For bearded dragon owners, it is very important to know what bearded dragons are actually able to do. Otherwise you might get a little shock when something unexpected happens. Dropping their tail can be pretty shocking for example. However, can bearded dragons drop their tail?
Bearded dragons are not able to drop their tail like other lizards are. If they lose their tail by accident, they are not able to regrow it.
So they are not able to drop their tail, but does that also mean that they cannot lose it in other ways? And how do bearded dragons show that they are scared to death and want to escape if they can´t drop their tail? Continue to read to learn more.
Can Bearded Dragons Drop Their Tail?
As you have just learned, bearded dragons are not able to lose their tail.
When I started with bearded dragons, I was very happy to hear that. As a child, every time we were on vacation in Italy or Portugal, I caught lizards. I knew exactly where I could find them and I could catch them pretty quickly.
Some lizards were totally calm even after I caught them, but others dropped their tail as soon as I touched them.
Honestly, it was always a little bit disgusting since even after the lizard dropped its tail, the tail continued to move. Further, depending on the size of the lizard, it was a bloody mess.
Well, I was a curious child and I did not understand what I did to those lizards. (Still, I always released those lizards and didn´t do any harm to them.)
How Do Bearded Dragons Show Fear? You Have To Know This
So, some of the lizards I caught clearly showed that they were scared to death and they thought that a predator had caught them. That´s why they dropped their tail.
Many predators catch lizards by their tails and lizards can easily escape by dropping their tails. However, how do bearded dragons show fear? How can they escape? How do you know that you should leave your bearded dragon alone?
It is actually pretty important to know that. If you don´t understand your bearded dragon´s body language, you could stress your bearded dragon without even knowing it.
Bearded Dragons Hiss
Actually, bearded dragons seem to be one of the fighters in the reptile world. They are not able to drop their tail to escape, but they have some great things to scare potential threats away.
If bearded dragons feel threatened, they hiss like cats and they will puff up their beards and color their beards completely black to seem more dangerous. In my opinion, this works pretty well.
I think that bearded dragons look pretty scary if they do that. Have a look at the video below and tell me that you would touch that bearded dragon unhesitatingly. I wouldn´t!
Bearded Dragons Even Bite
If you ignore the clear body language of a bearded dragon and still try to touch it or try to get it out of its cage, chances are you will get bitten. Don´t get me wrong here, most bearded dragons are pretty laid back, but since they can´t drop their tail, they will attack in case of danger.
Further, some bearded dragons also try to slap you with their tail.
It is only normal that you don´t want to get bitten by your bearded dragon. If you want to know how to avoid that and if it hurts, click here to read my article on bearded dragon bites.
They Close Their Eyes
Most beardie owners think that if their bearded dragon closes its eyes while being pet, it shows that it is enjoying it. However, that´s not true. Your bearded dragon is trying to show you that it feels discomfort and that it wants you to stop.
Beardies that only close their eyes when being touched have no intention to hurt you, but you should still respect your bearded dragon´s body language and act accordingly.
If you want to learn more about that, I have written an entire article on why beardies close their eyes. Read it here.
Other Ways Your Bearded Dragon Could Lose Its Tail
Just because your bearded dragon is not able to drop its tail it doesn´t mean that your bearded dragon could not lose its tail in other ways. And I am not talking about accidents here, I am talking about ways that are pretty common.
Do You Have More Than One Bearded Dragon?
Unfortunately, bearded dragons are still mostly sold in groups. The problem is that bearded dragons are loners.
Male bearded dragons are territorial and do not accept other males in the same tank. Even if you have two females or one male and one female bearded dragon, there is no guarantee that your beardies will get along with each other.
Often times, unaware beardie owners think that everything is fine with their beardies and that they get along, but one morning they find one of their bearded dragons with a shorter tail or with missing limbs.
Bearded dragons fight and oppress each other and it can happen that one of your bearded dragon will have its tail bitten off. This is not rare in bearded dragons that are kept together in one tank.
Have a look at all the baby bearded dragons that are sold in pet shops. Many of them have missing toes or tail tips.
If you have two or more bearded dragons I highly recommend to read my article: Can you keep bearded dragons together in one tank?
Your Beardie Could Suffer From Tail Rot
Tail rot is a horrible disease in bearded dragons. The tail literally starts to rot from the tip to the bearded dragon´s body. In the worst case this can even kill your bearded dragon.
A lot of bearded dragon owners have experienced this and a lot of bearded dragons have lost a part of their tails because of this horrible disease.
A dry and dark tail tip that looks more like a branchlet is the beginning of this disease.
I have written an article for bearded dragon owners who fear that their bearded dragon is suffering from this disease. Click here to read my article on tail rot in bearded dragons.
Shedding problems in bearded dragons can end badly. In fact, reptiles that are not able to shed properly, lose their tails if they don´t get any help or if they are not able to help themselves.
If your bearded dragon has problems to shed its tail, it can happen that the old, dead skin cuts off the blood supply to the tail and the tail will die off.
Your bearded dragon has shedding problems? No, problem, read my bearded dragon shedding guide here.
Frequently Asked Questions
Even though I have given you a clear answer on this issue, I want to answer the most common questions bearded dragon owners have on beardies dropping their tail.
Can Bearded Dragons Regrow Their Tails?
If your bearded dragon has lost its tail in a fight, an accident or due to tail rot, it will not be able to grow the tail back, as bearded dragons are not able to regrow limbs.
How Long Does It Take For A Bearded Dragon´s Tail To Grow Back?
Bearded Dragons are not able to regrow limbs, so the tail won´t grow back, not even a part of it. However, the tail will heal within a couple of weeks and the bearded dragon can live without it without any problems.
My Bearded Dragon´s Tail Fell Off – What Do I Do?
Most probably your bearded dragon´s tail did not simply fell off, your bearded dragon lost it in a fight, an accident or due to a disease. Get your bearded dragon to a vet to check if it is okay and to understand what happened.
As you see, just because bearded dragons can´t drop their tail, it doesn´t mean that they are easy prey.
So, can bearded dragons drop their tail? No, but make sure that your bearded dragon doesn´t lose it in other ways.
Any questions? Leave them in the comment section below.