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Joan, Veterinary Technician
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 17300
Experience:  35+ years experience as veterinary tech and 20+ years experience doing reptile rescues.
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I have a four month old bearded dragon. He will not eat any

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I have a four month old bearded dragon. He will not eat any crickets today but he has eaten greens. He is opening his mouth and puffing up his beard repeatedly but not constantly. Should I be worried?

My name is XXXXX XXXXX I am a Vet Tech with special interest in Reptiles and Reptile Rescue. I need to ask some questions to assist you.
How old is your Dragon?

Can you tell me about the set up?

Diet prey/veggies?



UVB light? Is it a florescent tube or compact coil, brand, and strength?

Basking light?

Temps and how measured?

State to locate a Herp Vet if needed?


Customer: replied 3 years ago.

He is around four months old.

He has a large terrarium. He eats crickets and various greens and vegetables. I dust the crickets with calcium powder.

he has a 60 watt UVB bulb and a regular bulb along with a night heating bulb.

The normal temps are around 80 degrees in the basking area. temp is measured with a gauge on the wall.

we live in Florida and the house temp is around 78 degrees.


I believe that you were sold a full spectrum bulb and not a UVB bulb. Can you give me some further information about the Bulb you are using? Brand, is it a compact coil, florescent tube, or Mercury vapor bulb?

is the temp guage just the small round guage?

Substrate or bedding you are using?


Customer: replied 3 years ago.

It is a exo terra repti glow 10.0 UVB coil bulb, it is in a metal housing. Yes temp gauge is small and it is from the brand Zilla. We have a reptile carpet on the bottom of the terrarium


Thank-you for the information. The coil bulbs have a bad reputation and we normally suggest using the Reptisun 10.0 Florescent tube. This is some info on the coil bulbs:

The next issue we may be facing is the Tank temps. The basking area should be 105*F-110*F, the warm side mid 90's and the cool side mid 80's. If the temperature is too cool the Dragon will shut down, and cannot digest food. The type of temp guage you are using can be off as much as 20*F eaither way. I suggest a digital probe thermometer which is much more accurate and help stop future problems. The digital probe thermometers can be found at Pet Shops as well as in the hardware section of in Fl you do not need to use a night bulb unless the temp drops below 72*F.

As far as the behavior you are seeing is very typical of a Dragon starting to go through Puberty. They will puff out, stomp, hiss and act big and bad. They will go on and off foods. Right now the diet should be 80% live prey and 20% fresh veggies. At a year old, we change the ratios to 80% veggies and 20% live prey. As long as the activity level is good and Link is eating his veggies, you are ok. You may want to try some different feeders. Silk worms, phoenix worms, dubia roaches goliath worms, an occassional wax worm are good to change up for a happy Dragon. You can order these feeders online:

Please let me know if you have further questions and I will be happy to continue with you. My goal is to give you and Link 100% Excellent Service. PS, I too am in FL. Joan

Joan and other Reptile Specialists are ready to help you
Hi Jill,

I'm just following up on our conversation about Link. How is everything going?