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How Do You Know When a Bearded Dragon is Mad?

How Do You Know When a Bearded Dragon is Mad?

Just because they don’t have words, that doesn’t mean that bearded dragons do not communicate. Your reptile friend will use its body language to let you know how it feels.

It is important that you learn to interpret these gestures correctly to ensure your beardie always gets proper care. 

Although bearded dragons are not generally aggressive by nature, they may become mad and show signs of aggressive behavior if they feel threatened, they may feel threatened should you mishandle them or if they interpret something as an act of aggression even when it isn't.


This is an obvious sign that your beardie is mad, and it usually occurs when they are not happy with the way you are handling them. If you're not sure whether your bearded dragon may bite you, put a pair of gardening gloves while managing it, just be aware that they may find it harder to recognize you. They rarely ever bite, even when threatened they would rather try and scare off whatever is threatening them but they can bite as a last resort, baby bites just feel like a pinch but older dragon bites hurt a lot more as dragons have very strong jaws.


Hissing is one of the common behaviors your beardie will show when angry. This is a sign that they are feeling uncomfortable or threatened. It is usually accompanied by an open mouth and a flared beard and can be quite surprising.

Bearding (Fluffing Their Beard)

Fluffing their beard is where your beardie got its name, and it is normally a threat sign. Bearding makes your lizard make bigger and scarier, especially if their beard turns into a darker or even black color. They can also fluff their beards to stretch them and fluffing can also indicate excitement so it doesn't always mean that they are angry.

Head Bobbing

Head bobbing, especially if they are doing it a few times quickly, is usually a sign of territorial aggression between males or domination over females. They are unable to discern between another dragon and their reflection so may also do this when they see themselves in the mirror or glass, sometimes you will have to find a way to prevent their reflection from being seen on the sides of their tank for this reason as this can lead to constant stress which is bad for your dragon.

Gaping (Opening Their Mouth Wide)

When dragons get mad they can sometimes open their mouth wide, this is usually accompanied by bearding and you will be able to see right into the back of their mouths this is also usually when they hiss. They do this in order to make themselves look bigger to predators to try and scare them away.

Previous article How Often Should I Handle My Bearded Dragon?


sam - January 6, 2021

thank u this made it somuch easier to tell when my sweetie pie is mad or not

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