14 Signs of an Unhealthy Bearded Dragon

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Unhealthy Bearded DragonMany times bearded dragon owners may come across special health needs of their pets. There are also times when your bearded dragon might be showing signs of an unhealthy condition without you really knowing it.

Unfortunately, our bearded dragons can not tell us what is wrong with them.

That’s why it is very important to pay attention to tell-tale signs that something might be amiss. These signs could give clues as to any unhealthy conditions the bearded dragon is going through. There are times when it shows signs of an unhealthy state that it can be remedied by simply changing its habitat or food. Some serious conditions will require a visit to a reptile veterinarian.

Here are fourteen signs that you should keep an eye on that could mean an unhealthy bearded dragon.

Eyes Are Not Bright, Clear and Alert

If the bearded dragon’s eyes seem to have a film on them, or seem to not move towards any motion, it could mean it is having some complications. A film over the eyes could simply be a shedding issue, or it could be something more serious like an infection. Check to make sure a bearded dragon you intend to purchase always has clear, bright, and alert eyes.

Recommendations

If it’s a shedding issue, try giving the bearded dragon a bath in warm water. Let it soak for about 15 – 20 minutes to help loosen the skin. You can also use Repti Shedding Aid, or Zilla Bath Shed Ease, to help loosen the skin and promote healthy shedding. If the problem does not seem to be a shedding issue, seek a reptile veterinarian as soon as possible.

Acts Very Lethargic

A bearded dragon that seems “lazy” and doesn’t move much could mean a couple things. One problem could be the temperature of the habitat. A young bearded dragon needs a basking area temperature of between 95°F to 110°F, with a cooler region of around 80°F to 90°F. Often low habitat temperatures coincide with loss of appetite as well.

When seasons begin to change from summer into fall and then into winter many bearded dragon may brumate, or hibernate. The bearded dragon’s appetite will decrease along with it’s activity levels. Most of the time this is normal and nothing to worry about. It’s still important to continue to offer food and water while maintaining proper temperatures and light cycles.

Recommendations

Continually monitor temperatures within the terrarium by using a high quality thermometer like an Exo Terra Digital Thermometer/Hygrometer. It is a good idea to use two – one located in the basking area and the other located in the cooler area so that you can check the complete temperature gradient throughout the terrarium. Adjust temperatures as needed by adding a larger or smaller wattage basking bulb depending on your needs. A mercury vapor bulb can be used to supply both radiant heat and UV radiation.

If temperatures are in the correct range for the age of your bearded dragon, and it’s not the right time of year for brumation to occur, and your bearded dragon is still acting lethargic you may need to seek the advice of a reptile veterinarian.

Soft, Runny, or Foul Stool

Soft or runny stool could be a sign that your bearded dragon has a possible internal parasite or an inadequate diet. Feeding a bearded dragon lettuce can cause a runny stool and cause malnutrition. A yellow tinged urate (the end of the poop that is white) can be a sign of dehydration. Urates that are red or rusty-colored could be an indication of possible parasites.

A bearded dragon that is very stressed out could also have a runny stool or temporary diarrhea.

Recommendations

Make sure to feed your bearded dragon a proper diet and avoid feeding lettuce, as it holds no nutritional value and causes diarrhea. Internal parasites can come from feeder insects that are raised in unsanitary conditions. Make sure you are purchasing feeders that are kept properly. Don’t be afraid to ask your feeder supplier about their husbandry.

It is also important to keep your bearded dragon’s home clean and sanitary. Clean the entire terrarium and any decor at least once per month with a quality terrarium cleaner. Do not use household cleaners such as Windex or anything containing strong chemicals. Clean any spills or soiled areas as soon as possible. This will keep bacteria to a minimum.

It is very important to keep your bearded dragon hydrated. If you begin to notice the white part of the poop (the urate) is a yellow-ish tint there could be a hydration issue. Mist your bearded dragon a couple times per day with clean, dechlorinated water. If using tap water treat the water with a water conditioner that removes chlorine, ammonia, heavy metals, and other chemicals. Zoo Med ReptiSafe is a great product. Lightly mist his/her face with water and they will begin to slowly lap the water off the end of the nose. You should also give your bearded dragon a bath in clean, dechlorinated water at least once a week. Baths not only help keep the bearded dragon hydrated, but also help facilitate shedding and can even help with light constipation.

If your bearded dragon is new to its home, or recently moved around it could be stressed, causing temporary diarrhea. Allow some time for your bearded dragon to adjust, and provide a hide box so that he/she will have a bit of shelter for security.

If your bearded dragon has runny stool or sustained diarrhea have your veterinarian perform a fecal exam to find out the cause of the abnormal stool. Ask them to check for parasites and treatments.

Swollen Limbs or Tail

Swollen limbs or tail could be a sign of a fractured or broken limb/tail. This could come from a fall or when multiple bearded dragons housed together get into a skirmish. Limbs or a tail that tend to break or fracture easily could be a sign of Metabolic Bone Disease. There could also be a bacterial infection, such as tail rot, that could cause swelling.

Recommendations

If your bearded dragon has a swollen limb or tail seek a qualified veterinarian immediately. The veterinarian can perform x-rays and other tests to determine exactly what’s causing the swelling and prescribe treatment.

If you suspect possible Metabolic Bone Disease, seek a qualified veterinarian. This is a life-threatening disease that should be treated immediately.

There are some steps you can take to help reduce the risk of Metabolic Bone Disease with your bearded dragon:

Loss of Appetite

Loss of appetite can be due to a variety of issues – everything from inadequate temperatures to stress. Unfortunately, our cute bearded dragons cannot talk to tell us what the problem is, so we must use our best judgement according to conditions.

Recommendations

Check the habitat temperatures to make sure they are in the proper ranges for the age of bearded dragon you have. If the temperatures are correct, then check to make sure adequate UV radiation is provided.

There are many things that can cause bearded dragon’s to become stressed. The most stressful times are when a new pet is first brought home, or when the terrarium setting drastically changes. Remember, bearded dragons have different personalities just like people, so each one will act differently. Some bearded dragons are not fazed one bit by change, others may freak out. If you have recently acquired a bearded dragon give it time to adjust and only disturb him/her when absolutely necessary. Do not leave live feeders in the terrarium overnight or for long periods of time as this can cause some stress.

If you have covered all the bases and your bearded dragon is still not eating well you should seek the advice of a reptile veterinarian as there could be other possible health issues such as impaction or Metabolic Bone Disease.

Hanging Mouth Open

If your bearded dragon sits with his mouth open, this could be due to temperatures being too warm. Many times they will open their mouth as a way of cooling off. Check habitat temperatures and adjust them accordingly.

Inside of Mouth is Blacked or Discolored

A discolored, or blackened mouth could be the symptoms of mouth rot. Mouth rot is a bacterial infection that affects the mouth and gums of bearded dragons. It is typically caused by unsanitary conditions and low temperatures, and must be treated by a veterinarian.

Discolored Stomach

If the stomach of your pet darkens, or becomes black, it could be due to stress. This can happen most commonly with bearded dragons that have recently been brought home, or changed habitats. Give it time to adjust to the new surroundings. Stress can also be caused by feeder insects left in the habitat overnight, or incorrect temperatures.

Boney / Malnourished

This is usually a direct sign that the bearded dragon is not eating correctly. This could be due to stress, improper temperatures, or a sign of a more serious condition. Check habitat temperatures, and vary the diet to provoke eating.

Disfigured Tail or Limbs / Brittle Bones

Tail or limb disfigurement can be a sign of a broken bone resulting from a drop, or impact of some type. This can often times be the sign of Metabolic Bone Disease. Have a veterinarian perform an exam immediately.

Obesity

Bearded dragons in the wild are very active creatures. Captive-raised bearded dragons do not have the room typically to be as active as in the wild. With an abundant amount of food, couple with less activity, can lead to obesity. You can combat obesity by supplying it with plenty of leafy greens, and taking it out for regular exercise.

Jerky / Shaky Behavior

There can be many reasons why your bearded dragon is showing jerky, or shaky behavior. The most common reason is due to calcium and vitamin D3 deficiencies. Bearded dragons need calcium for strong bones and vitamin D3 in order to absorb calcium. Providing your pet with sufficient UVB rays is important too reducing the risk of these deficiencies.

Bloody / Damaged Snout

A bloody damaged-looking snout is most commonly caused by snout rubbing. This generally happens when it is kept in an enclosure that is too small. As it searches for a way out of the enclosure it will rub it’s snout until it’s bloody and raw. This can be remedied by ensuring the bearded dragon’s enclosure is adequate and has the proper diet. Taking it out of the habitat occasionally can also help with snout rubbing.

Sunken Eyes

If your bearded dragon appears to have sunken eyes, it could be the signs of an infection. This can also result from dehydration. Give it a bath in warm water. It should lap some of the water after you set it in. Always supply your it with fresh water daily. Be sure the water container is relatively shallow so it can not drown. Misting your bearded dragon several times a day will also help. It will lap up drips of water from its nose as you mist it.

There can be many signs that point to an unhealthy, or unhappy bearded dragon. It’s always important to keep an eye on any issues, and take it to a qualified veterinarian for periodic exams. Most unhealthy symptoms described above should be examined and treated by a reptile veterinarian. If you have any doubts seek veterinarian advice immediately! This information is for educational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice.

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Comments

  1. Hank e. says

    My bearded dragon has passed away and I don’t know why. It has been molting slowly for a few weeks and I came home today to see it on its belly on his sand and i noticed that his right side of his belly was very green and his bottom head and neck were black if u have any information on his cause of death it would be greatly appreciated please email me back. Thank you

    • says

      Hi Hank, very sorry to hear about the loss of your bearded dragon. It’s very difficult to nail down what the possible cause of death was without a medical examination. You mentioned sand so my best guess would be possible impaction, especially if your beardie was a baby or juvenile. Impaction is caused by a blockage in the digestive system due to swallowing small particles (sometimes large particles) over time.

      Sand is a very bad culprit of this because the bearded dragon inadvertently swallows sand particles when going after feeder insects and other food. Over time, these sand particles collect in the digestive tract and create a blockage which usually leads to death.

      The best advice I can give is to take your bearded dragon to a veterinarian and have a necropsy (animal autopsy) performed to determine the cause of death. This service can generally cost anywhere from $50 – $100, depending on the veterinarian. It’s up to you to figure out whether that cost is acceptable.

      Again, I’m sorry to hear of your loss and thanks for your question.

  2. Jason says

    My baby bearded dragon has a block dot on the same two spots of is nec is that.also sometimes when he eats his eyes pop out a little what is that I need info.

  3. rocky says

    this list is bs. mouth open? seriously? this is a sign of happiness. its a sign that they are basking, almost as if saying “ahhhh…pure bliss”

    • Dani says

      I found this pretty informative actually.

      I think the author means constantly having an open mouth is a sign the habitat is too hot. And that’s pretty accurate.

    • Ashley says

      It happens often when dragons are just chilling or when they are basking as a way to regulate their body temps, yes. BUT, if you have a dragon that gapes constantly and has other symptoms such as lethargy, loss of appetite, etc., it can be a sign of a respiratory issue, which is a disaster if not treated early on.

  4. Kiersa Howard says

    Irecently noticed that my beardie has one back leg and 1 front leg that are gray in color I am worried that there might be something wrong as I have not noticed this before during shedding season. I have been looking online but haven’t found anything similar any information is greatly appreciated

    • Ashley says

      This is way late now, but firstly, there is no “shed season.” All dragons shed differently, at different rates, different times of the year, etc. Secondly, the gray you see is the old scales detaching from the new scales underneath. Basically, you are seeing the dead scales drying out before falling off. Next time it happens, look closely at the edge and you can see the new scales underneath and you can even see the space between the old scales and the new.

  5. says

    I’m scared that this is fungial infection but so far, it hasn’t spread anymore than this in the last couple of days.. I think it could possible be a burn because I was using a heat pad for him on his basking side but I also had a black rock on the same side.. He was sleeping on it last night with just his back two legs in it so I feel that could be it but I’m not sure.. I made an appointment for the vet because I don’t wanna be wrong about what it is but if it’s just a burn than I don’t really wanna go to the vet for nothing. I don’t know what to do.. Please help ASAP! Thank you.

  6. says

    My Bearded Dragon has something going on I have never noticed. I have had him about 2 yrs. and he was a yr already when I got him. When I first got him he was malnourished and small for his age so I rushed out and got him all the necessities! He has a 75 gallon tank, UVB light, basking lamp with some driftwood and a rock to get
    on to bask, and a container of water big enough for him to crawl into (he can fit all the way if he curls his tail around his body). He is around 2 ft.
    which is triple size he was when we got him and has gotten completely healthy and eats about 50-100 crickets once a week with a mixture of kale, squash, and change of a dab of treat (strawberries, bananas, or blackberries) about twice a week. He has had this for the last 2 yrs and has grown great, become very loving and protective but friendly, and has had no health issues. Now to the problem: yesterday, I picked him up and noticed right where the split is at the base of the tale, he has something hanging out of that split and it looks fleshy. No idea what it is, but very concerned due to he has never been ill! Not to be gross, but could it be his genitals? I have no idea. It has been like that for two days now and I have no idea what to do. His heat lamp went out 4 days ago so my hubby just rushed out to get another one so when he gets back I can put him in some warm water in the tub and then put him under the heat lamp to see if it will go away. Just no ideas. Eyes and all else seems fine. Please someone help ASAP!!!!! ANY IDEAS WOULD BE GREATLY APPRECIATED TO HELP BLACKJACK! Thanks! Amanda :'(

    • says

      Hi Amanda – I’m very sorry to hear about the issues your bearded dragon, BlackJack, is going through. Without a picture it is difficult to diagnose what the problem actually is, but it sounds like he is suffering from a prolapse. It’s similar to hemorrhoids in humans. Basically, the end of his intestines is sticking out of the vent (or anus). BlackJack should be seen by a qualified reptile vet as soon as possible. If it is a prolapse surgery may be required if it is severe. In the mean time the best advice I can give is to give him warm baths a couple times per day and limit his food to soft foods that are easily digestible like finely chopped fruits and worms such as wax worms and Goliath worms. Try to avoid feeding crickets and meal worms because of the hard chitin shell.

      The causes of prolapse are difficult to determine. It could be a sign of impaction or maybe a parasite. It could also be linked to genetics. A vet will be able to determine the cause better than I can.

      Good luck with BlackJack and keep us posted on his well-being!

  7. says

    Thanks for this list. I don’t know where our dragon would fall in the list. He has some lethargy and hasn’t eaten in the last three days. He is shedding. We have given him water by dropper and baths. He is pooping. Overall, he looks healthy. I don’t know how to submit photo. Temps are good. He usually eats crickets, waxworms and carrots. He has not liked any other fruit or veggie offered.
    Any tips would be appreciated.

  8. Arianna says

    I’ve had my bearded dragon for about 2 years and it hasn’t grown at all, It has mouth rot and has lumps all over, It won’t eat and only opens one eye): It also just lays there and does nothing. I’m super worried about it and I don’t know what to do! I need help! Thank you.

  9. Vicki says

    My beardie is alert and looks healthy minus being very skinny and eats very little. His tank temp is at 90 and I thought to make it warmer. But then he spends a lot of time under his basking rock where it is cooler, not coming out all day. I soak him twice a week and he poops regularly while in his bath. He drinks water everyday from an eye dropper while on my lap. He used to be a great little eater but now he eats two crickets and stops. Or three worms and stops. Anything else I can try to stimulate his appetite?

    • says

      Hi Vicki! Thank you for visiting Bearded Dragon Care 101 and for leaving your question.

      It can be tricky in determining a bearded dragon’s appetite woes. They are all individual just like humans, the difficult part is they can’t communicate what’s wrong. Let’s go over a couple things you can try.

      You mentioned the basking temperature, but you didn’t mention the age of your bearded dragon. If your bearded dragon is less than 6 months old the basking temps should be 95 – 110 degrees F. If your bearded dragon is 6 – 18 months old then the basking temps should be 95 – 105 degrees F, and an adult basking temps should be around 90 – 93 degrees F. The cooler regions should be kept anywhere from 80 – 88 degrees F depending on age (the younger the bearded dragon, the warmer). You can read more about temps here – http://www.beardeddragoncare101.com/bearded-dragon-care-sheet/4/

      You should also make sure the bearded dragon is receiving sufficient UVB/UVA radiation. This can be accomplished using a fluorescent bulb especially made for reptiles or a Mercury Vapor Bulb. MVBs gives off heat and UVB/UVA radiation. You can read more about proper lighting here – http://www.beardeddragoncare101.com/bearded-dragon-care-sheet/3/

      Both temperatures and proper radiation can affect appetite. It is important to supply these in correct amounts to maintain proper beardie health.

      Also try offering different food items. Try some sweet fruits like cantaloupe, strawberries, or blueberries that are cut into small pieces for him to swallow. Try different insects like dubia roaches, wax worms, Goliath worms or even night crawlers. Maybe he needs a change in food offered. You mentioned offering him water. If you are using tap water make sure to use a water conditioner that eliminates chlorine and ammonia.

      I hope this helps, Vickie, and if you have any other questions please feel free to contact us any time.

  10. Tim Cline says

    Tee hope you can help me or give me you advise we bought Spike from an individual almost 3 yrs ago we have no idea how old she is , she is at least 12to 14 inches long including tail , came home 3 weeks ago and she had laid 18 small eggs we were floored did the research to find this is not uncommon as I am sure you know , after that she was eating a lot and we gave her xtra calcium from what I read that was needed .. in the last 3 or 4 days she has turned a very odd shade of yellow and her eyes are terribly sunken , don’t want to loose our scaley friend … what do you think could be going on with her ?

    • says

      Hi Tim, Sunken eyes are typically due to an infection of some kind or dehydration. Try giving her a luke warm bath a couple times per day. Watch to see if she laps water as she is sitting in the bath. You should also mist her several times per day using a misting bottle (spray bottle). Mist her all over for 4 – 6 minutes and also observe if she is lapping the water droplets of her nose as you do it. Make sure to use bottled water or a water conditioner if using tap water for the baths or mistings. You can also offer water via an eye dropper and just slowly drip water on her lips and nose. Be careful around the nostrils though!

      Monitor her feeding and overall activity levels. If she stops eating and begins acting lethargic it could be either a sign of brumation (kind of similar to hibernating) or could be a sign of illness.

      I would recommend monitoring her closely the next couple days and administer the baths, misting, and rehydration. If this doesn’t improve her color, sunken eyes, or activity levels then seek a reptile vet ASAP.

      Thanks Tim and please keep us posted on your bearded dragon!

  11. John gatlin says

    Hello my dragon has recently gone off his food and laid there with his eyes open right under his basking spot all day for about two days today I noticed his beard is black I’m not sure what this could be he has always been very energetic and ate we’ll he is about nine months old eats greens drinks in the tub poops normal but then three days ago this started happening o and he has all the UVB he needs I don’t know will a dragon brumate in the open

    • says

      Hi John, generally a darkening beard could be a sign of aging, or it could be a sign of stress. Has anything changed recently – rearranging of terrarium, moving terrarium to different location, change in feeding times, etc.?

      Sometimes bearded dragons can just lay around and not move much at times. Most of the time they snap out of their laziness and go back to “normal”. I would recommend to keep a close eye on him in the next few days. Monitor his eating and pooping. If his demeanor doesn’t change in a few days you may want to call a reptile vet and have a conversation about what’s going on.

      Good luck and keep us posted on any developments.

  12. says

    HELP! Ive had my bearded dragon for about 7 months his name is BruceLee and hes missing an arm:( we bought him that way lately he hasnt been eating and is getting skinny his eyes are low he doesnt open them all the way does anyone know what could be wrong with him? Please help me i really dont want him to die on me :(

  13. kelli says

    I bought my baby beardrd about a week ago the first few days he attacked his food like hed never eaten now he will onl eat every other day and just lays on his basking rock flat with half closed eyes head high up his beard and stomach are black striped with white dots his tank temp is about 99 degrees in basking area im concerned he is sick he poops daily it is dark solid with a little white spot in it yesterday he was shedding on his head now today it looks like the dead skin is gone but he is rubbing his face on his basking rock should i be concerned

  14. Eleanor says

    hi, i got my bearded dragon yesterday morning (it’s now 7:35 the next day). he’s around 5 months old, and seemed fine yesterday, but today he seems quite reluctant to leave his basking spot and he hasn’t pooped yet (i read that at this age at least once per day is normal? but it’s been more than 24 hours and nothing so far). he’s eating locusts if i offer them to him, but isn’t showing much interest in the cricket running around in there, even though he can definitely see it as it’s so close to him. i’m just wondering if i should be worried, this is the first time i’ve owned any reptile, so i’m not sure if this is a problem or if it’s normal! the basking temp is around 100-110, so i don’t think it’s anything to do with him being cold..

  15. Donovan says

    My 7 year old Bearded ragon Lizzy is acting lethargic and I don’t know what to do she is acting lazy to but I don’t know what it is

  16. jeannie says

    My adult bearded dragon was fine just a couple of hours ago. Now he is all black under his chin, very lethargic. He looks a little bloated and while holding him he keeps adjusting as though he is uncomfortable. Please help I’m worried sick :(

  17. says

    Hi there , my bearded dragon had a red /back spot on his side & I didn’t think nothing of it. it may not be nothing but just curious , I came down stairs last night & it was laying awkwardly with his eyes half open and his mouth open a little but and there was just no life in her , but she kept opening her mouth then she eventually passed away I left her in the cage , I came down this morning & she was the same as I left her then later on in the afternoon she had gone all puffy , I’m just wondering would you know what has happend

  18. melissa says

    Hello I have noticed for the last two days that my bearded dragon is reluctant to open one of her eyes. Could this be due to something in the eye or could this be a more serious matter.
    She also seems very un active and jumpy when approaching her. I have seen that on some websites that they say it could be to do with shedding.
    Do you have any ideas on what it could be and what I can do?
    thanks Melissa.

  19. Cristina says

    My bearded dragon is 5 years old and he hasn’t eaten or had a bowl movement in weeks. He’s been sleeping a lot and today i found him sleeping under the newspaper at the bottom of his tank. What could be wrong?

    • says

      Hi Cristina – First, check to make sure the temperatures in the terrarium are appropriate for your bearded dragon’s age. Also, make sure he/she is receiving adequate UV radiation (fluorescent bulbs should be replaced a minimum of every 6 months). Your bearded dragon could be going into a natural state of brumation (hibernation). This is pretty common when the seasons begin to change from summer to fall and then winter. I have had bearded dragons brumate for 3 – 4 months during the winter where they eat about once per week and stay very inactive. In late winter/ early spring they “bounce” back to normalcy. You can try to increase the basking temperatures about 5 – 10 degrees and keep the lights on for 14 hours during the day with 10 hours of nighttime to see if this helps to bring them out of brumation.

      I hope this helps!

  20. jordan says

    hey, i beardie is about 2 years old now, she recently laid 18 eggs and my girlfriend was at home and is not good with reptiles and she called me freaking out because she started eating all the eggs and i talked to 1 vet and he had never heard of this ? although i have heard of mothers in other animals killing there young if they feel threatened but i have no idea what to think of this because she was very sick for a 2-3 days after even though the day she ate all the eggs she then later that night before bed vomited. but ever since she had eggs and all this went on she hasnt been pooping regularly, maybe twice a week sometimes just on the weekends and she she goes its not solids more a mess like upset stomach, she eats fine i think, and will eat as much insects as i will give her, and if she wasnt pooping irregularly i would not know anything might be off, i have put her in a bath as soon as the non pooping gets to 5 day and so far the one day i did she went in the bath before i even had chance to rub her belly and the stench was almost unbearable, anyways any feedback or your opinions i would appreciate it,

  21. says

    My Beardie has made vomiting noises but also sounds like he is hiccupping sometimes.
    It worries me and I’ve been looking for an answer for a long while now.
    He recently had an impaction problem that I had fixed. He will be getting a new light here soon and the temp before the light broke was at 108. I do notice he does move to the other side of the tank. The temp has will be lowered soon once I get paid.
    He eats well. Carrots, baby kale and spinach, apples is his favorite.
    I have stopped giving him mealworms for I found that they can cause impaction and I have ordered horned worms which will help with his digestion.

    Other then that, he is adventurous, chases the cat and all. It just worries me because I don’t want to lose my pet.
    Can someone please help me with information?
    I have no cash right now to take him to the vet and the best vet for reptiles in in another city which is almost 2 hours away. Sadly my vehicle won’t make it.

    Please help me?

  22. Tareyn says

    Hello!
    I have a juvenile bearded dragon that’s about 3+ months old and that’s about at the length of 6 and a half inches, with half an inch or so of tail nipped off, and I’ve named him Orenjiiro.
    I just recently noticed that my beardie had just had an issue with constipation, and with that, I had given him a warmth bath to help him excrement. The redness around his anus had subsided, so that’s good, but I am really considering removing the repti-sand substrate I have for his habitat, and replacing it with the 40 gallon carpet that I had bought today, the Ecocarpet one.

    He has plenty of UV/UVB from the Solar Glo mercury vapor bulb that I had gotten, and his basking heat ranges from 87-95 degrees Fahrenheit, though it varies depending on how close he gets to the light (thanks to the driftwood I had bought for him that I had to stack on each other for better results.) He’s a gorgeous red and orange color, and he has been shedding beautifully, what with my misting him almost everyday that I can, and giving him a bath once a week. I do frequent spot cleans to ensure that his environment is as clean as possible until I can get around to cleaning his tank thoroughly.

    His diet consists mainly of medium Brown crickets, Kale, strawberries, and sometimes of Dubai roaches.

    Should I go ahead and replace the repti-sand with the ecocarpet to help ensure he does not go through impaction? I might have to go and check up with a veterinarian as soon as possible to get him checked out, but still. Help?

    • says

      Hi Tareyn,

      I would recommend replacing the Repti-Sand with a reptile carpet that you described. Make sure not to use indoor/outdoor type carpets as the “loops” can snag the bearded dragon’s toes. What you bought should work fine.

      If you still find constipation to be an issue try altering his diet by offering foods that are easier to digest, things like greens, berries (blueberries, strawberries with seeds removed, raspberries), or baby foods (peas, carrots, squash). Reduce the amount of crickets as they can sometimes be difficult to digest and increase the amount of small Dubia roaches. You can also offer wax worms, Horned worms (sometimes called Goliath worms), phoenix worms, butter worms, and even the occasional nightcrawler. These are all easily digestible. Avoid feeding meal worms or Super worms (until the bearded dragon is over a year old) as they have a hard chitin that is difficult to digest.

      I would also try to get the basking area a tad warmer. 95 degrees F is not too bad, but getting a little closer to 100 degrees would be good.

      I hope this helps!

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