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Home > Bearded dragons > Best Spot to Pet a Bearded Dragon: A Quick Guide

Best Spot to Pet a Bearded Dragon: A Quick Guide

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Bearded Dragons can be quite friendly and enjoy interacting with others. Some even like to be petted, though others may not like to be touched all that much. Generally, those who like to be touched tend to prefer certain body parts. Often, these areas include their head, neck, and back. Generally, any area pointing outwards is acceptable, though some also like to be petted underneath their chin.

Be sure to always pet in the direction with the scales—not against the scales. In most cases, this will be towards the reptile’s tail. However, it does depend on the exact part of the dragon you’re touching.

Of course, it’s important to note that not all Bearded Dragons are alike; some may want to be touched in particular places. Always start slow and observe a Bearded Dragon’s body language to determine if they enjoy the interaction.

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Do Bearded Dragons Like to be Petted?

Most Bearded Dragons like at least some attention. However, each reptile is an individual with different preferences. Some may be more social and enjoy being handled more than others. Certain Bearded Dragons may not like being petted at all.

You should always approach a Dragon slowly and watch their body language. Some Bearded Dragons enjoy being petted, while others may move away and hide whenever your hand comes out. Many will be somewhere in the middle, making it hard to determine if they’re enjoying the interaction.

Generally, Bearded Dragons that are enjoying the interaction will be relaxed. Some may even close their eyes. If the bearded dragon makes abrupt movements, they probably aren’t enjoying the interaction.

With that said, Bearded Dragons aren’t like traditional pets. They don’t crave attention like other pets and may not need to be petted very often. Be careful not to overhandle them, as this can cause serious stress and potentially injure them.

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Do Bearded Dragons Like to Cuddle?

Bearded Dragons are not cuddly pets in the same way cats and dogs are cuddly pets. However, they are friendly and may enjoy interacting with their owners. Bearded Dragons are innately independent creatures, though.

Some Bearded Dragons may enjoy sitting on their owner’s laps or shoulders for short periods. They must be properly trained and socialized, of course. Otherwise, they may be too fearful to sit calmly with their owner. It’s important to socialize your Bearded Dragons early if you want them to enjoy interaction at all.

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How to Socialize a Bearded Dragon

You’ll need to socialize your Bearded Dragon to ensure they like being petted. It’s important to socialize your pet carefully and early to help ensure they aren’t stressed by being handled and cared for.

Luckily, socializing a Dragon is easy and doesn’t require a strict schedule. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Handle them daily: The more you handle your Dragon, the more they’ll like to be handled. Therefore, you should start handling your Dragon safely for a few minutes each day as soon as you adopt them. Increase the time you spend handling them as they become more comfortable.
  • Always be calm and slow: Never approach a Bearded Dragon quickly or with erratic movements. Sudden noises and movements can scare your Dragon and prevent them from getting used to your presence.
  • Offer treats: Many Bearded Dragons are socialized through hand feeding. This makes the lizard associate humans with food, which makes them easier to handle.
  • Be gentle: Always be gentle when handling a Dragon. If you hurt your Dragon, your socialization efforts can be reduced by quite a bit. Never grip them tightly and avoid restraining them if you can help it.
  • Let them explore: The more your Bearded Dragon engages with the outside world, the less fearful they will be. You should let your Dragon explore with supervision to ensure they are safe.
  • Be patient: Your Bearded Dragon will take some time to warm up. Therefore, you’ll need patience and allow them plenty of time to adjust to you and their new home. Always keep an eye on their behavior and adjust as necessary.

How to Pet a Bearded Dragon

Petting a Bearded Dragon isn’t difficult. However, you must do it correctly. Otherwise, you may scare your bearded dragon or injure them. None of this will help your Dragon become used to you or make them enjoy being petted.

Here are some simple steps to pet your Bearded Dragon appropriately and carefully:

  • Approach cautiously: You should always start by approaching them cautiously and carefully. If your Dragon is scared, you shouldn’t attempt to pet them. You want them to be as calm as possible.
  • Start at the head: Most Bearded Dragons prefer to be petted on the head or neck. Therefore, we recommend starting there. Always stroke in the direction of the scales. Use a gentle touch and stop if your Dragon seems anxious.
  • Try the back and sides: Your Dragon may like it when its back and sides are petted. Therefore, you may want to try it if they seem okay about their head being touched.
  • Avoid the tail and feet: Most Bearded Dragons can be sensitive about their feet and tail. Therefore, we recommend avoiding these areas. If your Dragon seems uncomfortable being petted in a certain area, respect their boundaries and move on to another area.
  • Watch for stress: You should always watch your Bearded Dragon for signs of stress and discomfort. If your Dragon appears stressed, we recommend cutting the petting session short.
  • Be gentle: Always be gentle with a Bearded Dragon, as they can be easily injured. They are rather small, and many bones can be broken with too much force.

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Final Thoughts

Bearded Dragons are social animals that can be friendly and enjoy interaction. Some may even enjoy being petted, while others may not enjoy much touching. Typically, those who like being touched tend to have specific preferred areas, such as their head, neck, and back, or even underneath their chin.

It’s important to always stroke in the direction of the scales, towards the tail in most cases, to ensure a smooth touch. However, it’s important to note that every Dragon is unique, and some may have their preferred places to be touched.

Always start slowly and pay attention to their body language to see if they are comfortable with the interaction. Be aware that it may take time for a new Bearded Dragon to warm up to their owner and others before being comfortable with petting.

Featured Image Credit: tavan150, Shutterstock

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