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Bearded Dragon Lying Flat? Here Are 5 Usual Reasons for This Action

When owners see their bearded dragon lying flat, they may wonder about the reasons for their lizard pet's unusual behavior. Read the grounds here.

When an owner, especially a new one, sees his bearded dragon lying flat on its stomach, he is usually clueless. He may find such an action strange and ask why his reptile pet is exhibiting that unusual behavior.

Moreover, a bearded dragon owner may wonder about the causes or potential triggers resulting in a bearded dragon lying flat. We understand that new bearded dragon keepers feel curious about their tamed lizards’ actions.

On their tank’s reptile carpet, bearded dragons can lie flat on their stomachs. This activity usually makes them appear to have completely flattened their bodies. 

New bearded dragon owners may typically not understand this behavior of their domesticated lizards. 

Hence, in this educational article, we aimed to help reptile pet keepers learn and understand the main grounds why a bearded dragon would lie flat on its stomach. We discussed the five reasons for this uncommon behavior. 

Bearded dragon lying flat

5 Reasons Owners Must Know When They See Their Bearded Dragon Lying Flat

Bearded dragons can display odd behaviors in the vivarium, like lying flat on their stomachs. We want to enlighten bearded dragon owners about the following five usual grounds for this action:

1. The bearded dragon is unwell.

When a bearded dragon feels sick, it will usually not eat the food on its feeder. The lack of food in the lizard pet’s stomach can make this body part appear much flatter than normal. 

Since the bearded dragon does not feel well, it tends to lay still in one position. Lizard pet keepers will likely see their sick bearded dragon lying flat. 

We recommend that the owners evaluate this scenario and consult the veterinarian for a thorough examination of their ailing reptile pet. The animal healthcare specialist is the best person to determine the precise cause of why the bearded dragon is lying flat on its stomach.

Furthermore, the veterinarian can determine the exact disease bothering the domesticated reptile. 

We want to point out to bearded dragon owners that there is a tendency for them to fail in providing their domesticated lizards with regular doses of calcium supplements.

This deleterious practice often leads to their unhealthy bearded dragon suffering from calcium imbalance. 

Hence, we highly recommend providing calcium supplements or calcium powder with vitamin D, as well as liquid vitamins and multivitamin supplements to ensure the bearded dragon’s optimal wellness at all times. 

2. The bearded dragon is responding to a possible predator.

Owners will notice their bearded dragon lying flat if this reptile pet responds to a situation, person, or animal that makes it feel intimidated or threatened. 

We want to stress the fact that a bearded dragon performs this unusual behavior to appear larger, mightier, and nastier towards the external entity it believes is a predator that can harm it.

A bearded dragon lying flat on its stomach is actually doing another method to safeguard itself from a larger animal, besides the other common self-defense or protective ways such as running, hiding, puffing up its beard, and turning its beard black.

3. The bearded dragon feels cold.

Bearded dragon owners usually take their lizard pets outdoors for a relaxing stroll. We agree that this activity is healthy and facilitates necessary physical exercises and mental stimulation.

Nevertheless, we gathered that bearded dragon keepers might fail to consider the cold temperature outdoors. Thus, their domesticated home companion may lie down and flatten its body right away to absorb heat.

The bearded dragon may also begin searching for warm areas, wandering off, and may get lost in its owner’s garden or a park if it is not leashed.  

We want to point out that this behavior means that the bearded dragon feels uncomfortably cold. Besides, it is not enjoying the chilly temperature outside its owner’s home, making it lie flat on its stomach.

4. The bearded dragon’s tank has low or incorrect temperatures.

A bearded dragon lying flat on its stomach can be because of the wrong temperature in its vivarium. Thus, its owner may notice it flattening out. 

The bearded dragon’s beard or whole body may also stay dark for long periods, throughout the day, or at random times in the terrarium.

We advise our readers to refer to this bearded dragon tank temperature guide. This chart can help them set the right temperature their domesticated lizard needs inside its artificial habitat:

Tank Location or Time of DayCorrect Temperature Range
a. Basking Area95 to 100 degrees Fahrenheit
b. Cool Spot75 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit
c. Night70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit

Furthermore, we recommend a bearded dragon keeper purchase a contactless digital thermometer. This effective instrument ensures setting accurate vivarium temperatures. 

We also suggest having a high-quality thermostat. This ideal tool regulates the tank temperature ranges and does not require the adjustment of many dials. 

5. The bearded dragon is regulating and increasing its body temperature.

Among the main reasons for a bearded dragon lying flat on its stomach is its need to regulate or increase the temperature in its physique. We want to highlight the fact that bearded dragons are exothermic animals.

They depend on external heat sources like basking light to keep their body temperatures in optimal ranges. With the right body temperature via exposure to premium-quality heat sources, bearded dragons can enjoy proper food digestion.

Reaching the desired body temperatures also helps prevent all kinds of complications, like gut rot, which is an ailment involving undigested food inside a bearded dragon’s stomach decomposing.

Finally, bearded dragons become healthy, usually feeling good, and not slow or sluggish throughout the day. These five scenarios are the common reasons why an owner would witness his bearded dragon lying flat. 

We also want to inform our readers regarding the usual time bearded dragons lie flat on their stomachs. In this manner, bearded dragon keepers will further understand their lizard pet’s behavior and know how to respond properly.

Bearded dragon lying flat

Mornings: Usual Time When an Owner Sees a Bearded Dragon Lying Flat

Bearded dragons typically lie flat on their stomachs in the morning. We want to inform owners that this behavior is one of the two primary ways their domesticated lizards can reach their optimal body temperature faster.

The other way is by turning their beard or body darker or even black. Bearded dragons sleep in lower tank temperatures throughout the evening, ideally between 70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

Then, as daytime comes, it is significant for these tamed reptiles to achieve the right body temperatures relatively quickly. In this manner, the bearded dragons’ bodies can function well, and they can move around freely.

We want to enlighten bearded dragon keepers that it is perfectly normal for their reptile pets to flatten their bodies out first thing in the morning and even turn dark. These domesticated lizards typically demonstrate this behavior for one to two hours.

We also want to highlight the fact that a bearded dragon lying flat should not worry its keeper. After all, it will return to its normal shape and color afterward.

Bearded dragon lying flat

(C) 4 Tips for Owners When Dealing with a Bearded Dragon Lying Flat

A bearded dragon that lies flat on its stomach is a natural occurrence. Once owners understand the primary reasons for this behavior of their lizard pet, they do not have to feel worried.

We also recommend our readers learn the following helpful pieces of advice:

1. Have people or objects available at home that aid in increasing a bearded dragon’s body temperature.

Before a bearded dragon lies flat on its stomach, it usually searches for warm creatures, objects, or places giving off the heat it needs to reach its optimal body temperature. 

We recommend owners have a warm chair, basking rock, hangout decor 2, cooker, and even themselves or their family members available indoors for their bearded dragon.

Additionally, outdoor items like benches or chairs, rocks, fence posts, tables, and paving stones help bearded dragons increase their body temperature when flattening out. 

These domesticated lizards would normally lick these things or people. This natural action establishes the latter’s temperature for the bearded dragons, which then get close or lie atop these external elements with their bodies flattened.

2. Make the bearded dragon and other household pets comfortable with each other.

Household pets like dogs and cats can intimidate bearded dragons since they are much larger and can realistically pose a threat. 

Thus, we highly recommend owners try to make all their pets familiar with one another to live harmoniously. 

Additionally, owners can prevent the situation of their bearded dragon lying flat due to fear or feeling of being under attack with the presence of good hiding places inside the terrarium. One example is a hide hole for bearded dragon.

These hiding sections enable the domesticated lizards to feel safe and calm down when another pet enters the room that can frighten them. 

3. Avoid placing the bearded dragon’s vivarium beside or close to the window.

It is highly likely for owners to see their bearded dragon lying flat on its stomach when they happen to place its artificial habitat by or near the window. Cats and birds approaching this part of the room are natural predators that can terrify the tamed lizard. 

Therefore, we recommend bearded dragon keepers transfer the tank to another location in the room to prevent their bearded dragon from flattening out its body.

4. Set up the artificial habitat with safe and tranquil surroundings.

A bearded dragon can feel intimated or scared of unfamiliar people and objects. These external factors include its new owner, the terrarium ornaments, and the toys of the bearded dragon keeper’s children, like action figures or dolls.

A bearded dragon can mistake these elements as potential predators. If they are still babies, they would likely feel frightened of their new owners.

We advise that bearded dragon keepers bond with their domesticated lizard as much as possible. Additionally, we recommend setting up a tank replicating a bearded dragon’s natural habitat in the Australian wilderness.

Owners can place a hangout decor, a hangout decor or hideout decor big rock, and other accessories that help mimic their tamed reptile’s home in the wild. 

Bearded dragon lying flat

Moreover, we want to advise bearded dragon keepers to remove their children’s toys out of their domesticated lizard’s sight. This suggested measure prevents the bearded dragon from feeling stressed out or getting into defense mode.

These four helpful tips can help reptile pet owners understand how to manage a bearded dragon lying flat on its stomach. We want to reiterate that this flattening-out action is completely normal.

Bearded dragon owners should know the five main reasons for this unusual behavior we discussed in this article. In this manner, they would not feel panicked. 

We also recommend bearded dragon keepers consult their veterinarian if they notice the incidence of their bearded dragon lying flat becomes recurrent to properly address a possible wellness problem immediately.