Bearded dragons turning white is common and happens for different reasons. So, should you be worried when your lizard turns white? Is it something normal?
Bearded dragons are capable of changing color to specific body parts depending on various factors. Seeing a dragon turning white is pretty weird, especially if you are a new reptile keeper or enthusiast.
Here, we will learn why bearded dragons turn white, how you need to respond, and lots more.
What is the Meaning of a Bearded Dragon Turning White?
You might view your lizard as being cold and dumb and unable to communicate as many people do. However, that’s pretty far away from the real truth.
The truth is that bearded dragons can communicate their mood, feelings, and health by expressing various behaviors. Some of these behaviors include body-color change, showing a black beard, arm-waving, head-bobbing, etc.
A bearded dragon can turn its body white or particular parts, including the legs, tail, head, mouth, and nose. Let’s find out why bearded dragons turn to white.
A Bearded Dragon Turning White When Preparing to Shed
The most common reason why the beardies turn white is because of shedding. Shedding is a normal process, and it occurs more often (after every few weeks) in baby bearded dragons since they are growing tremendously.
As the beardies continue to grow, the shedding rate decreases and the adults usually shed a few times a year.
So, when shedding is approaching, the top skin in beardies is likely to turn white or pale, which can happen in patches. This should not make you worry at all. Typically, bearded dragons shed in patches, and the process can last for about 2-3 weeks.
Ensure the humidity in the enclosure is 30-40% and mist the lizard once a day to encourage it to shed naturally and easily. In case you notice some old skin remaining, always bathe your pet in lukewarm water to soften the skin, but don’t assist it in shedding.
Color Change in Bearded Dragons Due to High Temperature
It is usual for the bearded dragons to turn white or black because of the variation in temperatures. For instance, when a beardie gets cold, it will become darker, which helps it absorb as much heat as possible and within a shorter time.
On the other hand, a bearded dragon can turn white when it gets pretty hot to absorb less heat. So, if you notice your dragons turning white and it’s not about to shed, you will have to check the temperature in the tank.
Bearded dragons must have warmth for them to digest food effectively and thrive. It would help if you kept the temperatures within the required range, depending on your beardie’s age. For the babies, the basking spot should be around 110℉ and the cool spot 85-90℉.
Adults require a warm basking spot of about 100-105℉, and the cool side should be between 80-85℉. To monitor the temperatures and ensure they are within the necessary range, you need to have a digital thermometer.
Bearded Dragon Turning White when Sleeping
A bearded dragon can turn white while sleeping, and this is perfectly normal. Researches reveal that the lighter shade is due to the bearded dragon’s circadian rhythm.
There are some arguments that the beardies turn white at night to show that they are relaxing and comfortable while sleeping, which isn’t unusual.
Also, when the tank temperatures are too high at night, above 75℉, bearded dragons are likely to turn to a lighter shade. So, a bearded dragon turning white and sleeping is not always a big concern, but sometimes it can indicate something unusual.
For that matter, you need to chat with your reptile vet or any other experienced reptile expert and get advice from them.
Why Is My Bearded Dragon Turning White and Not Eating?
Although a bearded dragon turning white is not something of great concern, there are times when a lizard turns white, and it is not eating. If you see such signs, and the beardie also seems sluggish, this is a bad sign and can indicate that the beardie is dying.
You can also spot a dying bearded dragon by looking at its beard, which appears black while the tail, limbs, and face are pale. A dragon can reach such a point due to impaction, parasites, or it is at its old age.
In case of a sudden change in color and typical behavior, make sure to check for impaction. Impaction can result from the dragon consuming substrate, large objects, or indigestible chitin from insect feeders.
Please ensure you pay a visit to a reptile vet any time you witness your bearded dragon appearing white and is keeping off from food.
Bearded Dragon Tongue Turning White
Typically, the beardies tongue’s tip tends to vary from light pink to white, and it is a little bit sticky. This kind of texture is a physical adaptation that allows bearded dragons to seize their prey quickly.
So, the paleness in the tip of the tongue is usual in bearded dragons, but the entire mouth becoming pale is a dangerous sign.
A white throat and tongue show there may be a health issue. The pet could be having parasites, anemia, or other disorders. When in such a condition, it is good to take the dragon to a reptile vet for a checkup.
Bearded dragons express multiple behaviors under different circumstances, and some of them might seem weird, especially to new dragon keepers. It’s important to be familiar with the potential behaviors in these pets and understand their meaning.
It is only after distinguishing what each behavior stands for that you will be able to act accordingly.
Fully understanding your bearded dragon will help you better take care of them. As a suggestion, we would recommend you to get a good bearded dragon book. Not to become an expert on bearded dragon care but will help you avoid the common mistake in new pet lizard owners.
Last update on 2020-09-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Now you know that bearded dragons can shift from the usual color to pale or white for different reasons. Majorly, the beardie turning white is a sign of shedding, and it can happen in patches.
A beardie can obtain a white color when regulating its body temperature, especially when it is hot. The only time when you will need to see a reptile vet in case your pet turns white is when you observe other signs like being lethargic and refusing to eat.