If you decide to get a bearded dragon, it’s only natural to question their pooping habits and behaviors. Particularly if you are not sure what is normal for these reptiles. Besides, pooping frequency and quality can offer clear insight into your reptile’s health. And let’s be honest, it will also have repercussions in regards to enclosure cleaning frequency. Either way, here is everything you are going to want to know.
So, how often do bearded dragons poop? Bearded dragons will typically poop between one to seven times per week. This is the healthy range and the variance depends on a number of factors including age, weight, diet, health status, and the size of the bearded dragon. Generally, younger bearded dragons poop more.
There is not a definitive answer to how much a bearded dragon will poop when kept in captivity. But there sure is an average and general patterns we can observe. And learn from.
Equally, this is not to say something is wrong if your beardie falls a little out of this range.
You should only be concerned if your bearded dragon pooping habits change, or your beardie begins to eat abnormally or show other signs of ill-health.
Nevertheless, let us now take a closer look and explore the most commonly asked questions regarding the frequency of pooping in this reptile, along with some other considerations to ensure your beardie remains regular and healthy!
How Often Should A Bearded Dragon Poop?
A Bearded Dragons should poop between 1-7 times per week, on average. Generally speaking younger, juvenile beardies, will poop more frequently and can do so up to 3x per day on average.
Firstly, it is largely reliant upon the diet they consume.
Naturally, a younger bearded dragon eats more than an adult one – so it makes sense and is logical that they will need to go more often.
Going further, younger bearded dragons are more carnivorous – consuming much more protein in the form of insects and vegetables.
This is a direct cause of the need to go more regularly, which can be up to 3x per day.
Another important aspect is the genetics and genes that they inherited – some beardies are just known to go more than others.
As your bearded dragon ages, you will likely notice that they do not eat and consequently poop as much.
You’ll also notice a change and preference in regards to their diet – as they tend to gravitate to a more herbivorous one. Pooping can drop down to once per week, but it can be even less than this.
You should only be concerned with potential impaction if other signs, symptoms, and behaviors are present. We will take a look at these shortly below.
Ultimately, not being able to poop is not healthy. If your bearded dragon stops going once every 7 days then you should begin to monitor them to ensure all is still well.
How To Keep Your Bearded Dragons Poop Regular
To keep your beardie pooping regularly, you will need to provide your pet with a healthy diet of vitamins and minerals, proteins, and carbohydrates.
Bearded dragons are not exclusively carnivores or herbivores, but omnivores. This means that they eat and do best on both plants and meat.
Young bearded dragons usually eat a lot of insects, but as they grow older, they enjoy veggies and fruit added to their diet.
Foods to feed your bearded dragon for optimal digestion and to keep them regular include:
- Proteins – crickets, waxworms, mealworms
- Greens – kale, certain lettuces, cabbage, red cabbage, broccoli
- Fruits – blueberries, apples, strawberries, melon,
- Pellets (once a day)
- Lots of fresh water
- Your bearded dragon also needs calcium and phosphorus so you’ll need to sprinkle calcium powder with vitamin D3 on their food a couple of times a week. Then sprinkle a calcium powder without vitamin D3 on other days. It may be a good idea to also sprinkle reptile minerals supplement on your pet’s food. This is an ideal supplement to buy from Amazon.
Feeding your beardie appropriately will guarantee that they are able to poop enough and that the poop is normal – both in terms of consistency and bulk.
How Do You Know If Your Bearded Dragon Is Impacted?
Bearded dragons can become impacted. Impaction is when your bearded dragon’s digestive system gets blocked and they are unable to have a successful bowel movement.
Causes of impaction include:
- Insects – Too large for your beardie to eat, or especially crunchy
- Substrates – These are the materials you put on the bottom of your bearded dragon’s enclosure. Inappropriate ones can contain sand or lose pebbles that end up in your bearded dragon’s gut and cause impaction.
- Poor temperature control -If the temperature in your beardie’s enclosure isn’t regulated your pet will have problems digesting its food.
Signs of Impaction
Keep an eye on your bearded dragon for signs of impaction. These include
- Stops pooping all of a sudden or he has not pooped in days
- Acts ill, sluggish
- A bump on the back of your beardie
- Lack of moving back legs or dragging back legs. This is a serious symptom, and you should get your pet to the vet immediately.
What To Do To Help Your Bearded Dragon Poop
If you think your beardie may be impacted, you can do a couple of things to help them poop before it gets too serious.
- Warm bath – Put some lukewarm water into a large container. Put your bearded dragon in the water for a little bath time. Give him 30 minutes in the warm water. This will relax your pet and can help him poop.
- Massage their tummy – Rub their tummy a little. this can stimulate the intestines.
- Olive oil – Put a few drops of olive oil on your bearded dragon’s nose so they lick it off. Don’t substitute other oils for olive oil, they are not healthy for them. But a small amount of olive oil can have a loosening effect on the bowels.
- Apple sauce, natural fruit juice without sugar
- Canned pumpkin – Thin down the canned pumpkin with water.
What Should A Bearded Dragons Poop Look Like?
Normal poop will have a consistent color. It will have the correct consistency, without being too runny.
Dietary changes will change your beardie’s poop, and specific foods (like insects) can affect the color of your beardies poop.
Here’s a guide on what to be on the lookout for.
- Brown Poop – Normal and how it should look, it is usually a combination of urate and poop.
- Black poop – Black poop may be from feeding your bearded dragon too many insects and not enough fruits and veggies. It could also mean he has a parasite infection if the poop smells bad and is especially runny.
- Yellow poop – You may be feeding your beardie too many sweet potatoes, peppers or carrots. They could also be laying eggs that look yellow.
- Green poop – Your bearded dragon’s food is high in chlorophyll, usually leafy greens or your pet is eating the substrate. If your bearded dragon’s poop is runny and smells bad, it could mean they have an infection.
- White poop – White poop could mean your beardie is dehydrated. They will need more water. It could also mean they’re constipated.
- Runny poop -If your bearded dragon has runny poop it could be because they have had a recent change of diet such as lots of fibrous veggies that act as a laxative. If the poop is runny and smelly, this could mean they have parasites. Other symptoms of parasites include weight loss, lethargy, and bloody discharge. If you observe any of these in unison, visit a vet as soon as you can.
How Do You Clean Bearded Dragon Poop?
When you first get your pet bearded dragon, you’ll have a lot to consider regarding their diet and setting up the enclosure optimally.
The right food and enclosure should ensure that they stay healthy and happy. Plus, it will also make it easier to clean your bearded dragon’s poop.
Here are some practical tips to ensure your bearded dragon has the environment they need for healthy bowel movements:
- Get a proper sized enclosure- A bearded dragon needs a space much larger than they are. If your dragon is twenty inches long, they need at minimum a 120-gallon tank.
- Something to sit on – Bearded dragons in the wild live in trees. They like to hang out off the ground. Give them an area to bask in the light such as a high rock or log.
- Consistent temperatures – Keep the enclosure at an even temperature. It should be around 80 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit during the day. Under the basking light, it could be as warm as 95 to 100 degrees. At night, the temperatures can go down to 65 to 70 degrees when you turn off his light. Keep a thermometer in the tank to gauge the temperatures.
- UVA light – Get a fluorescent bulb that has UVA rays. Secure the light at least 12 inches away from where they’ll bask. This will keep your dragon’s biological processes working optimally.
- Humidity – Keep the tank humid for your beardie. Mist the enclosure every day to increase the humidity. Again, this will keep your dragon’s biological processes working optimally.
- Substrate – This is what you lay on the bottom of the tank. Make sure you get a safe and correct type that will not risk your beardie getting impacted if accidentally consumed.
The cleaner you keep your beardies enclosure, the happier they will be. Its also more hygenic and can prevent illness.
You should deep clean your reptile’s tank at least once a month.
Here’s how you should do so, especially cleaning up the poop.
- Put your beardie in a safe location while you clean. This could be a large container.
- Wear gloves and a mask
- Remove decorative things, dishes, bowls, and substrate.
- Remove any basking rocks or logs.
- Remove any uneaten foods.
- Soak the decorative things, dishes, and bowl in a mixture of hot soapy water and one teaspoon of bleach. Rinse with cold water and dry on a rack.
- Wipe off the substrate carefully. Some beardie owners use disposable substrates or sand that can be removed and replaced with fresh sand.
- Using a solution of warm water, dish soap, and 1 or 2 teaspoon bleach, use a clean rag and wipe down the entire tank inside and outside. Scrub any especially dirty areas where the poop has stained it. Let sit for 15 minutes, then carefully rinse the entire inside and outside with warm water.
- Wipe the outside glass with vinegar to clean it.
- Put a clean substrate back into the bottom of the tank. Add the clean decorative items and bowls.
- Once everything is back inside, put your beardie back into his tank. Never put him in if anything is still wet.
While you’re cleaning keep an eye out for poop that has stained the sides of the enclosure or the substrate. This must be removed.
Also, be sure the dishes are completely free of any poop residue.
Bearded dragons make cool, exotic pets that provide hours of enjoyment. They are the only reptiles that will truly interact with their human owners.
At first, it may be a little overwhelming as your research what your beardie will need to stay healthy. A big enough tank, the proper food with the right amount of protein, fruits, and vegetables will ensure your beardie stays healthy and happy.
Beardies are prone to get impacted so you’ll need to keep an eye out for symptoms.
Plus, different colors of beardie poop mean different things, so you’ll also need to be aware of what to watch out for when he poops.
Parasites are a common problem for beardies that have been exposed to other lizards. Their poop could also indicate this type of problem.
Consistently clean out your bearded dragon’s tank so he won’t get sick, especially runny poops.
In no time, you’ll be a bearded dragon expert knowing exactly how to take care of your pet.
So, don’t worry at first if you feel overwhelmed by impaction, runny poops, or cleaning up poop – it’s all part of owning a beardie. You’ll also enjoy hours of fun watching and interacting with your bearded dragon!
I am an experienced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets, from traditional pets like dogs and cats, to the more exotic like reptiles and rodents. I currently own a Cockapoo (pictured) called Bailey. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site dedicated to sharing evidence-based insights and guidance, based on my vast pet ownership knowledge, experience, and extensive research.