What Not To Do With Your Bearded Dragon? Things to AVOID!

In this post, we will list and explain all the things that you should never do to your bearded dragon.

What Should You Not Do With a Bearded Dragon?

Here is a list of things every bearded dragon owner needs to avoid.

Fireflies/Lightening Bugs

Never let dragon eat them as eating fireflies will prove to be lethal for them. Fireflies have a steroid type substance called lucibufagin. They use this substance as a defense against predators. It acts as a stimulant to the heart.

When a dragon eats these fireflies or lightning bugs, they start feeling nauseated and start shaking their head in a violent manner. Once eaten the bearded dragon dies between 30 minutes and 2 hours of time. The dragons should not be fed these as this diet is like a major overdose of heart medication to a Pogona vitticeps.

Heat Rocks

After eating the bearded dragons need the warm rocks in their enclosure to rest. This helps in digestion. But once these rocks get too hot, then this could result in thermal burns.

A regular Ole rock must be kept near the basking zone. The rock must not be kept directly under the heat as that can also be too hot for them. The best indication for these is when the dragon goes on this rock and lifts up his toes slightly. Therefore these devices such as heat rocks which are commercially sold must be removed from the market.

Iceberg Lettuce

Diarrhea or dehydration is the resultant if your dragon eats the iceberg lettuce. Lettuces contain very less nutritional value and have too much water in them. So the dragons should not be fed lettuces.


Toxic to a Bearded Dragon


Toxic to a Bearded Dragon

Prey caught outside

Imagine of a situation. In your backyard or outside your house you see some bugs or crickets. You decide to feed them your dragon. It is not a good idea at all. As you never know where they have traveled and who knows what they have been eating. It would be unhygienic.

What if you feed your dragon worms that have ingested the herbicides and those deadly chemicals? What if a bug that you have caught traveled through the grass which had pesticides sprinkled over it? The insects which are caught outside can contain traces of those deadly chemicals. It could be deadly and harmful for your dragon too.

Large Food

The selection of foods for your dragon must be according to its size. The Greens, veggies, worms & bugs should be of a size that is appropriate for your dragon.  Please make sure they are no bigger than the space between their eyes or the width of their mouth. 

If we don’t pay attention to the size of foods, then this problem could be severe. This problem invites a number of problems such as terminal ingestion. There can be other problems too if the dragon swallows the food bigger in size. The swallowed substances get lodged in their intestinal tract and thus cause severe pain.

The dragons extend their limbs straight which are the signs of blockage in the intestinal tract. Paralysis can happen with terminal ingestion. You will not be able to save the dragon if this complication arises. Therefore the size of foods must be right.

Too Much Fruit

Too much fruit is bad for bearded dragons. If they are consumed in access dragons can get cavities. You can give a small amount of fruit once a week.

Extreme Heat

As we know, bearded dragons are desert creatures. They like to live in a hot environment. Your enclosure must be having a temperature that suits them. But some dragons may like a little warmer or a little cooler temperature.

Overheating is also bad for your dragon. It must be formulated like this. As your home temperature rises so does the temperature of your enclosures.

Too Cool

The best temperature for the night is around 65 degrees, but in the daytime, the temperatures should be much higher. They should have a hot basking zone with a temperature of 95 to 105 degrees for older dragons and 105-110 degrees for the hatchlings.

If your cage is not able to keep the appropriate zone temperatures and once the humidity is also high then this could result in respiratory infections. Baytril is prescribed for this, but as they say, prevention is better than cure that is why one must adjust the cage temperatures accordingly.

To be on the safe side, invest in a better cage designed specifically for bearded dragons.

Housing DragonsTogether

The sizes of dragons play an important role in keeping dragons healthy. If an adult is kept with a baby, there are chances that the adult will eat the baby. If you keep juvie and adult, then the adult is going to seriously injure the juvie. So adults must be kept with adults and juvie with juvie.

There are no familial emotions among the bearded dragons that are the reason they are not kept along whether it is a mother, child, or father.

The mistake of putting small dragons with big ones must be avoided because every smaller dragon is prey for the bigger one. When putting dragons together, you must keep in mind their size in mind. They must be of the same size.

If the dragons of bigger size are kept along with the smaller ones, then, the smaller ones remain under a lot of stress. They refuse to eat and ultimately die of starvation. This fear is not only outward or just shown during feeding time.

If you find a dragon who is not able to feed properly then he must be separately, and it must be referred to a veterinary doctor once he doesn’t pick up eating in a few days’ time.

Understand a dragon is from human beings, therefore, the foods that you eat must not be fed to them as their digestive system is not meant to digest the foods we eat. So for these dragons chocolate, fries and pizzas are no at all.

Holding or Putting Your Dragon on His Back

The respiratory system of your dragon depresses with this act. The result is cut off in the oxygen intake of your dragon, and it can kill the dragon.  So you must avoid this for the safe life of your dragon.

Calcium Sand (Calci-Sand), Crushed Walnut Shell, and many other questionable substrates – These chemical substrates is known for all wrong reasons. The substrates are deadly for dragons, as the sharp pieces of these substrates can be lodged in the intestinal tract causing blockages or hemorrhage.


Above is the list of what not to do with your bearded dragon. If you think we have missed something please let us know in the comments below.

Filled under: Lizards

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