Do Bearded Dragons Like to Be Held? Here’s What You Need to Know

Bearded dragons are fascinating creatures and they make great pets. However, if you’re a new owner or considering getting one, you may be wondering if these lizards like to be held.

In this blog post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about holding your bearded dragon and offer some tips for doing so safely and comfortably for both you and your pet.

Understanding Bearded Dragons

Bearded dragons are known for their calm temperament and affectionate nature. While they may not be as accustomed to being held as some other pets, with proper socialization, they can form a strong bond with their owners. However, it’s important to note that some individuals may display aggressive behavior if they feel threatened or uncomfortable. As responsible pet owners, it’s essential to learn how to read your bearded dragon’s body language and provide them with a safe and comfortable living environment.

Natural Behavior

Bearded dragons have strong territorial instincts, which means that they will become accustomed to and bond with the space in which they live. This is why providing a calm environment for your bearded dragon is crucial to its overall well-being. Additionally, basking habits are natural behavior for these reptiles as they require heat to regulate their body temperature.

Bearded dragons have strong territorial instincts and require a calm environment for their well-being.

When it comes to hunting patterns, bearded dragons are not naturally aggressive animals and do not typically form emotional bonds with their owners. However, with proper socialization and affection from pet owners, these reptiles can become quite comfortable being held or handled. It’s important to note that every individual bearded dragon has its own unique personality and preferences when it comes to handling.

Always support your bearded dragon fully while holding it - don't let it dangle, or worse, fall!
Always support your bearded dragon fully while holding it – don’t let it dangle, or worse, fall!


Bonding with owners is an essential part of socialization for bearded dragons. These reptiles may not show affection in the same way as dogs or cats, but they do form bonds with their owners. Holding your dragon regularly can help build a bond between you and your pet.

Bearded dragons are not naturally aggressive animals, but they can become stressed if they are not accustomed to interacting with other pets or people. When introducing your dragon to new environments or other animals, it’s best to start slow and monitor their behavior closely. Keeping a calm environment will also help them adjust more quickly.

Tips for Holding Bearded Dragons

When it comes to holding your bearded dragon, there are a few things to keep in mind. First and foremost, make sure you’re using the proper technique. Always support their entire body and avoid picking them up by their tail or limbs. Additionally, while it’s great to bond with your pet through holding them, it’s important not to overdo it. Too much handling can cause stress for your bearded dragon.

Another key factor in determining if your bearded dragon likes to be held is frequency. Some individuals may enjoy being handled more than others. Pay attention to cues such as body language and behavior when deciding how often to hold your pet. Ultimately, every individual is different so take the time to get familiar with their preferences before making any assumptions about what they do or don’t like!

Proper Technique

Support the Body:

When holding your bearded dragon, it is important to properly support their body. This will prevent any discomfort or injury to the reptile. Use both hands and place one hand under their belly for added support.

Avoid Squeezing:

Be gentle when handling your bearded dragon and avoid squeezing them too tightly. They have delicate bones that can easily break if handled incorrectly.

Let them Climb:

Bearded dragons are natural climbers, so allowing them to climb on you or a branch can provide exercise and stimulation for them. Just make sure they are in a safe environment and not at risk of falling from a high surface.


While it’s okay to hold your bearded dragon occasionally, excessive handling can cause stress for the animal. It’s recommended that owners limit holding sessions to 10-15 minutes at a time, only once or twice per week.

Start slowly and briefly handling your bearded dragon while it is young, so it can get accustomed to you and build trust!
Start slowly and briefly handling your bearded dragon while it is young, so it can get accustomed to you and build trust!


Observing the frequency of holding your bearded dragon is crucial for their health and happiness. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Start slowly and gradually increase:
  • Don’t overwhelm your pet with too much handling at once. Begin with short periods of time, such as 5-10 minutes, then gradually increase the duration.
  • Limit handling time to avoid stress:
  • While it’s important to bond with your bearded dragon through holding, they also need plenty of rest and relaxation. Avoid overhandling or holding them for extended periods that can lead to stress.
  • Observe Your Pet’s Reactions:
  • Every bearded dragon has a unique personality, so pay attention to their body language and behavior during handling sessions. If they seem uncomfortable or stressed out, it may be best to cut back on how often you hold them.

By following these guidelines, you can ensure that you’re providing your beloved pet with enough social interaction without causing unnecessary discomfort or stress.

Bonding with your Bearded Dragon

Bonding with your bearded dragon is an important aspect of being a responsible pet owner. Not only does it provide them with social interaction, but it also helps to establish trust and a strong relationship between you and your pet. Here are some tips for bonding with your bearded dragon through handling and interaction:

Start Slowly:

It’s essential to begin the bonding process slowly, especially if your bearded dragon is new to your home. Start with small interactions, such as offering them food by hand or letting them climb on your lap. This will allow your pet to become comfortable with your presence and build trust. It will need to learn to recognize you as a friend before your beardie will want to cuddle!

Be Patient:

Bearded dragons are not known for their affectionate nature, so it’s essential to be patient when bonding with them. Don’t expect immediate results and be consistent with your efforts.

Use Positive Reinforcement:

Positive reinforcement is an effective tool for building trust and reinforcing positive behavior. Offer your bearded dragon treats or praise them for good behavior during handling sessions.

Experiment with Different Activities:

Try different activities during bonding sessions to find out what your bearded dragon enjoys the most. Some bearded dragons enjoy being held and petted, while others prefer climbing or exploring. Find out what your pet likes and incorporate these activities into your bonding sessions.

Stay Calm:

Bearded dragons can sense fear and anxiety, so it’s essential to stay calm and relaxed during handling sessions. This will help to keep your pet calm and comfortable.

In short:

Bonding with your bearded dragon is an important part of being a pet owner. Remember to start slowly, be patient, use positive reinforcement, experiment with different activities, and stay calm during handling sessions.

And most importantly, pay attention to your pet’s reactions and body language to ensure that they are comfortable and happy.

With these tips, you’ll be well on your way to building a strong and trusting relationship with your bearded dragon.


In conclusion, bearded dragons can learn to tolerate being held if they are introduced slowly and given time to adjust. However, not all bearded dragons enjoy being held and may become stressed or aggressive. It’s important for pet owners to pay attention to their dragon’s body language and behavior to ensure they are comfortable and happy.

When it comes to choosing a tank for your bearded dragon, there are several factors to consider such as size, lighting, and temperature regulation. By providing a spacious and comfortable environment with proper care, you can ensure that your beloved pet will thrive in its new home.

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