Top 10 Bearded Dragon Frequently Asked Questions

If you’ve never owned a bearded dragon before, chances are you have plenty of questions about how to best care for them. I mean, it’s only natural that you would right?

Considering that bearded dragons only started becoming popular as pets within the last ten years or less, it’s not exactly like general society has loads of experience with them.

As such, I found it very important to put this article together to hopefully provide clarity on some of the more common questions.

So, with that being said just keep reading to uncover the answers to some very commonly asked questions!

If you are looking to purchase a reptile pet that is strong and healthy, instead of sickly and malnourished - you should never purchase a reptile from a pet store. Find out the three reasons why here.

Bearded Dragon Diet Related Questions

Do you have to feed your bearded dragon every day?

While you don’t have to feed your bearded dragon every day… you absolutely should!

This is especially important if your dragon is under a year old, as in this particular instance, they should be eating 3 to 5 times a day to ensure they grow up healthy.

Bearded Dragon eating calcium dusted feeders

Now, if you skip a day or two with an adult dragon (who otherwise eats well) then they’ll be fine, albeit hungry. But adult bearded dragons should consume greens every day and insects at least every other day.

If you are feeding your bearded dragon every day and they’re not eating, then assume something is wrong, such as…

  1. They’re being a picky eater because you’re not giving them what they want.
  2. Their appetite is suppressed from an upcoming or ongoing shed.
  3. They’re brumating or are about to start.
  4. They’re sick (there should be other signs of this)

So, as you can see… your dragon wants to eat every day, but sometimes there are logical reasons why they don’t. 

If you can assume your dragon isn’t eating because of reason #1, I recommend playing around with different staple foods.

For instance, maybe try Dubia roaches instead of crickets (or vice versa) OR swap out dandelion greens for squash and collard greens, etc. 

Bearded dragons can develop their own personal taste preferences so sometimes it just take a little exploring to figure out what your beardie prefers.

What fruits can bearded dragons eat?

Bearded Dragon with Fruit on Head

Although you shouldn’t give your bearded dragon fruit every day, you can definitely indulge them occasionally (as in once or twice a week max) with the following fruits…

  1. Apples (peeled)
  2. Apricot
  3. Blackberries
  4. Blueberries
  5. Cantaloupe
  6. Cherries
  7. Cranberries
  8. Figs
  9. Grapes (red & green)
  10. Grapefruit
  11. Guava
  12. Honeydew
  13. Mandarin Orange
  14. Mango
  15. Melon
  16. Nectarine
  17. Oranges (Navel)
  18. Papaya
  19. Peach
  20. Pears
  21. Pineapple (fresh or canned)
  22. Plum
  23. Prunes (canned)
  24. Raisins (seedless)
  25. Watermelon

On the flipside, you can feed your bearded dragon these fruits rarely (once a month)

  1. Banana
  2. Kiwi
  3. Olives (canned, pitted)
  4. Pomegranate
  5. Raspberries
  6. Starfruit
  7. Tomato (uncooked)
  8. Strawberries (read our dedicated article here)

Lastly, never give your bearded dragon this one fruit…

  1. Avocado (extremely toxic)

What vegetables can a bearded dragon eat?

Bearded dragon eating carrots

Vegetables are a staple part of any bearded dragon’s diet, especially an adult dragon. Here are the vegetables safe enough you can give to your dragon daily

  1. Collard greens
  2. Dandelion greens
  3. Mustard greens
  4. Squash (acorn, butternut, spaghetti, summer)
  5. Turnip Greens

In addition to these staple daily veggies, here are some veggies safe enough to give your bearded dragon occasionally (ideally no more than once every other week)

  1. Alfalfa
  2. Artichoke (heart, uncooked)
  3. Arugula
  4. Asparagus
  5. Basil
  6. Bell pepper (green, red, yellow)
  7. Bok choy
  8. Cabbage (red and green)
  9. Carrots
  10. Celery (leaves and stalk)
  11. Cilantro
  12. Cucumber (peeled)
  13. Kale (uncooked)
  14. Leeks (uncooked)
  15. Lemon Grass
  16. Okra
  17. Parsnip
  18. Pumpkin (uncooked)
  19. Radish (uncooked)
  20. Seaweed
  21. Turnips (uncooked)
  22. Zucchini (uncooked)

Additionally, here are the vegetables you can only feed your bearded dragon on very rare occasions

  1. Beets
  2. Broccoli (uncooked)
  3. Brussel sprouts
  4. Cauliflower (uncooked)
  5. Corn
  6. Lettuce (red leaf, Romaine)
  7. Parsley
  8. Peas
  9. Rutabaga (uncooked)
  10. Swiss chard

Lastly, these are the vegetables to never give your bearded dragon…

  1. Eggplant
  2. Lettuce (loose leaf and Iceberg)
  3. Onion
  4. Rhubarb
  5. Spinach

Can bearded dragons eat cheese?

Although bearded dragons need calcium to maintain healthy bones and stay strong, cheese is far too calcium-rich for them to digest.

In fact, dairy as a whole is not good for your bearded dragon and as such, should never be given to them… not even for a rare treat.

Can bearded dragons eat bread?

Although a tiny bit of wheat or white bread here and there probably won’t hurt, it really isn’t a good idea to give your bearded dragon bread ever.

For starters, bread has no nutritional value for your dragon, so it doesn’t logically make sense to offer it to them.

Also, bread can swell in the stomach and expand, leading to potential health issues.

Bottom line? Don’t feed your dragon bread, but if they somehow eat a little, don’t worry too much either.

Bearded Dragon Health and Wellness Questions

How long does a bearded dragon live in captivity?

How long your bearded dragon lives will 90% depend on the quality of life you provide them with.

Now, of course your dragon could have some genetic predisposition to deadly diseases, but this isn’t necessarily super common… especially if you got him or her from a reputable breeder.

Bearded dragon and owner kissing

If your dragon has a healthy diet, a suitable cage setup with proper UVB exposure and temperatures (hot and cool), and plenty of enrichment to keep them happy, then they can live up to about 10 years on average, with 12 years being exceptionally rare.

Does my bearded dragon need a water bowl?

In short, no.

Placing a water bowl in your dragon’s habitat runs the risk of upping the humidity (depending on the type of cage they’re in) and also, you can easily keep your dragon hydrated by gently dripping some water drops on their snout a few times a day and also giving them regular baths.

Bearded Dragon and Spray Bottle

In addition to this, you can even lightly spray them down with a fine mist of water as well, which will be absorbed by their skin.

How can you tell if a bearded dragon is dehydrated?

If your bearded dragon has wrinkly, loose looking skin then it could be do to hydration.

Also, sunken eyes could be an indication of dehydration as well. 

​Do all bearded dragons have Salmonella?

In short yes.

Is it something you should worry about? Not necessarily.

You see, bearded dragons (along with tons of other reptiles) do in fact carry salmonella and this can be passed on to humans through their feces and in rare instances their skin. 

However, with this being said, you are more likely to contract salmonella from contaminated food than a bearded dragon.

Check out the tips below for how to avoid putting yourself or your family at risk (no matter how small) of contracting salmonella…

1. Practice keeping their habitat clean.

You wouldn’t want to live in filth, so why should your bearded dragon?!

Make it a habit to clean out your pet’s tank once a week and immediately remove any poop or uneaten food once you notice it.

As far as a deep clean? Try to do one around once a month, and certainly at least every two months.

I recommend using a cleaner like this one.

Or if you want to make your own, do a 1:10 bleach to water mixture, just make sure it’s completely rinsed off the cage and the cage is totally dry before putting your beardie back in it.

cleaning bearded dragon tank

You can also use a spray like this one to get the cage nice and smelling clean.

2. Bathe your beardie frequently.

By frequently, I mean just once a week or so.

Your beardie may not necessarily like bath time (some simply don’t), but in time you should find that as long as you can make it a relaxing experience, they should warm up to it.

bearded dragon getting a bath

Fill the tub with a few inches of warm water, making sure the water is no higher than the dragon’s shoulders, and allow them to soak and splash around for 10-20 minutes.

You can even use super mild soaps like this one to provide a more thorough clean.

3. Always wash your hands after handling.

A no brainer, right? Wash any part of your body or clothing that has come in contact with your pet.

This will ensure that if you’ve inadvertently come in contact with the salmonella bacteria, you kill it.

4. Don’t skimp on vet checkups.

Just like you would a dog or cat, make sure you regularly take your bearded dragon in for a checkup with a legitimate herp vet.

Bearded dragon at the vet

Aside from monitoring salmonella levels with a stool test, the checkup will give the vet a chance to check that everything else is good with your pet, potentially preventing major (not to mention heartbreaking and expensive) issues down the road.

Bearded Dragon Social Questions 

Does my bearded dragon need a friend?

As in, another bearded dragon? No!

Bearded dragons can be kept together as babies but should never be homed with another animal as this can lead to territorial issues, bullying, fights, and in some cases, death.

Unless you are an extremely experienced (not using this word lightly…) breeder or dragon owner, I do NOT recommend housing your dragon with another dragon, especially if one or more of the dragons is a male.

Bearded dragon with owner

Now, in regards to other “friends”… the only companion your bearded dragon needs is YOU and any other humans that live in the home.

Dragons can grow quite social and fond of their humans but should be kept away from other animals, as this puts them at risk of being hurt or killed.

If you are looking to purchase a reptile pet that is strong and healthy, instead of sickly and malnourished - you should never purchase a reptile from a pet store. Find out the three reasons why here.


So there you have it!

I hope these answered some of the questions you have, but if not, feel free to leave different questions in the comments below and I’ll do my best to answer them!

Read These Articles Yet?

How to Bond with Your Bearded Dragon

The Ultimate Bearded Dragon Care Guide

Why Bearded Dragons Make Great Pets

10 thoughts on “Top 10 Bearded Dragon Frequently Asked Questions”

  1. My beardie has done something to her leg and it’s swallow can I give her baby Ibuprofen and if so how much she is a year old?

    • Hi Amanda,

      Sorry to hear about your beardie. Not sure what you mean by her leg being “swallow”, did you mean yellow? If so, please check out this post on yellow fungus here.

      Or perhaps you meant swollen? Is she living with another beardie who could have bit it?

      And it would be best that you do not give her any ibuprofen or otherwise human drugs. What you can do, is give them some Serrapeptase which is an anti-inflammatory enyme derived from silkworms. This is a GREAT resource to have on hand for reptile injuries.

      Here’s how to figure out how much serrapeptase to give them: take your dragon’s body weight in grams and divide by 1,000 to get the number of ml necessary to include. For example, if your dragon weighs 500 grams, you’d divide this by 1,000 to get 0.5ml.

      In addition to the serrapeptase, just continue to monitor the leg. If it fails to show improvement after a few days of at home treatment, go to the vet.

      Hope this helps!

  2. I have learned a lot on your website about breaded dragon. I have a 2week old breaded dragon and not sure what vegetable to start him off on? Any help please. He is eat just roaches for right now. You also have stated that putting vitmans and calcium on his food 4 to 5 times a week. What do i do for calcium and vitamin for the last 2 days?

    • Hi Cynthia!

      I’m happy to hear you’ve been able to learn about beardies from this site!

      To answer your questions… I would recommend experimenting with veggies as all beardies have particular tastes. Definitely start with any of the 5 greens mentioned above. It’s hard to guess what he’ll prefer without simply letting him sample first.

      When it comes to dusting his feeders with calcium, do this 4-5 times a week but never more than once in the same day. On the days you don’t dust with calcium, dust his feeders with his multi-vitamin. If there’s a day where he doesn’t get either, it’s not the end of the world as long as you are adhering to the schedule. This schedule should continue until he is around 12 months old or so, at which point, you can go down to calcium 3 times a week (or every other day) and a multi-vitamin once a week.

      If you have any other questions pertaining to diet and nutrition you may find my bearded dragon diet guide of help! I go over dietary needs for every stage of life, and also cover vitamins and calcium.

      Hope this helps!

  3. I put my beardie in a new habitat, how long does it usually take for them to adjust? He gets agitated and turns black under his chin and claws at the glass. The temp is it same as before, just more space. Thank you.

  4. I find it very helpful to have hand warmers or heat packs so in case of a power outage you can keep them warm. A plastic tub will hold the heat better than a glass tank, so you might want to move your dragon into a small plastic tub to keep them warm. Make sure it doesn’t get too hot though.
    Prolonged darkness isn’t really as issue as long as it doesn’t occur for more than a day. Always day and always night will mess up sleeping cycles, eating cycles and even when the go into brumation. For a day or too it won’t hurt them but if you must. Open a curtain next to a window to try and replicate day and night cycles.

  5. Hello,
    Thank you for all of this information. I’m a new baby beardie mom and honestly the idea of owning a reptile until now creeped me out. My baby is 2-3 months old and I have had him for 2 weeks now. I’ve been compiling information for him every where I can find it and your post was the most helpful. I do have a question though, I see you answered the how often and what to feed your beardie at each stage but I was hoping you can help on an amount for the veggies he can have everyday as he grows?? Right now he eats mostly crickets and a few worms and at the end of the day he munches on a few small pieces of either collard greens or kale, but I’m so lost as to the amount to make him as he ages everyday. What is the difference in veggies vs salads? And lastly, can I ask what mix you put together everyday for your beardie to eat in the morning and how long you leave it for him to eat during the morning/day? I’m soooooo new to this and the info out there is overwhelming so again thanks for all this and you help. I look forward to hearing back from you and your advice!

    A new beardie mom,

    • Hi, what do you mean by veggies vs salads? It’s essentially the same type of thing. I recommend feeding veggies to your bearded dragon three times per day. If you leave veggies in the cage, your beardie will eat whenever it wants. Greens, broccoli, alfalfa hay, bok choy, watercress, cabbage, bell peppers, and green beans are examples of good vegetables to feed your beardie.

      -Reptile Guide team

  6. My family and I just got 2 bearded dragons giving to us, they are already 3 years old as well as they are overweight, the owner truly didn’t take care of them very well. They have been on a strict diet of nothing but worms I believe. What can I do to help them adjust better and eat properly to lose weight? I want to do what’s best for these little guys and I have no idea what I am doing.


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