Yes, bearded dragons do pee. Like all animals, they need to excrete waste. However, they do so differently. Bearded dragons produce uric acid, which is excreted in a semi-solid form along with feces and appears as a white or cream-colored substance in the stool. This is normal for bearded dragons and other reptiles that excrete uric acid in their feces.
Bearded dragons excrete uric acid instead of urea to conserve water. Uric acid is a waste product produced when proteins and other nitrogenous compounds are broken down in the liver. Unlike urine, mostly water, uric acid is a solid waste product that is relatively dry and chalky.
Factors That Affect the Bearded Dragon’s Pee
Diet can significantly impact the quality and quantity of a bearded dragon’s urine output. Bearded dragons require a balanced and varied diet that provides them with the nutrients they need to maintain their health and vitality.
Suppose a bearded dragon’s diet is not adequately balanced. In that case, it may not be getting enough water or consuming too much protein or other nutrients that can contribute to urinary tract problems. Inadequate hydration and a diet that is too high in protein can contribute to the formation of urate crystals or urate bladder stones, which can obstruct the urinary tract and cause serious health problems.
Conversely, a diet that is too high in water content or contains excessive amounts of certain minerals or vitamins can also lead to health problems. In addition, bearded dragon owners must provide their pets with a varied and well-balanced diet that includes a mix of vegetables, fruits, and high-quality proteins to ensure they are adequately hydrated.
Generally, younger bearded dragons tend to urinate more frequently than adults, as they are still growing and have a higher metabolic rate. This means they consume and process more food and water, which can result in more frequent urination.
As bearded dragons age and reach adulthood, their metabolism slows down, and they may not need to urinate as frequently. However, it’s important to note that other factors, such as diet, hydration, and overall health, can also influence the frequency and quantity of urine output.
Older bearded dragons may be more susceptible to health issues that affect the urinary tract, such as bladder stones or infections, which can also affect their urine output. Therefore, it’s essential for bearded dragon owners to monitor their pet’s urine output and to seek veterinary care if they notice any changes or abnormalities.
Like all reptiles, bearded dragons are known to be sensitive to stress. Long-term exposure to stress, such as changes in temperature or lighting, a lack of appropriate housing, or a poor diet, can cause problems for bearded dragons.
When bearded dragons are stressed, they release stress hormones, leading to dehydration, appetite changes, and digestive problems. Stressed bearded dragons may produce less urine than usual, or their urine may become more concentrated or discolored due to dehydration. Stress can also cause them to hold in urine longer, leading to bladder stones or other urinary tract problems.
Bearded dragon owners must provide their pets with a comfortable and stress-free environment to help prevent stress-related health problems. If a bearded dragon shows signs of stress or its urine output has changed significantly, it’s essential to seek veterinary care to rule out any underlying health issues.
4. Illness or Injury
Illness or injury can significantly impact a bearded dragon’s ability to urinate normally. In addition, certain medical conditions such as bladder stones or infections, kidney disease, and gout can affect the quality and quantity of a bearded dragon’s urine output.
Injuries like spinal injuries can also affect a bearded dragon’s ability to urinate normally. This is because the muscles that control urination may be affected, resulting in difficulty or inability to pass urine.
If you notice any changes in your bearded dragon’s urine output or quality, it is essential to seek veterinary care as soon as possible. For example, a reptile veterinarian can perform a physical exam, run diagnostic tests, and provide appropriate treatment to help your bearded dragon recover.
Certain medications can affect a bearded dragon’s urine output and quality; for example, diuretics increase urine production and may cause a bearded dragon to produce more urine than usual. This can lead to dehydration if they are not given enough water.
Other medications may change the color or consistency of a bearded dragon’s urine. For example, some antibiotics may cause the urine to turn green or blue. This is usually not a cause for concern and should resolve once the medication is discontinued.
Following your veterinarian’s instructions when administering medication to your bearded dragon is essential. They can guide how the medication may affect your bearded dragon’s urine and what signs to watch for in case of adverse effects. If you notice any changes in your bearded dragon’s urine while they are taking medication, contact your veterinarian for advice.
How to Ensure Healthy Peeing in Bearded Dragons
To ensure healthy peeing in your bearded dragon, you should consider the following:
- Provide fresh, clean water: Ensure your bearded dragon always has access to clean water. Change the water daily and ensure that the water dish is big enough for them to soak in.
- A balanced diet: Offer a balanced diet of insects, vegetables, and fruits to ensure your bearded dragon gets the necessary nutrients. Avoid feeding them foods high in oxalates or phosphorus, which can lead to urinary tract problems.
- Monitor temperature and humidity: Ensure your bearded dragon’s enclosure is at the appropriate temperature and humidity levels. Provide a basking spot with a heat lamp to help regulate their body temperature.
- Provide a clean living space: Keep your bearded dragon’s enclosure clean and hygienic. Remove feces and uneaten food regularly and clean the enclosure with reptile-safe disinfectant.
- Monitor their pee: Monitor your bearded dragon’s urine output and quality. Look for any changes in color, consistency, or frequency. If you notice any changes or abnormalities, take them to a reptile veterinarian for a check-up.