Have you been looking for a pet that is pretty and interesting to watch, but perhaps a bit unusual? A bearded dragon may be a great option for you! Here, a Scottsdale, AZ vet discusses bearded dragon care.


Keeping your scaled buddy comfortable in his cage is very important. We recommend getting at least a 20-gallon terrarium. To keep your pet’s cage at the correct temperatures, you’ll need two heat lamps. Your beardie will also need a UVB light. For furnishings, you’ll want to add a hidey-hole or reptile cave, food and water dishes, and a basking toy, such as a fake branch. You can also add some live plants to make your reptilian pal’s home look nice. Ask your vet for more information, including specific environmental conditions.


Bearded dragons should always be kept by themselves, as they tend to fight. However, many beardies don’t mind being held or petted. Some even like it! Just be sure never to pick your scaled pet up by his tail: put your hand under his belly instead. Avoid scaring, squeezing, or dropping your beardie. If your reptilian pet is nervous, and struggles to get away, just let the little guy go.


You’ll need to add a safe, suitable substrate to your lizard’s home. Don’t use sand, as it can cause severe intestinal blockages if ingested. As far as substrates, you can use reptile carpet, butcher paper, or even paper towels. Ask your vet for more information.


Feeding a beardie is definitely not for the squeamish! Your pretty pet will thrive on live insects, such as crickets, superworms, hissing cockroaches, and hornworms. You’ll need to prepare the creepy-crawlies by dusting them with calcium and vitamin powders. This is known as gutloading, and will ensure that your lizard is getting proper nourishment. In addition to bugs, your beardie can also eat fresh veggies, such as kale and carrots. Ask your vet for specific advice.


Just as with any other pet, bearded dragons can be vulnerable to illness and disease. Respiratory issues, for instance, are not uncommon in these pretty lizards. Make sure you have a great vet that handles reptiles! It’s also important to do lots of research, so you more easily can spot signs of illness.

Please contact us, your Scottsdale, AZ pet clinic, for all your bearded dragon’s veterinary care needs. We’re here to help!