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Bearded Dragon Bites: Do they actually hurt? 5 Reasons why they might bite you

A very popular question we get is Do Bearded Dragons bite?

Yes they do bite sometimes but you can easily tell when this is about to happen

it’s usually not something that will surprise you very much

New bearded dragon owners will often wonder will my bearded dragon bite me while I’m holding him? or touching him?

It’s good to know if your new bearded dragon will bite because you may be introducing your new reptile into your home with your kids!

This guide will help you understand why they would ever bite you and how to avoid it in the future

Why Does a Bearded Dragon Bite?

Bearded dragons will often show you signs they are about to bite you like showing a black beard

A black beard is shown when they are under signs of stress or discomfort

They will nip at you and it can actually draw blood if it gets you the right way so you should be careful

Once you learn exactly what to look for it will be much easier for you to figure out if they’re about to bite or not

Bearded dragons are friendly creatures

They don’t bite for the sake of biting you

Sometimes when they bite you it might be a complete accident because you might not have been aware of the signs of stress

Reason 1: New Home

They will most often bite you when they are first brought home from the store

The reason for this is because of the new environment

It would honestly stress anyone out if you think about it

A new home sometimes doesn’t take into account other stressors like super loud music or a stuffed animal that triggers them

Whenever you bring home a new animal trial and error is just part of the process

The best advice I ever got from my friends who owned bearded dragons before I did was to spend time with them

Even if you’re just in the same room as them

Let them recognize your voice

Give them time to recognize that you’re not a threat

After several weeks they will be used to you and will actually bond with you

Then you can start playing with them more and they will eventually start falling asleep on you

Reason 2: Not used to people

Sometimes bearded dragons aren’t going to be used to people at all

If you think about it we would look like giant things to them

They will take time to get used to us because bearded dragons are afraid of predators much smaller than us

A baby bearded dragon has never even been around people yet

The earlier you introduce them to people the more trusting they will be

Trust is the universal theme with animals and reptiles

why might a bearded dragon bite

What I did why my bearded dragon is I held him for about 10 mins every other day when I brought him home

sometimes he didn’t want to be picked up and sometimes he did

Whenever he didn’t want to be picked up I just left him alone

Don’t force it. If they don’t want to be picked up then spend some time with them in the room instead

Eventually, it got to the point where my bearded dragon would start glass surfing and then would want to be picked up

When you have guests over at your place I would highly suggest picking up your beardie first so they see you around these other people then let other people hold them

They will notice that you are associating with them and then trust will be given easier

Reason 3: You’re doing something that stresses them out

The next reason why your bearded dragon might bite is that you’re doing something they don’t like

Sometimes you might be even wearing a piece of clothing that they don’t like

The cool thing about bearded dragons is they will show you when you do something they don’t like

They will usually show a black beard or they might actually hiss at you

If this happens just put them down in their cage and let them calm down

sometimes owners will think to hit their bearded dragons for some reason

it’s not cool to smack your pet because YOU stress them out lol

Another way a beardie will show you he doesn’t like something you’re doing is to puff up

If whatever you’re doing continues then they will sometimes bite you

This is usually preceded by them squirming or trying to get free if you’re holding them

A small list of things they don’t like is

  • Being held too tightly
  • Being dropped (obviously)
  • covering their nose or mouth too much
  • Coming from above them. When you pick them up come from in front of them
  • Not supporting their legs when holding them
  • pinching their legs, neck or body

A new owner isn’t going to be 100 percent sure how to hold them correctly but again they will tell you when they’re uncomfortable

Reason 4: They’re actually excited

This is exactly like how a dog gets excited

A bearded dragon bite will come your way if they are extremely excited to see you or maybe they’re having their favorite meal

Feeding time is a really exciting time for them

especially when they’re about to have some fruit

fruit and sweet things excite everyone in my opinion

Usually, bearded dragons are pretty chill and don’t tend to get so excited that they bite you

It does happen though so you should be aware of it

If this happens just know it wasn’t really on purpose. They simply couldn’t help themselves

The best thing to do is stay calm and relaxed if they do end up nipping at you

If you react they will get more stressed and nervous

if you stay relaxed you will cut down on the frequency of them being stressed immensely

Reason 5: They’re actually hungry

The last reason on this list why a bearded dragon bite might happen is because they are hungry!

Bearded dragons can get excited and sometimes that excitement will come out when they’re hungry

This will happen when you’re feeding them by hand and they might nip your fingers or hand by accident

this has actually happened to me a few times. Eventually, I learned to just drop the food at a specific time

now. Here is where I messed up

I was eating chips

my hands must have smelled like food

He took a nip at the fingers that were in the chip bag!

I eventually figured it out and then I stopped eating chips right before feeding my beardie

I swear my beardie felt bad after nipping me because he started wanting to cuddle after

It was cute but they do bite hard

if you want to avoid getting bit you can wear gloves when feeding them

this is actually a good idea if you still want to hold them while they’re getting to know you

if they are especially prone to biting at that time then you can stop the pain at least with some gardening gloves

But the best thing you can do is wash your hands before feeding

That way your beardie doesn’t smell the food and bite you

Is a Bearded dragon bite dangerous?

Any bite from any animal or reptile can be dangerous because of the bacteria

But they are toxic or poisonous

When they do bite you though just make sure you clean it up after

If bacteria are allowed to set in then they can infect you

When that happens things can get back from there

When they do bite you just make sure you don’t yank away

I understand it might be a total surprise and it’s a natural reaction to yank your fingers or hands away

but this could actually really hurt your bearded dragon’s teeth

firstly you could yank out some teeth which would suck because they obviously need that to chew food

If they do happen to get a hold of you what you should do is slowly use your other finger to open their jaw and get them off you

Again try not to get upset

Do bearded dragon bites hurt?

Yeah they can hurt

They can actually draw blood if they get you right

it will feel like a sharp pinch and you’ll notice it right away

Some new owners assume that all reptiles bite so they will often wonder if a bearded dragon bite would hurt