Ed Dragon lying on its side, shedding skin, surrounded by a ring of uneaten food

Do Bearded Dragons Stop Eating When Shedding

Bearded dragons are a popular pet. However, their shedding process can be alarming to inexperienced owners. Shedding is often accompanied by a decrease in appetite and other changes in behavior.

This article will discuss the signs of shedding and the reasons why bearded dragons stop eating. It will also cover the diet during shedding and provide care tips for shedding dragons. Additionally, it will touch on when to seek vet care for a shedding bearded dragon.

Key Takeaways

  • Bearded dragons commonly experience a decrease in appetite during shedding.
  • Changes in food preferences and stress levels can contribute to this decreased appetite.
  • Providing smaller, frequent meals and creating a stress-free environment can help maintain their appetite.
  • Veterinary care should be sought if distress signs, loss of appetite, swollen eyes, or excessive scratching or biting are observed.

Signs of Shedding

During the shedding process, it is common for bearded dragons to display certain behaviors that indicate they are in the process of shedding. These may include changes in their feeding habits and a decrease in environmental activity.

Bearded dragons often stop eating during this time, as they lack an appetite due to the skin coming off their body. A decrease in activity is also normal for a bearded dragon while shedding, as they tend to be lethargic and less responsive to stimuli.

Shedding can take up to two weeks depending on the individual lizard’s health and age.

Reasons Why Bearded Dragons Stop Eating

When molting, a decrease in appetite may be observed amongst bearded dragons. This is usually attributed to changes in food preferences as the animal’s diet shifts during the process.

Additionally, stress levels associated with shedding can also cause the reptile to lose its appetite. During such times, it is important to provide smaller amounts of food more frequently and create an environment that minimizes stress for the dragon.

Diet During Shedding

Molting can result in a reduced appetite for bearded dragons, requiring dietary adjustments to ensure optimal digestive health. Shedding frequency varies by species and age; during this period, the diet should provide adequate nutrition while avoiding over-feeding.

A balanced diet of fresh vegetables, supplemented with insects and vitamins is necessary for proper shedding. Offering small portions more frequently is advised to reduce the risk of nutritional deficiencies or weight gain, as well as providing an opportunity for hydration.

Care Tips for Shedding Dragons

Adopting proper care practices during the molting process can ensure optimal digestive health for reptiles. Keeping humidity levels high and establishing a regular schedule are essential for a shedding bearded dragon.

To maintain high humidity, mist the enclosure daily and provide a humid hide on one side of the tank. Additionally, regulate their day-night cycle by providing 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of darkness to mimic natural conditions.

Lastly, feeding your pet regularly will encourage them to stay healthy during this period.

When to Seek Vet Care

It is important to seek veterinary care if there are signs of distress during the molting process. Bearded dragons that are shedding may experience handling stress, temperature changes, and other health issues. Signs that warrant veterinary attention include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Swollen eyes
  • Excessive scratching or biting

Observing the dragon closely and taking steps to reduce stress can help prevent a medical emergency.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Does the Shedding Process Usually Last?

Shedding in Bearded Dragons can be triggered by changes in environment, nutrition and health. Care must be taken to ensure a shedding process that is healthy and safe for the animal. This process typically lasts 1-2 weeks depending on the age of the dragon.

What Are Signs That a Bearded Dragon Is About to Shed?

Prior to shedding, bearded dragons may display signs such as a decrease in appetite, changes in coloration, and the development of scales on their skin. In addition, they may also require an altered diet to support them during the shedding process.

Are There Any Specific Foods That Should Be Avoided While a Bearded Dragon Is Shedding?

When a bearded dragon is shedding, it’s important to adjust their diet accordingly. Foods high in fat and fiber should be avoided as they can impede the shedding process. Additionally, maintaining proper hygiene during shedding is crucial; regularly cleaning the enclosure helps reduce bacteria buildup which can irritate the skin.

Is It Normal for a Bearded Dragon to Eat Less During Shedding?

It is normal for a bearded dragon to eat less during shedding. Moisture levels should be monitored to ensure the shedding process is not hindered, and additional care should be taken to make sure the animal is healthy throughout the process. Proper shedding care can help ensure that your pet’s appetite returns once complete.

Are There Any Home Remedies That Can Help Speed up the Shedding Process?

Moisturizing techniques, such as lightly misting the dragon with a spray bottle or bathing them in lukewarm water, can help reduce shedding stress and speed up the process. It is important to ensure their environment is humid enough to aid in natural shedding.


Shedding in bearded dragons is a natural process that indicates good health. During shedding, it is important to maintain the dragon’s diet and adjust any environmental changes needed to promote healthy shedding. It may be necessary to provide additional hydration and moist hiding spots.

If the shedding process does not appear normal or if the dragon stops eating, then veterinary care should be sought immediately. By understanding what to expect while shedding and providing appropriate care, owners can ensure their bearded dragons remain healthy during this essential life stage.

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