A glass aquarium is often the best choice for viewing a pet bearded dragon and for housing the pet securely. One should supply the pet with ample room so that it can maintain a constant body temperature by moving toward and away from a heat source. On average, a pet lizard of this kind needs a living space equal to a 55 to 70 gallon (208 to 260 liter) tank. When using a glass aquarium, it may be helpful to the lizard to place a white melamine cover over the back, leaving the front of the aquarium uncovered for viewing. Covering the back with white melamine will increase the bright light within the aquarium, which can help to stimulate the bearded dragon to feed.
Bearded dragons, often called pogonas, are native to Australia and are exposed to a dry and arid environment. They are adapted to a high heat environment and maintain their core body temperature by sunning themselves and by hiding and under rocks and burrowing into dirt mounds when necessary. When choosing a bearded dragon cage, it is important to supply a similar environment to what the animal would be used to in nature.
These reptiles generally have a calm nature, but cages must still be kept secure. Knowing what type of environment best suits the particular breed of bearded dragon is important to raising and housing the pet safely. Pet owners should always be careful when handling or moving their bearded dragons as it is possible to make the lizards nervous or fearful with rough handling or unsafe changes in the environment and may cause the pet to stop eating for a time.
Choosing a larger bearded dragon cage or aquarium will be beneficial to a bearded dragon as it grows. This type of lizard grows quickly, and owners may find themselves in need of a larger aquarium sooner than they might have anticipated. Some housing options allow one the living area for pet pogonas to be expanded as they grow, and an extendable clear storage bin is a secure option that can be expanded easily according to the pet's needs. An opaque backing for this type of bearded dragon cage may give the pet a sense of security as well as increasing the available light.
Once a bearded dragon cage has been chosen, it is best to replicate a comfortable, natural living environment for the pet. The pogana is familiar with an arid Australian environment, which is sandy and rocky. Several types of material can be used to line the aquarium or other housing unit. Sand is the most common choice. A non-adhesive shelf liner placed underneath is much easier to clean than newspaper.