One great thing about bearded dragons is that they are typically quite gentle. You’ll need to be sure to handle your pet regularly, to keep him tame and socialized. (Note: never pick your beardie up by the tail or legs. This can cause serious injuries! )
When your tiny dinosaur is a baby, he’ll need at least a 20-gallon tank. However, adult beardies need quite a bit more room than that: we recommend at least 75-gallon tanks for full-grown beardies. Your scaled pal will need a suitable substrate, such as reptile carpet. You can use calcium sand for adult lizards, but it isn’t recommended for youngsters. You’ll also need to provide dishes and a hidey-hole. To make your pet’s home interesting and comfortable, add hammocks, rocks, and branches.
Bearded dragons need specific conditions, so you’ll need to get some special equipment. Your little buddy will require both UVA and UVB lights, as well as a basking lamp. You’ll also need to carefully regulate the temperature in your beardie’s tank, so that there are different temperature zones. Ask your vet for specific advice.
Before you adopt a beardie, make sure you can stomach feeding your new pet. Beardies eat insects, which can be a bit off-putting for some. Although beardies do eat some fruits and veggies, the bulk of your pet’s menu should include lots of creepy-crawlies, such as crickets, butterworms, and black fly larvae. Before you give your scaled buddy his food, you’ll need to dust the bugs with nutritional powder. Ask your vet for more information.
Bearded dragons need proper veterinary care to stay healthy, just like any other pet. You’ll need to bring your cute dinosaur in to the vet for regular checkups. Between appointments, watch for signs of illness, such as lack of appetite; discharge from the eyes, nose, or mouth; and diarrhea. Contact your vet immediately if you notice any signs of illness in your pet.
Do you have questions about caring for a bearded dragon? Please feel free to contact us, your Moorpark, CA animal clinic, anytime!