Bearded dragons are fascinating reptiles that have gained popularity as pets in recent years. With their unique appearance and docile nature, they make wonderful companions for reptile enthusiasts of all ages. However, as a bearded dragon owner, you may occasionally notice some changes in your pet’s coloration, which can be concerning. One common color change that owners often wonder about is when their bearded dragon turns white. In this article, we will delve into the reasons behind this phenomenon and explore the various factors that can contribute to it.

Normal Coloration of Bearded Dragons

Before we delve into the reasons why a bearded dragon may turn white, it’s important to understand their normal coloration. Bearded dragons typically display vibrant hues of brown, tan, and green, which help them blend into their natural environment. Their bodies are adorned with unique patterns, spots, and scales, adding to their charm. However, it’s worth noting that the coloration of bearded dragons can vary depending on their species and individual genetics. Some may have more vivid colors, while others may exhibit more muted tones.

Why is My Bearded Dragon Turning White?

Now let’s address the main question at hand: why is your bearded dragon turning white? There are several possible explanations for this phenomenon, and it’s important to consider all factors before jumping to conclusions. The most common reasons for a bearded dragon turning white are shedding, stress, illness, and environmental factors.

Shedding and Color Changes in Bearded Dragons

One of the most natural and common reasons for a bearded dragon to turn white is shedding. Like all reptiles, bearded dragons periodically shed their skin to accommodate their growth. During the shedding process, their skin becomes dry and dull, which can give them a white or pale appearance. This color change is temporary and should not cause any concern. However, it’s crucial to ensure that your bearded dragon’s shedding process is smooth and without complications, as difficulties in shedding can lead to health issues.

Shedding is a natural process that occurs throughout a bearded dragon’s life. Younger dragons shed more frequently, while adults shed less often. It’s important to provide your bearded dragon with a proper habitat that includes a moist hide or bath area to aid in the shedding process. Additionally, maintaining proper humidity levels in their enclosure can prevent dry and difficult sheds, reducing the chances of your bearded dragon turning white during this normal process.

Stress and Color Changes in Bearded Dragons

Stress is another factor that can cause a bearded dragon to turn white. These reptiles are sensitive creatures, and changes in their environment or routine can easily stress them out. Common stressors include sudden loud noises, excessive handling, overcrowded enclosures, and changes in temperature or lighting. When bearded dragons feel threatened or overwhelmed, they may respond by turning white. This color change is a defensive mechanism that allows them to blend in with their surroundings and avoid potential predators.

If you notice that your bearded dragon has turned white and seems stressed, it’s important to identify and address the underlying cause. Ensure that their enclosure is set up correctly, with appropriate hiding spots, a comfortable temperature gradient, and a consistent day-night cycle. Minimize excessive handling and provide a quiet and calm environment to help your bearded dragon regain its natural coloration and overall well-being.

Illness and Color Changes in Bearded Dragons

In some cases, a bearded dragon turning white may be an indication of an underlying health issue. Illnesses such as metabolic bone disease, respiratory infections, or parasites can cause changes in a bearded dragon’s coloration. These conditions often result in a loss of appetite, lethargy, weight loss, and other concerning symptoms. If you suspect that your bearded dragon’s white coloration is due to illness, it’s crucial to seek veterinary care promptly.

A qualified reptile veterinarian will be able to examine your bearded dragon, perform diagnostic tests if necessary, and provide appropriate treatment. Early detection and intervention are vital in ensuring the best possible outcome for your pet. Remember, timely veterinary care can make a significant difference in your bearded dragon’s health and quality of life.

Read About: What Does Stuck Shed Look Like On A Bearded Dragon

Environmental Factors and Color Changes in Bearded Dragons

Lastly, environmental factors can also contribute to a bearded dragon turning white. Temperature extremes, inadequate lighting, improper humidity levels, or poor diet can all play a role in disrupting their natural coloration. Bearded dragons require specific environmental conditions to thrive, and any deviations from these requirements can affect their overall health and appearance.

To prevent color changes caused by environmental factors, it’s essential to provide your bearded dragon with an appropriate habitat. Ensure that their enclosure is spacious enough, has proper temperature gradients, and offers suitable lighting. A balanced and nutritious diet, including a variety of insects, vegetables, and occasional fruits, is also crucial for their well-being. By creating a suitable environment and meeting their dietary needs, you can help your bearded dragon maintain its vibrant and healthy coloration.

How to Help Your Bearded Dragon Regain its Color

If your bearded dragon has turned white and you suspect that it’s not due to shedding, stress, illness, or environmental factors, there are a few steps you can take to help them regain their color. First, ensure that their habitat is clean, comfortable, and properly maintained. Regularly clean their enclosure, provide fresh water and food, and monitor the temperature and humidity levels.

Additionally, spending quality bonding time with your bearded dragon can help alleviate stress and promote a sense of security. Gentle handling, regular interaction, and providing mental stimulation through appropriate toys and activities can all contribute to their overall well-being. Remember, a happy and content bearded dragon is more likely to display its natural coloration.

When to Seek Veterinary Care for a Color-Changing Bearded Dragon

While many instances of a bearded dragon turning white can be attributed to natural processes or environmental factors, it’s essential to know when to seek veterinary care. If your bearded dragon’s color change is accompanied by other concerning symptoms such as loss of appetite, lethargy, difficulty breathing, or changes in bowel movements, it’s crucial to consult a reptile veterinarian. They will be able to assess your bearded dragon’s overall health and provide appropriate guidance and treatment if necessary.


As a bearded dragon owner, it’s natural to be curious and concerned when you notice changes in your pet’s coloration. While a bearded dragon turning white can be alarming, it’s important to consider all the possible factors before jumping to conclusions. Shedding, stress, illness, and environmental factors can all contribute to this color change. By understanding these factors and providing appropriate care, you can help your bearded dragon regain its natural coloration and ensure its overall well-being. Remember, a healthy and happy bearded dragon is a beautiful sight to behold.

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