Do you know those people? Those people that squeeze your hand like a lemon when shaking your hand? I hate that! What is the problem with just shaking the hand normally?
Well, while we humans are just brought to our knees with such a ferocious handshake (some of us even cry – me for example) bearded dragons could be hurt badly.
Squeezing your bearded dragon like an almost empty toothpaste tube will surely kill your little dragon.
That´s why I want to talk to you about the correct bearded dragon handling. How much pressure is enough? How often should you handle your beardie? Should you handle it at all? All these questions are about to be answered.
SHOULD YOU TAKE YOUR BEARDED DRAGON OUT OF IT´S CAGE?
A question that a lot of people ask is, should you handle your bearded dragon at all? It seems that people from America handle their bearded dragons with joy, while people from Europe think that this shouldn´t be done too often.
The truth is, if you always make sure that your bearded dragon gets enough heat before handling it, there shouldn´t be a problem. Of course your bearded dragon also should get enough UVB throughout the day.
That means, you should not take your bearded dragon out of the cage the whole day. Your dragon needs it´s natural environment and only your tank comes close to that.
Except you live in a very hot area and you can give your beardie the opportunity to get some natural sunlight ? If you wanna go outside with your beardie, don´t forget a beardie leash!
If you have a very skittish bearded dragon, make sure that your dragon can´t get hurt while being outside. Trust me, beardies can get really fast when they are nervous. Your dragon could run against a wall, door or whatever is in the way.
I show you how to grab your beardie correctly so that it can´t escape from your hands and run through your room below. But first …
WHY IT IS RECOMMENDED TO HANDLE YOUR DRAGON REGULARLY
In my opinion it is always better to have a bearded dragon that is used to being touched, grabbed, petted etc. There will be times when you need to get your bearded dragon out of the cage. It is way less stress for your and for your dragon if it is used to being handled.
Let´s say you need to visit a vet. If your beardie is skittish, it will be a pain for your and for your pet. Being bitten is no fun and on the other side, being chased teh whole day is more stress than a beardie should have to handle.
So spend some time with your bearded dragon. Let your little reptile friend get used to your presence. Most bearded dragons are really calm. That´s why they are awesome reptiles for kids, however some of them are shy.
However, I have never seen a bearded dragon that could not be “tamed” with patience. So don´t get frustrated if your dragon takes some time to stay calm when you enter the room.
Especially if you just bought your dragon you should give it time. Most of the time they are absolutely calm after a week. If you need some help with taming your beardie, read this article.
HERE IS HOW YOU HANDLE YOUR BEARDED DRAGON CORRECTLY
If your bearded dragon is not calm at all, maybe even aggressive, but you need to get it out of the cage, here is how to do it.
I do not recommed gloves to tame your bearded dragon, but if you need to get it out right now, you should wear them. Why?
Well, it is important that you stay calm when grabbing your dragon, even if it might bite you. If you do not have any protection you most probably will be a little bit afraid if you are not used to your dragon.
This will lengthen the whole process and this means more stress for the dragon.
So, get some gloves like NoCry gloves, for example. Slowly move your hand below your dragon. The thumb and the pointing finger should be directly behind the legs to make sure that the bearded dragon doesn´t fall while lifting.
Hold you other hand above your dragon´s back with a reasonable distance so that your bearded dragon won´t see it as a threat, but close enough to grab it in case it will chip off.
The video below shows you perfectly how it is done.