How Long Do Bearded Dragons Live? All the Facts & Tips

Bearded dragons are a type of pet lizard that is becoming increasingly popular. They make interesting, low-maintenance pets and they can live long healthy lives if they are kept in the right environment.

Have you ever wondered how long bearded dragons typically live? Most reptile owners want to know this information so they can plan for the future and make sure their bearded dragon has a happy home.

In this article, we’ll look at how long bearded dragons live. We’ll go over some factors that influence their lifespan and discuss steps you can take to ensure your bearded dragon lives its longest possible life.

How Long Do Bearded Dragons Live?

Bearded dragons live an average lifespan between five to fourteen years. They can, however, reach a maximum age of around ten when kept as pets. Generally speaking, males tend to live longer than females because they are bigger and can better withstand harsher environmental conditions.

Additionally, female bearded dragons have shorter lifespans due to the energy expenditure of laying eggs which takes a large toll on their bodies.

Typical Bearded Dragon Lifespans

Bearded dragons in the wild tend to live a shorter life, typically falling between 5 and 8 years. However, when kept as pets, bearded dragons can live significantly longer – from 8 to 12 years!

The key factor affecting how long your bearded dragon will live is their level of care. Are they receiving a balanced diet? Are their temperatures and UVB rays at proper levels? Are they kept alone or with other dragons?

If you’re providing them with the right environment as well as proper nutrition, then you can expect your pet bearded dragon’s lifespan to reach upwards of 12 years! Ensuring that they eat live bugs dusted with calcium is also essential in helping them live longer and healthier lives.

Average Lifespan Of A Bearded Dragon In The Wild

Wild-dwelling bearded dragons have an average lifespan of 5 to 8 years, due to various factors that can adversely affect their population. Natural predators such as hawks, buzzards, wolves, and big cats often prey on them, causing serious injury or death which shortens their lifespan.

Additionally, they struggle to find food and water in their dry desert-like climate, making survival more difficult. It also lowers their potential lifespan by three to six years when all of these factors are put together.

Beardies must consume around 20 to 30 mL of water per kilo each day in order to stay hydrated and healthy, but the scorching heat of the desert sometimes makes it difficult for them to access enough of it. Nevertheless, with proper care and maintenance,, a wild-dwelling Bearded Dragon’s lifespan can be prolonged significantly.

How Long Do Bearded Dragons Live In Captivity

Bearded Dragons in captivity are known to have longer lifespans than those in the wild. This is thanks to being protected from predators, as well as having access to plentiful food and water sources. With proper care and a nutritious diet, Bearded Dragons can live for eight to twelve years in captivity.

For your bearded dragon to reach its full potential lifespan, you must provide it with the right lighting, heating,, and humidity levels along with adequate space and nutrition. Also, don’t forget that supplements like calcium can help give it the best possible chance of reaching old age.

By spending just a few extra minutes each day on husbandry, you’re effectively giving your lizard more years of life – so don’t hesitate to take some time out of your busy day to make sure they thrive!

How Long Bearded Dragons Can Go Without Water

Bearded dragons can last a surprisingly long time without water – but just how much time? While they’re naturally adapted to dry desert conditions, if you plan to have one as your pet, then it’s important to pay attention to their hydration.

Generally speaking, all animals can survive longer without food than they can without water. So, in ideal circumstances, you should try and give your bearded dragon fresh water daily. Of course, there are going to be times when this isn’t possible – such as if your pet gets lost or if the power fails – so it’s worth looking into how long a bearded dragon can go without water.

The opinions out there on this vary: some people say that their own pets went missing for two weeks yet were only dehydrated when found. But this is not recommended as a rule of thumb as going for longer than a few days/week without any hydration could be dangerous for your pet’s beard!

Factors That Impact A Bearded Dragon Lifespan

Bearded Dragons make wonderful pets, but it is important to ensure that their lifespan is maximized. As the owner, it’s up to you to provide your Bearded Dragon with the best possible care, which includes things such as providing the right diet and housing, monitoring their poop, and avoiding mistakes like breeding them too young.


When it comes to feeding your lizard, it’s important to provide them with a balanced diet in order to ensure their health and maximize their lifespan. The specific foods that you feed them should vary depending on their age. Young lizards (hatchlings and juveniles) require more protein, so they should primarily eat insects in their meals. Adult lizards, however, should shift focus towards plant-based diets as there is no longer the need for extra protein for growth.

It’s also important to keep track of the amount and type of food that you’re giving your pet. In addition, monitor calcium levels closely – if too much calcium is consumed then it can lead to problems such as yellow poop, bowel issues, and organ damage. To counteract this issue, hatchlings should receive a calcium supplement five times a week; juveniles should get one every other day, and adults only once per week.


If you’re a Bearded Dragon owner, it’s important to make sure that you provide your pet with the necessary enclosure to ensure they live a happy and healthy life. A quality 120-gallon tank is recommended, as this gives enough space to keep the proper levels of light, heat, humidity, and substrate. Without these things in check, their lifespan will be significantly decreased – so it’s worth taking the time to properly set up their environment.

It’s important to note that some substrates can be ingested by your pet lizard; leading to serious health risks such as impaction. As such, only use non-particle substrates like reptile carpets when setting up the enclosure. Additionally, you should also provide a shaded area for them as well – making sure not to cover the entire tank length with the heat lamp, or else it could cause overheating! This is an easy way for your pet’s life span to be reduced drastically.

Don’t forget about providing quality UVB light too! The best thing you can do is install a large bulb – not a coil – which will help promote healthy growth and development in your pet. However, too much light can also hinder their progress so remember to also keep an eye on humidity levels within your enclosure (which should sit between 30 and 40%). Respiratory infections can be avoided if maintained correctly.

Finally, make sure the enclosure isn’t too small either! A cramped cage isn’t good for any animal; increasing stress levels have negative effects on their overall health. So this is key in ensuring they get as big and strong as possible!


The disease is a very real threat to Bearded Dragons, and it’s essential that their health is monitored closely. Preventing it in the first place is much better than having to try to treat it, so regular exams with a vet, at least once a year, are highly recommended. Proper husbandry practices are also key for ensuring your Beardie stays healthy.

Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD) is one of the most common diseases affecting Bearded Dragons, and it can be non-infectious.

As the condition progresses, possible deformities in the jaw, spine, and legs may be seen. Additionally, their front legs could become spread out horizontally.

The main causes of MBD include inadequate exposure to UVB light and not providing enough calcium supplements for your pet dragon, making careful husbandry practices critical for keeping them safe from this potentially deadly illness.


For those looking to get the longest life possible out of their female Bearded Dragon, then you may want to reconsider breeding. That’s because breeding can take a toll on her body, leading to a decrease in her lifespan.

Due to the enlargement of her abdomen and consequential loss of mass in her pelvis and limbs, reproduction can have a significant negative effect on the health of your girl. And this is especially true when we factor in all the energy she expends during the process – after all, females are capable of laying multiple clutches that could contain anywhere from 15 to 25 eggs!

If you decide to breed your Beardie, be prepared to provide her with extra care and support afterward. This includes providing additional food and water, as well as manually tending to her needs for several days after she has laid her eggs. Taking these steps will significantly improve the longevity of your dragon’s life.

Stress, Illness & Abnormal Behaviors

When it comes to owning a bearded dragon, stress and illnesses can have a negative impact on their health and lifespan. It is important for Dragon Keepers to recognize any signs of stress, such as stress marks, glass surfing, or frenzied activity, so that they can take steps to calm their dragons down.

Illnesses are also preventable with proper care or treatable if discovered early. Metabolic bone disease is an example of an illness that can be prevented with good care but can become deadly if it progresses further. It’s important for owners to pay attention and observe their dragons in order to spot anything out of the ordinary quickly.

Some behaviors that could signify illness or stress include not eating or changes in appetite, lethargy, diarrhea, vomiting, panting, difficulty walking or limping, eye bulging, and biting. By being familiar with your dragon’s regular behavior you will more easily catch any abnormalities when they occur. Follow our blog post for deciphering bearded dragon behaviors for more information about recognizing common stressors and illnesses.


Bearded dragons come in a variety of sizes and shapes, with each species being unique. There are a total of eight subspecies of bearded dragons, and their size plays an important role in their overall resilience.

Bearded Dragons are much more resilient and stronger the bigger they get.The Pogona vitticeps subspecies is the most common pet species found and they have a lifespan of 8 to 12 years. On the other hand, Pogona henry lawson is smaller than its counterpart, with a lifespan ranging from 8 to 10 years. Lastly, Rankin’s dragon is another smaller subspecies with a lifespan ranging from 6 to 10 years.

No matter which species you choose as your pet Bearded Dragon, you can expect not only physical strength but also mental agility for years to come!

How Can You Tell How Old A Bearded Dragon Is?

When it comes to determining how old a bearded dragon is, the best way is to measure its body length. At first, these tiny creatures measure around 4 inches when they hatch and grow by roughly an inch every week until they reach 6 months of age – at this point, a beardie’s size will be approximately 11-18 inches long.

In addition to size, you can also look for physical signs that differentiate between males and females. Male bearded dragons typically come with enlarged femoral pores, bigger heads, wider tails, and darker beard coloration while female ones tend to remain smaller in comparison with distinct protrusions above their vent area instead of two as well as having slim heads and thinner tails.

These features can assist you in ascertaining the age of a bearded dragon much more accurately than solely assessing its body length.

Bearded Dragon Life Cycle

Bearded dragons experience six stages of life, starting with the embryonic stage which happens in the egg. The mother’s diet and stress levels during this period have a major impact on the offspring’s quality of living.

Hatchlings are born at around three inches in length and usually take between 55-75 days to grow up to eight inches in size, gaining an inch or two every month. From there they enter the juvenile stage where they are aged between seven and eight inches in length.

Once Bearded Dragon approaches one to three years of age, they become young adults and should consume more vegetables and greens as opposed to insects. During this period social behaviors increase, however, growth begins to slow down.

At four to seven years old bearded dragons reach the mature adult stage where there is no further growth and reproduction rates gradually decrease. Old age starts from around 7 – 8 years on average but can be delayed depending on the quality of care given earlier on in their lives, being characterized by increased lethargy, decreased feeding, and generally poorer health overall.

Life StageDuration
Embryonic55 to 80 days to hatch.
HatchlingFrom birth until eight inches in length.
JuvenileBegins when they reach eight inches in length.
Young adult1-3 years old.
Mature Adult4-7 years old.
Old Age8 years and older.

Average Bearded Dragon Lifespan and Aging

Bearded dragons are known for their long lifespan when kept as pets. In captivity, they can live up to 8-10 years with proper care, while those in the wild have a much shorter life expectancy due to a lack of food, water, and veterinary care.

At one to two years old they become mature, which is far earlier than many would assume. Some might even age to 6 months and enter a process called brumation, where they undergo a state of hibernation during the colder months.

Female dragons will lay clutches of eggs multiple times in a year, typically after brumation and increasing temperatures. Each clutch may have up to 20 eggs, with some being fertilized and others not regardless of the presence of a male dragon. Fertilized eggs will develop into embryos that hatch between 55 to 75 days later.

What Makes Some Bearded Dragons Live Longer Than Others?

The key to a longer life for your bearded dragon may lie in the husbandry and environment that you provide for them. Therefore, it’s important to do your research and make sure you have everything set up correctly to ensure their long-term health.

Poor husbandry can lead to a number of medical conditions in your bearded dragon, such as metabolic bone disease and kidney diseases which are caused by incorrect ultraviolet light exposure and lack of calcium supplementation. Female bearded dragons may also suffer from retained follicles that can even rupture internally if they are not cared for properly. Furthermore, periodontal or tooth and gum disease is a common issue due to the lack of regular veterinarian visits.

In addition to improper care, overcrowding beardies is another issue that needs to be avoided as they may injure each other, leading to wounds and loss of limbs. Improper hydration due to inadequate bathing could result in shedding problems which can cause toe or tail constriction resulting in the loss of these body parts. Obesity, which is often caused by too much food with not enough exercise, can also lead to various health-related issues so it’s important to monitor your bearded dragon’s weight accordingly.

To give your bearded dragon the best chance at living a long life be sure there is proper lighting (both UV light and heat), temperatures prove adequate basking spots and humidity, and leafy greens should be provided daily with a healthy variety of vegetables as well as gut-loaded insects with calcium dustings available (dubia roaches, super worms, crickets, etc.) Plus making sure you have an appropriately sized terrarium with access to water plus providing necessary calcium and multivitamin supplements will help keep them happy and healthy!

How to Improve Your Bearded Dragon’s Lifespan

Improving the lifespan of your bearded dragon is key to giving them a long and healthy life. There are several things that you can do to help ensure your beardies’ health and general well-being. Of course, you should always consult with a veterinarian first as they will be able to provide tailored advice.

In terms of general recommendations, regular veterinary exams and yearly bloodwork, along with fecal parasite testing, are important. Quarantining any new reptiles is also crucial, for up to 3-6 months depending on what your vet recommends.

Make sure the terrarium has appropriate lighting and temperatures, as well as easy access to UVB rays wherever possible. Additionally, never use floor or heat mats that could potentially lead to burns. Following proper feeding schedules based on their life stages such as overfeeding which can lead to health issues should also adhere too. Ensure fresh vegetables are fed along with live, healthy insects – avoid dehydrated versions due to lack of nutritional content too. Supplement with calcium and multivitamins too for an added boost!

Finally, check your beardie frequently for abnormalities or signs of illness; remember if keeping multiple dragons together that it needs to be done so to breed them – otherwise provide each one a large terrarium at least 2-3 times their nose-to-tail length in size; plus replace their UV bulbs every 6 months – even if they appear alright!

Tips for Giving Your Bearded Dragon a Long Life

Caring for a pet bearded dragon requires significant efforts to ensure they have a long and healthy life. Some of the most important things you can do are:

Keep them at the right temperature – it’s essential to make sure their enclosure is kept warm while also providing cooler parts of the enclosure where they can seek shade and relief from the heat. Bearded dragons cannot stand extremes and could suffer serious health issues if exposed to either too much or not enough warmth.

Have suitable humidity levels – maintaining adequate humidity levels is also an important factor in keeping your pet beardie healthy. Too much moisture, however, can lead to respiratory infections, so make sure you mist their enclosure frequently but still keep it relatively dry. It’s also essential that your beardie always has access to fresh drinking water.

Providing these basics will help ensure that your bearded dragon will enjoy a long and happy life!


Do Bearded Dragons Get Attached To Their Owners?

Bearded dragons can form an attachment to their owners, even though they are not emotion-based animals in the same way that mammals are. They recognize you as a source of food and show their attachment with signs of calm and friendly behavior when you handle them.

In the wild, bearded dragons usually lead solitary lives but in captivity, they have been known to express their attachment to owners by recognizing when it’s you and staying calm while being handled. They will also try to attract your attention if they are looking for your company, such as scratching the tank or arm-waving.

How Long Do Bearded Dragons Live Without Food

Bearded dragons, as desert-dwelling reptiles, can survive without food for up to several weeks or even months. This is an advantageous adaptation that allows them to cope with periods of food scarcity in the wild; while in captivity this phenomenon is referred to as brumation.

How Long Do Bearded Dragons Live Without Heat

Bearded dragons can survive a day without heat, as long as it remains above 65° Fahrenheit (18° C). However, the warmth they need is paramount for their survival, so make sure to keep their environment within their optimum temperature range.

How Long Do Bearded Dragons Live With Mbd

Though recovery from moderate to advanced cases of MBD in dragons is possible, it often leaves them scarred or deformed, and the healing process can be both lengthy and painful.

That’s why it’s important to be mindful of your dragon’s natural behavior and provide them with regular, diligent attention if you want to protect them from this devastating condition.

Do male or female bearded dragons live longer?

Bearded dragons tend to have a lifespan of about 10 years. It is commonly believed that males are more robust and have longer lifespans than females, although this could be due to the physical energy expended during reproduction in female dragons.

Female bearded dragons can produce clutches of up to 15–25 eggs, but breeding is detrimental to their long-term physical health as it causes the abdomen to expand significantly and results in decreased muscle mass in their limbs and pelvis. Each pregnancy additionally exacerbates this process by imposing increased stress on the body.

Also, male bearded dragons usually grow bigger than females and can live up to 2 years longer.

Are Bearded Dragons Happy In Captivity?

If your bearded dragon is getting enough exercise and living in a safe and healthy environment, then it is probably content. The healthiest sign of a content beardie is simply a healthy one.

If you’ve noticed any changes in the behavior of your bearded dragon, like loss of appetite, lethargy, or aggression, it could be a sign of stress or illness. In this case, it’s recommended that you take your pet to the vet to get a proper diagnosis.

What Was The Oldest Bearded Dragon?

The Guinness world record holder for the longest-living bearded dragon was Sebastian, owned by Lee-Anne Burgess in Middlesex UK. Sebastian lived an astonishing 18 years and 237 days, from January 1997 through June 2016.

What is the average lifespan of a bearded dragon?

Under proper care, Bearded dragons can have a lifespan of up to 10 years. However, in their natural habitat, life is usually considerably shorter due to external factors such as predators and lack of resources during times of drought.


Bearded dragons make wonderful companions and, with enough love and care from their owners, can have a life span of up to 15 years. The environment they are in, as well as the proper maintenance they receive, both play a role in determining how long they live.

Be sure to do your research and understand what goes into caring for one of these hairy creatures so that you can reap the rewards for years to come.


Learn how to care for your bearded dragon and maximize its lifespan! Find out the average life expectancy and health tips here.