The appearance of bearded dragon stress marks is a common occurrence when keeping these lizards as domesticated home companions or pets. We want to highlight that similar to humans, lizard pets like bearded dragons also experience pressure due to various factors, leading them to show irregular markings on their bodies.
Stress is basically how a bearded dragon’s body reacts to challenges or demands it encounters in its surroundings. It leads these lizard pets to exhibit drastic changes or strange behaviors.
We understand that bearded dragon owners, especially novices, who see bearded dragon stress marks for the first time may not comprehend what is happening to their beloved pet. They may also feel anxious because they are not ready to see these indicators of pressured feelings among their domesticated reptiles.
We want to note that some new bearded dragon owners unfamiliar with bearded dragon stress marks may panic. They would highly likely take the unusual markings seriously and head straight to the veterinarian for assistance.
De-stressing and calming bearded dragons are important, and we want to assure our readers that they can learn some of these significant techniques here in our discussion. Although there is no single solution or a one-size-fits-all remedy, this comprehensive guide can help bearded dragon owners properly deal with bearded dragon stress marks.
In this comprehensive article, we tackled bearded dragon stress marks’ nature, symptoms, and causes. We enlightened the prospective and existing bearded dragon keepers about how to properly respond when they see the odd marks on their lizard pets’ bodies by providing them with the tried-and-tested strategies and tips we strongly recommend.
Since bearded dragon pets completely depend on their owners for all their needs, we encourage reptile pet keepers to study and learn about bearded dragon stress marks. In this way, they will be knowledgeable and comfortable resolving these issues the next time they see them in their lizard pets’ bodies.
Table of Contents
Identifying the Bearded Dragon Stress Marks on the Reptile Pets’ Bodies
Since stress is the natural response of living creatures’ bodies to a specific challenge, species like humans and bearded dragons can experience this inconvenient state. Bearded dragon stress marks are oval-shaped patterns, a dark beard, or an exhibition of dark colorations or lines on bearded dragons’ physiques.
They appear mostly on these lizard pets’ belly, and sometimes on their limbs and chin. Moreover, bearded dragon stress marks are common.
We want to inform bearded dragon owners that these body markings can appear at any point due to various factors. Therefore, it is highly crucial that these reptile pet enthusiasts keep a close eye on their lizard pets to ensure their well-being.
Bearded dragon stress marks on a reptile pet’s body materialize when the animal is upset, or it gets moved into a new cage. Additionally, these odd markings commonly appear when the lizard pets arrive in their new home for the first time or get exposed to a piece of new furniture in their owners’ home or their terrarium or tank.
We want to emphasize that bearded dragon stress marks are temporary and should not cause tremendous worry or concern among bearded dragon owners. They usually disappear with time as the bearded dragon gets used to the changes in its surroundings.
We also want to inform our readers that, as pet keepers, when they identify the reasons or causes for their bearded dragon exhibiting the stress markings, the latter should subsequently disappear following the resolution or addressing of the cause.
5 Common Indicators of Stress in Bearded Dragons
We want to inform our readers that bearded dragon stress marks are symptoms of anxiety or stress among these reptile pets. New bearded dragon owners may also wonder how they can tell if their lizard is feeling pressured.
The following are some of the typical signs that a bearded dragon feels stressed out:
1. Exhibition of dark beards
Bearded dragon stress marks consist of these reptile pets’ beards showing darker coloration. We want to inform pet keepers that this case requires their attention as their domesticated home companion can be in distress and needs their help immediately.
2. Lack of appetite
Healthy bearded dragons usually eat live crickets, mealworms, and green leafy vegetables as parts of their healthy diet. They consume their food well.
Nevertheless, if lizard pet owners notice that their bearded dragons are not eager to eat, they can tell something is wrong. This scenario highly likely indicates that their beloved bearded dragon is stressed out.
3. Zero bowel movement
As living species, excretion or pooping is a natural process in a bearded dragon’s existence. Owners have to deal with this occurrence at least once or twice a week.
For some bearded dragons, pooping can take place on a daily basis, depending on several factors like diet, hydration, age, environment, wellness status, and so forth.
However, we want to inform lizard pet keepers that their bearded dragons can be experiencing undue stress or pressure if they are not pooping at all.
This abnormal situation can be concerning for owners, especially if they know their bearded dragon is usually healthy and poops regularly.
4. Runny or smelly feces
When bearded dragons undergo the excretion process, runny poop tells that something is not right in their bodies, and this occurrence can be because of anxiety or stress.
Additionally, we want to point out that when bearded dragon owners encounter unusually foul smells in their lizard pet’s fecal matter, they should remember that it is another indicator of pressure or anxiety experienced by their domesticated reptiles.
5. Lethargic appearance
Healthy bearded dragons usually roam around their tank quietly, using the hangout decors, substrates, and other accouterments. But if their owners notice that their reptile pets have low activity levels or are uncharacteristically sluggish, it is highly likely that they are under stress.
These incidences are the five common indications of stress or anxiety among bearded dragons. They typically materialize due to several causes, and we encourage owners to closely keep an eye on their lizards and promptly respond to their needs.
8 Reasons Why Bearded Dragons Feel Stressed Out
Bearded dragon stress marks appear when these lizard pets undergo particular experiences with which they may be unfamiliar or uncomfortable.
We want to inform bearded dragon keepers that it is beneficial if they learn the following causes to detect and resolve their lizard pets’ inconvenient feelings fast:
1. MOVING TO A NEW HOME
Relocation anxiety or stress is among the causes of bearded dragon stress marks. We want to enlighten our readers that this incident happens when their newly-bought bearded dragon settles in their residence and a new terrarium.
Relocation stress can be experienced by baby, juvenile, or adult bearded dragons. In their new home, bearded dragons have to adjust to a change in their environment.
These domesticated home companions get to meet new people, who are typically the family members of their owners. These people would normally assemble in front of the tank.
Additionally, in their new home, bearded dragons experience new smells, sounds, and sights. They may also meet new pets in their unfamiliar surroundings.
These events involved when moving into a new residence may overwhelm the lizard pets. They can also be too inconvenient for baby bearded dragons. Hence, they can exhibit bearded dragon stress marks.
2. INCORRECT TERRARIUM OR TANK SIZE
Bearded dragons are similar to human beings who require sufficient spaces in their homes to avoid feeling claustrophobic. These reptile pets need to feel comfortable when they roam around their tanks.
Bearded dragon owners who may be too busy to attend to their domesticated home companion’s terrarium needs may fail to notice that their lizard pet has grown bigger and older.
Therefore, these bearded dragons may not fit comfortably in the same enclosures they have lived in since they were young. This inconvenient scenario can cause them to feel extremely stressed out and exhibit the bearded dragon stress marks.
3. WRONG ARTIFICIAL HABITAT ARRANGEMENT
Bearded dragon stress marks are noticeable when these reptile pets do not feel cozy in their terrarium or tank. This factor is a major cause of external anxiety or stress among these lizard pets.
Bearded dragons may feel that their enclosure does not provide them with that natural home experience, especially if the environment is not set up properly. Hence, they might feel uncomfortable and bored as well.
4. EXTREME OR INCORRECT TERRARIUM TEMPERATURES
When a bearded dragon’s enclosure has incorrect temperature ranges, it is highly likely that these domesticated reptiles would feel pressured or anxious. Bearded dragons originated from Australia’s dry regions, including the country’s deserts.
Therefore, these animals thrive best in surroundings that match the temperatures in their locations of origin. Bearded dragon stress marks are common in the morning.
When the reptile pet wakes up during these early hours, it needs to adjust from the evening’s cold temperature, making it feel stressed out. Hence, the bearded dragon would usually go under a basking lamp to warm itself first thing in the morning.
5. HUNGER AND UNFULFILLED FOOD CRAVINGS
Bearded dragons get stressed out when they are hungry and do not get the right amount of food they require to consume in a day. They may also exhibit conspicuous stress markings if they feel frustrated.
For example, the reptile pet may see live insects like Dubia roaches close to its tank, but it cannot access these fresh foods. Thus, this hungry and craving bearded dragon may feel anxious or stressed out, demonstrating bearded dragon stress marks.
These stress indicators can also appear when these lizard pets hear the live crickets inside a box that owners placed close to their enclosure. The bearded dragons can then feel disappointed since they cannot get the live insects that are regular parts of their wholesome diets.
6. LOUD AND UNPLEASANT SOUNDS
Bearded dragons have excellent hearing abilities. We want to emphasize that these animals can hear sounds quite well, including a large tree falling, noisy children playing indoors or outdoors, helicopters passing through, blaring music, thunder, owners yelling at one another, or barking dogs.
Bearded dragon stress marks can materialize in these reptile pets’ bodies when they hear a noise. We urge owners to keep these unpleasant sounds at bay because they can harm their bearded dragons’ health.
7. PRESENCE OF OTHER PETS AT HOME
Bearded dragons are solitary creatures. They thrive when alone in a terrarium. We want to educate potential or new owners that putting another bearded dragon in the same enclosure is not a good idea.
After all, these bearded dragons can cause stress to each other and will highly likely fight. Bullying is also a common incident among these reptile pets.
Bigger bearded dragons would usually bully the little ones. They usually win in a fight and dominate the tank.
Furthermore, dominant bearded dragons take the best basking spots and foods, leading the weaker lizard to feel pressured. Bearded dragon stress marks can materialize when the reptile pets witness other household pets like cats and dogs.
These lizard pets may feel intimidated and think that the other domesticated home companions are predators. Hence, bearded dragons can feel alarmed, making them show the dark stress markings on their bodies.
Although bearded dragons are solitary reptile pets and thrive on being alone, they can also get bored. This scenario highly likely happens if a bearded dragon owner does not provide his reptile pet with sufficient enrichment activities, making these lizard pets feel upset and bored.
Thus, bearded dragon stress marks can appear in their physiques. Reptile pet keepers who do not fill their bearded dragons’ schedules with toys they can play with or other fun and enjoyable activities they can do can also cause anxiety on these domesticated animals.
Understanding these eight typical causes of bearded dragon stress marks can help owners or keepers identify the reasons for their reptile pets’ uneasiness. We encourage these reptile pet owners to take their time familiarizing themselves with these common scenarios responsible for their lizard pets’ feelings of stress.
In this manner, they can carry out the necessary adjustments and perform the appropriate remedies for the benefit of their beloved bearded dragons.
15 Ways to Get Rid of Bearded Dragon Stress Marks
Bearded dragon stress marks are a reality that reptile pet keepers have to face. After all, these markings are inevitable and part and parcel of how bearded dragons react to changes and other stimuli in their surrounding environment.
However, bearded dragon stress marks can be inconvenient to these domesticated lizards. Therefore, we want to inform our readers about the following effective measures on how to keep them at bay and enable their reptile pets to live comfortably:
1. The terrarium’s dimension should correspond to the bearded dragon’s age and size.
Bearded dragon stress marks usually appear when bearded dragons are placed in a tank for which they are too small or too large. Therefore, we highly advise the owners to ensure that they provide their lizard pets with sufficient space in their enclosures.
The following information details the ideal tank size for bearded dragons of different ages. We suggest reptile pet keepers use this table as guide:
The guide above shows the suitable tank size for bearded dragons of a specific age range. We highly recommend following it since having adequate tank space is essential for a healthy and happy bearded dragon.
2. Make sure that the tank temperatures are right.
Bearded dragons can feel stressed out or restless if it is quite hot in their terrarium. These reptile pets find it difficult to tolerate extreme temperature ranges.
Hence, we recommend the use of a thermometer in checking the tank temperature. We advise bearded dragon owners to always make sure that the temperatures are kept within the range of 95 to 110 degrees Fahrenheit in the basking area.
Meanwhile, the cool spot should be in the neighborhood of 75 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit, which is usually tolerable for adult bearded dragons.
Furthermore, at night, the room where the bearded dragon’s enclosure is located should have a temperature between 70 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. After all, these domesticated home companions do not need much heat at night to sleep peacefully.
3. Provide the essential accessories inside the terrarium.
Bearded dragon stress marks can appear when bearded dragons feel uneasy in their tank. We want to remind reptile pet owners that the purpose of the terrarium is to copy the setup of the bearded dragons’ natural habitat in the wild.
A component of this step is putting the crucial items inside the terrarium. They include tank decors like a hide hole for bearded dragons or hiding nests, proper lighting, and a suitable substrate.
We also advise bearded dragon owners to place a temperature gradient and other significant pieces of terrarium furniture. By performing these measures, the bearded dragon’s enclosure will be enhanced, looking natural, fully furnished, and above all, relaxing for the reptile pet.
4. Consistently feed the bearded dragons with health-giving food.
Hunger can make bearded dragons feel stressed out. They would feel uneasy, resulting in dark bearded dragon stress marks appearing in their physiques.
Hence, bearded dragons can keep stress at bay if they consistently consume green leafy vegetables and live insects such as Dubia roaches or crickets daily. Additionally, they should have a consistent supply of fresh drinking water.
We advise that baby bearded dragons get fed 3 to 5 times per day, while adults should eat once or twice daily. The former grow fast, so they need more food than the grown-ups and a diet rich in live insects.
Plus, we want to advise reptile pet keepers that they should remove any uneaten live insects inside the terrarium. Otherwise, the bearded dragons may get nibbled or attacked by them.
5. An owner should try placing his hand in the tank to enable the bearded dragon to get used to him.
This effective strategy prevents relocation stress. We suggest bearded dragon owners put one of their hands in the terrarium with their palms up for several minutes daily.
This measure will assure the reptile pet that they are safe and their owner will not hurt them. Plus, it facilitates the lizard pets to slowly and comfortably get to know their owner.
6. Familiarize the bearded dragon with its owner’s smell.
Bearded dragons can feel stressed out when they encounter new things and people in their surrounding environment. One way to prevent them from feeling anxious is for the pet keeper to get these lizards used to their smell.
We suggest a bearded dragon owner put an article of clothing in the terrarium. This step will enable the domesticated reptile to become familiar and used to its keeper’s scent or smell more quickly.
Moreover, we want to inform our readers that this measure is an effective way to overcome relocation stress more rapidly and facilitates bonding with their lizard pet. The bearded dragons also get to feel more comfortable with their keepers and their new environment.
7. Cover the terrarium with a towel or place a good background behind or in front of it.
Bearded dragon stress marks can be avoided with this technique. It diminishes the bearded dragons’ reaction to sensory inputs, such as being around huge crowds or many spectators, excessive noise, and technology.
After all, we want to inform bearded dragon owners that these lizard pets can feel overwhelmed with overstimulation caused by excessive sensory intake or sensory overload.
These domesticated home companions are similar to people who can feel over-stimulated by their environment, ultimately leading them to feel severely stressed out.
8. Avoid sudden modification of the interior of the bearded dragon’s artificial habitat.
Owners may feel in the mood or have the time to alter the existing tank setup. They may change the location of the UV lamp and other items in their bearded dragon’s terrarium.
We recommend these reptile pet owners avoid modifying the artificial habitat’s interior setup all of a sudden. After all, bearded dragons can feel stressed out or confused when they encounter a sudden movement or witness an immediate change inside their enclosure.
9. It is better to have sound-proof windows, walls, or doors.
Bearded dragons can pinpoint people’s movement and are immensely attuned to vibrations. Thus, bearded dragon stress marks appear when these domesticated home companions hear loud sounds.
These kinds of noise consist of helicopters, thunder, arguing owners with loud voices, and so forth. Bearded dragons will then feel anxious, and worse, these loud, unpleasant sounds may take a toll on their overall wellness.
We advise the reptile pet keepers to have sound-proof walls, doors, or windows if they want the optimal life experience for their lizard pets. Hotel-standard quietness in the house will tremendously benefit bearded dragons and their owners as well, preventing all of them from feeling stressed out.
10. Ensure that bearded dragons can engage in fun activities in their tanks.
Bearded dragons can feel tremendously pressured or anxious when left without any kind of amusement that can keep them stress-free in their terrariums. The dark stress marks may then appear on their bodies.
We recommend reptile pet keepers to place some plants, climbing trees, and hiding accessories in their bearded dragon’s tank. Putting a hangout decor or hideout decor big rock will also enhance the terrarium into a natural-looking enclosure.
Hence, the bearded dragons can engage in some enjoyable activity in their artificial habitat. They can roam, climb, hide, and so forth, which are their normal activities in the wild.
Letting them perform these actions will make them feel like they are in their natural home, feeling comfortable, and staying healthy.
11. Speak to the bearded dragon in a soft and pleasant tone.
Believe it or not, bearded dragons are aesthetic creatures. They are close to perfect. After all, they dislike noise.
Since they have excellent hearing capabilities, they can thrive and avoid feeling stressed out if their owners speak slowly and softly to them. The bearded dragons will then feel unafraid, pacified, and not intimidated by their keepers.
Furthermore, speaking softly and slowly as the owner advances towards their reptile pets’ terrarium lets the bearded dragons know their keeper is there before seeing him.
12. Always handle the bearded dragons with care.
We noticed that new bearded dragon owners commit the common mistake of reaching from above the bearded dragon’s head when picking it up for inspection or bathing. This mishandling of the lizard pets often makes them feel startled.
We want to inform reptile pet keepers that bearded dragons have a third eye on their heads’ center. This part enables these domesticated home companions to detect both shadow and light.
Therefore, when wrongly handled, bearded dragon stress marks may appear as these lizard pets would mistake their pet keeper’s hand as a threat. We advise that bearded dragon owners pick up their pets from either their front or side portions.
We also want to inform them that they must ensure they properly support their lizard pets’ tails, physique, and legs. After all, bearded dragons need to feel secure when their owners hold them.
13. Ensure that the bearded dragon does not have a roommate.
Bearded dragons prefer to stay alone in their tanks, complete with essential accessories like feeders, substrate, basking light, and so forth. They are territorial animals, and bullying incidences are common when they are put on the same enclosure together.
Hence, we want to advise reptile pet keepers that they should place a new bearded dragon in a separate tank and not together with their old bearded dragon at home. In this way, their lizard pets can live peacefully and not cause problems to their owners.
14. Provide bearded dragons with warm and calming bath moments.
When bearded dragons arrive in their new home, they would normally exhibit bearded dragon stress marks. After all, they may feel uneasy and under attack seeing new surroundings or environment.
We suggest that owners of newly bought bearded dragons welcome their beloved reptile pet home with a soothing and warm bath. This session can last for 20 minutes.
This technique is an effective way of de-stressing and tranquilizing a bearded dragon. These lizard pets can also feel fresh, clean, and hydrated.
Additionally, we want to remind the bearded dragon keepers to ensure that the bathwater is between 85 and 92 degrees Fahrenheit. They should also keep their bearded dragon’s nose or eyes from getting soaked in the bathwater.
15. Place the bearded dragon outside its tank periodically.
It is unhealthy for bearded dragons to remain in their terrariums all the time. Since these reptile pets are also living creatures that need an occasional change in scenery or view, we advise bearded dragon owners to take their lizards out of their enclosures periodically to play.
They can also take out the reptile carpet and allow the bearded dragon to roam in the living room or garden for several minutes to an hour, spending quality time with their keepers.
Plus, the owners can walk with their bearded dragons or travel with them to a new destination. This effective step prevents bearded dragon stress marks from appearing. It is also an excellent activity that keeps bearded dragons active, wholesome, and happy.
Following these 15 ways can help prevent bearded dragon stress marks. We want to reiterate that these markings on bearded dragons’ stressed-out bodies are temporary.
The bearded dragon stress marks can vanish after a very short period, like merely a few hours long, especially if the reptile pet keepers correctly identify and address the anxiety’s causes.
Nevertheless, we want to point out to our readers that bearded dragon stress marks can occur repeatedly and remain for quite a long time, such as one week. It is because these markings depend on the scenario behind the stress.
We want to advise our readers that bearded dragon stress marks are a normal part of owning bearded dragons. Stress is not completely bad as it is an organic part of these reptile pets’ lives.
It is a way in which these animals respond to changes or threats in their surrounding environment. The stress markings merely indicate that the domesticated animal properly responds to external stimuli and requires his owner or keeper’s assistance.
Therefore, bearded dragon stress marks should be considered normal, common and should be expected and understood by reptile pet keepers.