These animals belong to the deserts of Australia. Like, dragon it has spiny scales. These animals are yellow in color. They mainly prefer warm areas such as deserts, savannas, and subtropical woodlands. They are mainly cold-blooded animals and require external heat to maintain their body temperature. In case of a very high temperature, they hide inside the burrow. They have an average life span of 4 to 10 years. The size usually around 18 to 22 inches. They weigh around 10 to 18 ounces. These animals are omnivorous and like to eat fruit, flower and occasionally small lizards. In the USA, people keep them as pets. Bearded dragons are active during the day time and generally sleep at night. There are some rules to follow for choosing the best bearded dragon enclosure.
Factors to consider for setting up the enclosure
These animals mainly kept in glass tanks. Some people make custom made enclosure by using the material such as PVC, or melamine. Although, the aquariums can be used to keep these animals. Generally, glass made enclosures do not get scratched easily. It provides a 360-degree view. The glass enclosure can be cleaned easily too. The glass tanks are the cheaper option. According to some pet owners, the glass tank does not have proper insulation. So, it may affect the color of the animal.
For long term use the best size for the enclosure is a 125-gallon tank. For an adult, the size of the enclosure is 55-gallon. They need more horizontal space than the height. So, while choosing an enclosure it is better to keep the room size in mind.
The enclosure should have tight-fitting cover or lids. So, the animal cannot go away. The sides should not be pointed, as the bearded dragon can scratch itself. The enclosure should have a good ventilation system as well as a lockable and secure door. It is always better to supervise children when they are near to the enclosure. It is better to give the pets 3 to 4 day’s timing for adjustment.
As these animals belong to the desert, so they need bright light for 12 to 14 hours per day. So, such arrangements must be made. The tank should be warmer on one side and colder on the other side. The warmer side should have temperature 95-degree F to 110-degree F. The baby bearded dragon usually requires a slight variation in temperature. One needs to maintain the UVB level appropriately. One 10.0 UVB tube can be arranged to make a source for UVB lightening. One may use a ceramic heater, a household light bulb to keep the dragons warm.
Some different facts to consider
These animals need appropriate humidity for their survival. So, a good screen cover on the top of the tank is required. Bearded Dragon Tank bedding is mainly depending on the age of the dragon. The baby animals can eat more insects as compared to older once. The following type of bedding can be used like a newspaper, paper towel, reptile carpet. One should not use the wood or chips for the flooring. To make the dragon feel at home, one should have some accessories like cage furniture and tank backgrounds. Dragons usually like to climb on rocks and low height branches. So, it is a good idea to provide rocks and shelter for them. One can apply different themes like desert, jungle, to the tank.
It is important to maintain a high level of cleanliness in the dragon’s house. Freshwater should be provided daily and the water should be changed daily. These animals are very susceptible to worms, so a regular check is needed by a veterinarian. In case of abnormal movements, diarrhea, lethargy, and loss of appetite, one should contact the doctor immediately. Dysecdysis (Abnormal Shedding) can occur due to lower humidity. In the enclosure, the humidity level should be maintained between 20 to 40%. A hygrometer will help to monitor humidity. Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD) can occur due to incorrect diet or inappropriate UV lighting.
The enclosure should be checked for feces. It is better to remove and replace soiled or wet portions of the base to prevent fungal and bacterial growth. It is important to disinfect the enclosure regularly. Always it is advisable to wash hands before and after cleaning accessories and enclosure.
These animals are omnivorous and require a variety of diets. A salad of greens and other vegetables and insects should be given to adults daily. Baby dragon requires more protein so they should have more insects in their diet. It is also necessary to remove uneaten food at night. It is better to avoid Cabbage, kale, as they are high in calcium oxalates which can cause bone disease. Spinach, parsley, and broccoli are high in goitrogens which decrease thyroid function. Some of the bearded dragons do not need any extra supplements. It is required to feed the young ones daily and adults can be feed daily or on every other day. The amount of food should be such that which can be consumed by the end of the day.
The dragons do not get lonely. The bearded dragons are such creatures that enjoy going with themselves. They don’t need interaction with others to be happy and healthy. As all know that all pets may scratch or bite and could transmit the disease to humans. Because all lizards are the carriers of infectious diseases. So, it always better to wash hands before and after cleaning the enclosure to prevent the spread of diseases. Infants, children under the age of 5, pregnant women, people with weak immune systems, and the elderly people are at a greater risk for infection. These individuals should be very careful when in contact with the pet or its habitat. Some bearded dragons got mad when someone handles them roughly. In that case, it may bite or scratch. So, it is necessary to handle them with care and love.