Are Bearded Dragons High Maintenance?

why bearded dragons are such great pets

Bearded dragons are becoming increasingly popular pets due to their docile nature and unique appearance. However, before deciding to bring one into your life, it’s important to consider the level of care required to keep them healthy and happy.

While bearded dragons are not necessarily high maintenance, they do require specialized care and attention. From providing the right diet and lighting, to creating a suitable habitat, being a responsible bearded dragon owner requires a commitment to meeting their needs. In this article, we’ll explore what it takes to keep a bearded dragon happy and healthy, and help you decide if they’re the right pet for you.

Are Bearded Dragons High Maintenance?

Are Bearded Dragons High Maintenance?

Bearded dragons are one of the most popular pet reptiles in the world, but are they high maintenance pets? This article will explore the care requirements of bearded dragons and help you decide if they are the right pet for you.


The first thing to consider when deciding if bearded dragons are high maintenance is their enclosure. Bearded dragons require a large enclosure with proper lighting and heating. A 40-gallon tank is the minimum size for one adult bearded dragon, but they will need a larger enclosure as they grow. The enclosure should also have a basking spot with a temperature of 100-110°F and a cooler side with a temperature of 80-85°F. Bearded dragons also need full-spectrum UVB lighting to help them absorb calcium.

Enclosure maintenance is not difficult, but it does require daily attention. Bearded dragons should be spot cleaned daily and have their enclosure deep cleaned once a month. This involves removing everything from the enclosure, cleaning it with a reptile-safe cleaner, and replacing the substrate.


Bearded dragons are omnivores and require a diet of both insects and vegetables. They should be fed a variety of insects including crickets, mealworms, and dubia roaches. Vegetables should make up 20-30% of their diet and should include leafy greens, squash, and carrots. Bearded dragons also require calcium and vitamin supplements.

Diet maintenance is relatively easy, but it does require some planning. Bearded dragons should be fed daily and their diet should be varied to ensure they are getting all the nutrients they need. Insects should be dusted with calcium and vitamin supplements before being fed to the bearded dragon.


Bearded dragons are generally docile and easy to handle, but they do require daily interaction and socialization. They also have specific behavior requirements, such as basking and digging, that need to be accommodated in their enclosure.

Behavior maintenance involves providing a comfortable and stimulating environment for the bearded dragon. This can include providing hiding spots, climbing structures, and toys. Bearded dragons should also be handled daily to help them become comfortable with human interaction.


Bearded dragons are generally healthy pets, but they can be prone to certain health issues such as metabolic bone disease and impaction. It is important to monitor their health and take them to a reptile veterinarian if any issues arise.

Health maintenance involves monitoring the bearded dragon for any signs of illness or injury. They should also be taken to a reptile veterinarian for regular check-ups and to address any health concerns.


Bearded dragons are relatively affordable pets, but they do require some initial investment in their enclosure and equipment. The cost of their enclosure, lighting, heating, and substrate can add up quickly. They also require ongoing costs such as food, supplements, and vet visits.

Cost maintenance involves budgeting for the initial investment and ongoing costs of owning a bearded dragon. It is important to factor in the cost of their enclosure and equipment, as well as the ongoing costs of food, supplements, and vet visits.

Benefits of owning a bearded dragon

  • Bearded dragons are docile and easy to handle, making them great pets for families with children.
  • They have unique personalities and can be very entertaining to watch.
  • Bearded dragons are relatively low maintenance pets, especially compared to other reptiles.
  • They can live up to 15 years with proper care.

Bearded dragons vs other reptiles

Bearded Dragon Leopard Gecko Corn Snake
Enclosure size 40 gallon minimum 20 gallon minimum 20 gallon minimum
Diet Omnivore – insects and vegetables Insectivore Carnivore – mice and rats
Behavior Docile, basking and digging behavior Nocturnal, climbing behavior Nocturnal, hiding behavior
Cost Medium Low Low

Compared to other reptiles, bearded dragons are medium maintenance pets. They require a larger enclosure than leopard geckos and a more varied diet than corn snakes, but they are generally easier to handle than both.


Are bearded dragons high maintenance? It depends on your definition of high maintenance. Bearded dragons do require a certain level of care and attention, but they are generally considered low maintenance compared to other reptiles. With proper care, they can make great pets for families and reptile enthusiasts alike.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Bearded Dragons High Maintenance?

Bearded dragons are relatively low-maintenance pets, but they do require some specific care to keep them healthy and happy. One of the most important aspects of caring for a bearded dragon is providing the right environment. This means a large tank with a basking spot, UV lighting, and appropriate substrate. You’ll also need to feed your bearded dragon a varied diet of live insects and vegetables, and provide fresh water every day.

Another factor to consider is the time commitment. While bearded dragons don’t need constant attention, they do require regular care and interaction. This includes daily feeding and cleaning, as well as spending time with your pet to keep them socialized and happy. Overall, while they do require some effort and attention, bearded dragons can make wonderful pets for those willing to put in the effort.

What Kind of Environment Do Bearded Dragons Need?

Bearded dragons need a specific type of environment to stay healthy and happy. This includes a large tank or enclosure with plenty of room to move around, climb, and bask. You’ll need to provide a basking spot with a heat lamp or ceramic heat emitter, as well as UV lighting to help your bearded dragon absorb calcium and stay healthy. The substrate should be appropriate for your pet’s size and age, and you’ll need to clean the tank regularly to prevent the buildup of bacteria and parasites.

In addition to the physical environment, bearded dragons also require mental stimulation and socialization. This means providing hiding spots, climbing opportunities, and toys to keep your pet engaged and entertained. You’ll also need to spend time interacting with your bearded dragon to help them feel comfortable and happy in their environment.

What Do Bearded Dragons Eat?

Bearded dragons are omnivorous, which means they eat both insects and vegetables. The exact diet will depend on your pet’s age and size, but generally, bearded dragons should be offered a mix of live insects such as crickets, roaches, and mealworms, as well as a variety of vegetables and fruits. Dark, leafy greens like kale and collard greens are good options, as well as squash, carrots, and bell peppers.

It’s important to offer a varied diet to ensure your bearded dragon is getting all the necessary nutrients. You’ll also need to provide a calcium supplement to prevent metabolic bone disease, which is common in bearded dragons. Make sure to remove uneaten food promptly to prevent the buildup of bacteria and parasites in the tank.

How Often Should I Clean My Bearded Dragon’s Tank?

It’s important to clean your bearded dragon’s tank regularly to prevent the buildup of bacteria and parasites. The frequency of cleaning will depend on the size of the tank and the number of pets you have, but generally, you’ll need to do a deep cleaning every 2-4 weeks. This involves removing all the substrate, decorations, and accessories, and cleaning them with a reptile-safe disinfectant.

In addition to deep cleanings, you’ll also need to spot clean your bearded dragon’s tank every day. This means removing any feces or uneaten food, and wiping down any surfaces that have become soiled. You’ll also need to change the water every day, and replace any filters or lighting fixtures as needed.

Do Bearded Dragons Require Veterinary Care?

Like all pets, bearded dragons can develop health issues and may require veterinary care. It’s a good idea to find a reptile veterinarian in your area and establish a relationship before any problems arise. Some common health issues in bearded dragons include metabolic bone disease, respiratory infections, and parasites.

In addition to regular check-ups, you’ll need to watch for signs of illness or distress in your bearded dragon. These can include lethargy, loss of appetite, weight loss, diarrhea, or abnormal behavior. If you notice any of these symptoms, it’s important to seek veterinary care as soon as possible to prevent further complications.

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In conclusion, while bearded dragons require some level of maintenance, they are not considered high maintenance pets. With proper care and attention, they can thrive and make great companions for their owners.

Firstly, bearded dragons require a clean and spacious enclosure with proper lighting and temperature control. This can be easily achieved with some basic equipment and regular cleaning routines.

Secondly, they require a well-balanced diet consisting of live insects, vegetables, and fruits. This can be easily achieved with some research and planning, and can also be a fun and interactive experience for both the owner and the pet.

Lastly, while they may require occasional veterinary check-ups and may exhibit some health issues, they are generally hardy and resilient creatures. With proper care and attention, they can live long and healthy lives.

Overall, while bearded dragons may require some effort and attention, they are rewarding pets that can bring joy and companionship to their owners. With a little patience and some basic knowledge, they can make a great addition to any household.

Aubrey Sawyer


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