• Hello guest! Are you a Bearded Dragon enthusiast? If so we invite you to join our community and see what it has to offer. Our site is specifically designed for you and it's a great place for Beardie enthusiasts to meet online. Once you join you'll be able to post messages, upload pictures of your dragons and enclosures and have a great time with other Bearded Dragon enthusiasts. Sign up today!

Beardie running around tank

Joigannon

Bearded Dragon Egg
Messages
12
Hi! I’m a first time beardie owner. I have a juvenile (about 4 months) who I’ve been really struggling to bond with. He’s been eating, sleeping, and pooping normally. I just moved him into a larger enclosure, and I’m just having a hard time interpreting his behavior. He’s been running, climbing, jumping in the tank. Not really glass surfing, just going around. I’m just paranoid about behavior because he really doesn’t like to be handled, but he has gotten used to me putting my hand in the tank. I’m not sure if this behavior is ok, is he excited and playing, or is he stressed out? Please help!
 

Sadie

Bearded Dragon Veteran
1,000+ Post Club
Messages
5,787
Hi! I’m a first time beardie owner. I have a juvenile (about 4 months) who I’ve been really struggling to bond with. He’s been eating, sleeping, and pooping normally. I just moved him into a larger enclosure, and I’m just having a hard time interpreting his behavior. He’s been running, climbing, jumping in the tank. Not really glass surfing, just going around. I’m just paranoid about behavior because he really doesn’t like to be handled, but he has gotten used to me putting my hand in the tank. I’m not sure if this behavior is ok, is he excited and playing, or is he stressed out? Please help!
Is the beard black? How long have you had him? Its good hes active and its normal for the jumping when babies --- the putting the hand in the tank is good you want to try and pet him and hand feed him so he gets used to you--- place a piece of clothing or fleece blanket in his hide w/ your smell on it so he gets used to you --- approach from the side not over head he / she will think your a predator --- they have a 3rd on top of their heads for predators Now lets go over the lighting in the tank ---- how many big is the tank ? What kind of UVB are you using and where in the tank is it ? Is it a coil or a tube fixture and if a tube what bulb a T 5 or a T 8 --------- basking temps what are they and how are you taking them ? NO stick ons they are inaccurate -- you want basking surface temps not ambient or air - temps should be 105-110 for a baby they will change when he gets to be around 6 months old --- NO coils for a UVB No colored bulbs and the basking bulb needs to be a CLEAR bright white bulb No off white or yellowish and NO daytime bulbs they have a neodymium coating that is harmful to the eyes -- once we get this established maybe we can figure out the behavior --- temps and UVB are crucial to the overall health and behavior of the dragon --
 

Joigannon

Bearded Dragon Egg
Messages
12
Is the beard black? How long have you had him? Its good hes active and its normal for the jumping when babies --- the putting the hand in the tank is good you want to try and pet him and hand feed him so he gets used to you--- place a piece of clothing or fleece blanket in his hide w/ your smell on it so he gets used to you --- approach from the side not over head he / she will think your a predator --- they have a 3rd on top of their heads for predators Now lets go over the lighting in the tank ---- how many big is the tank ? What kind of UVB are you using and where in the tank is it ? Is it a coil or a tube fixture and if a tube what bulb a T 5 or a T 8 --------- basking temps what are they and how are you taking them ? NO stick ons they are inaccurate -- you want basking surface temps not ambient or air - temps should be 105-110 for a baby they will change when he gets to be around 6 months old --- NO coils for a UVB No colored bulbs and the basking bulb needs to be a CLEAR bright white bulb No off white or yellowish and NO daytime bulbs they have a neodymium coating that is harmful to the eyes -- once we get this established maybe we can figure out the behavior --- temps and UVB are crucial to the overall health and behavior of the dragon --
Thank you for being so thorough!! His beard is down and light when he’s running around. Sometimes he’ll start off with it darker when I put my hand near, but then it lightens. When I first got him, he’d bite, so tolerating me is a huge improvement! He has an 18 inch T8 10.0 uvb tube. It’s not inside the tank, because I can’t figure out how to affix it, so it’s just sitting on the The tank. I moved him to is a 75 gallon, but he was in a 45 gallon before. He started glass surfing so I moved him. I’m a science teacher, so I use a probe to check temp regularly, it stays around 107 on his hammock where he basks. He won’t take the bugs from me by hand, but he’ll take veggies by hand, but it’s after a good amount of resistance. I had a red bulb at night, but stopped using it a week ago when I learned it could damage his eyes. I have a cut tshirt on his hammock with my smell. I’ve had him for about 3 months and got him as a hatchling. I made some mistakes early on (improper handling, lighting, etc) that I’m paying for now with trust issues. I’ve made some strides, but the mistakes were tough learning lessons. He seems generally healthy, so I’m happy about that, but I want him to be happy, too, and now I’m super paranoid. Sometimes he lays with his eyes closed, and I read closed eyes mean discomfort, but not always, but usually (??) and now I just feel like everything I do is wrong! Anyhow, thanks so much for the reply!!
 

Sadie

Bearded Dragon Veteran
1,000+ Post Club
Messages
5,787
Thank you for being so thorough!! His beard is down and light when he’s running around. Sometimes he’ll start off with it darker when I put my hand near, but then it lightens. When I first got him, he’d bite, so tolerating me is a huge improvement! He has an 18 inch T8 10.0 uvb tube. It’s not inside the tank, because I can’t figure out how to affix it, so it’s just sitting on the The tank. I moved him to is a 75 gallon, but he was in a 45 gallon before. He started glass surfing so I moved him. I’m a science teacher, so I use a probe to check temp regularly, it stays around 107 on his hammock where he basks. He won’t take the bugs from me by hand, but he’ll take veggies by hand, but it’s after a good amount of resistance. I had a red bulb at night, but stopped using it a week ago when I learned it could damage his eyes. I have a cut tshirt on his hammock with my smell. I’ve had him for about 3 months and got him as a hatchling. I made some mistakes early on (improper handling, lighting, etc) that I’m paying for now with trust issues. I’ve made some strides, but the mistakes were tough learning lessons. He seems generally healthy, so I’m happy about that, but I want him to be happy, too, and now I’m super paranoid. Sometimes he lays with his eyes closed, and I read closed eyes mean discomfort, but not always, but usually (??) and now I just feel like everything I do is wrong! Anyhow, thanks so much for the reply!!
Please upgrade your uvb for that size of a tank - you will need to buy a new fixture and w/ the T 8 it's not a appropriate size- it's not strong enough to go thru the screen - you need a 24" w/ a reptisun 10.0 T 5 bulb-- distance and placement will be determined by your screen-- please get your T 8 unobstructed and a piece of basking decor directly under the uvb 6-8 inches- -- if you like I can post some stuff to hang inside your tank and some links for good uvb's
 

Joigannon

Bearded Dragon Egg
Messages
12
Please upgrade your uvb for that size of a tank - you will need to buy a new fixture and w/ the T 8 it's not a appropriate size- it's not strong enough to go thru the screen - you need a 24" w/ a reptisun 10.0 T 5 bulb-- distance and placement will be determined by your screen-- please get your T 8 unobstructed and a piece of basking decor directly under the uvb 6-8 inches- -- if you like I can post some stuff to hang inside your tank and some links for good uvb's
Yes, thank you! That would be greatly appreciated!!
 

Sadie

Bearded Dragon Veteran
1,000+ Post Club
Messages
5,787
Yes, thank you! That would be greatly appreciated!!
Zoo Med 24" fixture this comes w/ a 5.0 bulb keep it as back up it is similar to the T 8 your using now
https://www.pangeareptile.com/collections/light-fixtures/products/zoo-med-reptisun-t5-hood you will need this bulb 22" https://www.pangeareptile.com/colle...d-reptisun-10-0-uvb-t5?variant=26907418591332
this one is out of stock you might check Petsmart if you have on near you they supposedly have started carrying this one Arcadia Pro T 5 w/ a 12% bulb https://www.pangeareptile.com/collections/t5-lighting/products/arcadia-prot5-12-uvb-bulb-with-hood or this one
Sunblaster Nano Tech 2 ft or 24" https://hydrobuilder.com/sunblaster...mp.html?opts=eyJhdHRyaWJ1dGU5MDEiOiI2NjA0In0=
the distance for these UVB's is 12-15 inches inside the tank unless you have a screen that is wide holed - it then can sit on top if its a fine screen then it needs to go inside the tank -- on top of screen 8-10 inches directly above the basking decor piece ---
please make sure your basking bulb is a CLEAR bright white basking bulb NO off white or yellowish bulbs and NO daytime bulbs they have a coating called neodymium that is not good for the eyes --
if you need help w/ diet or anything else please ask --- after you get this lighting fixed see what his behavior does -- as of this time hes not getting enough UVB --- so please get the T 8 fixed -- let me know what his behavior is after you get the T 8 situated --- he should behave differently and eating and colors will be different as well
 

Joigannon

Bearded Dragon Egg
Messages
12
Thank you for all your info!! I'm still waiting on the light, I went with the Sunblaster Nano Tech you suggested. When I pulled up the ZooMed one, it was only 14", and the tank needs a solid 2 ft at least, based on your recommendation. Just to be sure, this is the fixture AND the bulb, correct? If not, which one do I need to get to have the whole setup? It's hard to tell from pictures/description. I moved the T8 to inside the tank in the meantime, and that did seem to help. Basking bulb is clear, no neodymium. The girl at PetCo actually mentioned the same thing.

I've also started covering his tank when I go to work, since I have a cat who is very curious of the little guy. It seems like that helped, too. I can monitor their interactions this way. Been training the cat to just sit and watch when she's interested. She's getting better, and Archie doesn't puff his beard or go dark when she's just sitting there. He seems more curious, tail up, calmer movements, doesn't mind walking away. I've also backed off in handling and I've just been putting my hand in everyday for a few minutes ear him.

I had to handle him to clean his tank last night, though and he climbed on me pretty easily, but then started freaking out when i puled him out. I'm not sure how to handle these moments, since I want to keep his tank clean, but he hates leaving it. He's still so small and fragile. I've tried using blankets, towels, just cupping my hands, etc. But he's jumped from my hands onto the floor a couple times before I can get him into the spare tank for cleaning. How can I get him into the spare tank without freaking him out? Also, do you have any suggestions on substrate? I've been using the repitcarpet because I have a few that I can change out and throw in the wash. But the internet is full of conflicting answers on this one.

Thanks again for all your help!
 

Sadie

Bearded Dragon Veteran
1,000+ Post Club
Messages
5,787
Thank you for all your info!! I'm still waiting on the light, I went with the Sunblaster Nano Tech you suggested. When I pulled up the ZooMed one, it was only 14", and the tank needs a solid 2 ft at least, based on your recommendation. Just to be sure, this is the fixture AND the bulb, correct? If not, which one do I need to get to have the whole setup? It's hard to tell from pictures/description. I moved the T8 to inside the tank in the meantime, and that did seem to help. Basking bulb is clear, no neodymium. The girl at PetCo actually mentioned the same thing.

I've also started covering his tank when I go to work, since I have a cat who is very curious of the little guy. It seems like that helped, too. I can monitor their interactions this way. Been training the cat to just sit and watch when she's interested. She's getting better, and Archie doesn't puff his beard or go dark when she's just sitting there. He seems more curious, tail up, calmer movements, doesn't mind walking away. I've also backed off in handling and I've just been putting my hand in everyday for a few minutes ear him.

I had to handle him to clean his tank last night, though and he climbed on me pretty easily, but then started freaking out when i puled him out. I'm not sure how to handle these moments, since I want to keep his tank clean, but he hates leaving it. He's still so small and fragile. I've tried using blankets, towels, just cupping my hands, etc. But he's jumped from my hands onto the floor a couple times before I can get him into the spare tank for cleaning. How can I get him into the spare tank without freaking him out? Also, do you have any suggestions on substrate? I've been using the repitcarpet because I have a few that I can change out and throw in the wash. But the internet is full of conflicting answers on this one.

Thanks again for all your help!
Yes the Nano Tech 2ft or 24 inches is good -- change the bulb out in approx one year I recommend a month prior to - leave him in the tank for cleaning - just hold him in the tank for about 5 -10 min so he gets used to you - he needs to acclimate to the tank and his surroundings -- it may be months so be patient - you can get some textured NON adhesive shelf liner cut to the size of the tank and clean w/ vinegar/ water 50/50 -- Anytime you move him he will get nervous --- yes let the cat and dragon get used to each other --also a Reptisun 10.0 T5 22" bulb should fit the Nano fixture
 

Sadie

Bearded Dragon Veteran
1,000+ Post Club
Messages
5,787
Yes, thank you! That would be greatly appreciated!!

Use this for your UVB fixture its like a Velcro strap cut into strips then wrap around your fixture
when you get the UVB please let me know your screen will determine where the UVB will go
 

Joigannon

Bearded Dragon Egg
Messages
12
35BC3D5D-DFE8-402F-99EA-5FB0E1F76ECF.jpeg

This is what his screen looks like
 

Joigannon

Bearded Dragon Egg
Messages
12
He’s like a new dragon!! Got the uvb, and his attitude seemed so much better. He even crawled up and cuddled on my chest after a bath. I can’t thank you enough for your help!! He’s letting me hand feed and even eating greens. And he started shedding again and eating and pooping even more! You really saved both of us! Thank you, thank you!
 

Sadie

Bearded Dragon Veteran
1,000+ Post Club
Messages
5,787
He’s like a new dragon!! Got the uvb, and his attitude seemed so much better. He even crawled up and cuddled on my chest after a bath. I can’t thank you enough for your help!! He’s letting me hand feed and even eating greens. And he started shedding again and eating and pooping even more! You really saved both of us! Thank you, thank you!
Sounds great just keep an eye on him if any of this behavior changes let me know we may need to put the uvb in the tank but for now he sounds good-- I take it he's basking under that uvb
 

Joigannon

Bearded Dragon Egg
Messages
12
Oh yeah, basking, playing with toys, hunting critters. I’m taking him back to school next week. The mesh there is a bit finer, so I’ll put the uvb inside the tank there. It came with excellent clasps to hold it in place. Really wonderful recommendations!
 

Sadie

Bearded Dragon Veteran
1,000+ Post Club
Messages
5,787
Oh yeah, basking, playing with toys, hunting critters. I’m taking him back to school next week. The mesh there is a bit finer, so I’ll put the uvb inside the tank there. It came with excellent clasps to hold it in place. Really wonderful recommendations!
Ok for the fine mesh inside tank the distance 12-15 inches directly above the basking decor ---- please do not let the kids handle him -- he will go thru relocation stress so his eating will be off again --- make sure you keep an eye on those kids -- I dont recommend dragons in school simply because of the stress from the kids and just stuff they do --- temps in the school need to be 65 at nite -- if his tank drops below 65 at nite your going to need to get a CHE - a dome w/a ceramic socket --- they get really hot place on top of the screen center middle of tank 65-75 air temps -- I would get a 100 watt for a 40 + gallon tank --- I also would get a lock put on the doors if you have them so the kids cant get in to the tank ---- I have responded to lots of teachers w/ dragons in the school and the issues that come up w/ the dragon in the classroom-- one personal experience is that is where we got the first dragon from --- summer beardie sitting job my daughter brought home she was a 9th grader and the things the boys tried to do to the dragon were not so good -- pencil erasers in the ears --- for example---- just fyi ---
 

Joigannon

Bearded Dragon Egg
Messages
12
One of the reasons I’ve kept him home until now. I trust the students, my kids have actually gone to bat for me and I keep my doors locked. But the temperature thing does make me wary. I’ve come in on days it’s 70 and others it’s 85. Unfortunately, I work at a title I school and everything is falling apart. I’m torn between how much the kids love Archie, and the environment there. Anyway I can set the CHE dome to specific temps?
 

Sadie

Bearded Dragon Veteran
1,000+ Post Club
Messages
5,787
One of the reasons I’ve kept him home until now. I trust the students, my kids have actually gone to bat for me and I keep my doors locked. But the temperature thing does make me wary. I’ve come in on days it’s 70 and others it’s 85. Unfortunately, I work at a title I school and everything is falling apart. I’m torn between how much the kids love Archie, and the environment there. Anyway I can set the CHE dome to specific temps?
I am not sure let me check w/ someone who would know ---
 
Top