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Home > Bearded dragons > How to Travel With Your Bearded Dragon: A Stress-Free Guide

How to Travel With Your Bearded Dragon: A Stress-Free Guide

bearded dragon_Gerhard G., Pixabay

If you have an upcoming move, vet visit, or trip that your bearded dragon will need to go on with you, it’s a good idea to plan ahead and make sure you’re prepared for the most stress-free trip that you can give your bearded dragon. Keep in mind that many beardies are uncomfortable with travel and will likely not enjoy going on an unnecessary trip with you, but each pet is different, so use your best judgment with your own beardie.

Regardless of the reasons for your travel, there are plenty of steps that you can take to make the trip as gentle and easy on your beardie as possible.

divider-bearded dragon

What Do You Need to Travel With Your Bearded Dragon?

bearded dragon turning black
Image Credit: Sebastian Duda, Shutterstock
  • Carrier: Just about any small animal carrier or box with a secure lid will suffice for this purpose if it has plenty of ventilation. Clear plastic carriers may seem like a fun way for your beardie to see the sights during travel, but this type of carrier may become too hot, especially in direct sunlight. Also, so much vision of the outside world may be overwhelming and stressful for your beardie.
  • Soft Materials: You want your beardie to be safe in the car, so make sure to provide soft materials like towels or blankets to keep things padded in case of an accident or sudden stop.
  • Heat Sources: A heated car is important, but you may still need heat packs or hot water bottles, especially in cold weather. Just use these carefully to avoid burning your bearded dragon.
  • Substrate: Substrate will help ensure that any messes in the carrier will not end up all over your bearded dragon.
  • Leash and Harness (Optional): If you’re planning a long trip or move, a leash and harness can supplement rest stop opportunities, so your beardie to safely feel the grass under its feet during the trip. These can also be beneficial if you need to clean the carrier because they will ensure that your beardie will stay safely near you and not be able to bolt.
  • Portable UV/Heat Light (Optional): This is only necessary for long trips or moves. Natural sunlight isn’t reliable, especially in the car, since you can’t control how strong the lighting is and the angle at which it enters the car. It will also help ensure that your bearded dragon stays warm, even in places like hotel rooms.


The 6 Steps to Travel With Your Bearded Dragon Stress-Free

1. Prepare Your Bearded Dragon

Get your bearded dragon used to being handled and taken into novel environments, even if it’s just different spots in your house or yard. This will help reduce stress from the travel itself and the frequent handling. You can even let it spend time in the box or carrier that you’ll be using for the trip so it feels and smells familiar during travel time.

2. Plan Ahead

Make sure you have everything that you need before the day of travel. You don’t want to wait till the last minute and then realize that you don’t have the carrier or heat lamp that you need for a trip. Also, make sure to pack food and water for your beardie for your destination and for stops along the way. Plan out your stops with places that will be safe and bearded dragon friendly.

3. Pack Up

Pack up everything that you need, and double check to ensure that you have everything. Make sure you’ve packed all necessary items and any additional things that you’ll need during the trip or at your destination. Go ahead and put your bearded dragon into the carrier or box. Make sure the carrier contains substrate so if poop happens, it won’t get all over your beardie.

4. Be Safe

Buckle your bearded dragon’s carrier into a seat in the car, or put it on the floor in a place where it is secure and won’t fall over or have things fall onto it. Drive safely and slowly, and do everything you can to avoid sudden stops.

5. Heat the Car

Turn on the heater so your beardie won’t get too cold. This will also give you extra time for your bearded dragon to adjust to its temporary environment.

heating car_Mohamed Ali Gabr_Shutterstock
Image Credit: Mohamed Ali Gabr, Shutterstock

6. Take Breaks

If you’re traveling a long way, take breaks to check on your bearded dragon. You’ll want to ensure that the temperature in the carrier is appropriate and that your beardie is comfortable and safe.

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Final Thoughts

Traveling with your bearded dragon doesn’t have to be a stressful experience for either of you! Preparation and planning are essential when it comes to travel, and that extends to your bearded dragon. Getting it used to being handled and to the carrier itself will help significantly with stress prevention and reduction. Have a fun trip!

Featured Image Credit: Gerhard G., Pixabay

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