feeding schedule

Baby bearded dragons need to eat frequently throughout the day due to their small stomachs and high metabolism. It’s recommended that they are fed two to three times per day until they reach six months old. After six months old, you can switch them to one feeding per day.

It’s important not to overfeed your baby beardie as this can lead to obesity and other health issues. A good rule of thumb is that their food should not exceed the size of their head.

Proper supplementation

To ensure your baby bearded dragon is getting all the necessary vitamins and minerals they need for optimal health, it’s important to provide proper supplementation.

Dusting their food with calcium powder at least once a week will help prevent metabolic bone disease. You can also add vitamin supplements like Reptivite or Repashy Calcium Plus once or twice per week.

Be careful not to over-supplement as too much calcium or vitamin D3 can be toxic to your beardie. Always follow the recommended dosage on the supplement packaging and consult with a veterinarian if you have any concerns.

Health and Wellness

Signs of Illness in Baby-Bearded Dragons

Being able to recognize the signs of illness in a baby bearded dragon is crucial to ensuring its health and longevity. Some common signs of illness include loss of appetite, lethargy, weight loss or gain, diarrhea, discoloration or darkening of the skin, and abnormal behavior such as excessive sleeping or lack of movement.

It’s important to keep a close eye on your baby bearded dragon’s behavior and habits so that you can catch any potential health issues early.

Common Health Issues and How to Prevent Them

The most common health issue in baby bearded dragons is metabolic bone disease (MBD), which occurs when there is a lack of proper calcium intake leading to weak bones.

To prevent MBD from occurring in your baby bearded dragon, it’s important to provide them with adequate calcium supplementation as well as UVB lighting that helps them synthesize vitamin D3.

Other common health issues include respiratory infections, impaction caused by ingesting substrate materials such as sand or gravel, and parasitic infections. To prevent respiratory infections, make sure the enclosure is kept at appropriate temperature ranges without excessive humidity levels.

Also, ensure that the enclosure has good ventilation while avoiding direct drafts near the dragons basking site. Avoid feeding them prey items that are too large for their size as this could lead to impaction.

Veterinary Care

If you notice any signs of illness in your baby bearded dragon or have concerns about its overall health and wellness it’s important to seek veterinary care immediately.

A qualified veterinarian experienced with reptiles should perform regular checkups on your pet dragon every 6 months even if they appear healthy. In addition, these visits will also help ensure that you’re providing proper care for them such as correct nutrition.

Regular veterinary care is essential for ensuring the health and wellness of your baby bearded dragon. Your veterinarian may recommend additional preventive measures based on the specific needs of your pet.

These may include vaccinations, parasite prevention, and bloodwork to monitor overall health. By providing your baby bearded dragon with proper veterinary care, you can help ensure that it remains healthy and happy for years to come.

Handling and Socialization

Proper Handling Techniques for Baby-Bearded Dragons

When it comes to handling baby bearded dragons, there are a few key things to keep in mind to ensure their safety and comfort. First and foremost, make sure your hands are clean and free of any lotions or other substances that could harm the dragon.

Be gentle when picking them up, supporting their entire body with both hands. Never pick them up by the tail, as this can cause injury.

It’s also important to remember that bearded dragons are prey animals by nature, so they may become stressed or frightened if you approach them too quickly or suddenly. To help your baby dragon feel more comfortable around you, move slowly and speak softly while interacting with them.

Once you have a good grip on your baby beardie, it’s important to support their entire body as you handle them. Avoid any sudden motions that could startle or injure the dragon.

Tips on How to Socialize the Baby Beardie

Socialization is crucial for young bearded dragons, as it helps them become more accustomed to human interaction and reduces stress in new environments. One way to socialize your baby beardie is simply by spending time near their enclosure each day.

This will allow them to get used to your presence and develop trust over time. As your dragon becomes more comfortable with you, try offering small amounts of food from your hand or gently petting their head with a finger.

This can help build positive associations between you and the dragon. Another effective way to socialize baby bearded dragons is through regular handling sessions.

Start with short sessions of just a few minutes each day and gradually increase the length of time as your dragon becomes more comfortable with being handled.


Summary of Key Points

Taking care of a baby bearded dragon requires attention to detail and commitment. Proper housing and environment, feeding and nutrition, health and wellness, handling and socialization are all critical aspects for the healthy development of your pet.

A suitable enclosure with appropriate temperatures, lighting, substrate options, and decorations is essential to create an ideal environment for the baby beardie.

Feeding them a balanced diet consisting of live insects, vegetables, fruits, and proper supplementation is vital for their growth. Monitoring the health of the baby bearded dragon by checking their appetite levels, weight gain or loss, and bowel movement quality along with regular veterinary check-ups can prevent any health issues in advance.

Using proper handling techniques while holding them can ensure they feel safe while getting used to human interaction. Socialization with other pets or family members is an important part of their overall well-being.

Importance of Providing Proper Care for a Healthy Happy Baby Bearded Dragon

Providing proper care for your baby bearded dragon will reap long-term benefits as they grow into adulthood. These benefits include having a healthy young beardie that will develop into an interactive pet that enjoys human interaction.

Owners who provide appropriate housing environments with correct heating and lighting requirements decrease stress on their pets leading to prolonged lifespans filled with playful activity levels.

Additionally, feeding them nutritious meals will give them the energy they need to engage in physical activities such as walking around their enclosure or playing games such as hide-and-seek with you.

Regularly checking up on your beardie’s health requirements and early detection of any issues helps avoid more severe problems developing in later stages.

Providing proper care for a baby bearded dragon involves paying attention to its needs across various aspects ranging from its housing environment to its socialization needs. This effort ultimately translates into excellent quality of life for your baby bearded dragon, and a happy, healthy pet will fill your home with added joy and fun.