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Worrisome Bearded Dragon Bite: Avoidable and Not Really Concerning

A bearded dragon bite is a natural occurrence that reptile pet keepers should learn about and understand how to manage. Discover more about it here.

Prospective bearded dragon owners who watched the brief YouTube video showing late Australian wildlife expert Steve Irwin experiencing a bearded dragon bite may feel curious. 

In the clip, the late great “The Crocodile Hunter” got bitten on the nose by the Australia-originated wild reptile well-known as a choice to be kept as domesticated home companions. However, in this short presentation, we want to inform potential bearded dragon owners that Mr. Irwin’s reaction was of amusement.

Although we acknowledge the fact that the human nose’s skin can be thin and sensitive to injuries, this late popular zookeeper did not appear to be inconvenienced or discomforted by the bearded dragon bite.

The YouTube video can then lead interested bearded dragon keepers to wonder if bearded dragon bites are, indeed, too strong that they would hurt the owners very badly.  

Keeping the tamed reptiles as pets at home is, indeed, more than ensuring their wellness through the provision of regular doses of multivitamin supplements, calcium powder with vitamin D, calcium supplements, or liquid vitamins.

Bearded dragon bite

Bearded dragon-keeping also involves learning about its biting tendencies. In this online discussion, we aimed to enlighten our readers about the bearded dragon bite. 

We want to help bearded dragon owners, especially the new ones, to discover the severity of the injury or pain a bearded dragon bite can cause. 

Moreover, we tackled other related topics, such as why bearded dragons bite their keepers, how to treat the resulting wound, and how to avoid these undesirable scenarios. 

We certainly want to aid bearded dragon owners in having a safe and satisfying relationship with their lizard pets through this educational article.

Bearded Dragon Bites: A Natural Occurrence in Owners’ Reptile Pet-Keeping Journey

We want to inform new bearded dragon owners that their choice of reptile pet is a typically chilled-out and docile lizard. We want to highlight the fact that bearded dragons are among some of the least aggressive domesticated lizards that interested pet keepers can purchase from online and brick-and-mortar pet shops.

Furthermore, since bearded dragons are generally the least hostile reptiles, they are, indeed, not aggressors. However, we want to emphasize the fact that these domesticated home companions have the tendency to bite their keepers. 

This incident can happen as the bearded dragon may simply mistake their owner’s finger for their normal food, such as the mealworms. These lizard pets may also perform bearded dragon bites because they may merely have missed their food entirely.

Bearded dragon bite

Despite the fact that bearded dragon bites are a reality, we want to assure potential owners that these lizard pets definitely do not commit these behaviors all the time. 

Moreover, we want to highlight the fact that since bearded dragons are not aggressive animals, they would not really go out of their way when threatened to bite their keeper, unlike snakes, dogs, big lizards like iguanas, and turtles that can be unfortunately associated with painful bites.

Severity of Bearded Dragon Bites: Not Quite Serious as Prospective Keepers May Think

First-time bearded dragon owners may feel concerned about the bearded dragon biting tendency and if this kind of attack causes serious injury. We gathered that this reality is common, especially for prospective bearded dragon owners with children.

We understand their worry since they naturally want to safeguard themselves and their families before they welcome a bearded dragon as a new pet in their residence. We want to reiterate the fact that bearded dragon bites, indeed, happen.

Nevertheless, we intend to keep bearded dragon keepers and interested ones not to feel worried by providing the following six facts they should keep in mind:

1. Bearded dragons have small teeth, making their bites almost painless.

2. The tamed reptiles usually attack, but they neither really feel aggressive nor intentionally want to harm their keepers.

3. Bearded dragons’ bite is usually totally accidental.

4. Bearded dragons are not poisonous animals.

5. The domesticated lizards’ biting instances usually draw blood from their owner’s skin, but this scenario is rare.

6. Salmonella transmission should not be a concern since this kind of bacteria is transferred via a bearded dragon’s stool and not its bite.

These six facts demonstrate to bearded dragon keepers that their tamed lizard’s bite is not really dangerous. 

We understand that these reptile pet owners may feel alarmed and concerned, especially if they feel slight pain or their skin gets damaged with blood drawn from it due to the minor attack.

Nonetheless, we want to emphasize the fact that, although a bearded dragon bite may hurt a little bit, it should not cause tremendous anxiety of possible life-threatening or infectious dangers to the owners. 

6 Main Reasons for Bearded Dragon Biting Incidents

Lizard pet keepers should remember that bearded dragon bites happen and are normally experienced when keeping these animals as domesticated home companions. These minor attacks neither tend to hurt much nor happen too frequently.

We want to stress the fact that bearded dragon bites occur, and most certainly, there is a reason for them. In this informative article, we explained the six primary reasons these reptile attacks transpire.

We believe lizard pet owners will significantly benefit if they know the following main grounds for the bites:

1. HUNGER

Hungry bearded dragons can be a little overzealous, foolish, and tend to bite their owner’s hands on accident more. Reptile pet keepers’ hands may also smell like food, or their fingers may resemble mealworms that are common bearded dragon nutriments.

Bearded dragon bites also happen when these lizard pets go for their feeders but mistakenly nip their owner’s fingers used when handfeeding them.

2. DISCOMFORT OR PAIN

Bearded dragons attack their keepers if they feel uncomfortable, harmed, or terrified. These scenarios happen when bearded dragon owners mishandle their domesticated reptiles that these pets get hurt.

We want to emphasize the fact that holding the bearded dragons the wrong way is among the main causes of bearded dragon biting incidences.

3. ANGER

Annoyed bearded dragons usually reach a breaking point, leading them to bite their keepers. This scenario can happen when a bearded dragon owner forces their lizard pet to have a cuddle, pokes or prods them, or refuses to put their domesticated reptile down when it is already agitated.

In these instances, the bearded dragon bite is the natural body language the tamed lizards execute. They are trying to inform their keepers to stop bothering or inconveniencing them. 

Bearded dragon bite

4. FEAR

Bearded dragons may feel terrified or threatened, especially if they are new pets arriving in their owner’s residence for the first time. These domesticated lizards would initially feel wary of their new owner and would even hiss when the latter comes close to them.

Threatened bearded dragons usually hiss and puff up their beards to warn their new owners or other people first, so the latter need to pay attention. However, we want to emphasize the fact that it is unlikely that the bearded dragon will come right out and bite its new keeper without warning.

5. OVEREXCITEMENT

Bearded dragon bites can happen when these domesticated home companions feel overly thrilled. Hence, they tend to inadvertently nip their owners’ fingers or parts of their hands.

Overexcitement can happen when the bearded dragon looks forward to its meal of green leafy vegetables every morning. Additionally, it occurs when this reptile pet has a favorite food or treat placed on its feeder but only once in a blue moon.

6. FAMILIARITY PROBLEM

Bearded dragons with new owners may not have been properly socialized by their breeders yet. Hence, these lizard pets may feel distrustful and defensive towards their new keepers.

Additionally, bearded dragons unfamiliar with the people in their surroundings, have experiences of being mishandled, or have never been handled much may feel afraid and self-protective that they would bite anyone that comes close to them.

These six common reasons for bearded dragon bites are, apparently, reasonable. They demonstrate that bearded dragons feel inconveniences and find it proper to respond accordingly and protect themselves.

2 Proper Techniques of Treating Bearded Dragon Bites

Bearded dragon owners may suddenly feel the need to pick up their domesticated home companion while it is sitting on its vivarium’s reptile carpet. This incident can result in them getting bitten by their lizard pet. 

In these scenarios in which a bearded dragon bite can cause trouble to the reptile pet owners, we highly recommend the latter understand how to apply the proper remedies. 

The following are the two methods that can help address these wounds:

1. If the bearded dragon bite BROKE the owner’s skin:

In this scenario, we advise bearded dragon keepers to treat their wounds similar to remedying a cut or scratch caused by other pets. These owners should wash the bite with soap and warm water right away.

Then, they should disinfect the cut using Neosporin, isopropyl alcohol, or any other appropriate disinfectant. Covering the bearded dragon bite with a bandage is also highly advisable. 

2. If the bearded dragon bite DID NOT DAMAGE the owner’s skin:

We advise the bearded dragon keepers to wash their hands with water and soap if their lizard pet’s bite is gentle enough not to cause serious skin damage. This important safety measure is similar to the step performed after handling the bearded dragons.

These two methods of treating bearded dragon bites effectively eliminate the possible infection that can stem from the cut. 

We want to remind bearded dragon owners that the attack may sting a little on their skin, but we assure them that this inconvenience is normal and will disappear after one to two days.

7 Effective Methods to Prevent Bearded Dragon Bites

We want to highlight the fact that bearded dragon bites are 100-percent avoidable. We know that these unwanted experiences are what owners do not want to deal with often.

Hence, we want to provide the following effective measures they can practice to prevent the incidences of bearded dragon bites:

1. Use tongs to feed the domesticated reptiles.

Since handfeeding bearded dragons can cause these lizard pets to bite their owners’ fingers, we recommend feeding them using tongs. This technique aids in disassociating a reptile pet keeper’s hand from food and accidental bites.

Furthermore, tongs are best used when feeding bearded dragons with Dubia roaches and live crickets. We want to advise the owners to avoid teasing their domesticated home companions with food as well to avoid getting bitten.

2. Place the bearded dragon outside its tank for a short while, then drop its food in the tank.

This handfeeding strategy involves an owner taking out his reptile pet for a short while from the terrarium, then putting the vegetable salad or other foods in the artificial habitat.  

Afterward, the owner can return his bearded dragon inside the tank. This useful technique can tame the bearded dragons and prevent biting their keeper’s fingers.

Moreover, we highly recommend bearded dragon owners keep their reptile pets on a regular feeding schedule and ensure they are eating enough to prevent the biting worries. 

3. Make the bearded dragons accustomed to being with people.

We want to highlight socialization’s importance in human-animal relationships. This activity involves bearded dragons getting used to being picked up or handled by their breeders, veterinarians, rescuers, and owners.

These lizard pets will then feel comfortable as they get used to being around human beings. Their temperament will also get modified as they adjust to their new environment, making them no longer inclined to bite their keepers.

4. Gently scrub the bearded dragon.

Bearded dragon biting incidences can be avoided by using a toothbrush or any grooming brush to scrub the reptile pet and provide it with some soothing body pleasure. Bearded dragon keepers can find their domesticated home companion sitting atop its hangout decor or hideout decor big rock or a reptile carpet in the vivarium daily.

In this position, we recommend they gently scrub their tamed lizard to make it feel good and comfortable with its owner. This pleasurable experience can also be done during the bearded dragon’s bathing time.

5. Hold the bearded dragon correctly by ensuring proper support to its body.

Bearded dragon bites can be avoided by holding these domesticated reptiles correctly. One technique is supporting a bearded dragon’s belly with one hand and the other hand ensuring it will not fall or jump.

Another technique of properly holding this lizard pet is slowly reaching for it from the sides or the front and holding it firmly yet comfortably that it cannot jump or escape. 

We also advise bearded dragon owners not to swoop in from above the tank when picking up their reptile pet as this motion can remind the latter of its natural predators in the wild such as a massive bird. 

Finally, we highly recommend lizard pet keepers never to pick up their bearded dragons by their limbs or tails and ensure their beloved pets are not pinched or squeezed very hard as they possess fragile bodies.

6. Ensure that adult supervision is practiced if a child handles the bearded dragon.

The owner’s children usually feel excited to hold the bearded dragons. This reality often leads to these young people dropping the lizard pets if they feel surprised or get bitten.

As a piece of expert advice, we recommend owners sit on the ground with their child as the latter holds the bearded dragon. In this way, they can avoid accidents and injuring the domesticated reptile.

7. Avoid a stressful environment in the artificial habitat.

The lack of privacy in the tanks or the improper terrarium temperatures can make bearded dragons feel stressed out. Thus, we highly recommend owners provide hiding places in the cool side of the artificial habitat, such as a hide hole for bearded dragons as well as some relaxing backgrounds.

The sense of peace these hiding areas and vivarium features provide are significant in keeping the bearded dragons’ stress levels down, preventing them from staging unwanted attacks on their keepers. 

Bearded dragon bites are natural happenings that these domesticated home companions typically inadvertently commit. These bearded dragons’ attacks using their small teeth are usually not committed to deliberately harm their owners as well.

They do not pose critical health risks and can be painless overall. Hence, bearded dragon bites should neither be a reason for owners to feel immensely worried nor want to punish their tamed reptile.

Bearded dragon bite

We want to point out the significant fact that bearded dragon bites are natural occurrences. By educating bearded dragon owners about the nature, causes, remedies, and preventive measures, they will be able to prevent these biting incidents.

Above all, bearded dragon keepers can feel confident in their reptile pet-keeping journey and build strong and worthwhile bonds with their bearded dragons for the long haul.