Search
Close this search box.

Red Bearded Dragon – Best Care Guide With 5 or more Tips!

A Red bearded dragon is the coolest looking dragon with some red and orange colors

The Red bearded dragon is a specific morph of bearded dragon known for its red hues

Bearded dragons are great pets to own. They have great temperament and actually like to be handled unlike some other reptiles

there are things you need to know about before owning your bearded dragon long term

For example

  • how humid does its tank need to be
  • how much should they be eating daily
  • what to do if their shedding skin gets stuck

There’s much much more you need to know about when owning a bearded dragon and this also applies to a red bearded dragon as well

Are Red Bearded Dragons Good Pets to Own?

Bearded dragons have rapidly grown in popularity because of their simple care needs

if you’ve always wanted a lizard type of pet these guys are the best place to begin

They do need certain special care but once you understand what those are it’s easy to maintain

one of the most important things you need to know is to have the right tank size

many many new owners think that a 40-gallon tank is good for the entire life of the bearded dragon which is completely false

An adult bearded dragon needs much more room to run around

A baby bearded dragon doesn’t need much room to run around even though they are much more active

The other thing you need to be careful of is food

They can eat many things humans can eat but new owners don’t realize that bearded dragons need a healthy amount of calcium

Calcium is needed to keep the bones healthy and to prevent Metabolic bone disease

many new owners need to know that feeding your bearded dragon too much fruit can actually cause MBD (check out the linked article to find out why)

Appearance

Red bearded dragons have this nice orange/red hue to them

All bearded dragons have this dinosaur look to them but what makes them distinct is their little “beard” under their chin

its this little mass of scales under their chin and they can actually do things with it

they can puff up their beard to look bigger and more threatening

They can also turn their beard black when they feel stressed or uncomfortable so its not just for looks

Their beard will give you information about how they’re feeling

Bearded dragons can grow up to about 24 inches in length depending on the subspecies

Most of this length is going to be their tail! They have long tails

They will also weigh between 450 grams to 530 full grown. Some less and some more

Red Bearded dragons are going to be easy to see because they are so different in color compared to many others which are more brown and tan colors

Red Bearded Dragon Care sheet

This list here is what you’re going to need to know going forward to keep your bearded dragon healthy and happy long term

Its important you follow this as close as you can with the budget you have. I know not everyone can afford the same setup as someone else so do your best

Tank

I recommend a pretty big tank even when your bearded dragon is a baby

If you start off big you won’t need to upgrade so often or at all

I recommend a 120-gallon tank of the bat

Bearded dragons love to climb things so make sure there is tons of room for decor

You want to add Hides, trees, logs, rocks, branches, and other cool things to climb on

I do a nightly routine of cleaning my beardies tank.

Having a dirty tank can lead to many different health problems especially since the humidity in the tank will be high

Doing a daily spot clean will help keep bacteria, fungus, and viral infections down

At least once a month do a deep clean of the tank

This means pulling out all the decor and cleaning the substrate, walls, corners and creases, everything you can see

The biggest thing you will notice is dead insects and rotting food. The heat from the lamps and lights will make food rot quickly

Lighting

Bearded dragons are normally from hot dry climates which would provide them with the required UV lights they need in the wild

Bearded dragons need UV lighting and heat to help with digestion and health

The right lighting will go a long way and this is the light I recommend

This is the basking light i recommend as well

The basking light is going to provide them with the right heat but I will go into the heating part later

Make sure you change the lights every 6 months even if the light bulb is still working

Also, make sure to turn the lights off at night to create a cooler tank at night

Heating, Temperature and humidity

this is important to your bearded dragon’s health and vitality

You need to provide a temperature gradient throughout the tank like this

Bearded dragon temperature gradient
Bearded dragon Temperature Gradient for all ages

At night you want to make sure the tank doesn’t go below 75 degrees Fahrenheit or they can get too cold

This is the thermometer i use to keep a close eye on temperatures

The humidity levels need to remain between 20% – 40%

You can raise humidity levels yourself by misting the tank and by putting extra water in a bowl under the basking light

Certain substrates will hold onto moisture better like moss and mulch

If the moisture is too low it can be hard for your bearded dragon to shed its skin

if moisture is too high then it can get respiratory infections and get sick. This could result in you having to take them to the vet

Substrate

the substrate is the one thing that confuses most owners because pet stores give crap information about how to actually take care of bearded dragons

Stay away from loose substrates as much as possible. Sand, gravel, pebbles, mulch

Stick to reptile carpet, ceramic tile, and newspaper

The problem with loose substrates is your bearded dragon can easily ingest it when its eating live food or its salads you give them

this causes something called impaction

impaction is when they have eaten something that won’t pass through their digestive system and can cause digestive trauma

if left too long they will have to go to the vet to be taken care of and that could mean surgery which you should obviously avoid at all costs

The right substrate is going to be a personal preference but I like stuff that I can easily clean

Cleaning loose substrates is a huge pain and another reason why you should avoid them

You can easily clean a ceramic tile by spraying it down and baking it in the oven (yeah that’s a thing) which kills all bacteria quickly

If you don’t get the ceramic tile you can get reptile carpet which isn’t as easy to clean as ceramic tile is but easier than loose substrates will be

Cleaning reptile carpet is as simple as taking it out and soaking it in a sink with soap and hot water

Don’t put it in with your clothes in a washing machine… just don’t

Red Bearded Dragon Diet

A Red bearded dragon doesn’t eat anything special compared to regular bearded dragons

You want to be giving them fruits, vegetables, and live protein

The Protein you’re going to be giving them is going to be Dubia Roaches and crickets and worms

Some owners won’t be used to the idea of needing to feed your bearded dragon gut loaded and dusted protein but you will get used to it

For dusting, I literally take the roaches and put them in a sandwich bag with calcium powder

Give it a nice shake and then you’re good to go

Young bearded dragons need much more protein than adults beardies do

Young beardies need about 70 to 80 percent protein and the rest vegetables

The reason why young bearded dragons need so much protein is that they grow really fast

They need proper calcium supplements as well but I will put a list of those down below for you

Adult bearded dragons need less protein and more vegetables

I literally just put a salad together with a tiny bit of fruit

Adult bearded dragons need 70% vegetables and around 20% protein with around 10% fruit

I personally don’t feed my bearded dragon fruit every week. What I actually do is I feed my bearded dragon a lot of fruit during one week out of the month

You want to keep the phosphorus levels down. If they’re too high then what happens is that phosphorus will bind to the calcium and it won’t be absorbed into the bloodstream correctly

That’s why too much fruit can cause MBD (metabolic bone disease)

How to keep your Red Bearded Dragon healthy

Keeping your red bearded dragon healthy is a simple as knowing what they like and don’t like through trial and error

like anything in life, it takes time and patience to see what stresses them out and what doesn’t and this will vary from beardie to beardie

You want to be replicating the wild as much as possible with your bearded dragon without the stress of predators

Stress is a major factor in your bearded dragon’s health and mental health

if the temperature of the tank is off then they will not feel to great and be stressed out

Red Bearded dragon

Make sure you check the humidity levels

Possible health issues

Metabolic Bone Disease is caused by too much phosphorus in the diet and too little calcium

to avoid this just keep the fruit content low

Respiratory infections – these can be caused when the humidity levels are too high. You will hear cracking and wheezing coming from your bearded dragon’s mouth

Too much bacteria and Fungus thriving in your bearded dragon’s tank will cause this to happen as well so make sure you stay on top of cleaning

Parasites – This will cause your bearded dragon to become sick and lethargic. Sometimes food that isn’t clean will cause this. Make sure you keep an eye on your bearded dragon’s Poop. Like I said before you can tell a lot about their health from their poop

Mouth Rot – This is when they develop a sort of bacterial infection around their mouths. Their mouths will swell up a lot and they will dispel mucus

Lifespan and longevity

Red bearded dragons can live a long time if they are well taken care of

They can live up to 15 years while living in captivity

in the wild bearded dragons will have to deal with much more outside influences on their health and well being

in captivity, they don’t really have to worry about much since you will be their caretaker

Breeding

Female bearded dragons will breed and lay eggs about 6 weeks later

Now the best thing you can do is separate the bearded dragons once they have mated because they can get very aggressive and want to hurt each other

if you’re going to take care of the breeding process yourself i would make sure you have a place where the eggs can sit. A box or a plastic bin or something with some soil in it will help

The eggs will need to be incubated and watched over

Shedding

Red bearded dragons do shed and I did a whole article about this that is linked above

Adults will shed around 1-2 times per year. They can experience stuck shed when they are doing this in which you can give them a bath to help them out

Baby Bearded dragons will shed a lot more. usually once a month or so

The best way to keep a bearded dragon happy with shedding is keeping moisture levels between 20-40 percent

Brumation

Bearded dragon brumation is basically when they hibernate

Their metabolism will slow down as if winter is coming

They will actually do this in the wild because food is harder to come by in the wild during the winter

They won’t always do this in captivity especially if you keep them away from the windows

However, if this does happen they will be very slow

I wrote a whole article about it and you can check it out here

The cost of a Red Bearded Dragon Morph

Red bearded dragons are a lot more expensive than their counterparts

A red bearded dragon can cost around 400 CAD or 250 – 300 USD

The more rare a color is and the harder it is to breed the more expensive it is going to be

The darker and more elegant the colors are the more expensive it will be as well

Summary and Questions

I’ve owned my beardie for quite some time now and it has been one of the most rewarding experiences

The first 3 months were tough. I want to give you realistic expectations

it took my bearded dragon quite some time to bond with me and trust me

Red bearded dragons will be awesome to have. Many people that come around your place if they do will look at their colors a lot since they are visually striking

if you’re on the fence about getting a bearded dragon you won’t regret it but just be very patient with them

it can take some time before they decide you’re trustworthy

Good luck with your bearded dragon!