Why is my bearded dragon tail white?

The most likely reason your bearded dragon’s tail is turning white is shedding. Bearded dragons shed their skin periodically, and during this process, their skin may appear dull, pale, or white.

Younger dragons can shed as often as every few weeks, while adults usually shed a few times a year. Shedding typically occurs in patches, so it’s normal for only the tail to appear white at first.

However, if the white tail is accompanied by other symptoms such as lethargy, loss of appetite, abnormal behavior, or any other unusual symptoms, it could indicate an underlying health issue. In such cases, it is crucial to seek veterinary care promptly to address any potential problems

The Normal Color of a Bearded Dragon Tail

Bearded Dragons
Credit: Reptiles Plus

Bearded dragons are known for their unique physical features, and their tail is one of the most distinctive. Typically, a bearded dragon’s tail is brown or dark gray in color.

This coloring helps them blend in with their natural environment, which is dominated by rocky terrain and sandy deserts. The brown or gray coloring of the tail allows bearded dragons to camouflage themselves against dirt and rocks.

They can hide from predators by blending into their surroundings. Bearded dragons are also known to flatten themselves against the ground when they feel threatened.

The flattened shape of their body combined with the coloration of their tail makes it difficult for predators to spot them. In addition to providing camouflage, the coloration of a bearded dragon’s tail can also indicate its mood or health.

When they are happy and relaxed, their tails will be held high and have a healthy sheen to them. On the other hand, when they are stressed or sick, their tails may appear dull or even darken in color.

Overall, the normal coloration of a bearded dragon’s tail plays an important role in helping these creatures survive in the wild. It allows them to blend into their environment while also indicating important information about their mood and health.

Reasons Why a Bearded Dragon Tail Might Turn White

Bearded Dragon
Credit: tah/venuti

Bearded dragons are known for their unique physical features, one of which is their tail. Typically, a bearded dragon’s tail is brown or dark gray in color, which helps them blend in with their natural environment. However, there are certain circumstances that can cause a bearded dragon’s tail to turn white.


Shedding is a natural process for all reptiles, including bearded dragons. During shedding, a bearded dragon will shed its old skin to make way for new growth. Shedding can affect the coloration of the tail, causing white patches to appear during the shedding process.

This is because the old skin begins to dry out and loosen from the body before it falls off completely. As a result, the skin underneath may appear lighter in color than usual.


Injuries to the tail can also cause discoloration or even loss of the tail altogether. If a bearded dragon experiences trauma or damage to its tail, it may become discolored due to bruising or other internal injuries that affect blood flow and pigmentation.

The severity and location of an injury on the tail will determine how much discoloration occurs and how long it takes for it to heal.

Some common examples of injuries that could cause discoloration include bites from other animals (like dogs or cats), getting stuck in tight spaces and having their tails crushed as they try to escape, getting caught in doors or other objects while roaming free around your house.


Illnesses such as fungal infections or parasites can also cause changes in color on a bearded dragon’s tail. Fungi grow on moist surfaces and can take hold if your pet lives in damp conditions with inadequate ventilation. Parasites like mites or ticks can also attach themselves to a bearded dragon’s tail and suck their blood, causing discoloration.

This can lead to serious health problems if not identified and treated promptly. While it is normal for a bearded dragon’s tail to be brown or dark gray in color, there are certain conditions that can cause it to turn white.

Shedding, injury, and illness are all common reasons why this may occur. It is important to keep an eye on your pet’s tail and take action if you notice any changes in color or texture as they could indicate something more serious.


Bearded dragons, like other reptiles, shed their skin regularly. This process is essential for their growth and health.

Shedding is a natural process that occurs throughout the bearded dragon’s life, and it allows them to get rid of old or damaged skin cells. During shedding, the outer layer of skin peels off in small pieces.

The Process of Shedding:

The shedding process can last from a few days to several weeks and consists of several stages. Before shedding begins, the bearded dragon’s skin will start to appear duller than usual.

This is because a new layer of skin is growing beneath the old one. As new skin cells grow, they push away the older skin cells.

Once this process starts, the outer layer of the beardie’s skin cracks open around its head and neck area, then around its body until it reaches its tail area. If all goes well (meaning your pet is healthy), then it should take about 7 – 14 days for a complete shed cycle.

How Shedding Can Affect Tail Color:

During shedding time, some bearded dragons might show changes in their tail coloration as well as other parts of their body.

White patches on your pet’s tail are common during this time and nothing to worry about if all else looks normal (eating drinking – normal behavior). The white coloration you may notice on your beardie’s tail could indicate that the shedding process has already started in that area.

The white patches can also be dead or dying layers of topcoat preparing itself to fall off during a shed cycle. – just keep an eye on these changes during shedding cycles but remember there is nothing alarming about white patches on your beardies’ tail if everything else looks good!


When Tail Trauma Happens

Bearded dragons are prone to tail injuries, and this can happen in different ways. For instance, if a bearded dragon’s tail gets caught in something or gets slammed in a door, it can experience trauma that causes discoloration or even loss of the tail altogether. The severity of the injury will determine how much discoloration occurs and whether it is permanent.

Types of Injuries That Can Cause a White Tail

There are different types of injuries that can cause discoloration or loss of the tail in a bearded dragon. Some common ones include:

  • Burns – This happens when a bearded dragon’s tail touches a hot surface like an exposed light bulb or heater.
  • Fractures – A fractured tail can cause bleeding and swelling which may lead to white coloring on the affected area.
  • Bites – Bearded dragons may sometimes bite each other, leading to injuries on their tails.
  • Amputation – If an injury is severe enough, it may require amputation of part or all of the tail. Once this happens, new growth will usually occur but with some differences like having white color patches where there wasn’t any before.

Treatment for Injured Tail

If you suspect your bearded dragon has experienced an injury on its tail, it’s essential to seek veterinary care right away. Your veterinarian will assess the severity of the injury and recommend appropriate treatment based on this assessment.

In cases where there is minor trauma like scrapes or bruises, pain relief medication and application of antiseptic products would suffice as treatment while extensive injuries might require more advanced interventions such as wound dressing or surgical reconstruction. Understanding how injury can cause your bearded dragon’s tail to turn white is crucial.

The symptoms of such injuries can range from discoloration to loss of the tail, depending on the severity of the injury. Therefore, it’s essential to provide appropriate care for your pet by seeking veterinary assistance as soon as you notice any signs of tail injury.


Bearded dragons can be susceptible to various illnesses that can also cause changes in the color of their tail. Fungal infections, for example, can cause a white or yellowish appearance on the tail.

These infections usually occur in areas of the body with high levels of moisture and humidity, such as the tail. Parasites such as mites and ticks can also cause discoloration on a bearded dragon’s tail.

Fungal Infections

Fungal infections are often caused by poor hygiene, unsanitary living conditions or from being housed with other reptiles who may have fungal spores on their skin. A fungus-infected bearded dragon may become lethargic and lose its appetite. The fungus may appear as white or yellowish patches which can spread rapidly if not treated promptly.


Mites are tiny parasites that feed on blood and live under the scales of a bearded dragon’s skin. They are sometimes visible as small brown or black spots along the tail and other parts of the body, particularly armpits and groin areas.

Ticks are larger than mites and attach themselves to a bearded dragon’s skin, feeding on its blood until they become engorged before falling off.

Explain how these illnesses can affect the overall health of your beaded dragon

Illnesses like fungal infections and parasites not only affect your beaded dragon’s physical appearance but also their overall health and wellbeing. If left untreated, these illnesses could eventually lead to severe complications such as loss of appetite, weight loss, dehydration, seizures or even death.

If you suspect that your beaded dragon is showing symptoms of any illness affecting its tail coloration or behaviour you should immediately seek veterinary advice to get it diagnosed correctly so that appropriate treatment for its condition could commence immediately.


Changes in the color of your bearded dragon’s tail can be an indication of several underlying issues that could affect its overall health and well-being. The most common reasons for a white tail are shedding, injury, or illness.

Shedding is normal, but injury and illness need to be treated promptly to prevent further complications that could lead to death. It is best practice to keep a close eye on your pet’s behavior and physical appearance regularly to identify any changes or symptoms of illnesses early enough for prompt treatment so as to ensure a healthy and happy life for your reptilian pet.