Posted:does anyone here own a bearded dragon? my boyfriend wants one when he can afford it so im getting information for him...if so, how much do they cost to maintain and also, silly question but i think very valid, do they cost a lot in electricity as you are using a light and uv lamp and heat mats etc doesnt this suck the juice so to speak? if this is the wrong place ive posted i am very sorry moderators. sk x
Posted:All exotic reptiles require great care and expense (see peles recent thread on the subject).
None more so than the bearded dragon, who, in addition to appropriate housing, heating and food, requires regular appointments with a professional reptile beard stylist who can make the most of this species impressive facial hair.
As with all dragons, they love to breathe fire, which makes regular beard trimming even more important.
"You can't outrun Death forever. But you can make the Bastard work for it."
--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR, "Last of The Lancers" AFC 32
Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!
Posted:had a check, thats shocking, but very helpful information though. still need to figure out how much its gonna cost in electricity etc, because unlike some people he really wants to think it through before taking on the commitment. sk x
Not only do you have to have a consistant heat mat 24/7 year round but also a UVA/UVB lamp for daytime use and a heat lamp or ceramic heater at an extreme end of the tank for basking.
The tank itself needs to be quite large, 2 to 3x the length of your dragon as an adult, which could be up to 18" or more. That is alot of space to heat up.
They cost quite a bit in food. Not only do they eat veggies, fruit and even my jade plant daily but require a two time a day feeding of crickets and occassionally meal worms. The crickets need to be domestically raised because wild ones can be filled with pesticides and such that domestic animals do not have a resistance to like wild ones. That means they need to be purchased at a store...and this is where people get lost a bit.
An adult Beardie will eat 20-30 crickets in 15 minutes. After that you need to fish the rest of the crickets out so they don't cause stress illness to the animal. Now, around here crickets tend to go for 10cents each...which means at least $4 a day in crickets alone...$120 USD a month. That is not including veggies, pellets, vitamins.
And they do require vitamins and even a monthly worm treatment.
Then there is the actual time they take. You need to spot clean the tank daily, because they will run through their poop and get ill.
If your bf goes away, he will need to find someone to care for the Beardie, even for an overnight excursion.
If there is a power outage, you MUST have a back up plan for heat, even in summer.
There is alot that goes into the care of these animals. They are extremely prone to stress. And they are expensive.
Your bf is looking at a good $1500/year alone in food, not including tank upgrades, substrates, electricity, vet bills and more.
And this is for an animal that on average lives about 6 years.
If he does get one, tell him to get the largest one in the pet shop, not the smallest. The smallest are cute but normally are calcium defficient. They feed based on a hierarchy, which means the larger ones are the ones who are stronger and more apt to not be ill. Also have him ask to handle the animal. Make sure that it's eyes are clear and not swollen. Make sure that the animal is not a yellowish color and lift it's tail to make sure the anal scale is free of impaction. Those are some of the preliminary signs of a healthy animal.
Hope this helps. Feel free if you have any more questions to ask.
Pele Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir "Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall "And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK
Posted:I had a bearded dragon for 8 years, feel free to ask anything, i dont feel the need to give any advice at the mo cos Pele covered pretty much everything, all i'll elaborate on is that you also need a heat mat for on end of the tank for night use (put it at the opposite end to the main basking lamp
also food wise its also good to give them the occassional Pinky, (a baby mouse) which can be added expenses and have to be frozen so you may want another freezer if your uncomfortable with having them in yours
Best advice I can give though, being someone who has looked after exotic pets is make sure he thinks long and hard about it, exotic pets are the hardest to look after and are too often thought as a fashion accessory or a commodity, if hes truly ready to commit to it then all the best to him
An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind
Give a man a fish and he'll eat 4 a day hit a man with a brick and you can have all his fish and his wife
Posted:you's have been an excellent help, thankyou very much! i dont think that reptiles are particularly fashionable, but i love my fluffy westie, i died his hair pink so he would match my outfits. (only joking) do people actually do that?? Im sure my boyfreind and his brother would be 100% commited and so would i with him, id hate the thought of it ending up like the ones pele has to addopt, although it sounds as though pele takes excellent care of them with a lot of work! ive got a million questions but i cant think of them right now. i shall refer back here when i do. big flame grilled beardie hug to all of you! grrr!
Posted:You probably already know this, or have inferred it from previous comments, but many species of lizard, Bearded Dragons being one of them, live for quite a long time. I got one for my nephew on his 7th birthday, he'll be turning 13 on monday - "Flame" has since grown to be over a foot in length, and continues to live the happy lizard life. That's a long time for heat rocks and lamps to be drawing current...