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Possible Burn on New Dragon - HELP

PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 6:34 pm
by kingfriday

About 2 months ago I adopted a new bearded dragon who was about 7.5 inches long, and is now about 9 inches. I’m housing him in a 20 gallon long with ReptiCarpet; his basking side is 90 to 95 degrees, and the cool side is 70 degrees. During the night I shut off both his UVA and UVB bulbs, and I was worried about temperature drops, so I’ve been using a heat pad that I leave on both day and night. I’m not around during the day, but when I am home in the evening I haven’t noticed excessive use of the heating pad.

I’m worried because I noticed a dark, what looked to be charred patch, on one of his feet and I’m very concerned! I had him out, didn’t notice anything, came back in about an hour and 40 minutes, and noticed the dark spot.

There are no blisters or peeling, so I don’t think it’s a second degree burn. I dampened a paper towel with cold water and applied off and on for about 7ish minutes (he was pretty skittish about staying still on a cold damp surface), and the mark didn’t go away. Any suggestions on how to identify if this is a burn, and if so, how to best treat it.

Re: Possible Burn on New Dragon - HELP

PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 6:44 pm
by Claudiusx
Hi there,

We should be able to tell if its a burn if you post up a picture for us.
You can do so here to the site with this link:

Upload the picture there, and then you can just copy and paste the XIMG code to your post and it will show up as your picture.

By the way, what is your actual basking surface temp, and how are you measuring your temps?


Re: Possible Burn on New Dragon - HELP

PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 7:02 pm
by kingfriday
thanks for the response!
here are two photos, I can send more/different ones if you need.

[Click image to enlarge]

[Click image to enlarge]

I measure the tank temperature with two thermometers – one for the hot side, and the other for the cold side. To accurately measure the basking surface temp, would it be okay to place the thermometer from the cold side (so as to not start with an already high reading) on top of his basking log, wait 20 minutes, and then read the thermometer?
Additionally, the heating pad I use is from Exoterra, and the packaging says that it is designed to increase the temperature of the surface to be 5-10F above the ambient air temperature.

Thanks again!

Re: Possible Burn on New Dragon - HELP

PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 7:50 pm
by KarrieRee
To get an accurate temp you need a digital probe thermometer place on spot he sits leave 10 minutes get temp - basking temps need to be 105-110-- please ditch the red light they are harmful to the eyes and can cause long term eye damage--- and it disturbs their sleep also get rid of the heat pad- if you need extra heat get a CHE they are heat only NO LIGHT-- you don't need a CHE if your tank stays above 65 at night- that 20 gallon tank is not going to last long-- I would start looking for a tank the minimum 40 I recommend as big as you can afford- w/ the red light I haft to ask what are you using for a UVB?

Re: Possible Burn on New Dragon - HELP

PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 9:21 am
by kingfriday
Hi Karrie,
Last night I unplugged the heating pad. Also, I found that the basking spot is 107.
I am using the red bulb as the UVB light source. It gets shut off at night.
The pet shop where I bought his terrarium offered to set up the tank for an extra fee, so I'm not sure what brand, but I know that its 100 watts. When I was doing research about the bulb, I found a split; some sources supported and some disapproved of using a red UVB bulb. Out of curiosity, is there a reason why red light specifically hurts their eyes? Do you have a recommendation for what I should buy to replace the current bulb with?
I definitely plan to get a bigger tank, is there a certain size that I definitely should have the new tank set up?

Lastly, do you think his foot is burned? I'm debating whether I should take him to the vet immediately.

Thanks :)

Re: Possible Burn on New Dragon - HELP

PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 9:48 am
by KarrieRee
I am not sure about the foot can you possibly post another pic of it - others on here will be able to help w/ that -- as far as the lighting your dragon has not been getting any UVB - please invest in this immediately---------- I would recommend getting a 24" fixture w /, a reflector for your tank now and in the future-- get a Reptisun 10.0 bulb either a T 8 or a T 5 how soon are you getting a new tank ? If its going to be like a few months get the T 8 it will need to be changed out in 6 months it needs to go on top of tank w/ NO screen approx 8-10 inches from basking decor- if your getting a new tank here real soon get the T 5 its a stronger bulb and it will need to go on top of tank approx 12-15 inches from decor --- your dragon needs this right away --- if you are in a warm area you can take him outside for 15 minutes direct sunlight that will equal out to 4 hrs of UVB - use a plastic container NO glass - let him sit in direct sunlight -- who ever gave the advice about the colored UVB is a door knob!!! There are no colored bulbs that are UVB's or not that I have ever heard of or seen ---------- dragons have very sensitive sight and can see very good the colored bulbs distort their vision --- all you need in that tank and it is crucial to their health is a bright white basking bulb that is keeping temps 105-110 for your baby and a good TUBE UVB --- no coils !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Please do not listen to those people that gave you the advice about your dragon --- when you get your new tank that UVB will go into it and distances will be the same so let us know and we can help getting it placed in the new tank - since you are using a 20 gallon now I have some pics of my 20 gallon and the way it was set up if you would like to see ------------ we recommend the minimum of 40 gallon but I would get a larger tank like a 75-120 gallon - you can look on FB marketplace or craigslist try and find one w/ front doors also if you find one make sure you sanitize it real good before use

Re: Possible Burn on New Dragon - HELP

PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 1:05 pm
Hi Kingfri, welcome to the forum. :) Can you post a couple more shots of the foot ? I highly doubt it's a burn. more likely to be a food or poo stain, very common. Give him a soak and use a papet towel or soft toothbrush to see if it comes off.

And Karrie is right, the red bulb is not right for a beardie. I raised them for years + know many breeders. No one uses red lights for a primary heat source and they do not produce uvb.