Causes of a lethargic Bearded dragon

A lethargic bearded dragon is an indication that something is wrong with your pet. It’s not normal for a cheerful, active lizard like this to become sluggish and unmotivated. If you’re seeing signs of lethargy, it’s important to figure out the cause and treat it as soon as possible so your beloved pet can return to its happy, healthy state.

In this article, we’ll explore the various causes of a lethargic bearded dragon so you can identify the issue quickly and help it recover in record time.

causes of a lethargic bearded dragon

How To Tell Your Bearded Dragon Is Lethargic

Bearded Dragons may be prone to lethargy, which is a lack of activity and energy. To get your scaly friend back to their normal jubilant self, it’s essential to recognize these signs so that you can take prompt action.

You can tell if your bearded dragon has been experiencing lethargy if they are unusually still and show signs of exhaustion by lying down longer than usual without movement or interest in eating. Additionally, any convulsions should be taken extremely seriously and the vet should be contacted immediately.

There could be many reasons why your bearded dragon is lethargic, from being too hot or cold, not enough food or hydration, or even illnesses like parasites or virus infections. All of these need immediate attention in order for your beloved pet to return to its playful nature as soon as possible.

If you believe there is an issue with your Bearded Dragon that isn’t immediately visible, contact your local veterinarian for medical tests and proper treatments.

Signs of a Lethargic Bearded Dragon

If you’re a reptile owner, you know how important it is to watch for signs of lethargy in your pet. Bearded dragons are no exception – if you notice your dragon showing any of the below signs, it could be a sign that something’s wrong.

  • Unwillingness to eat
  • prolonged lying down
  • unable to move their legs properly
  • staying in one spot for extended periods of time.

Other signals can include eyes that stay closed for long periods and seem unaware of their surroundings.

Unwillingness to eat

If your beardie continues to not show any appetite for several days, then this could be an indication that something could be wrong and it would be best to check with a vet. Lethargic signs in bearded dragons include loss of appetite, slow movements, and a general lack of energy. Paying close attention to the behavior of your pet can help determine if there might be underlying health issues that need treatment or further investigation

Lying down and unable to use the legs

If your Bearded dragon is not using its legs to lift its body off the ground and isn’t able to hold its head up in the air, then it’s a sign that that could be lethargic. A healthy Bearded dragon should be able to easily use their legs to lift itself up and hold their heads high.

Other indicators of a lethargic Bearded dragon include difficulty walking, or appearing weak when trying to move around. If your bearded dragon is unable to lift itself from the ground, then it’s a surefire sign that something could be wrong. Seek professional help if this happens.

Staying in one place most of the time

When it comes to the health of a Bearded dragon, one sign that something isn’t quite right is if they become lethargic and stay in one spot most of the time. Normally, they should respond to gentle pushing by moving away but if your dragon refuses or isn’t able to, then it’s cause for concern and you should take them to a vet as soon as possible.

Other signs of a lethargic Bearded dragon can include becoming unresponsive, not eating as much, or being more inactive than usual. In any case, if you notice any of these changes in behavior then it’s important to get your dragon checked out immediately.

Closed eyes and unaware of the surroundings

As far as Bearded Dragons are concerned, sleeping during the night or when it gets colder is normal. But if you’re noticing your Bearded Dragon sleeping most of the time or being lethargic most of the time, there could be a problem.

Signs of a lethargic Bearded Dragon include closed eyes, unawareness of its surroundings, sleeping more than usual (even in higher temperatures), and lack of activity after meals. If you’re seeing any of these signs in your Bearded Dragon, consider consulting a vet for further evaluation and advice.

Causes of a lethargic Bearded dragon

Bearded dragons are often seen as being lethargic and listless. Although a lethargic Bearded dragon should not always cause worry, it is well worth making sure that the cause is not something serious. Here are the 4 important causes why a Bearded dragon might be lethargic.

lethargic Bearded dragon is one that is:

  • Unwilling to eat
  • Lying down, unable to use the legs
  • Staying in one place most of the time
  • Closed eyes and unaware of the surroundings

Also, see the 4 signs of a lethargic Bearded dragon for more information.


One of the main reasons why Bearded dragons become lethargic is that their husbandry needs are not fulfilled. Both the temperature and ultraviolet (UV) lighting plays a vital role in the activity of Bearded dragons. If the temperature is too cold, or there is not enough or adequate UV lighting available to see, a Bearded dragon will become dull and lethargic. I have very often confirmed husbandry by placing a lethargic Bearded dragon outside in full sunlight. If it perks up and becomes interested in food again, then the keeper needs to inspect/rectify the enclosure as soon as possible. Also, see Bearded dragon housing requirements for more information.


Being sick is probably the most concerning cause for a Bearded dragon to be lethargic. Because lethargy is such a general clinical sign in a sick Bearded dragon, there can literally be anything wrong. Lethargy is a very unspecific and only one of the possible clinical signs of disease. Sick Bearded dragons are often lethargic for a couple of consecutive days. If one suspects a disease being the cause of a lethargic Bearded dragon, be on the lookout for any other signs of ill health. Abnormalities to look out for are any physical abnormalities, diarrhea, anorexia (refusal to eat), skin thickenings or color changes, and exudates from the eyes, nose, and mouth. Falling and complicated injuries without any visible signs can also cause Bearded dragon lethargy.

Physical abnormalities and diseases are best treated by an experienced reptile-friendly veterinarian. In most cases, it will be beneficial to make a specific diagnosis before treatment is instigated. Some lethargic Bearded dragons will, unfortunately, get worse no matter what the treatment is going to be. When seeing a veterinarian, always accommodate a lethargic Bearded dragon with a fresh stool sample sealed in a ziplock or similar plastic bag. Expensive additional tests such as fecal flotation and wet preparations, radiography, and ultrasonography might be necessary to diagnose some of these cases. Treatment will include a combination of parenteral fluids (a drip), antiparasitics, and antibiotics.


While some behaviors might be seen as hyperactivity, others are seen as lethargy. Behavioral reasons why a Bearded dragon might be lethargic are brumation, being full, or part of the shedding process.

Brumation is a period where Bearded dragons go into a semi-slumber state because of colder weather. This is often, but not always, the case with adult Bearded dragons during the colder months of winter. If this is the case, Bearded dragons will spend a lot of their time sleeping and even hiding. Their appetites will be reduced and food is often refused for more than half the week at a time. Brumation behavior in Bearded dragons is normal. In my opinion, nothing should be changed from a husbandry point of view, except that the amount and frequency of insect feeding should be adapted to the needs of the Bearded dragon. Normal activity should return during the late winter to spring.

A full, or satiated Bearded dragon will often be lethargic while spending the most time in the basking area in order to digest its food. This behavior is often observed after a normal or large meal. Full activity should return in a day.

Skin shedding is another reason why a Bearded dragon might be lethargic. Even normal shedding might reduce activity and even cause periods where a Bearded dragon refuses to eat. Shedding will be evident by the sudden dark coloration of the majority of the body and by pieces of dry, dead skin starting to peel in places.

Most Common Causes Of Lethargy

Lethargy can be caused by many things and it’s important for bearded dragon owners to be aware of the most common causes.

One of these is dehydration, which happens when a bearded dragon isn’t consuming enough water. If your dragon appears weak or inactive, make sure that they have constant access to clean drinking water.

The Temperature Is Too Low

Lethargy in your bearded dragon can be caused by a few things, with the most common being low temperatures. If the temperature outside is below 50 degrees Fahrenheit, then your pet lizard is likely to feel sluggish and less lively than usual.

Their Environment Might Not Be Suitable

When it comes to a bearded dragon’s health, one of the most common causes of lethargy is their environment. It needs to be suitable for them in order for them to be healthy and active.

If their tank doesn’t have enough space or the lighting isn’t right, then this could impact their energy levels and cause them to become lethargic. Other possible causes of lethargy are dehydration, stress, and inadequate temperatures as well.

Their Diet Might Not Be Suitable

Bearded dragons are usually quite active animals, but a drop in energy might be a sign that something isn’t quite right. In most cases, their lethargy can be linked to their diet.

The most common causes of lethargy are when bearded dragons consume too much fiber or too little protein in their diets. High levels of fiber can be found in grasses, leaves, and hay and low levels of protein are common in meats, eggs, and fish.

If you suspect your bearded dragon is not getting enough of the right food for its needs, then it’s time to switch up its diet.

They Might Be Sick

Some illnesses may have no telltale signs that your dragon is sick, while others might be more noticeable. In any case, if your beloved pet starts exhibiting signs of being sick, you should take them to a veterinarian right away.

Some of the most common causes of lethargy in these reptiles include pneumonia, parasites, intestinal obstruction or infections, metabolic bone disease, and respiratory infections.

They Might Have Parasites

Lethargy in bearded dragons is most commonly caused by parasitic infections. Very small creatures called parasites can cause harm to both people and animals.

While most reptiles are susceptible to parasitic infections, there are only a few types of parasites that can be harmful to bearded dragons, with the most dangerous type being roundworms.

If left untreated, roundworm infections will typically cause diarrhea, which can lead to dehydration and weight loss – all of which can rob your bearded dragon of its energy and enthusiasm.

So it’s important to recognize the symptoms early and seek help if your pet is exhibiting signs of lethargy or excessive tiredness.

They Might Be Dehydrated

Lethargy can be caused by a number of issues, and it’s important to identify the underlying cause. In bearded dragons, one of the most common causes of lethargy is dehydration. This can happen if your dragon is losing water through excessive urination or breathing out moist air.

If your dragon seems to be drinking excessively, you should provide them with additional water supplies. On the other hand, if you think dehydration may be causing their lethargy, then add some fresh water to their enclosure in order to help replenish fluids and electrolytes.

They Might Be Stressed

Lethargy in bearded dragons can be caused by many different things, with stress being one of the most common causes. Stress can arise from a variety of different factors such as overcrowding, lack of exercise, or insufficient light exposure.

Closely observing your beardie’s behavior during the day and night is key to detecting signs of stress.

They Might Start Brumation

Lethargy is one of the most common causes of brumation in bearded dragons. Brumation happens when reptiles become inactive during their winter months, usually because temperatures drop below freezing, making it difficult to stay warm.

In addition to cold temperatures, other conditions can also lead to your pet’s lethargic behavior such as poor nutrition and stress.

They Might Have Hypoglycemia

Lethargy in bearded dragons can be caused by a variety of different things, but the most common cause is hypoglycemia. Hypoglycemia is when a pet lizard has an abnormally low blood sugar level.

When this happens, their body begins using stored fat reserves instead of glucose, and energy levels start to drop.

It Doesn’t Have The Right Nutrition

When caring for a bearded dragon, it’s essential to provide them with the proper vitamins and minerals. Without these, your pet can become lethargic and weak, a sign of malnutrition.

Inaccurate nutrition is one of the most common causes of lethargy in bearded dragons; this involves not providing enough protein sources or not combining food sources properly.

How Can You Improve Your Bearded Dragon’s Energy Levels?

If your bearded dragon is sluggish and has a decreased appetite, then it’s important to take steps to increase its energy levels right away. You should speak to your veterinarian about what can be done and even consider consulting with your local pet store owner for tips.

When it comes to improving the vitality of your beloved lizard, there are several things you can do: feed them twice a day, give them plenty of physical activity daily (i.e. climbing and jumping), change up their diets by introducing new fruits, veggies and probiotics, provide them with calcium supplements and keep the temperature between 70 °F and 80 °F at all times.

Beardies require high amounts of Vitamin B6 which can be found in dark leafy greens such as spinach, collards, and broccoli. Adding these foods to their regular meals will ensure that they get proper nutrition to help boost their energy levels.

Overall, with the help of professional advice from a vet or pet store owner combined with regular exercise, diet changes, and proper temperatures – you’ll notice that your bearded dragon’s energy levels start to improve over time!


How Can You Fix Lethargy In Bearded Dragons?

Bearded dragons can become lethargic for a number of reasons, including low blood sugar levels. Though it’s normal for the sugar levels in your dragon to be around 150 mg/dL (7.8 mmol/L) or higher, a drop below this mark can cause sluggishness and a decrease in appetite.

How Can You Tell If Your Bearded Dragon Is Dehydrated?

It can be tough to tell if your Bearded Dragon is dehydrated, but there are several signs you should look out for. Typical symptoms of this are lethargy, a decrease in appetite, low water consumption, and excessive salivation.

If your lizard companion exhibits any of these issues, they may be dehydrated and you should take action.

Pay careful attention if you are familiar with your Beardie’s typical activity level, or how often they drink water normally. Do they suddenly seem sluggish or uninterested in food when they usually devour every meal?

Pay attention to the amount of drool produced – which can be an indication that the bearded dragon isn’t drinking enough water.

How Do You Know If Your Bearded Dragon Is Upset?

An upset bearded dragon will display a variety of behaviors, such as increased activity, excessive chewing, and even biting. Other signs include scratching, pacing, or spinning.

If you notice any unusual behavior in your Bearded Dragon then you should contact your veterinarian right away.

It’s important to pay attention to any changes in behavior and let your veterinarian know as soon as possible so they can help diagnose the problem and provide the best care for your beloved pet.


In conclusion, a lethargic bearded dragon can be caused by a variety of factors. These include inadequate exercise, improper diet, dehydration, and stress. To ensure that your lizard buddy stays healthy and active, it is important to provide him with the right environment and nutrition.

Additionally, you should also make sure to monitor his blood sugar levels and hydration status regularly. With proper care and attention, your bearded dragon will remain happy and healthy for years to come.