Bearded Dragon Tail Rot
Does your bearded dragon have tail rot? Find out what tail rot is, how to identify tail rot, and how to treat tail rot when your bearded dragon has it.
What is Tail Rot?
Tail rot is caused when there is not enough blood flow reaching the full length of the tail. When there isn’t enough blood flow throughout the length of the tail, your bearded dragons tail will start to rot away little by little. Most of the time, the problem will start at the end of the tail and work its way up, which is why it is very important to get it treated right away. If you do not treat it right away, the bacteria will work its way up the tail and possibly spread to your bearded dragons internal organs leading to death. The longer treatment is held off, the more discomfort and pain your bearded dragon will be in.
What Causes Bearded Dragon Tail Rot?
There are two main causes of tail rot. First is pure trauma to the tail. Trauma usually consists of something falling on the tail, the tail getting stuck on an item, or even a bite from another bearded dragon to the tail (reason why you shouldn’t house bearded dragons together). The second is an incomplete shed, a retained shed to be more specific. Usually, this only occurs when there has been multiple layers of retained shed left on the tail. The layers of retained shed will layer up on top of each other creating a very thick tight band causing blood circulation to stop circulating on that part of the tail. This is why it is very important that you understand the full concept of bearded dragon shedding. Whatever you do, do not pull the shed off yourself. You can hurt your bearded dragons tail that way.
How to Cure Bearded Dragon Tail Rot?
The best cure for tail rot is a vet appointment! To really understand the seriousness of the problem, a vet must examine the problem. Your vet may give you a few home remedies that you can do yourself at home to cure the wound, might prescribe your bearded dagon antibiotics if the infection is really bad, or worse case scenario… may suggest to amputate a certain section of the tail to save the rest of the tail. Without a vet appointment, you’re really just risking your bearded dragons health by trying to diagnose the problem yourself.
If you are planning to look up some home remedies to cure the tail rot yourself, just know most bearded dragon owners cause the problem to be worse than what it is when trying to do so. If you can not afford a vet visit, I can not promise you a happy ending, because neither of us know how bad it really is. But to help you out, try the following…
Do your best to clean the tail daily with lukewarm water and keep it away from anything that may infect it like loose substrate or feeders that are in the enclosure. Remove any sand or loose substrate that you may have in the enclosure and put only paper towels as substrate. Make sure the enclosure is super clean. Any bacteria in the enclosure will only make the problem worse.
To treat the infected tail rot area, most bearded dragon specialists will advise to bathe the tail with a betadine solution and water. The color of the water should be a light tea color. Bathe your bearded dragons tail (not your bearded dragons body) in it for 5 minutes a day. Then pat dry the area with some gauze and apply neosporin with NO pain relief to the area. Do this for the next few days and monitor the tail very closely to make sure the tail rot isn’t rising towards the body area.
DO NOT USE:
Hydrogen Peroxide – it will eat the flesh away on your bearded dragons tail causing the tail rot to be worse.
Neosporin with Pain Relief – The chemicals in the Pain Relief are harmful to your bearded dragon.
Note: The information on this bearded dragon tail rot article is not a substitute for veterinary care.