Bearded dragons are cold-blooded creatures that are designed by nature to live in deserts. Their skins and their metabolic systems are very slow. Moreover, they have a particular way of living, which is impacted by their environment. When you bring this wild reptilian home, how long can bearded dragons go without heat?
Bearded dragons need the kinds of temperatures that they are designed for, which means that they need a warm and temperate climate during the day and a slightly cooler environment at night. Pet owners who have gotten a bearded dragon recently, or if are considering getting one, must know the optimum temperatures for these creatures.
The Optimum Temperature For Bearded Dragons
Bearded dragons require higher temperatures than many creatures and the optimum temperature is between 90⁰F and 95⁰F. This temperature range is not only normal for them but will ensure that they remain healthy and thrive as adults. The minimum temperature for bearded dragons is 60⁰F.
If the temperature goes below this minimum range, then it will become uncomfortable for them and they become too nervous and panic. The bearded dragons show signs of nervousness, or anxiety when they are not comfortable with their surroundings. The signs of anxiety and lack of appetite get more intense as the temperature intensities out of their optimal temperature range for a long. You can see some drastic mood changes if your bearded dragon is not at ease in terms of temperature. Also, read What Temperature Does A Bearded Dragon Need.
Providing Heat To Bearded Dragons
Bearded dragons require an external heating device such as a UVB lamp to keep their tank optimally warm. In case, the lamp is unavailable and there is no source of external heat for the bearded pet, how long can they live in the cold?
If the bearded dragons remain in the cold without any external heat device, they will begin to slow down just like reptilians slip into hibernation in the cold winters in the wilderness. In the three months of cold days and nights in the wild, there are no reptilians out and about because they hide in warm spots and sleep for a long time. Their metabolism slows down to a minimum which only means that they are breathing and their body spends stored energy in keeping their body systems running at a minimum rate.
In case there is too much cold and the temperatures drop below 40⁰F, the bearded dragon may be in danger of succumbing to organ functions reducing to nil, which means they will die. Pet owners must ensure that they can provide a warm environment for their bearded dragon pets because it is a matter of life and death for them.
Too Much Cold Is Harmful To Bearded Dragons
Dogs, cats, and other animals that have hairy hides may not feel so lethargic or slow in cold weather because their bodies are designed to survive in all kinds of weather. Even in these animals, some breeds are more acclimatized to warmer climates while others have thick coats that keep them warm in cold places. Bearded dragons may be defined by the place where they originated, but they are not attuned to all kinds of weather conditions. They are cold-blooded and that means they need an external heat provider to keep them fully functional.
Bearded dragons are made for warmer areas such as deserts and sandy arid regions. As pets, they may be kept in all kinds of places, but then you will have to ensure that they are kept warm. These reptilians require an environment closest to their natural habitat.
Many pet owners who have cats or dogs know that if they keep a particular breed that does not originate in the same weather as where they are kept, special arrangements have to be made to ensure their well-being. For example, if you keep a Siberian Husky in Arizona, you would have to ensure that it has a fan and cold baths every other day. Moreover, you will have to trim its furry coat to make sure it doesn’t feel too hot as that can be dangerous to it.
Similarly, when you keep a warm origin animal as a pet, you will have to give them protection from the cold and that is why bearded dragons cannot stay in the cold for more than 24 hours. This period may be prolonged to three days if there are no chill winds or snow chills in your area. However, for pet owners, the 24-hour mark will be a good warning to take the external heating as an emergency measure to ensure the life of their bearded pet!
Another reason for keeping optimal temperature for dragons is that they stop eating as if in hibernation. When they do not eat, but they are awake, their bodies consume more of the stored energy and they will get exhausted sooner than when in hibernation. If the UVB lamp is not in place for 24 hours, it is time to get a new one, before it gets too late for your dear pet.
Bearded dragons can go without heat for 24 hours and any more than this would mean a loss of body functions. If the bearded dragon is in the cold for a long, it will become lethargic and may stop eating, which can lead to drastic changes. Moreover, the cold weather makes them lose their vital activity and they may suffer.
Frequently Asked Questions
What should I do if it is too cold for my dragon?
You can make sure that your pet is warm by keeping a UVB lamp in their tank. If that is not in place, use any light bulb that emits heat. If you see them become lethargic, you can provide them a warm place by wrapping them in a blanket and placing them near you, but this is a short-term solution.
Can I place a heater in the tank?
A heater can be harmful if you place it on the floor or at a level where the bearded dragon may touch it. However, if the heater is installed on the roof of the tank it may work. The best heaters for bearded dragon tanks are UVB lamps.
Emma is a pet enthusiast, and her way with words makes her an expressive writer. Her interests lie in healthcare and planning nutrition for various pets. She has two girls, and she’s passing her passion to them through occasional volunteer projects in the small neighborhood zoo. Emma joined our team as an enthusiast and has added more years to her experience by researching more about various creatures!