how to treat tail rot bearded dragon

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What’s Bearded Dragon Tail Rot?

How To Determine Tail Rot

Figuring out tail rot can change into tough particularly when your bearded dragon has dark-colored pores and skin. Other than a change in coloration particularly on the tip of the tail (darkish brown, black), search for indicators of dehydration. Part of the tail that’s actually dry and has an uncommon coloration are indicators of tail rot. Search for flaky, brittle, or coarse textures on the affected components of your beardie’s tail or perhaps a stiff tail which will have a slight bend.

Typically, shedding may be mistaken for tail rot and vice versa. Take notice {that a} wholesome tail that’s shedding will nonetheless be pliable and versatile. It’s going to appropriate itself and straighten out after in contrast to motion one affected by tail rot which can change into stiff or bent. If the remainder of your beardie’s pores and skin is flaking off or appears dry, then it might simply be shedding. Present correct hydration in your pet always to help in shedding.

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Behavioral Signs Of Tail Rot In Bearded Dragons

Non-physical tail rot signs level to behavioral adjustments in bearded dragons that always point out ache, sickness, or stress.

  1. Irritability
    1. Your dragon could change into irritable and impatient, typically hissing or attempting to chunk which is an indication of misery or ache. Your dragon may additionally present a black beard due to stress.
  2. Lack of urge for food
    1. Decreased urge for food or weight reduction are additionally indicators that your beardie is sick and presumably dying. Nevertheless, brumation may trigger a scarcity of urge for food, so remember to examine the enclosure’s temperature as effectively to rule this out.
  3. Discomfort or ache when the tail is touched
    1. For those who discover that your bearded dragon exhibits indicators of discomfort or ache when the tail hits or touches an object, then it might have tail rot.
  4. extended hiding and lethargy
    1. In case your beardie appears extra reclusive than regular or is hiding for extended durations of time in uncommon areas of their enclosure then it might be sick or in ache.

What Causes Tail Rot in Bearded Dragons?

1. Fights & Trauma

Fights and trauma are sometimes causes of tail rot. Unfastened objects within the enclosure can pin your dragon’s tail inflicting trauma or harm so be certain its enclosure is secure. Bearded dragons are solitary animals that like dwelling alone. If they’re housed with one other dragon, they typically change into aggressive and territorial. Fights might be widespread in bearded dragons housed in a single enclosure so it is best to separate them. In a battle, the tail can change into bitten or scratched and such accidents can pave the best way for tail rot. Typically, the rotting of a dragon’s ft may happen in the event that they maintain accidents there.

2. Insufficient Food regimen

Correct weight loss plan and vitamin play an enormous half in a bearded dragon’s total well being particularly in its potential to ward and battle off infections. All the time present your bearded dragon with high-quality meals and dietary supplements akin to calcium and vitamin D3. These nutritional vitamins will strengthen its immune system and help in correct bone and cartilage development. A scarcity of calcium in your beardie’s weight loss plan could make the onset of tail rot change into worse. All the time be certain to get your reside meals (bugs) from respected breeders to keep away from parasites and different dangerous toxins. Beardies additionally want the proper ratio of bugs to greens so take note of what you feed them.

3. Incorrect Lighting

Correct full-spectrum lighting (UVA/UVB mild) is important in your bearded dragon’s digestion and absorption of calcium. Even in case you present a calcium complement, UVB mild continues to be wanted in your bearded dragon to get sufficient vitamin D3 to help in calcium absorption. Once more, these vitamins will guarantee your dragon’s good well being (sturdy bones, wholesome eggs, correct cartilage development). Keep in mind that your UVB lamps degrade with time and can must be changed each 6 months.

4. Incomplete Shed

Typically, your bearded dragon could not shed fully and part of its pores and skin could get caught on the tail and constrict it. This cuts off blood circulation, inflicting tail rot. Nevertheless, it is best to by no means try to assist your beardie shed as this may hurt them as effectively. As a substitute, ensure that your dragon is effectively hydrated by offering clear water always and maintaining correct humidity ranges (30-40%) in its enclosure. Spend money on a great hygrometer so you possibly can examine precisely. Misting may also help with the humidity ranges in addition to a pleasant heat tub to help in shedding.

5. Poor Care and Upkeep

It goes with out saying that correct care and upkeep of your bearded dragon’s enclosure ensures that they continue to be in high well being. A poorly stored cage can harbor micro organism and different parasites that can hurt your beardie and make them susceptible to infections. Remember to keep up the required temperature, humidity, and lighting ranges in your dragon’s habitat. Hypothermia, or when your dragon’s physique temperature is stored too low, may trigger tail rot so ensure that the temperature within the enclosure is the proper vary. Spend money on an correct digital thermometer. Maintaining your dragon in good well being is the most effective treatment in opposition to tail rot and different ailments.

6. Embolisms

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Blood clots or embolisms within the tail can prohibit blood circulate and trigger tail rot. Forestall this with correct weight loss plan and vitamin and by maintaining your bearded dragon wholesome and stress-free.

Tips on how to Deal with Bearded Dragon Tail Rot From Residence

There are some dwelling treatments that may assist with tail rot but it surely’s at all times finest to take your beardie to the vet, particularly in superior circumstances since tail rot can progress fairly quick and switch deadly. Nevertheless, you possibly can attempt to deal with it at dwelling for minor and early circumstances with a betadine soak and topical medicines.

Make a 1 half betadine to five components water combination and soak the tail gently for five minutes. After soaking, dab the realm with an absorbent paper towel or clear fabric then apply an antibiotic ointment like Neosporin (the type with out ache reduction – ache relievers are recognized to be poisonous to lizards). Keep in mind to do all the things gently.

Repeat these steps every single day for about 1-2 weeks. Nevertheless, the betadine soak ought to solely be carried out for a most of three days as this may dry out your beardie’s pores and skin making the situation worse. Once more, if unsure, at all times seek the advice of your vet.

When Ought to You Seek the advice of A Vet?

All the time remember the fact that tail rot is a painful and disintegrating situation that may be deadly in your bearded dragon if not handled correctly. Typically, a visit to the vet is the most effective factor you are able to do in your beardie. If this cannot be carried out then some first help listed above may be administered.

Seek the advice of a specialist vet when preliminary dwelling remedy didn’t enhance the situation or once you solely observed the tail rot at its superior stage. If the tail rot is accompanied by behavioral signs akin to lethargy, lack of urge for food, and ache then it’s a signal that the tail rot has progressed and your beardie requires medical consideration.

Bearded dragon with amputated tail due to tail rot

The vet could advocate amputation to verify the decaying tissue doesn’t progress to the remainder of the physique. Although this may sound excessive, it might be the one factor that can save your bearded dragon. Hydration, correct vitamin, and antibiotics are often the prescribed aftercare post-amputation in addition to maintaining a clear atmosphere in your beardie.

The vet may additionally require different bodily exams and scans to examine the interior organs of your dragon. At finest, solely a betadine soak and a few antibiotics might be prescribed.

How To Forestall Tail Rot In The Future

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Stopping tail rot from taking place will at all times be higher than remedy and it often steps that each one bearded dragon house owners are acquainted with. These prevention measures are what it’s a must to do to take excellent care of your bearded dragon anyway. On the very begin, just be sure you get your bearded dragon from a accountable breeder so that you’re assured that your dragon won’t be susceptible to sickness.

Guarantee that your beardie’s enclosure has enough area and is the suitable tank measurement to make sure wholesome development. Preserve your tank furnishings easy but practical – ensure that there are not any sharp edges or unfastened objects that may trigger accidents. All the time maintain your tank clear with the correct habitat circumstances (temperature, humidity, heating, and lighting). Preserve just one bearded dragon in a tank to forestall fights.

Correct weight loss plan, vitamin, and hydration may even maintain tail rot at bay with high quality meals and dietary supplements. Be certain that your UVB lamps are in fine condition and exchange them each 6 months. In case your dragon is shedding, don’t assist it and simply be certain it’s effectively hydrated. A heat tub may additionally assist. The perfect prevention to any illness, together with tail rot, is to make sure your bearded dragon is wholesome and stress free.


Tail rot is a critical and presumably painful situation for bearded dragons attributable to trauma or constriction of blood provide to the tail. Some dwelling treatments can be found akin to an antiseptic soak and topical antibiotics however it’s typically finest to seek the advice of your veterinarian earlier than the situation will get worse.


Additional Studying

A vet’s perspective on treating tail rot:How I deal with Tail Necrosis in Lizards — Vet TailsWhat is Bearded Dragon Tail Rot?

An inventory of widespread ailments affecting bearded dragons:Bearded Dragons – Illnesses

Fast data on toe, tail, and limb necrosis in lizards:Toe, Tail, and Limb Necrosis in Lizards

Explaining widespread myths and details about bearded dragon care:Myths and Details about Bearded Dragon Care

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