Bearded dragon is not exactly common to everyone.
Some people are not even familiar with this pet reptile.
With this, when you say that you want to adopt bearded dragon to be your pet, some reactions would be “what is that?”, “a dragon?”, “a dragon with a beard?”, “sounds scary” and so many others.
Well, these reactions are indeed common from people who are unfamiliar with bearded dragon.
Sometimes, they will easily jump into a conclusion that bearded dragons are dangerous when they see the physical appearance of the reptile.
Of course, we cannot help the fact that there are people who have nothing in their mind besides dogs, cats, birds and fishes when you say “pet”.
They do not understand that there are also reptiles specifically bearded dragons that are ideal to become a pet.
If you are relating to this kind of situation, like for example, your parents do not want to agree for you to adopt a bearded dragon or maybe your wife feels that having bearded dragons in the house is too dangerous for the kids then you need some explaining to do.
It would be best for everyone if you will explain and introduce a bearded dragon to them carefully until they realize that not all reptiles are dangerous and that bearded dragon is in fact a perfect pet to have.
Knowing a Bearded Dragon for the First Time
Convincing a person who is not familiar with bearded dragon could require a lot of work before you get their “yes”.
However, introducing to them this pet lizard in an effective manner could make things a bit easier for you.
Well, first thing is do not bring the person or the people you are convincing in front of a bearded dragon just yet.
It would be better if they will have background or idea first, about what a bearded dragon is.
Here are the details about bearded dragons that you could share to them for them to know more about the reptile that you want to adopt:
- Bearded dragons are living in the wild particularly in Australia but they do well in captivity which is why there are already lots of bearded dragons in the United States of America and other parts of the world.
- They are friendly. It must be difficult to believe that a reptile is friendly but you should explain to your folks that bearded dragons are harmless. There are lots of people sharing stories how they meet a bearded dragon in the wild but the reptile did not do anything but freeze themselves out. Unlike other animals in the wild, they do not attack when threatened. They may change their colors like chameleons, they freeze, and that is that.
- They are called “bearded dragon” because of the beard under their throat. This is one of the most distinctive features of this reptile and you will be able to distinguish various species of bearded dragons based on their beards and spikes. With that, you will be able to explain the meaning behind the name.
- It would also be great for them to know that bearded dragons have long life. They can grow from 10 to 12 years old and with really great care, they can even reach 15 years. It is indeed nice to have a pet that you can grow old with – a pet that you can even introduce to your children or grandchildren.
- It is also wonderful to know that bearded dragons are easy to maintain. They may look intimidating but the truth is that they are simple and they require simple and routine care.
- Another concern of other people who are unaware of bearded dragons is the foods these reptiles eat. Well, you should explain to them that beardies are omnivores. They can eat anything whether plants, vegetables, fruits and meat in the form of insects. They are not picky-eaters so there will not be a problem about feeding.
- Pet bearded dragons are also docile and they have great temperament. They may be aloof or uncomfortable when you hold them during first few days of adoption but they will grow accustomed later on when they start to recognize their master.
- They are usually quiet. If you are the type of person who wants quiet home so you can relax after long day at work then a pet bearded dragon is indeed perfect for you.
- Children and everyone in the house are safe since bearded dragon is just staying in an aquarium or enclosure. Well not that beardies are harmful or dangerous, but it would be a relief for those people who are hesitant about having a bearded dragon in the house to know that the reptiles have their own cage or shelter and that everyone in the house is safe.
- Another great thing about having a pet bearded dragon is the fact that they do not litter in the house. With the help of the substrate in their cage, you will be able to clean their mess easily.
Preparations for Your Bearded Dragon
You will convince more the people around you to allow you to have a pet bearded dragon when they realize that you are completely ready and responsible to become a pet owner.
Therefore, it is best to learn about the different preparations for your bearded dragon even before you buy or adopt one. Here are some pointers to remember:
- Learn exactly where you could adopt a bearded dragon – it is best if you know where to go to when you are adopting a beardie. How are you going to convince your parents or your spouse that you are ready for a bearded dragon when you do not know where to begin? Therefore, before you bring up the issue of adopting a bearded dragon you should make sure to know where you plan to buy or adopt the pet. You can decide whether you want to buy from a pet store, contact a breeder from online websites or maybe you want to adopt a beardie from rescue center.
- Prepare the aquarium even before the bearded dragon arrives home – we already discussed in a past lesson how detailed setting up an aquarium for your bearded dragon could be. With this, you must make sure to prepare the enclosure before your pet beardie arrives home. You should establish the two sides in the enclosure warm and cooler areas as well as the basking spot. It is also advisable to do your trial and error or testing when it comes to overall temperature and lighting in the cage. This way, you are sure that the bearded dragon will have comfortable time in the cage. It will be stressful for the reptile if there is no enclosure prepared yet.
- Plan the diet of your pet – you should base the diet plan of your bearded dragon according to their age. Young beardies as well as juvenile need more protein in their diet therefore you should give them more insects like roaches, worms and crickets. However, it would be best to choose young insects to feed them so it is easier for them to chew. For adult beardies, you could settle with more fruits and vegetables. It is a golden rule to measure the food based on the distance between their eyes to know for sure that they can digest the foods easily.
- Prepare a routine care plan – we also discussed from previous lesson how important it is to prepare a routine care plan. Preparing this kind of plan shows that you are ready for your responsibility as pet bearded dragon master. Once your folks or your spouse notice how prepared you are then it is not impossible for them to agree with you eventually.
- Find a good herp vet – it would be ideal to meet a good herp vet near your area. This will help you secure good health for your bearded dragon. It is mentioned that bearded dragons have long life expectancy however just like humans and other animals, bearded dragons get sick too. It would be best for them if you will be able to treat the disease immediately with the help of the vet that specializes in the case of reptiles like your bearded dragon.
It may not be very easy to convince or persuade other people to the idea of having bearded dragon as pet however once they get to know more about the reptile, they will slowly understand why there are people who are interested in adopting bearded dragons.
If you are truly interested to adopt one then be sure that, you are 100% ready for a long time commitment because having a bearded dragon is also like having a baby.
You need to nourish them with great love and care. In the next lesson, you will be able to understand more about different behaviors of bearded dragons like arm waving, head bobbing and eye bulging.
Bearded Dragon as Pets
There are many reasons why bearded dragons make such great pets and in this post I’m going to be discussing some of them.
The bearded dragon is a good-natured, docile and friendly lizard that enjoys to be touched, held and stroked. Many bearded dragons will happily sit on your shoulder and provide you with company whilst you go about your household tasks.
Bearded dragons are not too large (between 12 and 24cm long), which means, compared to other reptiles, they do not take up a lot of space.
You will need a vivarium or tank for your bearded dragons, which can be quite long (4 or 5 feet) but this makes an interesting and aesthetic focus point for the room they are in.
Bearded dragons are omnivorous and enjoy a wide range of different foods that are readily available from your local supermarket or pet store.
Because they don’t have any specific or unusual dietary requirements, their diet can easily be catered for. You can find out more about what to feed your bearded dragon here.
You can’t play with a bearded dragon like you can with a dog, but they can provide lots of viewing entertainment as they scuttle around your home.
They also love to be held and stroked under the chin.
Easy To Care For
Compared to other lizards and reptiles, Bearded Dragons are one of the easiest species to care for. Of course, you do have to cater for their environmental requirements by providing a vivarium for them to live in and you do have to make sure their dietary needs are met but once you’ve set it up and got into a routine, it takes very little time out of your schedule.
Same Sleeping Patterns
Like humans, bearded dragons are diurnal, which means they are awake during the day and sleep at night. This means that unless you work the night-shift, your bearded dragon will be awake and able to interact at the same times as you.
Not Too Rare
Finally, although bearded dragons make an interesting and unusual pet, they are not so rare that you will have difficulty finding a breeder to get one from.
In addition, because of their popularity as a household pet, there is lots of information, both online and offline, about caring for these wonderful creatures.