If you want your bearded dragon to stop running away from you and become more friendly and trusting towards you, there are some steps you can take to improve your bond with it.
- Provide a suitable habitat for your bearded dragon: Make sure your bearded dragon has a spacious and secure enclosure that meets its needs for heat, light, humidity, and ventilation. A 75-gallon terrarium is the minimum size for an adult beardie. The substrate should be easy to clean and non-toxic, such as tile, newspaper, or reptile carpet. Avoid sand, gravel, or wood chips that could cause impaction or infection if ingested. Provide a basking spot with a temperature of 95-110°F (35-43°C), a cool side with a temperature of 75-85°F (24-29°C), and a UVB light that covers at least 75% of the enclosure. Also provide some hiding places, branches, rocks, and plants for enrichment and security.
- Feed your bearded dragon a balanced and varied diet: Bearded dragons are omnivorous and need both animal and plant matter to thrive. Depending on their age, they may need more or less protein in their diet. Juveniles need to eat more insects than adults, while adults need more greens and vegetables than juveniles. A good rule of thumb is to feed your bearded dragon 80% plant matter and 20% insects as an adult, and 20% plant matter and 80% insects as a juvenile. Offer fresh food daily and remove any leftovers after an hour. Some examples of good food items for bearded dragons are:
Avoid feeding your bearded dragon spinach, kale, lettuce, broccoli, cabbage, avocado, onion, garlic, citrus fruits, or fireflies . These foods can cause health problems such as calcium deficiency, oxalate poisoning, goiter, or death . Also avoid feeding your bearded dragon insects that you catch outside, as they may carry parasites or pesticides .
- Handle your bearded dragon gently and regularly: Bearded dragons are usually docile and easy to handle, but they may need some time to get used to you and trust you. Start by handling your bearded dragon for a few minutes every day, gradually increasing the duration as it becomes more comfortable with you. Always support its body with both hands and avoid grabbing its tail or limbs. Be gentle and calm when handling your bearded dragon and avoid sudden movements or loud noises that may scare it. You can also offer some treats or praise when handling your bearded dragon to reinforce positive associations with you.
By following these steps, you can make your bearded dragon stop running away from you and enjoy its company more. Bearded dragons are amazing pets that can live up to 10 years or more with proper care. They have unique personalities and behaviors that make them fun and entertaining to watch and interact with. With patience and consistency, you can build a strong bond with your bearded dragon and make it feel happy and safe with you.