Ed dragon happily exploring a terrarium full of rocks, plants, and toys such as wheels and hammocks

13 Things That Bearded Dragons Love: Enrichment Ideas

Are you looking for ways to make your bearded dragon’s life more enjoyable? If so, this article is perfect for you!

Here, we’ll cover 13 enrichment ideas that bearded dragons love.

From UVA/UVB lighting to natural environments and handling and socialization, all the tips you need are right here.

So grab a pen and paper and let’s get started – your beardie is sure to thank you!

Key Takeaways

  • UVA/UVB lighting and live plants are important for the health and well-being of bearded dragons.
  • Providing a variety of plants, including nocturnal and swimming plants, promotes exploration and natural behaviors.
  • Creating a habitat with cool areas, access to cold tiles or air conditioning, and a nighttime temperature drop encourages nocturnal behavior.
  • Enrichment accessories such as hide boxes, digging spots, swimming opportunities, and perches enhance the dragon’s habitat and provide opportunities for stimulation.

UVA/UVB Lighting

Bearded dragons need UVA/UVB lighting to stay healthy, so investing in the right type is key. Quality lighting sources give them UVB exposure and intensity they need, while ensuring temperature control.

Following these guidelines will give your dragon the freedom to enjoy a safe environment while giving you peace of mind.

Live Plants

Exploring the variety of live plants that you can introduce to your bearded dragon’s habitat is a great way to create environmental enrichment. Not only will this provide visual stimulation, but it can also help promote natural behaviors like foraging and basking.

Make sure you are aware of which live plants are safe for your bearded dragon before introducing them. Some may be toxic or cause irritation when ingested.

Plant Variety

Offering a variety of plants in the bearded dragon’s habitat is important for its enrichment. Nocturnal plants, like dandelions and sedges, should be included as they help replicate the natural light cycles that dragons are accustomed to.

Swimming plants, such as water lettuce and duckweed, can also be added to provide an aquatic environment if desired.

To ensure that your dragon is getting the most out of its habitat, mix up textures and colors. This will create an interesting space with plenty of opportunities for exploration.

Plant Safety

It’s important to ensure plants in a bearded dragon’s habitat are safe to handle and consume.

When socializing plants, be sure to research non-toxic varieties, inspect for pests, and provide ample lighting.

Be aware of potential hazards like toxic leaves or sharp thorns.

Check regularly for signs of disease or infestation, addressing any issues immediately with natural remedies.

Handle pests carefully and without fear; it’s important to keep the environment healthy as well as free!

Night-time Temperature Drop

Bearded dragons are nocturnal animals, so naturally they prefer warmer temperatures during the day and cooler temperatures at night.

To mimic their natural cooling habits, you should allow your dragon’s habitat to drop by about 10 degrees Fahrenheit in the evening.

This drop in temperature will encourage nocturnal behavior and provide your dragon with a more comfortable environment that mimics their natural habitat.

Cooling Habits

Providing bearded dragons with consistent access to cool areas is essential for their cooling habits. Cooling methods can include:

  • Placing a cold tile in the enclosure.
  • Installing air conditioning in the room, if necessary.
  • Allowing natural environmental control, like open windows and fans.

These will help your dragon stay safe and comfortable while they relax during the night-time temperature drop.

Nocturnal Behavior

Now that you understand their cooling habits, let’s discuss bearded dragon nocturnal behavior.

These creatures are technically omnivorous and have different habitat requirements for day and night. During the day, they prefer high temperatures and bright lights, while at night they like it cooler with dim lighting.

Additionally, their mating habits will influence their nocturnal behavior as well.

With adequate preparation, you can create a nighttime environment that best suits your bearded dragon’s needs.

Hide Boxes

Creating hide boxes for your bearded dragon can be a fun way to provide enrichment. Not only does it give your pet the chance to explore and express their natural behaviors, but it also stimulates their mind with new activities and sights. Additionally, hide boxes help them stay cool during hot days and offer protection from predators and stressors in their environment.

Hide boxes offer many benefits, but there are also hazards to consider. Accidental entrapment, dehydration, and overheating are potential risks that need to be taken into account.

Digging Spots

Digging spots are another great way to keep your bearded dragon entertained and help them feel secure. Offer rocky areas or burrowing spots that mimic their natural environment. Create a pile of rocks for them to explore, making sure they’re stable and safe.

You can also add logs or pieces of wood for your beardie to climb on. Allowing them to dig and move around provides lots of stimulation!

Swimming Opportunities

Giving your bearded dragon swimming opportunities can be a great way to provide them with an enriching experience.

  • Create swimming challenges by submerging rocks, logs, or other objects in shallow pools.

  • Invest in safety measures like protective pool covers and non-toxic water treatments.

  • Make sure the pool environment is comfortable and secure for your scaly friend.

Variety of Food

Providing your pet with a variety of food can be an important part of their overall care. Healthy options, such as fruits, vegetables, and insects, should make up the bulk of your dragon’s diet.

Variety helps keep them from becoming bored with eating the same thing day after day. A dietary balance of proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals will ensure that your bearded dragon stays healthy and happy!


Perches can be a great way to give your dragon climbing and perching opportunities to keep them active. When setting up their cage, use furniture placement that will provide space for them to climb. Choose long branches or tree limbs of different sizes and textures. Install rocks or ledges that are comfortable for them to rest on. Offer naturalistic wide perches at various heights in the cage. This allows your dragon to explore its environment while providing it with more freedom.

Branches and Logs

Offering branches and logs in your dragon’s cage can give them an extra sense of security as they explore their home. Natural wood pieces provide a safe spot to observe their environment, and even use for bathing habits if the enclosure size is large enough.

Not only do logs provide comfort, but they also offer stimulation with different textures and heights to climb. Be sure to check for any sharp edges before introducing them into the habitat.

With the right setup, you’ll have a happy bearded dragon!


You can give your dragon fun entertainment with creative enrichment ideas!

Playing music, exploring caves, and interactive toys are great ways to keep your pet engaged.

Listen to classical or new age tunes – a dragon’s favorite is often up to the owner’s taste.

Provide different materials for exploration – such as tunnels or corrugated paper tubes.

Offer interactive toys that stimulate mental and physical activity- like hiding food around their cage!

With these simple activities, you can give your dragon an interesting environment to explore and enjoy.

Toys and Puzzles

Providing your dragon with interactive toys and puzzles can help keep them entertained and active. Selecting the right toys for your pet is key; choose ones that are non-toxic, safe, and appropriate for their size.

Vary the difficulty of puzzles to challenge their minds as they grow. Toys should provide enrichment, be fun, durable, and stimulating.

With a good selection of toys available to your dragon, boredom won’t stand a chance!

Natural Environment

Creating an enriching natural environment for your bearded dragon is essential to its health and wellbeing.

Providing opportunities for your pet to forage can help them stay active and alert, and sand bathing gives them the chance to regulate their temperature.

With these simple steps, you can create a stimulating home life that will keep your dragon happy and healthy.

Foraging Opportunities

Offering foraging opportunities is a great way to provide enrichment for bearded dragons. They love a challenge, so hide treats in different locations and let them find them – it’s like an egg hunt!

Foraging also offers a variety of nutritional benefits, mental stimulation, and physical exercise.

Creating these challenges allows your dragon to explore their natural instincts while providing much-needed enrichment.

Sand Bathing

Giving your dragon a sand bath is an essential part of their care and enjoyment. Bathing preferences may vary, so make sure to research the best type of sand for your dragon.

Natural sands like play or beach are ideal, but avoid calcium-based sands as they can be dangerous for dragons. Provide at least one inch of sand in a shallow dish big enough for them to fit into comfortably.

They’ll enjoy digging and rolling around, plus it helps regulate their temperature and keep skin healthy!

Handling and Socialization

You can help your bearded dragon become comfortable with being handled by offering it treats and spending time calmly near them.

  • Give positive reinforcement when they let you pick them up.
  • Use social cues to make them feel secure, like gently stroking their chin or back.
  • Make sure handling sessions are short and sweet to keep from overwhelming them.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Often Should I Feed My Bearded Dragon?

You should feed your bearded dragon a balanced diet of appropriate staple foods. Follow feeding guidelines to ensure your pet gets the nutrition it needs. Variety is important, so mix up meals for optimal health and enjoyment.

How Often Should I Bathe My Bearded Dragon?

Bathe your bearded dragon once or twice a week, using warm water. Ensure the temperature is comfortable for them, and that they can easily exit the bath when ready. Offer an enjoyable experience with plenty of stimulation and freedom to explore.

What Kind of Cage Should I Get for My Bearded Dragon?

You should get a cage for your bearded dragon that has good bedding selection and temperature control. Look for one with plenty of ventilation, a secure lid, and easy access for cleaning. Choose materials that are safe, durable, and provide the right environment for your pet.

How Often Should I Take My Bearded Dragon Out for Handling?

Handle your bearded dragon often to keep them active and content. Set up an enclosure that allows for easy access when handling. Habits should be established, with daily or twice daily sessions of gentle interaction to build trust.

What Is the Best Substrate to Use for My Bearded Dragon’s Enclosure?

For your bearded dragon’s enclosure, you’ll need a substrate that provides good temperature control and allows UVA lighting to pass through. Look for one that is easy to maintain, while still providing the freedom your dragon needs.


You’ve now got some ideas to keep your bearded dragon happy and safe!

With a range of UVA/UVB lighting, live plants, hide boxes, digging spots, entertainment options, and toys and puzzles, you can create an enriching environment that mimics their natural one.

Don’t forget regular handling and socialization too.

With the right set-up and care, you’ll ensure your scaly friend is living its best life!

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