Step-By-Step Guide How To Bathe Bearded Dragons

While Bearded Dragons may not require the same level of maintenance as other pets, like dogs or cats, they’ll need regular care, including bathing. 

Bathing your Bearded Dragon can provide numerous health benefits, such as;

  • Improving hygiene 
  • Promoting healthy skin
  • Aiding in shedding
  • Aiding in digestive health

In this article, we’ll discuss the steps to properly bathe your Bearded Dragon, as well as some tips and tricks to make the experience enjoyable for both you and your pet.

Why Do They Need Baths?

There are 4 health benefits to spending time bathing your Bearded Dragon, I’m going to discuss these below.

Hygiene

We all need general hygiene on this earth, but Bearded Dragons are ectotherms and don’t have sweat glands. So their hygiene isn’t to do with smell as they have no odor.

The reason they need cleanliness and hygiene is to keep them free of fungus, parasites, and bacteria buildup. 

Hydration

Bearded Dragons are known to be lazy drinkers, when they’re being bathed it is likely they’ll drink some of the water. This is a great way to keep your beardie hydrated if they’re not one for drinking out of the fresh water dish you provide daily.

Healthy Skin

As Bearded Dragons spend a lot of their time under the basking bulb in their enclosure, their skin will be dry, bathing them is a great way to keep the skin healthy and moist to prevent painful cracking.

Shedding Assistance

Shedding is a natural process your Bearded Dragon will go through, but it can be an uncomfortable experience for them. There are a lot of ways we can help our Bearded Dragon through the shedding process which I talk about in detail here.

However, baths are one of those methods, it allows them a relaxing warm relief from the irritation and the water will also soften the skin making it easier for your beardie. 

Never attempt to pull any loose skin you see off your Bearded Dragon, if it’s still attached, it’s supposed to be.

Digestive Health

Bathing is great for a Bearded Dragon with digestive problems, the warm water will help alleviate the pain and soften the blockage making it easier to defecate. They’ll also be drinking the water, the increased hydration will also help get their intestinal tract working.

How To Bathe a Bearded Dragon

What You’ll Need

  • Container
  • Cup
  • Temperature Appropriate Water (90-100°F)
  • Toothbrush
  • Towel

I recommend using a container instead of a sink or basin to protect you and your Bearded Dragon.

The risk to you is salmonella poisoning, Bearded Dragon feces contain salmonella which they’ll likely leave for you in the sink or basin.

The risk to them is the shampoos and cleaners we use contain chemicals that can harm Bearded Dragon skin. 

8 Steps To Bearded Dragon Bathing

#1 Fill Container

Fill the container of choice with water at a temperature between 90-100°F. The water levels must not be higher than your Bearded Dragons knees, this prevents drowning.

#2 Place Dragon In Water

Gently place your beardie in the water, depending on the container you’re using, I recommend putting a cloth at the bottom so they’ll have something to grip onto which will prevent them from slipping.

#3 Never Leave Them Unattended

Even though we’re keeping the water shallow at knee height, you must never leave your Bearded Dragon unattended. Although beardies are avid swimmers, water inhalation can cause respiratory complications which can be fatal.

#4 Make It Fun

Bath time doesn’t have to be a chore, you can add toys for them to chase around in the water, this will be a great experience for you and them. Playing with your Bearded Dragon also helps build the bond between you.

Some objects to add to the container to make it fun or to make your beardie more comfortable is;

  • Rocks
  • Bridges
  • Floats

#5 Clean Them

When it comes to cleaning, it’s pretty straightforward, use a soft-bristled toothbrush ideally not your personal one. 

Brush in the direction of their scales, the only parts of your Bearded Dragon to avoid brushing during this are the eyes and cloaca.

If you’re not confident using a brush, you can simply fill a cup with water and gently pour it down their body. Be careful when doing this, you don’t want to pour too much and stress out your beardie by soaking them in water.

#6 Dry Them

When your beardie is clean, remove them from the container and pat them dry with paper towels or a soft towel. Never rub Bearded Dragons to dry them, their skin is sensitive and this will cause them pain. 

#7 Place Under Basking Bulb To Warm Up

Once you’ve dried your Bearded Dragon, place them under its basking spot to allow them to warm up again. 

The process of leaving the bath and getting dry will be a shock temperature change to them so I recommend getting them under the basking bulb as quickly as possible.

#8 Clean The Container

I recommend cleaning the container you used immediately after you’re finished. You can do this with warm water and white vinegar, this will disinfect the tub without leaving any chemicals in there for your beardies next bath.

How Often To Bathe a Bearded Dragon

The regularity of bathing a Bearded Dragon really depends on your personal schedule, however, I recommend bathing them 2-3 times a week. 

If your Bearded Dragon is shedding, I recommend trying to bathe them daily to help them through the process. 

Alternative To Bathing

If your Bearded Dragon doesn’t like baths or being around water in general, you can mist them. Misting is a process where you fill a spray bottle with water and gently spray water on the body instead of putting them in a container full of water.

Summary

Remember, bathe your Bearded Dragon 2-3 times a week and do so by following the 8 steps I mentioned above.

If your Bearded Dragon doesn’t like having baths, you can try adding objects to make them comfortable or you can utilize the misting method to receive the same benefits as having a bath.