As the owner of a bearded dragon I am sure you have seen it many times, but have you ever wondered why waving happens? That’s right this article is all about bearded dragons waving, why it happens, what it means and everything else in between. Once you have finished reading you will be a bearded dragon waving master!
So with that all being said let’s get into it.
Why do bearded dragons wave?
The reason why your bearded dragon waves at you is because it sees you as a threat. By waving at you it is actually showing you signs of submission and does not want to challenge you. Unfortunately it does not mean that it is welcoming you as some people are led to believe
So as mentioned that is the really short answer. However I urge you to read on so that you can find the exact cause of your bearded dragons waving and ways that you can help to relieve your beardies fears.
Just in case you do not own a bearded dragon but have heard about them waving and are curious I have included a video below, just so that you know what I am talking about. Also because it does look pretty cool.
This is what a bearded dragons wave means.
As mentioned in the short answer a bearded dragon waving is not as cute as it first seems. Unfortunately it can ultimately mean that your beardie is distressed or being submissive to you or another bearded dragon.
When I say submissive what I mean is that your beardie is seeing you as the bigger dragon. It thinks you are a bigger version of it and it wants to show you that it wants no trouble from you. This will also be the case if two bearded dragons of different sizes were to meet.
You may also notice that your bearded dragon waves when you are not in sight of it and there is no other bearded dragons around. It is though that this happens when your beardie sees its own reflection in the glass of the tank. Mistakenly thinking that there is another bearded dragon in the close vicinity.
Waving in bearded dragons is quite common and troubles quite a lot of owners just like when they see eye bulging. If you have noticed eye bulging from your bearded dragon please check out this article.
Ways to stop your bearded dragon from waving.
Although ultimately there is no clear way to stop your bearded dragon from waving there are ways in which we can reduce stressful situations.
Stop bearded dragons waving with a bigger tank.
One of the best ways to accomplish this is to provide your bearded dragon with a bigger tank. More often than not your bearded dragon can feel stressed if it finds its environment to be to small. This in turn can cause your bearded dragon to wave more as it is under more stress.
It is highly recommended that an adult bearded dragon should have a tank that is a bare minimum of 50 gallons. However I recommend that you should really be aiming for a 75 gallon tank as it will provide a far better environment.
Provide more hiding places.
Bearded dragons can often feel much more threatened if they do not have adequate hiding places. This in turn can cause your bearded dragon to wave more.
Make sure that you provide plenty of nice hiding places for your beardie. This could be in the form branches, rocks or rock caves.
Your bearded dragon should feel much more at ease with all of the extra safe hiding places just like it would have in the wild. You should notice a huge improvement in the amount of waving that your bearded dragon does.
Stop your bearded dragon from seeing its reflection.
This can often really help ease your bearded dragons waving. By adjusting the lighting situation in your beardies tank you can reduce the amount of reflection that it can see in the glass. This will stop it seeing itself and mistaking it for another bearded dragon.
Separate your bearded dragons.
Bearded dragons are not very sociable animals and as such do not like to share their tanks with another beardie. Although it can sometimes work it will usually be the case that one is more dominant than the other.
This can cause the less dominant bearded dragon to wave as it is a way of showing that it is being submissive. A situation like this is not healthy for your pets as it means that one of them (or both) will be feeling stressed. As such they should be placed in separate tanks.
Although it does look funny to see your pet bearded dragon waving it is a sign that there are some underlying problems. Making sure that your bearded dragon has a varied and exciting diet can also have an effect on its stress levels, If you would like to read our helpful article on bearded dragon diet have a look at this link.
Bearded dragons make awesome pets and as owners we want them to live a happy and healthy long life. So by implementing the tips from this guide you should be able to stop your bearded dragon waving and make it happy once more.
For more helpful bearded dragon guides on this website check out these articles!
My name is Andy Baines and I am the owner and writer here at Super Crazy Pets.
For the last 20 years I have been the carer/parent of many exotic pets, from reptiles to amphibians I have cared for and looked after them all.
I created this website to share my knowledge of looking after pets with other fellow owners.
My works and articles have been shared on many online publications including The Spruce Pets.
You can read more about my story by visiting the about me page.