Bearded Dragon Tail Up – 5 Surprising Reasons This Happens

Ever wondered why bearded dragon’s put their tail up? If you’re interested in finding out why this happens, stick around as I share the 5 reasons which cause bearded dragon tail up!

bearded dragon tail up

Why Is My Bearded Dragon’s Tail Up?

A bearded dragon with their tail up means they are either excited or alert or both! The exact cause of a tail-up bearded dragon will vary, depending on the scenario. However, the root emotions are always excitement and alertness!

So, let’s dive in and check out the 5 reasons your bearded dragon’s tail will go up!


5 Reasons For Bearded Dragon Tail Up


1. Hunting

Your beardie will likely have their tail up when they are hunting! In this case, they are more alert than excited. In the wild, they are on high alert whenever they hunt and a few years in captivity isn’t going to change this behaviour.

Hence, even if they are hunting the insects you put in their tank, you might see your bearded dragon’s tail up!

Next time they’re hunting, keep an eye out, and you’ll probably see that tail pop up.

Check out this short video of a beardie hunting!


2. Exploring

This is the most common time you’ll see your beardie with their tail in the air. They’re exploring your house or garden, and all the excitement is making that tail go straight up!

In this scenario, your bearded dragon is both alert and excited. Alert, as they are on the lookout for predators or prey. Excitement as this is the best part of their day!

As your bearded dragon gets older, they might not have their tail up so much when exploring. Don’t worry, their in perfectly good health, they just aren’t as excited as they used to be.


3. Dinner Time

Your beardie sees a handful of Dubia Roaches approaching and guess what? That tail shoots up! They know its dinner time and food can’t come soon enough!

Your beardie is mainly excited with a spoonful of alertness. Evolution has taught beardie’s they are especially vulnerable when eating! Hence, you’ll see that tail go up. 

Similar to exploring, this behaviour is more common in younger bearded dragons and less likely to occur in beardies as they get older. Most older bearded dragons are much more mellow and chilled than their youngers. Hence, it’s rarer for and old beardie (or Boldie) to stick their tail up in excitement!


bearded dragon tail up


4. Dominance/About to fight

If your beardie thinks they need to assert dominance, they will raise that tail. This is a sign they are alert and ready to fight should they have to. It signals to other bearded dragon’s “I’m ready, and I mean business!”

The primary emotion, in this case, is alertness. Which you’d expect as they are about to start fighting, and they need to be as alert as possible!

One of the funniest things beardies do is raise their tail and puff out their beard when they spot their reflection. This is done to assert dominance on that pesky reflection of theirs. Unfortunately, neither beardie is backing down!

In this scenario, it is common to see a black beard along with the bearded dragon tail up! If you’d like to learn more about what causes your beardie to show this black beard, have a read of Bearded Dragon Black Beard – 11 Reasons This Happens And What To Do.


bearded dragon tail up


5. Keeping Tail dry in the bath

You could see your bearded dragon’s tail go up when you’re bathing them. This is especially common in younger beardies, and happens for two reasons:

  1. They’re excited it’s bath time
  2. They want to keep their tail dry

Some beardies don’t mind getting a wet tail. Generally, older bearded dragon’s won’t mind so will leave their tail down. While younger, higher energy dragons will keep that tail up!


What to do if you see your bearded dragon’s tail up

Most of the time, you don’t need to do anything. They’re just excited and alert. Let them enjoy whatever strange beardie activity they’re doing.

However, if you think they are getting stressed (perhaps due to a reflection), you should try and remedy the situation. Check out this article. It will give you a few ideas on how to de-stress your beardie!


bearded dragon tail up



You now know what causes bearded dragon tail up! Next time you spot this behavior,  see if you can figure out the cause. If you can’t, you can always revisit this simple article.

Enjoyed this short post? Why not give it a share so other beardie owners can find out what causes bearded dragon tail up! 

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