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The Best Bearded Dragon Enclosure (Review) in 2021

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Published May 31, 2021

Whether you own a bearded dragon, are thinking of getting one, or are just curious about this magnificent reptile’s habitat preferences, we’ve got you covered. In this article, we not only review some of the best bearded dragon enclosures that the pet market has to offer, but also talk about how to best care for this cold-blooded but awfully cute pet. From specific lighting and temperature, to ideal substrate and cage size, this buying guide contains everything you need to know to care for your beautiful dragon pet!

The Best Bearded Dragon Enclosure

1

We will set things rolling with the Exo Terra Glass Natural Terrarium as it is made with top-quality materials yet it has a very reasonable price. It comes with a measurement of eight inches in length and width and twelve inches in height. Made of tempered see-through glass, it’s quite sturdy and durable. The terrarium also comes with a patented front window to ensure that your reptile friend gets all the ventilation it needs. The bottom frame has been raised to allow it to fit a substrate heater easily, plus there are escape-proof door locks with inlets that can be closed. Because it’s not very big, it’s ideal for a baby bearded dragon, however, we don’t recommend it for adult dragons.

8 x 8 x 12 inches

Escape-proof door locks

Closable inlets

Durable glass material

Specification:
  • Brand: Hagen
  • Model: PT2601
  • Weight: 1 pounds
Pros

Sturdy and hefty construction

Made with quality materials

Escape-proof design

Cons

Only for baby bearded dragons

2

The second entry onto our list is Tetra Aquarium Reptile Glass Kit With Lamps. Just as its name suggests, this bearded dragon starter kit comes with two dome lamps to be placed on top of the aquarium. They are essential when it comes to offering warmth and prime basking. When fixed, Tetra Aquarium Reptile Glass Kit measures an impressive thirty inches in length, and twelve inches in height and width, with a capacity for twenty gallons of water. Conveniently, the kit features everything you need to take care of your reptile buddy properly. These include cartridges, a decorative filter, heating lamps, basking platform, screen top, and boxwood plant mat. The decorative filter does not only create a beautiful waterfall and basking area but is also offers filtration in three stages.

30 x 12 x 12 inches

Complete aquarium kit

Two dome lamps

Decorative filter

Specification:
  • Brand: Tetra
  • Model: NV33230
  • Weight: 41.4 pounds
Pros

Boxwood plant mat

Durable glass material

Comes with a basking platform

Cons

Basking platform is short

Lid locks could be stronger

3

Up next, we have the Zilla Vertical Tropical Kit. This glass aquarium can hold up to eleven gallons of water, which is equivalent to five inches of water. It features a mini halogen dome with a light bulb that sits on top of it and provides enough heat for the aquarium. Also, the front opening door comes with a hinged screen top and a locking latch. It is made of crystal clear, high-quality tempered glass to ensure that it is durable and long-lasting. It also features a patented front to allow for proper ventilation. It measures eighteen inches in height and twelve inches in length and width. As a nice bonus, it’s very easy to clean and maintain. Do bear in mind though that this is not suitable for an adult bearded dragon, only for babies.

12 x 12 x 18 inches

Made of high-quality tempered glass

Front opening door with locking latch

Comes with a mini halogen lighting

Specification:
  • Brand: Zilla
  • Model: 100528750
  • Weight: 16.75 pounds
Pros

Escape-proof design

Easy to clean

Good choice for beginners

Cons

The top can be hard to open

Only for baby dragons

4

Moving on, we have the Exo Terra AllGlass Terrarium. This is the short model, so we recommend it for your baby bearded dragon, not full-grown adults. Just as its name suggests, the Exo Terra Short AllGlass Terrarium stands very short at the height of twelve inches. However, its width and length both come with a measurement of eighteen inches, giving it a horizontal appearance. The enclosure comes with front doors that can be opened separately and it has inlets that can be closed, which can be used for tubing and wires. The bottom is waterproof so there will be no drips and leakages under the cage, while the removable full-screen top ventilation allows for UVB and infrared penetration.

18 x 18 x 12 inches

Made of high-quality clear glass

Waterproof bottom and screen ventilation top

Closable inlets

Specification:
  • Brand: Hagen
  • Model: PT2603A1
  • Weight: 27.5 pounds
Pros

Front doors can open separately

Sturdy and durable

Reasonably priced

Cons

No glass backing after the foam wall

The screen top is made of plastic instead of metal

5

Next on our list is the SeaClear Acrylic Aquarium Combo Set. This set comes with a capacity of an impressive forty gallons. It is made of good-quality crystal-clear acrylic material that is sturdy and durable. Unlike glass, this material is more resistant to cracking and chipping, making it a good choice for a lively baby or adult bearded dragon. While sturdy, the acrylic cage is much more lightweight than its glass counterpart, which is another bonus. Another thing w like about this set is that it features a reflector and a twenty-four inches electrical light fixture. And, its elegant design makes it a beautiful addition to any room in the house!

36 x 15 x 16 inches

Made of high-quality acrylic material

Enough capacity for forty gallons

Includes a reflector

Specification:
  • Brand: SeaClear
  • Model: X1010012400
  • Weight: 20 pounds
Pros

Available in nine different designs

Resistant to impact

Resistant to cracks and chippings

Cons

Top of the tank is not warp-proof

The light fixture is not of best quality

6

Zilla makes another entry onto our list with their Fresh Air Screen Habitat For Reptiles. Sturdy, comfy and affordable, this is one of the best bearded dragon cages if you’re on a tight budget. To begin with, it comes in two sizes – the small model is fine for a baby bearded dragon, while the eighteen by eighteen size is great for an adult dragon. The enclosure features an aluminum frame that makes it durable, as well as a screen made of strong black mesh. This is securely fastened to the aluminum frame and is also escape-proof. The bottom of the cage is made of PVC and is, therefore, very durable as well as waterproof. Plus, it is very easy and pretty quick to put together. 

Aluminum frame and black mesh screening

Available in two sizes, max size of 18 x 30 inches

PVC water-resistant bottom

Sturdy, quality construction materials

Specification:
  • Brand: Zilla
  • Weight: 4.94 pounds
Pros

Easy to assemble

Plenty of ventilation

Simple to assemble

Cons

No light dome for heat

Prone to warping

7

Exo Terra makes another entry onto our list with its medium-wide all-glass terrarium tit. This model comes with a patented front window that allows for adequate ventilation and proper airflow for your dragon. And as usual, the frame of the bottom of the cage is waterproof and has been raised in order to fit a substrate heater. The tank also features two doors for escape-free access. Also, there are closable inlets for wires and tubing management. The tank comes with a measurement of 24 inches in length by 18 inches in height and width, so it can house either a baby or a still developing adult bearded dragon.

24 x 18 x 18 inches

Dual doors for easy access

Closable inlets for wires and tubing management

Stainless steel screen top

Specification:
  • Brand: Hagen
  • Model: PT2613
  • Weight: 58 pounds
Pros

Elegant and durable design

Easy to access and clean

Comes with a decorative background

Cons

Not big enough for a full-grown bearded dragon

Plastic latches on top feel a little flimsy

8

And, to our last but definitely not least entry, we have the SEI Terrarium End Table. If you are looking for something a bit different from the other bearded dragon enclosures that have been reviewed on this list, then you should check out this terrarium slash console table. This unique enclosure is composed of metal frames with glass screens and a black finish with silver distressing. It features magnetic door closures with two holes that allow just enough air flow for a dragon. An iron sheet forms the base to make it waterproof and durable, and the construction also comes with tall metal stands the elevate the base from the ground. This is an excellent addition to any area of your living space, however, it’s not suitable for dragons who are escape artists.

 40.75 x 13.25 x 9 inches

Magnetic door closures with ventilation holes

Tempered glass screen

Metal frame with black finish and silver distressing

Specification:
  • Brand: Southern Enterprises
  • Model: AMZ2688
  • Weight: 34 pounds
Pros

Ideal for interior and exterior display

Simple yet elegant design

Sturdy and long-lasting

Cons

Drilling required for a heat lamp

Sand falls off easily

9

Made from top-quality glass and measuring 36 inches in length and 18 by 18 inches in width and height, the Repti Zoo Reptile Glass Terrarium is another great choice for your bearded dragon. Importantly, the enclosure comes with a quality metal mesh top, so a heat lamp (or lamps) won’t warp it. The same mesh also provides plenty of ventilation for optimal airflow so your dragon should be quite comfy in their glass home. Conveniently, the cage comes with a specially designed lock that allows you to open the front door separately while keeping your pet safely inside the terrarium. As a nice bonus, the entire enclosure is super-easy and quick to assemble. Overall, one of the best bearded dragon cages around!

36 x 18 x 18 inches

Made of top-quality glass and metal

Mesh top is durable, won’t warp

Reliable lock on front door

Specification:
  • Brand: REPTI ZOO Store
  • Model: RK0119
  • Weight: 55.12 Pounds
Pros

Beautiful and sturdy construction

Front door can be opened separately

Super-quick to put together

Cons

Front lock could be sturdier

Quite heavy

Best Bearded Dragon Enclosure Buying Guide & FAQ

What to Consider When Buying a Bearded Dragon Enclosure

There are a few things to keep in mind when buying a bearded dragon terrarium.

  • Size: Always keep the size of your bearded dragon in mind before purchasing an enclosure. Baby dragons do great in smaller enclosures while the fully grown adult dragons require roomier cages where they have plenty of space.
  • Material: The enclosures can be made of different types of materials ranging from glass to PVC. Although the glass tanks are the most common ones available, they are usually very weighty and offer less ventilation as compared to the other types. However, they are the most elegant types. Other enclosures are made of wire mesh, PVC, metal, and acrylic.
  • Security: You don’t want your beardy escaping when you are not around, so opt for an enclosure that offers the best security when it comes to covering up all escape routes. This also means that no foreign creatures will be able to make it into the enclosure.
  • Ventilation: While focusing on blocking off escape routes, you should also ensure that your enclosure offers enough ventilation for your beardie.
  • Heat: Some enclosures come with a heat lamp or lamps that emit UVB. Heat is essential in ensuring that your beardie stays warm, as bearded dragons prefer hot environments. Be careful, though; some bulbs produce too much heat that may be harmful to your pet.
  • Vertical or horizontal: When it comes to bearded dragons, horizontal cages offer more ground space than the vertical ones.

Bearded Dragon Enclosure

What to Avoid When When Buying a Bearded Dragon Cage

After paying close attention to the things to look out for when buying a bearded dragon cage for your beardie, there are a few things to avoid.

  • All-In-One Starter Kits: As attractive as they may sound and look, you should avoid buying all-in-one starter kits. Here’s why. Most all-in-one starters come in sizes that are too small for a growing or fully grown bearded dragon. Also, most of the accessories that they come with, such as the heat bulbs, are of low quality and always need to be replaced. This being said, there are some quality starter kits available such as the Tetra Bearded Dragon Habitat.
  • Size: The recommended size for a bearded dragon cage is around 48 inches long and 24 inches wide and tall. This is ideal for fully grown adult beardies, although you can always go bigger. The minimum size for a smaller adult dragon is around 36″ x 18″ x 18″. Avoid smaller cages if you are buying for an adult beardie, but do check them out if buying for a baby dragon.

Type of Tank for a Bearded Dragon

When it comes to mimicking the ideal environments for a bearded dragon, a terrarium tank is the most ideal. This is because it gives you the chance to create an environment that comes close to a bearded dragon’s natural habitat with desert-like decorations and sand substrate. The heat domes also generate enough heat to mimic the preferred temperature that beardies are used to. The light from the bulbs also emits (or should emit) the right amount of UVB light that is essential for ensuring that your pet beardie has the right bone development and metabolism.

Best Bearded Dragon Cage FAQ:

Q: What should be the temperature for a Bearded Dragon vivarium?

A: As mentioned, bearded dragons thrive in humid conditions as they are designed to be desert dwellers. Thus, high temperatures are ideal for them. However, they also need a cooler spot in the enclosure to provide some sort of a gradient in the temperature. So, the warmest place in the vivarium should be around 105 degrees Fahrenheit or 40 degrees Celsius, while the cooler spot should be no more than 85 degrees Fahrenheit or 29 degrees Celsius. It is important always to monitor the temperature in your beardie’s enclosure.

Q: What size of terrarium do I need for a Bearded Dragon?

A: We have already indicated that a small size terrarium is not a bad choice for a baby or growing bearded dragon. However, an adult beardie requires much more space since they love to move around a lot. The recommended size for an adult dragon is 48″ x 24″ x 24″ or bigger, whereas for younger dragons, the recommended size is around 36″ x 18″ x 18″. Bear in mind that baby dragons need smaller cages.

Q: Do I need any special lights for my Bearded Dragon?

A: Proper lighting plays a bigger role than just giving you a good view of your dragon; it is essential to the growth and well being of your pet. Unfortunately, some of the already-made tanks do not come with quality level lighting features. The best lighting combination for your beardie should comprise a separate UV fluorescent light source and a combination of an everyday clamp-lamp and an incandescent bulb.

Q: What’s the best substrate to use for my Bearded Dragon?

A: Generally, recommendations for the best substrate vary from user to user. However, it is important to keep in mind that when it comes to young bearded dragons, you should never use any kind of loose substrate as the chances of them accidentally swallowing up the substrate are very high. And this can lead to a lot of health problems. Another issue with using a loose substrate has to do with defecating. Beardies empty their bowels often, so cleaning the substrate will become very difficult if it is loose. Some examples of recommended substrate include paper towels, newspaper, slate, and ceramic tiles.

Bearded Dragon on the rock

Our Top Pick

After reviewing some of the best dragon enclosures available on the market, our top pick remains the Exo Terra Glass Natural Terrarium. Here is a quick recap of its features. It is made of durable glass material and comes with a patented front window. It also features a raised bottom frame, which also doubles as a waterproof bottom. It measures eight inches in width and length and twelve inches in height, so it’s ideal for baby dragons. It also comes with escape-proof door locks and closable inlets.

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