DigyPet | Learning Center A wealth of information on saving the planet, the ecosystem, and how to be the best pet parent you can be!
5 / 5

Welcoming A Bearded Dragon Into Your Home

The scientific name of the bearded dragon is pogona. They are reptiles, omnivores, are 18-22 inches, weigh 10-18 ounces, and can live 14 years or more with the proper care.  

Provide the bearded dragon with the appropriate habitat, feed them the right foods, keep them and their home clean, and interact with them as much as possible, and you can have years of fun with your new pet.

So, you’re thinking of welcoming a bearded dragon into your home. Though considered a great reptile for beginners, let’s take a look at some things to know before taking the leap.


Although bearded dragons don’t get very large, they require some space in order to thrive and be happy. A 55 to 75-gallon tank with a secure screen top is ideal for a single adult bearded dragon. Substrate, the material you place on the floor of your bearded dragon’s enclosure, helps maintain humidity in the environment, and it can give the tank a more natural look and feel. Loose substrate like sand should be avoided for juvenile bearded dragons—they run the risk of ingestion, which can lead to intestinal impaction. Use paper towels or reptile carpet instead.

Bearded dragons are tree-dwelling and sometimes like to perch off the ground. Give your dragon a selection of half logs, sturdy rocks, and branches to climb on, especially in the part of the tank used as a basking area. And be sure to include hollow logs, so your beardie feels comfortable.

Heat, Humidity, And Light


You know how you feel when you’re too hot or cold in your house, and you run to the thermostat to set a more comfy temp? Your bearded dragon doesn’t have that luxury. Which means it’s all up to you to know what’s best for him.

As with other reptiles, a temperature gradient should be provided for your bearded dragon. A thermostat specifically designed for use with terrariums will help regulate consistent temperatures, and since bearded dragons know how to regulate their body temperature, they’ll know when to bask and when to move to a cooler area if it gets too warm. The gradient should go from 80 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit up to a basking temperature of around 95 to 105 degrees Fahrenheit.


You always want to mimic your pet’s environment, whether you have a pet snake, hamster, or bearded dragon. Bearded dragons prefer a humidity level of 35% to 40%. This shouldn’t be difficult for you to maintain unless you live in a high-humidity area. Ways you can lower the humidity in your beardie’s tank are:

  • Increase ventilation
  • Move water bowl away from heat sources
  • Switch to a different substrate
  • Stop misting until the humidity is back under control
  • Try using a dehumidifier.

To raise the humidity in your bearded dragons’ tank:

  • Mist your dragon.
  • Add live plants and mist them daily.
  • Move the water dish to the basking light.

 Monitor the tank humidity using a hydrometer.


Exposure to UV lighting is crucial for pet bearded dragons. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations. Exposure to sunlight is also beneficial. If you bring your bearded dragon outside for supervised outdoors, be sure that shad and shelter are available so he can thermoregulate. A glass tank will quickly overheat in the sunlight, so never place your pet dragon outside in this.


In the wild, bearded dragons are omnivores. They eat a mixture of invertebrate and vertebrate prey, as well as plant material. In captivity, they should be fed a combination of insects and vegetables. Depending on their age, bearded dragons should be fed at least once every 24 hours, and baby beardies often eat three times a day.

Your bearded dragon requires a mix of insects and worms such as crickets, phoenix worms, and hornworms. Greens and vegetables are essential, too. Things like collard greens, okra, and yellow squash. Certain foods should be avoided completely like avocado, lettuce, and spinach. Get a complete list of foods that are dangerous for your pet dragon from your vet. Provide supplements, dust insects and sprinkle salads with calcium powder, gut-load all insects, and use commercial bearded dragon food as a supplement.

Consult your vet on how best to feed your pet bearded dragon.

Wondering if you should provide a water bowl in your bearded dragon’s enclosure?

The answer is yes, absolutely. Though they’re considered a desert species, dehydration in pet bearded dragons can lead to health issues. Provide a shallow dish and if your dragon enjoys soaking in the water, offer him a larger dish to climb into occasionally. Keep the dish and water clean and refreshed!


Your bearded dragon will enjoy affection from you once he gets to know he can trust you. Some things to keep in mind:

  • Wash your hands before touching your pet dragon.
  • Approach him slowly.
  • Don’t reach from above.
  • Gently pet your beardie.
  • Read his cues—if he closes his eyes or blinks, he’s comfortable for you to pick him up.
  • Scoop him up gently with the palm of your hand by sliding your hand under his belly and gently lifting him while supporting his body with your hand. Always support all of his legs and pet him along, not against, the direction of his scales.
  • If his belly starts to feel cool, return him to his habitat in the same gentle way you supported his body, taking him out of it.
  • Have fun with your bearded dragon by taking him on outdoor adventures when it’s warm, letting him swim in a plastic container filled with shallow water that’s been treated with water conditioner, and playing ball.
  • After you’re done playing with your beardie, wash your hands with antibacterial soap.

Questions & Answers

Q: What does it mean when a bearded dragon is running around his cage a lot?

A: It could indicate something is wrong if it’s not part of his normal behavior. He could be stressed out, afraid, or feeling insecure. Ensure he has a safe place to rest and be sure his terrarium is set to the proper temperature.


Q: Can my bearded dragon run around the house?

A: Yes, it can be good for them to spend time out of the tank but be aware there are potential dangers in every room. Take time to eliminate these potential dangers and never leave him unattended.


Q: Does my bearded dragon like me?

A: If your dragon isn’t biting, bobbing his head, puffing up its beard when you approach or hissing at you, then he probably likes you and feels comfortable with you.


Q: What do bearded dragons hate?

A: Being grabbed from above or by the tail, birds, cramped spaces, ceiling fans.


Q: What do bearded dragons like?

A: Once he trusts you by taking food from your hand, he likes to be rubbed on the head.


Q: How can I tell if my beardie is healthy?

A: He acts alert, active, and free from swelling or puss. Always consult your veterinarian if you suspect your bearded dragon is ill.

There you have it. Some basic information to guide you in making the decision of whether or not adopting a bearded dragon lizard is the right step for you. Should you decide to press forward, remember, proper care of your pet bearded dragon can lead to many years of happy companionship.

Recommended Posts

4 Essentials Of Reptile Care

The Importance Of Reptiles


More from the Pets :

Healthy Homemade Dog Food

Your pup is part of the family. You’re most likely willing to pretty much do anything for your four-legged friend, including making m...


How Often Should I Feed My Fish?

Fish can’t meow or tug at your pant leg. They can only gape longingly through the aquarium glass until their message gets across: fe...


7 Freshwater Aquarium Essentials

Fish tanks grace a vast number of U.S. homes and doctors’ offices for several reasons: fish are quiet, colorful, inexpensive, and the...