How to Properly Bathe a Bearded Dragon

To maintain the hygiene of your pet bearded dragon, you need to bathe it whenever required. It helps in keeping your pet hydrated and makes him comfortable in his enclosure. You need to clean your pet regularly to make him comfortable and happy. Bathing can prevent the fungi and bacteria from growing on the skin of your reptile.

Many questions arise when we talk about bathing a bearded dragon about different parameters. It is essential to maintain a specific temperature and time for bathing the bearded dragon, given that they come from a hot and dry area. Following is a list of things you should do or take care of while bathing your bearded dragon.

Importance of bathing your bearded dragon.

Bearded dragons require to be cleaned up just as humans or other living things do. Despite their origin being from hot areas of Australia, and their need to stay warm, they require a good amount of water to drink and bathe. It is essential to bathe your bearded dragon in hot water regularly, as it keeps the beardie hydrated and prevents the bearded dragon from getting any skin condition.

If not given a bath, the bearded dragon may have fungi and bacteria developed on their skin, which can affect the beardie’s health if not taken care of on time. Furthermore, bathing elevates the level of hydration in the bearded dragon, positively impacting the bearded dragon’s health. Other benefits of bathing your bearded dragon are listed below.

It helps with hydration.

As mentioned above, bearded dragons need to be hydrated for most of their body functions. Furthermore, as the bearded dragons come from dry areas, they need their fair share of water to stay alive. Beardies do not recognize still water and drink from moving water, mist, or dewdrops in the wild.

In captivity, the bearded dragons are provided with the required amount of water through misting or placing a small water dish in the enclosure. However, the bearded dragons can be given a bath to keep them hydrated. While roaming around in the tank when coming across the water dish, the bearded dragon enjoys their time taking a bath in it.

Better Skin Health

Bearded dragons spend a good time basking under the UVB light in captivity, which can make their skin dry. The dry skin can be problematic while skin shedding; it becomes harder for a bearded dragon to shed its skin and result in skin rashes and injury. Bathing the bearded dragon will prevent this problem by improving skin health.

While shedding, if the bearded dragon has big skin pieces stuck to the body of the beardie and doesn’t come off quickly, it is suggested to bathe your beardie that will slough the skin smoothly.

Improved Hygiene

For keeping the beardie and the enclosure clean, it’s important to bathe your bearded dragon regularly. The bearded dragons create a lot of mess in the enclosure, as they seem to crawl in their waste, spreading the waste all over the place. Furthermore, handling the bearded dragon means getting in contact with hundreds of bacterias and germs, which are equally harmful to your health.

Bathing your bearded dragon will keep these issues away by cleansing all the germs of the reptile body. Furthermore, you must clean and sanitize the enclosure to remove the germs altogether to avoid bacterial diseases and infections. It will help maintain the beardie’s health from any potential disorders and reduce the spread of germs.

Better digestive health

A well-hydrated bearded dragon has a more efficient digestive system than the one that doesn’t get enough water. Bathing your bearded dragon can have a positive impact on its digestion, as staying hydrated can never bring you any harm.

Keeping the bearded dragon hydrated or bathing him can help your beardie while it has impaction. Impaction is a consequence of dehydration and needs to be addressed immediately; bathing your bearded dragon escalates the hydration level rapidly to help the beardie recover from this problem.

Furthermore, drinking more water can allow the digestion of hard substances consumed by the bearded dragon. It can help in smoothly passing the material without affecting the overall health of beardie.

How to bathe a bearded dragon?

The process of bathing a bearded dragon is not complex, yet there is a sequence of events and specific requirements that must be managed before planning to bathe your beardie.

Fill the tub with warm water

 If you’re preparing to bathe the beardie, then the first thing that you must prepare is a bathtub filled with warm water. Warm water is absolutely essential for bathing when you are talking about the bearded dragon. When preparing the bathing area for the beardie, you must arrange warm water at a specific temperature for the well-being of the beardie.

The depth of the tub is essential to notice; the bowl must be deep enough to allow your bearded dragon to swim in easily and contain splashes of water within. Furthermore, you must ensure not to have too much water in the bowl for keeping the safety of beardie in your mind, as the higher levels of water have a potential danger of getting into the lungs of a bearded dragon, causing respiratory problems.

Make sure the water temperature is correct

As mentioned earlier, the water temperature must be maintained according to the level required by a bearded dragon. The average temperature of water for bathing the bearded dragon is 85-100 degrees Fahrenheit. Hotter or cooler than the average temperature range provided will vex and harm your beardie’s health.

You can check the temperature of the water that you’re planning to bathe your bearded dragon is by using a thermometer. Remember, keeping the water lukewarm is the key to a pleasant and comfortable bath.

Place them in water and let them get comfortable

Do not rush to place your bearded dragon inside the water tub at once. If you’re doing it for the first time, keep holding your beardie for some time and then slowly splash water drops on them to let them recognize water. Afterward, place them slowly in the tub of water to enjoy a warm bath for hydration.

You might experience some difficulty while doing so, as, at times, the bearded dragons are reluctant to get into the water tub; don’t fret if you see resistance; it’s because your dragon is not acquainted with bathing. Before placing them in water, put your hand in the bathtub to create ripples that would enable beardie to see water.

Finally, put the beardie inside and let him enjoy the nice warm bath.

Clean Them

Use a grooming brush or any other soft brush for cleaning your bearded dragon while bathing it. As you plan to bathe your beardie now and then, make sure you clean the reptile’s skin with some soft and clean brush. This will help in removing dirt from each pore of the skin of the bearded dragon.

Do not use the brush harshly on the bearded dragon’s skin; instead, go gently, moving the brush in all directions of the beardie’s skin. Reach out for each part of the body for a thorough cleaning, except the eyes and cloaca of the beardie. You can even use a small spoon or cup for rinsing the body of the bearded dragon. 

Finally, let the bearded dragon soak in the water for some time and drink as much as it wants to; keep a strict check on your reptile as it continues to do so for the next 10-15 minutes.

Dry them off

Now it’s the time to dry your pet reptile; once it has had a relaxing bath of 10-15 minutes, take it out gently and dry the skin of the beardie by using a towel of your choice. The primary purpose behind drying is to remove excess water off the skin of the beardie. It can be done even by using a paper towel to absorb all the extra moisture from the bearded dragon’s skin.

While drying the beardie, make sure to keep a gentle hand. Do not rub the skin of the beardie as it can give rashes or cause skin damage to the bearded dragon. Furthermore, bearded dragons are cold-blooded reptiles, so it’s essential to maintain their body temperature by placing them under the UVB light soon after bathing.

How often should you give a bearded dragon a bath?

The frequency of baths is entirely up to you; however, it is recommended to bathe your bearded dragon twice or thrice a week to benefit your bearded dragon and keep them hydrated enough to regulate normal body functions.

The bathing routine can also be determined by looking at the hygiene of the bearded dragon. You can go off the beat if you find your bearded dragon filthy, having a problematic shed, or impaction. In these times particularly, you can go by your instincts, laying the schedule aside for some time.

Regular bathing is not recommended as some species of the bearded dragon can get over-hydrated easily. As mentioned earlier, the excess of something is equally harmful as the lack of the same thing. Over-hydration of the bearded dragons can cause diarrhea and loose dropping, which eventually results in dehydration.

How to dry a bearded dragon after a bath?

Bringing a wet bearded dragon right into an open environment can cause health issues in the bearded dragon. Bearded dragons are natives of hot Australian weather, so coming into a cold climate can adversely affect them. So, it’s essential to dry your beardie properly after bathing him.

You can dry your beardie by using a paper or cloth towel or any other suitable material. Make sure not to be harsh on the beardie or rub its skin. Warm the bearded dragon by placing it under the UVB light of the enclosure to maintain the reptile’s body temperature, as they are cold-blooded animals and need external sources to warm their bodies.

You can wrap them in the towel for some time to dry their body completely before exposing them to the room for transportation or playing. Furthermore, be more vigilant if your beardie is just a baby at the moment; wrapping them wouldn’t be a good idea, as you might lose track of them in there and hurt them unintentionally.

How much water should I use for bathing my bearded dragon?

You must check the level of water before introducing your bearded dragon into the water bowl. Ensure that the water level stays below the head of the bearded dragon; in other cases, the water will get into the lungs of beardie, causing respiratory issues.

Should you use soap?

It’s recommended to avoid using soap while bathing your bearded dragon for several reasons. As bathing aims for keeping your bearded dragon hydrated and healthy, introducing soap will contaminate the water, which your beardie might consume at any point in time. The bearded dragons love to drink water while bathing, and if the water had soap in it, there’s a high chance of risk to the life of your pet beardie.

Furthermore, the bearded dragon’s skin can absorb nutrients and everything that it is introduced into. No matter how reputable the product is in the market, it will still contain chemicals that can affect teh bearded dragon’s health and life. It’s best to keep the water soap-free to avoid risk.

How long to give a bearded dragon a bath?

You can’t just let your bearded dragon hang into the water bowl all day long, as it can over-hydrate the beardie, which has its side effects. Keeping this in mind, you should allow your beardie to soak in water for a specific time, i.e., 10-15 minutes.

Are there any bearded dragon toys to improve the bathing experience?

Bathing is a time for the bearded dragons to relax and enjoy the warmth of water by drinking it for enough hydration. Adding a few toys and luxuries into the bathing time can add more fun to the time the beardie spends inside the water. Ensure that the toys are not small enough for your beardie to swallow.

Should you bathe your bearded dragon while shedding?

If your bearded dragon has a problematic shed, then it might be because of dehydration. Bathing your bearded dragon can help solve this problem by softening the bearded dragon’s skin and making it easy to come off. It can further improve the experience of skin shedding by detaching the skin from the body gently and quickly.

If you find the patches of skin stuck on the bearded dragon’s skin, you may soak them inside the warm water for 15 minutes and use a soft brush to take off the skin gently.

How Old Does a Bearded Dragon Have to Be to Take a Bath?

There is no age limit for bathing your bearded dragon; you can undoubtedly bathe the bearded dragon even if it’s a baby. Bathing a hatchling is, however, not recommended, and you must hold on for some time to let it grow, then it’ll be ready to soak it in water.

Moreover, you must monitor the bathing activity of the baby bearded dragon at all times, as its small size can sometimes put him out of sight. Introducing bathing to the baby bearded dragon can have its advantages in the long run, as they will grow up enjoying these bathes and getting used to it.

What if my bearded dragon doesn’t like baths?

It’s normal to have a bearded dragon showing resistance to bathing, so you must not force it into the water, as it can increase the stress level in the bearded dragon. You can avoid this problem by starting slow and early; this can help get your beardie comfortable with bath.

For the adult bearded dragons, you may start by splashing water on them and introducing them into the water slowly and for less time. However, if your dragon still resists bath or gets into the water, you must stop at once, as this can just affect the emotional well-being of the bearded dragon. In this case, you can use other ways of cleaning your bearded dragon, which include misting and using a water dish.

Conclusion

Once you start to bathe your bearded dragon, you’ll learn the process. However, you must not ignore the crucial parameters of bathing for your beardie. Preparing a tub of lukewarm water and allowing your beardie to soak in the water for 10-15 minutes under your supervision can do the deed.

Furthermore, it’s essential to dry out the bearded dragon soon after the bath; otherwise, the beardie will go through health issues. Try bathing your bearded dragon by the steps provided above, and this will give you a smooth experience of bathing your beardie.

Lastly, it’s unnecessary to bathe your beardie if it’s reluctant to get one; forcing the beardie into bathing against its will can elevate the stress level, and you don’t want to do so. Stick to the procedure and make bathing fun for your bearded dragon.

About Tariq Aziz

I am working as Chief editor at MY BEARDIES. I have been working in the publishing business for over a decade now. I love reptiles and I love talking about them. I have years of experience in herpetoculture. I have cared for many reptiles including bearded dragons, geckos, and skinks since childhood.

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