Do Bearded Dragons Make Noise? Is Hissing a Noise?

Do Bearded Dragons Make Noise

It’s common knowledge that members of the animal kingdom communicate in different ways compared to us humans.

But even though they don’t use words, animals often do communicate via sounds. In fact, their noises almost always indicate something.

Dogs, for example, will bark when afraid and growl when threatened. Birds, on the other hand, will use sounds to claim territories, seek a mate, call their mate or chicks, scold an intruder, and announce the presence of a predator.

So, what about reptiles – and specifically bearded dragons?

Bearded dragons do make noise. However, since they don’t have vocal cords, which are needed to produce a range of sounds, they can only make hissing and gurgling sounds via their breathing tract. 

Let’s look in more detail at Bearded Dragon noises, and the reasons they make them.

Why Do Bearded Dragons Hiss?

Due to their lack of vocal cords, the only noise bearded dragon owners will hear is a hiss.

But what is the reason for these hisses? Before we look into this, remember that bearded dragons don’t aren’t particularly emotional creatures so if your pet beardie is hissing, it could be for several reasons, and it doesn’t mean he doesn’t like you.

Bearded Dragon with it's mouth open.
Beardie with it’s mouth open.

That said, bearded dragon hisses typically mean something negative, and they are communicating to you that they’re not happy.

This bearded dragon hiss is like a warning sign telling you (or another animal) to stay away.

If you hear your bearded dragons hiss, it’s best to stay back until you can figure out why they’re hissing. Let’s look at some common reasons.

Incorrect Temperature in The Tank.

If you have an incorrect temperature, your bearded dragon will hiss at you as a warning sign of your mistake. This is common with new owners who are unaware of what the correct temperature range for their tank is.

Bearded dragons need an average temperature of around 27C.

If your tank is cooler than this, your lizard will hiss at you when it enters the tank because it doesn’t feel comfortable. Similarly, if the temp in the tank is higher than this then they will also hiss when they enter their enclosure because it’s too hot.


When bearded dragons shed, they can feel sore and itchy. This means they become a little impatient and snappy (just like we do if we’re feeling a little under the weather).

During this time, bearded dragons often wish to be left alone. 

Over Handling.

If you’re handling your beardie too much, he will let you know by hissing. This is a signal for you to leave him be.

This is more likely to happen if your bearded dragon is in a new enclosure or home or is getting more attention than usual. 

It can also happen if you have new visitors like friends or family who want to come and see your pet. 

It’s great that you want to give your beardie so much attention, but you also need to have a balance so that they’re happy.

Beardies also need some alone time.
Beardies also need some alone time.

Mating Season.

During the mating season, bearded dragons can become aggressive and hiss, particularly males when they’re trying to be dominant. 

When you have a bearded dragon who is typically calm becomes aggressive, it could be that it’s mating season.

This is a perfectly natural behavior display and there isn’t anything you can do except wait for the season to pass.


When bearded dragons aren’t used to interactions with humans, they are defensively aggressive and might hiss.

This is common when you first bring home baby bearded dragons but it’s especially common if you rehome a beardie that has suffered mistreatment by its previous owners. 

It will take time to develop a sense of trust, especially if the beardie is older and has experienced some mistreatment in the past. 

A great way to tame bearded dragons and develop trust is to offer them food directly from your hand. 

No Place to Hide.

Bearded dragons need a place in their enclosure where they can hide away if they feel uncomfortable or threatened.

Providing several hiding places in the tank means they will feel safe and able to assess their surrounding as they would in the wild. 

Illness or Injury.

Unfortunately, bearded dragons do occasionally get ill or are injured. When this happens, they often want to be left alone as touching them can cause them discomfort.

If you know your beardie is under the weather or has an injury and is hissing, then that is probably the cause. 

Seeing a Reflection of Themselves.

Bearded Dragons can’t recognize themselves so if there is a mirror close to their enclosure, they might mistake it for a rival bearded dragon and become defensive and hiss.

For example, this can happen with any reflective surface like a tv screen. 

New Surroundings or New Home.

Instinctively, bearded dragons are defensive in their territory and if they’ve moved into a new enclosure or a new room, they might demonstrate defensiveness as they acclimatize.

If you need to move your bearded dragon or change its enclosure, make sure you provide lots of places to hide so that he or she feels safe. 

Disruptions While Bearded Dragons Eat.

When bearded dragons eat and they think another bearded dragon is going to take their food, they can become very defensive and hiss. Make sure that during mealtimes you give your bearded dragons adequate time and space. 

Other Pets Nearby.

Bearded dragons can become aggressive or stressed if there are large animals like dogs and cats in the home.

Since they’re larger than your beardie, they’re likely to be perceived as a threat, which will cause the bearded dragon to hiss. 

A Very Angry Dragon

Other Bearded Dragons Nearby.

If you have more than one bearded dragon, it’s really not recommended for them to be in the same enclosure.

Even if they’re just in sight of one another, you’ll often encounter hostility and hissing.

This is because bearded dragons are territorial. It can cause them lots of stress and isn’t good for their health so be sure to keep them apart. 

Surprizes or Something Unexpected.

Just like us, If your Bearded Dragons are surprised, or something unexpected happens, they might be defensive and hiss.

When you’re familiar with your pet’s behavior, you can better understand their body language including the sounds they make.

If you know what to expect from them, you’ll be less likely to surprise or startle them which will prevent them from becoming aggressive unintentionally.

Is It Normal If My Bearded Dragon Doesn’t Hiss?

While all bearded dragons can hiss, not all do. if you’ve never heard your bearded dragon hiss, then it’s a good thing – it means your pet is happy and comfortable in his environment. 

Is a Hissing Bearded Dragon Unhealthy?

Hissing is an innate response to adversity, stress, and threat. If your bearded dragon is hissing a lot, it means that he feels scared or stressed.

So, while hissing itself isn’t a sign of poor health, the cause of the hissing might certainly be. 

Calming a Hissing Bearded Dragon.

If you know why your bearded dragon is hissing then it’s easy to remedy the situation, i.e. you just need to remove the cause of the hissing, whether that’s a mirror reflecting, a pet in the room, or the lack of hiding space, for example. 

The tricky part of calming a hissing bearded dragon is when you don’t know what’s causing the hissing.

The best way to find out is to go through the list of things above and try to eliminate each one.

Final Thoughts

In this article, we’ve learned that bearded dragons don’t actually have vocal cords and are, therefore, incapable of making noises other than a hiss.

And since hissing is a negative thing, we must find out why bearded dragons are hissing to stop them.

Ultimately, quiet bearded dragons are happy bearded dragons!

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