• Beardie Bliss

How Fast Can a Bearded Dragon Run?

Pet bearded dragons enjoy a relaxing lifestyle, exploring at their own pace, though a wild bearded dragon uses its hind legs to run when it feels threatened or spot prey. In captivity, bearded dragons may not feel the need to move quickly, especially once they get acquainted with their new surroundings and feel comfortable.

How Fast Can They Run?

If your bearded dragon feels the need to escape a situation and has enough space, it can run at a pace of up to nine miles per hour. They sprint using their hind legs and typically run only in specific situations.

Why Do Bearded Dragons Sprint?

If your bearded dragon moves quickly and appears to be getting ready to run, there are a few reasons for it. One of the main reasons for moving quickly is to catch prey. While your dragon lives in captivity, it may react this way if it sees a source of food, such as live insects or worms, and need to move towards them. They move quickly if faced with a threatening situation to escape. Understanding your pet’s movements and how fast they run can help you get familiar with bearded dragon behavior and how to best support your pet's well-being.

Chasing Prey and Sourcing Food

When your bearded dragon sees food, either insects or vegetation, it will quickly move towards it, as it does in the wild when they spot prey. While they don’t run as fast for food as they do when perceiving a threat, such as facing a predator, they efficiently leap towards crickets, worms, and other natural foods in their tank. If they’re a bit far from their feed, they may move quickly, almost running.

Bearded dragons don’t have to move as quickly towards prey because live feed are typically slow-moving insects and worms that are easy to capture. Your dragon may also enjoy greens and sources of vegetation, which don’t require much effort to consume.

Moving to a Desired Location

Sometimes your bearded dragon may suddenly sprint or move when it spots a better location. A wild bearded dragon may run to a protective spot to seek shelter from the rain, dust, or high winds. At home, your adult bearded dragon may quickly dart from one side of the tank to another if it notices a warmer spot or a more comfortable area. If your bearded dragon’s terrarium has too much heat or humidity, it may run around the tank and try to escape.

Once you adjust the temperature for your bearded dragon, it will slow down and relax. If you notice your bearded dragon moving unexpectedly and away from a specific part of the tank, it’s best to assess if there are any cold spots or uncomfortable areas. You can gently change the setup of the tank or determine which area of the terrarium you need to improve for your dragon.

Running from Predators or Threats

When bearded dragons live in the wild, they run fastest when pursued by predators. Their survival depends on moving as quickly as possible to avoid capture, and they may run longer distances to find shelter or a safe spot. Some of the most common predators prey on bearded dragons include birds, so they will move as soon as they hear or notice them nearby. It’s common for this species to have regulare hiding spots so that they can remain out of the predator’s vision.

If you're a bearded dragon owner with other pets, your bearded dragon may initially consider them a threat and quickly run away to avoid them. It may also suddenly run if it becomes startled or you make an unexpected move, which may appear threatening or frightening. While living in captivity, your reptile may take a while to get comfortable with everyone in your home, including other pets and children.

Creating a Safe Environment for Your Bearded Dragon to Run

Your bearded dragon will likely become curious about the world outside its tank. Part of good bearded dragon care as a pet owner is to enjoy your pet’s company outside the terrarium, as long as you take extra precautions to ensure it can roam and explore safely. It’s a beneficial way to bond with your reptile and give it a sense of familiarity and comfort.

If you want to see how quickly your bearded dragon can run, you need to clear and protect a space for your pet to explore. To prepare your pet, secure a room in your home with borders but ensure there are no barriers, such as a door. It’s essential to prepare the room with the proper temperature to ensure your dragon is comfortable.

Clear the room of any items your pet may eat and remove all other pets from the space. There shouldn’t be any objects that may pose a risk to your pet’s safety, and ensure there are no spaces it can crawl into to hide or escape. It's also a good idea to keep noise to a minimum and constant, without any sudden changes in light or sound.


As a pet owner, you’ll enjoy a lot of exciting behaviors when you interact with your bearded dragon, including its quick, skillful movements and how it explores its environment. Your dragon thrives on attention, and you’ll notice how it naturally responds and moves in various situations. While various reptiles sprint at different paces, bearded dragons don’t always dash and reserve their energy for vital situations.