Some Bearded dragon owners consider it a challenge to give them the proper environment to thrive in. One of the most difficult hurdles is giving them a space where they can climb, explore, and bask in their habitat. Providing appropriate vertical climbing and basking locations can be very challenging in small or medium-sized habitats. It is no surprise that they think of Playpens at this point.
A playpen will help create the open space that your bearded dragon is looking for and is a great way to let your pet move around in their cage and get some exercise. You can also use it to keep the temperature of your cage steady, ensuring that your pet is safe and comfortable at all times.
Of course, these kinds of enclosures cost money—so we’ve put together this guide to cover DIY enclosures and playpens that anyone can build with items already available in-house. After all, beardies don’t ask for much, just a bit of effort and care go a long way.
Bearded Dragon Playpen – A Complete Guide
A bearded dragon playpen is a small enclosure that is used for providing comfortable housing. It can be made out of plastic, glass, or metal and it’s designed to be placed mostly inside a room, but there are plenty of outdoor enclosures off-late.
An ideal playpen is big enough to provide your beardies with the freedom to move around, but not too big since it also has to provide a sense of coziness. Bearded dragons have to face a lesser amount of anxiety in small places, so owners should refrain from making the mistake of splurging on large enclosures.
The playpen must be positioned in accordance with the ideal temperature, lighting, and humidity requirements for bearded dragons. Owners should also make sure that it remains safe from other pets, and stray animals that could cause anxiously and spread infections in the case of exotic reptiles.
Our recommendation: ESK Collection (ESK48-Blue) Pet Exercise Pen Kennel, 48 Inch, Blue
Bearded Dragon Outdoor Playpen – What You Should Know?
Bearded dragons are arid animals and they need to be kept in a dry environment. This means that you should not keep them in an aquarium, as they tend to retain moisture. The best way to provide them with proper ventilation is by using a terrarium.
The bearded dragon’s habitat must also be kept warm. Ideally, their temperature needs to range between 80°F and 90°F during the day and 70°F during the night; however, you can adjust this according to what works best for your pet. Check here for a discussion on outdoor playpens for bearded dragons.
In addition, you should provide your pet with plenty of hiding places so he can feel safe when he wants some privacy from other pets or humans in your home.
Our recommendation: GABraden Small Animals Playpen, Reptiles Cage, Chicken Run Coop Chicken Playpen Breathable Transparent Pet Playpen Pop Open Outdoor/Indoor Exercise Fence, Portable Yard Fence (Blue)
DIY Bearded Dragon Playpen
To build the playpen, you will need the following supplies:
- A large plastic storage bin ($10-$15) or two smaller ones.
- An old sheet (or two) that you don’t mind getting ruined by your bearded dragon’s claws and teeth.
- A roll of duct tape (about $5).
If you’re putting this together yourself, first ensure that your bin is large enough for your bearded dragon by measuring him out. If he is long enough to fit into it when laying down completely flat on his back, then it should be good to go.
You can also add an extra half-inch or so just in case, to stop him from getting stuck. Second, tape all the seams on both sides of each bin with duct tape so that no matter how hard he tries to escape their grasp, more than likely he won’t be able to get out. Finally, lay down some newspaper if you have it available.
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Bearded Dragon Outdoor Enclosure Plans
If you plan on keeping your bearded dragon outdoors, you will need to construct an enclosure that keeps them safe from predators and helps regulate their temperature. A good enclosure will provide your bearded dragon with exercise and stimulation. Here are some ideas that you can implement in your backyard or garden.
This enclosure is designed for young bearded dragons but can be adapted for older ones by increasing the size of the cage and adding additional heat sources.
- 1 sheet of plywood measuring 4′ x 8′ (or larger if you have more than one bearded dragon)
- 2 2x4s measuring 8′ long each (used for frame)
- 2 2x4s measuring 10′ long each (used for door frame)
- 3 1x3s measuring 12′ long each (used for door frame)
- 1 sheet of ½” thick foam board (cut into two pieces measuring 4′ x 8′)
- 2 tubes of wood glue or construction adhesive (for attaching wood pieces)
The construction is pretty straightforward. It is best to use wood glue or a construction adhesive to make it more secure than just nailing everything together (though that will work if you don’t have any glue on hand).
You must construct this enclosure in an area that provides a lot of shade throughout the day. Avoid areas that are in direct sunlight as this can cause your bearded dragon to overheat.
To sum up, we need to look at what a bearded dragon in the proper enclosure looks like. First of all the enclosure needs to be the right temperature and the right size. It needs to have plenty of places to hide, and climb, and a good-sized water bowl.
The humidity should be correct, which is an important consideration in maintaining proper hydration levels. Food dishes should be kept separate from the water dish as they are susceptible to urinary tract infections if they eat while in contact with their urine. Finally, any objects that can cause injury or toys that could pose a danger need to be removed, such as sharp rocks, sticks, rough bark, etc.
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When choosing a playpen, the most important thing to consider is whether or not you have enough space for it. Some people have built them in their garage or basement, but these do not work well if you live in an apartment building, or if there are small children around.