New to the Forum, Looking for help.

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Hello My name is Andy and I am new to this forum. I decided to try and get some help from people who have had more experience than I have with bearded dragons. I have a Dragon named Berko that I received as a one year anniversary gift from my girlfriend in January. They said that Berko was about 4 months old when my girlfriend purchased him which would put him at about a year old now. Berko is a foot long and increadibly beautiful and I love to just sit in my room and watch him. I'm not entirely sure if he is a he or a she because i haven't gotten the chance to check. For the past couple years I have been in bad health and not been able to do much for Berko besides feed him and clean his cage. He is not held often and I have been a horrible father :(. He has all the essentials and is fed every day but recently he has been a little mean. It used to be when I tried to hold him he would just run away from me, now he opens his mouth and tries to bite me. I feel bad that i wasn't able to pay attention to him for our first few months together but I am really making an effort now. He is in a 20 gallon tank that is going to be upgraded very soon to a 40 gallon tank. Being as Berko is a foot long I feel like his tank is too small. The ambient temperature in the tank is about 85 give or take a few degrees. His basking spot is 100 and he can choose to be any where from around 6 to 3 inches from the 75 watt bulb the way I have it set up. He eats like a mad man and will literally eat anything we give him. Am I doing something wrong or did the lack of attention make him nervous? I really hope I didn't make him mean for good I would really like to gain a new friend.

I will appreciate any help or tips, thank you so much!
an adult in a 20gal tank :shock: yeah i would upgrade QUICKLY,
to try and gain his trust just sit with your hand in the tank for a while, making him used to you. Don't go straight in and go for him you'll frighten him.
Maybe try the t-shirt trick just to make him more used to your smell before you go all in and scoop him up. 6-3 inches is a little to close, it should be more 6-8 inches away.
good luck


Original Poster
I use the Reptisun 10.0 tube bulb and it is only a few months old. I wouldn't use that other one because everyone seems to agree its no good. When I upgrade him to the 40 gallon the light will be higher, defiantly at least 6 inches. He seems content with his cage its not like he isn't eating or anything. No one thinks that its too late to gain his trust?


Hatchling Member
Lights are fine. So it is just a matter of him getting used to you again. I would try handling him in the early morning around lights on and at night around lights out. They are generally slower and sleepy so dont have much motivation to move. Lights out is a good time to build trust. Just make a little beardie buritto with a towel, blankie, or old t shirt you have worn and lay him on your chest for some cuddle time. Another trick is to put a shirt that you have worn in the cage with him so he gets used to your scent. Also you can try using tongs or hand feeding him his favorite treats this way he will associate your hand with giving him treats. Unfortunately gaining his trust back might not be the quickest just remember to be patient and he will eventually come around.


Original Poster
Thank you. I am going to upgrade his tank today and i put a T-shirt in his cage this morning. When I put my hand in there he gave me a little open mouth than quickly closed it and he let me pet him. Im watching him right now and i think the T-shirt is terribly confusing :lol:


Juvie Member
Do you have a top opening viv? I ask because if you approach them from above it can scare them, they sense the shadow and assume its a predator. Always best to approach from the side :)


Juvie Member
patience patience and .. more patience :/ You sound like a dedicated beardie slave so your little one will come round eventually :D
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