Reptiles are very different to dogs and cats and will not display affection in the same way. However there have been many cases proofing that you can build a bond with a bearded dragon. They have been known to even have favourites, preferring attention from one owner more than another.
Here are 5 top tips to building a relationship with your bearded dragon;
Bearded dragons are extremely tolerant of being handled. I allow mine to run around the kitchen at weekends for a while. They love to explore every nook and cranny.
Do not be scared of your beardie. They will only show aggression if they feel threatened or stressed. Be firm with them, but careful not to hurt them.
A great way of building trust with your dragon is to hand feed them. I hand feed my dragons their live food and vegetables. The key here is not to overdo it. Your pet should not become over reliant on you and lose their instincts to hunt prey and to eat from their food bowl.
Bearded dragons are very gentle and will take from you using their tongue, doing their best not to hurt you. They do make mistakes though and have been known to confuse fingers with food. Personally my dragons have never bitten me, just be careful and be assured that it is not intentional.
Regular Feeding Pattern
Try and install a regular feeding pattern for your dragons. They will come to recognise this and eagerly wait for dinner time. Just be prepared for a look of disapproval if you are late with their dinner.
I struggle to get the food into the food bowl before they are feverishly taking it from my hand. I really should install some table manners into the pair, but its very funny to see.
Bathing is a great way of hydrating your lizard. Bearded dragons do not recognise still water and seeing them drink from a water bowl is a very rare sight.
Bath them in a sink, or the bath in warm water. Some dragons enjoy this and others don't. But they will absorb the water through their pores hydrating their bodies.
Disinfect the sink or bath after use.
Respect their Privacy and Sleep
Loud televisions and stereos whilst your dragons are trying to sleep will cause them stress. Try and respect their down time. Also if your dragon is hiding under their log, its probably because they don't want to be disturbed. Respect their privacy and unless its urgent, such as giving them medication, leave them alone.
By Al Murray
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