As with any pet, it is important to ensure that your bearded dragon is in good health to ensure a long and happy life. However, determining the health of a bearded dragon can be challenging for new owners or those unfamiliar with reptile care.
A Bearded Dragon in good health will be lively, active, and will show interest in its environment. It will eat well, move around with ease, and poop normally. On the other hand, a sick bearded Dragon will display no activity and appear lethargic.
In this article, we will explore the key indicators of a healthy bearded dragon, as well as signs of potential health issues to look out for.
Signs of a Healthy Bearded Dragon
1. Alert And Energetic
A healthy bearded dragon will appear alert at all times, except when it is sleeping or resting. There are certain indications that your dragon is alert, such as having bright and focused eyes, always trying to do things, head bobbing, chasing after things, and just eating, chilling, and relaxing.
A bearded dragon’s eyes should not look dull, unfocused, or sunken in.
A healthy bearded dragon should be able to just chill on your shoulder and hold its body weight or move around without any issues.
Additionally, your dragon should have sufficient energy and not display any signs of lethargy, laziness, or excessive sleepiness. However, it is essential to investigate the cause of any unusual behavior, even if it appears to be associated with a non-serious condition such as brumation.
A healthy bearded dragon can bear its weight and move around using all four limbs effortlessly. If you observe any signs of weakness or inability to use a specific body part, such as the legs or tail, or if it struggles to hold its head up, it could be a warning sign that your pet is not in good health.
A healthy bearded dragon would have a healthy weight. While the recommended weight range is between 380 to 510 grams, keep in mind that size and weight can vary depending on your dragon’s age, gender, and specie.
As a general rule of thumb, a bearded dragon is usually around a foot long from head to tail, but some may be smaller and weigh less. To determine whether your bearded dragon is a healthy weight, observe its overall appearance.
If your bearded dragon appears malnourished, with sunken fat pads on its head or tail, this may indicate that it is not receiving enough nutrients or may be suffering from a parasite infestation.
Conversely, if your bearded dragon is nice and plump, this is typically a positive sign.
If your bearded dragon is overweight, you can help them get back to a healthy weight by reducing their protein intake and increasing their vegetable consumption. By ensuring that your bearded dragon maintains a healthy weight, you can help ensure a long and happy life for your scaly friend.
4. Clear Eyes
Eyes can tell a lot about a beardie’s health. A healthy bearded dragon will have clear eyes. While it may seem like a simple indicator, it cannot be stressed enough how vital this is.
Many pet shops and other places may offer bearded dragons that do not have clear eyes, which can be a cause for concern. In some cases, their eyes may be coated with mucus or appear droopy, indicating possible dehydration. Therefore, make sure that your bearded dragon should always have clear eyes. This is a sign that they are in good health and receiving proper care.
5. Bowel Movements
A bearded dragon’s digestive health is a good indicator of its overall health. A healthy bearded dragon will have regular bowel movements that are brown and well-formed.
However, if you notice any discoloration or runniness in your beardie’s stool, it could be a sign of internal parasites or other health issues. In such cases, it is essential to take your pet to a veterinarian as soon as possible to ensure timely diagnosis and appropriate treatment.
A qualified vet will conduct a thorough examination and run some tests to identify the underlying issue and recommend the right course of action to restore your bearded dragon’s health. Remember, regular vet check-ups are crucial for your pet’s overall well-being, so don’t hesitate to seek professional help whenever needed.
Bearded dragons need a well balanced diet of insects and veggies. A healthy dragon will consume its vegetables regularly without any fuss. However, if your pet is not keen on its greens, it does not necessarily mean it is sick. It could survive on an insect-only diet for a while without any immediate complications.
However, later down the road, the lack of a vegetable diet can cause problems, such as bone and movement complications. It is therefore advisable to establish a varied diet with a focus on vegetables early on to prevent long-term health issues.
A healthy bearded dragon will appear attentive, move around, eat, and excrete normally, and appear interested in its environment. A healthy beardie will also have curious and clear eyes, whereas a sick one would be listless and lethargic.