Caring for your bearded dragon during the hot summer months can pose some unique challenges compared to the rest of the year.
Since bearded dragons live in warm temperatures and low humidity in the wild, we need to duplicate that environment when they are kept as pets.
We accomplish this by using special heat lamps and other heating elements. But what about when the ambient temperatures in our home rise due to summer weather?
We need to take the warmer weather into account for our bearded dragons.
Here are a couple bearded dragon care tips for summer months.
Adjust Basking Temperatures
You should already know the basking temperature requirements for your bearded dragon depending on its age. Adult bearded dragons need less basking temperatures than juveniles and babies, while babies need higher basking temperatures than juveniles and adults.
During the summer, the temperatures inside a bearded dragon terrarium may become warmer due to the higher ambient temperatures in your home.
Because of this you need to closely monitor the temperatures within the basking area, and within the cooler areas, to make sure they do not become too hot. If the ambient temperatures within your home rise 5 to 10 degrees, the temperatures within the terrarium could rise by that much or more.
If the terrarium is getting too warm you will need to adjust the heating elements to lower the temperatures. There are several ways you could do this:
- Turn off any undertank heating pads you are using
- Raise the basking lamp several inches up to move it farther away from the basking perch
- Connect the basking lamp to an electrical dimmer switch so you can manually adjust the lamp output
- Use a lower wattage basking bulb
You will need to also monitor the nighttime temperatures to make sure the terrarium stays within correct temperatures at night.
It is very important to keep the temperatures within their perspective ranges throughout the year. It’s very easy for temperatures to become too high during summer months.
Keeping Bearded Dragons Outdoors During Summer Months
There’s nothing wrong with letting your bearded dragon play outside for a bit during warm days in the summer, but you should always keep a close eye on them.
Place the bearded dragon within a barrier (because they can get away quickly), and always supply an area of shade for the bearded dragon to get out of the sun if it needs to.
Never leave them outdoors unattended or for extended periods of time. An hour or two is the suggested length of time a bearded dragon can be outdoors.
Hydration Is a Must
Keeping your bearded dragon properly hydrated is a must throughout the year. One of the leading health issues for pet bearded dragons is dehydration.
Make sure to mist your bearded dragon with fresh, dechlorinated water several times per day, and to give weekly, or bi-monthly, baths to promote good hydration levels. Always offer fresh water in a bowl within the terrarium each day. If you do take your bearded dragon outdoors, make sure they have access to fresh water there too.
Never leave your bearded dragon without access to water.
During the summer months remember to monitor basking temperatures, always provide fresh drinking water, give plenty of baths, and supply shade if kept outdoors for an hour or two.