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This may seem very strange, but about once a month my 11/2 year old female bearded dragon goes in to a bit of a "mood". I adopted her about 5 months ago.

She stays in one spot, usually in her cave on the cold side for most, if not all of the day and will only really move if I offer her food. The first time this happened it really worried me and I took her to the vet who said nothing was wrong with her. It does continue to worry me, but I don't take her to the vet anymore. After a few days she goes back to normal behaviour. She hasn't laid any eggs either.

So, do bearded dragons menstruate, is this a common behaviour, or could there be something wrong with her?

Thanks in advance.

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  • you should read about your pet and learn all you can,you can take a look here en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Central_bearded_dragon Jun 22 '20 at 6:09
  • @trondhansen I'm afraid I've done a lot of research in to them. Something I believe everyone should do before getting any pet but that's besides the point. One thing I've just not been able to find is a solid answer to this question, and it appears to relate more specifically to the behaviour of my individual pet rather than the group as a whole - hence asking here.
    – tmac24utm
    Jun 22 '20 at 6:32
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    i posted the link for the ones that answer your question as a quick reference to find more information.sadly not everybody that gets a new pet do the research needed to give the pet a good life. Jun 22 '20 at 6:45
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    I'm not 100%, but I'm pretty sure menstruation only occurs in mammals with placentas. Reptiles, therefore would not menstruate
    – Kevin
    Jun 24 '20 at 14:50
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Let's clear up the terms first...

Menstruation is the regular discharge of blood and mucosal tissue from the inner lining of the uterus through the vagina. Only humans and animals with a uterus can menstruate and reptiles do not have a uterus.

Premenstrual syndrome refers to emotional and physical symptoms that regularly occur in the one to two weeks before the start of each menstrual period. It's the official term for mood swings caused by hormonal changes during the menstrual cycle. Those mood swings occur before the actual bleeding sets in.

So the short answer is: no, female bearded dragons do not menstruate.

Do they have mood swings, though?

That's possible, especially shortly before they shed their skin. It can also indicate a problem with the enclosure. Many bearded dragons try to hide in dark, shaded places if the temperature is too high for their comfort.

You should keep an eye on her color. Bearded dragons can turn the color of their beard darker as a sign of aggression, stress or pain. If she stays her normal color during her moods, it's probably just a mood. If she gets darker and the dark color persists over several days, there's something wrong with her. She might feel threatened by something in her environment or be in pain.

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