Pet Central Quick Picks:
- UVB Hood
- UVB Light Bulb 10.0
- Heat Lamp
- Water Bowl
- Food Bowl
- Daily Calcium
- Monthly Calcium
- Décor (Wood for basking)
Things to Know About Your Bearded Dragon
Bearded Dragons are one of the friendliest reptiles and have excellent temperaments. Most bearded dragons love attention and being handled, although the amount of handling is dependent on your bearded dragon’s personality. They are docile and diurnal, which means they are active during the day and sleep at night!
Lifespan & Size
Like many pet reptiles, Bearded dragons can live on average from 6-14 years in a home environment. They also are a bit larger than smaller alternatives growing to be about 16-24 inches long!
Bearded Dragons are native to the deserts of Australia and similar arid areas. Besides picking a proper-sized terrarium when setting up your bearded dragon’s enclosure, the most essential step is lighting. They need proper UV lighting to grow and avoid significant health risks. We recommend a UV strip light instead of the traditional coil bulb. The strip light will stretch along the entire length of the terrarium, allowing your bearded dragon to absorb proper D3 vitamins no matter where they are in the enclosure.
In addition to UV light, you will need to set up a basking area with a bulb and dome. The recommended basking temperature for bearded dragons is 95-110°. You can check the exact temperature of your bearded dragon’s basking spot with a temperature gun. You can use your wooden décor to build an angled basking area where they have a variety of basking temperatures to choose from!
Although from a desert area, we suggest avoiding very fine sand as it can cause impaction issues. Instead, we recommend using a coarser sand/rocky substrate such as excavator clay or other reptile-safe substrate alternatives. On the cooler side of the terrarium, you can place the food and water bowl! Plus, extra décor and hides.
Bearded Dragons are Omnivores! As babies, they eat a diet that is weighted more on the insect side; however, it is vital to introduce and feed your bearded dragon greens as a baby so they are not reluctant to eat greens as an adult. As bearded dragons grow, their diet switches to a mainly green diet with insects as a supplement.
There are many suitable options to feed your bearded dragon. Our favorite insect options are crickets, dubias, and superworms, and our favorite green options are collard greens, kale, mustard greens, etc. & bearded dragon-safe vegetables. You can pick these up at your local grocery store. Here at Pet Central, we buy their greens & veggies at the beginning of the week, chop them up, and store them in containers for easy and quick feeding throughout the week!
In addition to the vitamins that bearded dragons get from the UV light, they also need calcium sprinkled on their food daily. You can sprinkle the calcium on either the bugs or the greens!
Health-related problems that can occur with bearded dragons include MBD (Metabolic Bone Disease), Respiratory Infections, Parasites, Impaction, Egg Binding in females, & Dehydration.
Many of these issues are preventable through proper husbandry; however, problems sometimes can still occur just like any pet! We always recommend regular vet visits to help you monitor your bearded dragon’s health.