Bearded dragons are often classified as exotic pets. This basically means that they are less commonly owned as pets. They are classified as wild animals and have no actual obvious interest in humans. But you have brought this wild animal into your home because you love it and that is why you are here.
Bearded dragons are easy to care for. But it really depends on what your idea of easy is. Their food is easy to get. They don’t require special vaccines. They don’t eat large portions and don’t make loud sounds. All you really have to do is keep them fed, hydrated, properly lighted and clean.
I am going to talk about what makes these beautiful lizards very special and yet very easy to own and care for in this article. I’ll explain exactly what things you need to acquire before you decide to adopt a bearded dragon. Then I will discuss the most important thing you need to care for your dragon.
Basic things to know about Bearded dragons
You probably already know that bearded dragons are never going to be as active or in your space as dogs. May never be able to train them to perform tricks or anything like that. But then I am guessing that it is this peace that comes with dragons that inspired you to get them in the first place.
Bearded dragons are quiet, non-aggressive and lovely animals. They have just enough personality to make you smile. But not enough to make you need to leash them as with dogs. These cute reptiles are not known to carry diseases like rabies or such apart from salmonella. They rarely bite and definitely don’t need to be washed or have their fur trimmed. They do lay eggs. You can throw the eggs out if they are unfertilized.
There are some basic care elements for most pets. The elements of care for every animal and even humans involve the following.
- Health and perhaps reproduction
I am going to explore each of one after the other so that you can know how to make that decision on whether or not dragons are easy to care for.
Food is one of the most important parts of owning a pet. You should decide if you can afford to keep this pet or not. For instance, A lover of dogs will have to consider feeding before they choose a bull mastiff. Bearded dragons cannot eat as much as even the smallest breeds of dog. This makes them way cheaper. Bearded dragons have a very simple diet.
They require both protein and carbohydrates for survival like most other reptiles. You can feed them Crickets, Phoenix worms, Hornworms, Butterworms and an occasional Super worms. Now you don’t have to feed your dragon all of this all the time. You can alternate between choices.
You can feed them Collard greens, Turnip greens, Mustard greens, Butternut squash, Okra, Yellow squash, Sweet potato and even, Mango and papaya As far as leafy greens and veggies are concerned.
However, it is Paramount to avoid feeding them plants like Lettuce, Spinach, Avocado, Wild-caught insects, Citrus fruits and Rhubarb.
All of these food items can be found very easily. And you don’t have to spend so much money on them because they’re straight from nature.
This is another thing that your dragon needs to stay alive and healthy. Keeping your dragon hydrated is simple. You can mist their enclosures, give them periodic baths, put water bows in their enclosures, feed them from a syringe or just sprinkle water on the leaves in their enclosures. All of these require minimal efforts and time each day. And yet they go a long way in ensuring the health of your dragon stays top notch.
The enclosure of your dragon is a one time investment. You can get good tile substrate for your dragon and avoid sand and other loose particle substrates. The dragon will need heat lights and UV lights. You will need to change the UV lights once every six months. They are not expensive and are very good for the dragon’s health. You don’t need special costumes or decor for your dragon. You could have the same enclosure for different dragons over the years.
Bearded dragons don’t really care about where they live. They don’t get ectoparasite that they could pass on to you. And they on top of that don’t make half the mess that a cat would make by leaving fur on your furniture. They don’t need to be potty trained. There is almost nothing to fear as far as your home is concerned. Bearded dragons will not jump on your guest or steal your food. Lol.
Bearded dragons don’t often fall sick. They do have conditions they are prone to like tail rot and joint problems when they don’t get enough UVB. Their health care might be a little expensive because they are exotic pets. But you very likely won’t have to use a vet more than once in a blue moon. Especially if you chose a good healthy dragon from the beginning. You may need to visit the vet occasionally. But you won’t need to do it often if you have mastered the art of dragon care.
It is needless to say that bearded dragons require absolutely no grooming. They don’t have furs. They are as handsome and pretty as they will ever be. You don’t need to spend money on beautifying them. They are at their best so long as they are healthy. Bearded dragons are therefore considered to be one of the easiest pets to care for.
What exactly does ease of care mean?
It is easy to understand what pet owners mean when they refer to the term “ease of care” given everything that we know about most other pets. How easy is it to care for an animal? Is there an age restriction to handling the animal? The answers to all of these questions will determine the ease of care for an animal.
There are some questions to answer when it comes to determining what pets are easy to care for and what pets are not. The first one of such questions is “Is this animal dangerous to humans?”
When we look at Lions, elephants and tigers, for instance, they are considered wild animals. But at the same time, there are people who specialize in treating them and caring for them. These people have to go through extensive training on how to care for these animals without coming into danger themselves. On the front of danger to humans and other animals, bearded dragons are considered to be one of the least dangerous animals ever. There will really be very little or nothing to worry about in terms of serious infections or death on the rare occasion that a bearded dragon bites you.
Money is very important. Yet another parameter through which we can decide if bearded dragons are easy to care for or not is that off how expensive it is to care for them. How much money would you be expected or required to spend on the care of a bearded dragon monthly? The answer to this question lies in the consideration of how much money you spend on feeding, medication and every other thing including ultraviolet beams and heat bulbs. In no way whatsoever does a bearded dragon come close to a dog or a cat in terms of how much money you need to feed them or to get them vaccinated or medicated. so a bearded dragon is more likely to spend less money than a dog or a cat with all things being equal.
The only thing that is considered even remotely dangerous about Bearded dragon is it the possible presence of salmonella on their skin. And this can be combated by simply making sure that you wash your hands before and after handling the animal. But then, we should all wash our hands before and after handling all animals and not just bearded dragons alone. Bearded dragons are not dangerous.
I’m sure you weren’t thinking of this when you chose to have a bearded dragon as a pet. But the reality is that bearded dragons are some of the least time taking animals. They don’t need to be walked. Don’t need to cuddle or to be washed except of course for hydration purposes. Bearded dragons can basically entertain themselves as long as they are healthy and fed. You don’t have to worry about spending too much of your time looking after your dragon.
The reptile with arguably the best behaviour is the bearded dragon. These guys are docile and often even friendly. They have been observed to enjoy the company of their owners. They love to interact with their owners to the best of their ability. You can allow them to explore the home, or left in their cages depending on the mood of the owner. And you can even take them out on long walks if you can figure out how to use a leash the right way.
They have some acts that may amuse you. One of such behaviours is arm-waving. You can take this as a friendly gesture even though it may mean something else to them. They may also Bob or nod their heads over and over. Bearded dragons also billow their beard from time to time. This is actually how they get their nonscientific name.
Another thing to note is the fact that research has shown that dragons are actually smarter than we think. They can know and recognize their names. They recognize their owners too. So you can teach them a few simple tricks if you do have the time. Just remember that patience is key.
These amazing reptiles live for as long as fifteen to twenty years in captivity. Bearded dragons are very resilient. They need very little to survive. They are happy as long as they have food, shelter, water, and their lights. You will have a lot of nice time with your dragon over the years it will be alive. There is little to worry about when you make that decision to bring your dragon home. A bearded dragon definitely a good pet to bring home.