What to Do When a Bearded Dragon Dies but Doesn’t Go Stiff

Bearded dragon dead but not stiff

One common concern among bearded dragon owners is what to do when their pet dies but doesn’t go stiff. Unlike other animals, bearded dragons have a softer and more pliable body composition, which means they may not exhibit the same rigor mortis that other pets do.

So, if your bearded dragon has passed away but doesn’t go stiff, what should you do?

Steps to Take When a Bearded Dragon Dies but Doesn’t Go Stiff

3. Handle the Body with Care: Once the death is confirmed, it is crucial to handle the body of your bearded dragon with care. Use gloves or a towel to avoid direct contact and prevent the transmission of any potential diseases.

5. Follow Local Laws and Regulations: Before proceeding with burial or cremation, research and comply with any local laws or regulations regarding pet disposal. Some areas may have specific guidelines in place.

6. Inform Family and Friends: It can be helpful to inform close family and friends about the loss of your bearded dragon. Sharing your grief and memories with loved ones can provide emotional support during this difficult time.

9. Reflect on the Relationship: Take the time to reflect on the relationship you had with your bearded dragon. Cherish the memories and the bond you shared, as it can bring comfort during the mourning process.

Gather Information about the Symptoms

Pay attention to any changes in the dragon’s behavior or appearance leading up to its death. Did it show signs of lethargy, loss of appetite, or difficulty breathing? Did it display any physical abnormalities such as discolored skin, wounds, or swollen limbs? Take note of any strange or unusual behavior that might offer clues about the underlying health issues the dragon might have been experiencing.

It is also essential to consider the dragon’s living conditions and its diet. Did it receive proper UVB lighting, temperature, and humidity levels? Did it have access to clean water and a varied diet? Lack of proper care and a balanced diet can contribute to health problems in bearded dragons.

Consulting with a reptile veterinarian is recommended at this stage to help determine the cause of death. They will have the expertise to analyze the symptoms and provide guidance on what steps to take next. Be prepared to provide detailed information about the dragon’s symptoms, living conditions, and any recent changes that might have affected its health.

Contact a Reptile Veterinarian for Advice

When faced with the unfortunate situation of a bearded dragon that has passed away but doesn’t go stiff, it is crucial to contact a reptile veterinarian for advice. While a veterinarian’s expertise is invaluable in any situation involving the health and wellbeing of reptiles, it becomes even more essential when dealing with the death of a pet.

Gather Information about the Symptoms

Before contacting the reptile veterinarian, it is essential to gather as much information as possible about the symptoms and conditions leading up to the bearded dragon’s passing. This information will assist the veterinarian in diagnosing the cause of death and providing guidance on the appropriate steps to take next.

Be prepared to provide information such as:

  • The bearded dragon’s behavior leading up to its death
  • Changes in appetite or bowel movements
  • Any visible signs of illness or injury
  • The bearded dragon’s living conditions, including temperature and humidity levels

Seek Expert Advice

Once armed with this information, it is time to reach out to a reptile veterinarian. They have specialized knowledge and experience in dealing with issues specific to reptiles and can provide guidance on how to handle the situation.

Consider Necropsy

Consider Necropsy

In some cases, the reptile veterinarian may recommend a necropsy, which is the equivalent of an autopsy in humans. This procedure involves an examination of the bearded dragon’s body to determine the cause of death. While it may not bring your pet back, it can provide closure and valuable information about any health issues that may have contributed to their passing.

Remember, contacting a reptile veterinarian is an important step in navigating the loss of a bearded dragon that has passed away but doesn’t go stiff. Their expertise and guidance can help provide clarity and support during this difficult time.

Preparing the Dead Dragon’s Body for Disposal

  1. Wear disposable gloves before handling the dead dragon to prevent any potential spread of diseases or parasites.
  2. Place the dragon’s body in a suitable container, such as a shoebox or a biodegradable bag, for temporary storage. Make sure the container is lined with paper towels or cloth to absorb any fluids.
  3. If you choose to bury the dragon, find a suitable spot in your backyard or a pet cemetery. Dig a hole that is deep enough to prevent any scavengers from disturbing the body.
  4. Before burying the dragon, consider wrapping it in a bio-degradable shroud or cloth to provide some protection and respect.
  5. If burying the dragon is not an option, consider alternative methods such as cremation. There are pet cremation services available that can handle the process professionally and respectfully.
  6. Whether you choose burial or cremation, it is essential to take the time to say a final goodbye and honor the memory of your deceased bearded dragon.
  7. If you have other pets in the house, be mindful of their reactions to the dead dragon’s body. They may exhibit signs of grief or confusion. Provide them with any necessary support and reassurance during this time.
  8. After disposing of the dragon’s body, clean and disinfect the areas where it was stored or handled to ensure proper hygiene and prevent the spread of any potential diseases or parasites.
  9. Consider adopting or getting a new companion, but only if you feel emotionally ready. Every person has a different grieving timeline, so take as much time as you need before making such a decision.
  10. Lastly, reflect on the relationship and memories shared with your bearded dragon. Cherish the good times and the happiness they brought into your life.

Remember, each step in preparing the dead dragon’s body for disposal is essential to ensure respect, hygiene, and compliance with local regulations. Take the necessary time to honor your beloved pet properly.

Consider Cremation as an Option

When faced with the death of a bearded dragon, it can be a difficult and emotional time. One of the decisions that needs to be made is how to properly handle and dispose of their remains. One option to consider is cremation.

Cremation is the process of reducing the body to ashes through a high-temperature flame. This option allows for the bearded dragon’s remains to be preserved in the form of ashes, which can then be kept in an urn or scattered in a meaningful place.

There are several advantages to choosing cremation for a deceased bearded dragon. Firstly, it provides a way to keep the memory of your beloved pet close to you. Keeping the ashes in an urn allows you to have a physical representation of their life and the bond you shared.

Secondly, cremation is a more practical option in terms of storage and transportation. Unlike burying a bearded dragon, which requires finding an appropriate location and digging a hole, cremation allows you to keep their remains in a small, portable urn that can be easily moved if necessary.

Another advantage of choosing cremation is that it eliminates the risk of the bearded dragon’s remains being disturbed or dug up by other animals. This can provide peace of mind knowing that your pet’s final resting place will not be disturbed.

Benefits of Cremation for a Deceased Bearded Dragon:
1. Provides a way to keep the memory of your pet close.
2. Offers a practical option for storage and transportation.
3. Eliminates the risk of the remains being disturbed.

Overall, cremation is a thoughtful and dignified option to consider when a bearded dragon passes away. It allows you to honor their memory and keep them close to you, while also providing practical advantages in terms of storage and transportation. Remember to choose a reputable pet crematorium that specializes in reptiles for the best possible experience.

Research Local Laws and Regulations for Pet Burial

Firstly, check if burying a pet in your backyard is legal. Some municipalities have ordinances that prohibit backyard burials due to environmental concerns. In such cases, you may need to explore alternative options for laying your bearded dragon to rest.

If backyard burial is allowed, consider the depth and location of the burial. It is typically recommended to dig a hole that is at least three feet deep to prevent scavengers from digging up the remains. Choose a location that is away from utility lines, water sources, and areas that may be disturbed in the future, such as potential construction sites.

In cases where backyard burial is not an option, consider contacting a local pet cemetery. These facilities are specifically designed to handle pet burials and often have guidelines in place to ensure proper disposal. However, be prepared for potential costs associated with using a pet cemetery.

Another option to consider is pet cremation. Cremation allows for the respectful disposal of your bearded dragon’s remains while providing a physical memorial in the form of an urn or keepsake. Research local cremation services and inquire about their specific procedures and costs.

Key Points:
Research local laws for pet burial.
Check if backyard burial is legal.
Consider pet cemeteries or cremation services.
Respect and abide by the regulations.

Informing Family and Friends about the Loss

Start by contacting immediate family members and close friends who were involved in the care and interaction with the bearded dragon. It is essential to communicate the loss sensitively and with empathy, as everyone may have had a different level of attachment to the pet.

Consider sharing the news in person or over the phone to offer a more personal touch. This can allow for open dialogue and the opportunity for loved ones to share their own grief and memories of the bearded dragon.

In addition to personal conversations, it may also be helpful to send out a group message or email to extended family and friends who were aware of the bearded dragon’s presence in your life. This can help spread the news efficiently and ensure that no one is left uninformed.

Take Time to Grieve and Process the Loss

Take the opportunity to reflect on the special bond you shared with your bearded dragon. Cherish the memories and moments you had together. Whether it was playing, feeding, or simply observing, each interaction was unique and contributed to the special relationship you had with your pet.

It is natural to feel sadness and grief after the death of a pet. Allow yourself to express these emotions and don’t hesitate to reach out to friends or family for support. Talking about your feelings can help you process your grief and find comfort during this difficult time.

Consider creating a memorial for your bearded dragon. This can be a simple gesture such as writing a letter or creating a photo album filled with images and memories. You may also choose to plant a tree or flowers in your pet’s memory, allowing you to have a physical reminder of them.

Remember, everyone grieves in their own way and at their own pace. Give yourself permission to grieve and heal in your own time. It is normal to experience a range of emotions during the grieving process, including sadness, anger, and even guilt. Be patient with yourself and allow the healing process to unfold naturally.

If you find that your grief is overwhelming or impacting your daily life, consider seeking support from a grief counselor or therapist who specializes in pet loss. They can provide guidance and tools to help you navigate through your grief and find ways to honor and remember your bearded dragon.

Ultimately, the loss of a bearded dragon can be a painful experience, but by taking the time to grieve and process your emotions, you can begin to heal and remember the special connection you shared with your pet.

Consider Getting a New Companion if Ready

When your beloved bearded dragon has passed away and the initial shock and grief start to subside, you may find yourself contemplating whether or not to get a new companion. This decision is a deeply personal one and should be carefully considered.

Grieving the loss of a pet is a natural and necessary process, and it takes time to heal. Rushing into getting a new bearded dragon immediately after the death of your previous one may not allow you the space and time to properly grieve and process your feelings.

Take the time to reflect on your readiness to get a new companion. Ask yourself if you are emotionally prepared to welcome another bearded dragon into your life. Consider the amount of time, energy, and dedication required to care for a new reptile.

Remember, a new bearded dragon can never replace the one you lost, but it can bring joy and companionship into your life once you are emotionally prepared. Trust your instincts and make the decision that feels right for you.

Reflect on the Relationship and Memories Shared

When a bearded dragon passes away, it is natural to feel a mixture of emotions, including sadness, grief, and even guilt. Reflecting on the relationship and memories shared with your beloved pet can be a helpful way to navigate these emotions and find closure.

Take some time to think about the special moments you shared with your bearded dragon. Remember the first time you brought them home, the joy they brought to your life, and the bond you formed over time. Reflecting on these positive memories can bring comfort and help you celebrate the life of your reptilian companion.

Processing Grief

Grieving the loss of a pet is a personal process, and everyone copes with it differently. Allow yourself to experience the emotions that come with losing your bearded dragon, whether it’s sadness, anger, or even relief if they were suffering. It’s essential to give yourself permission to grieve and take the time you need to heal.

Some people find it helpful to express their emotions through writing, painting, or creating a memorial for their pet. Others may seek solace in talking to a supportive friend or family member who understands the pain of losing a beloved pet. Remember, there is no right or wrong way to grieve, and it’s crucial to be patient with yourself as you navigate through this challenging time.

Honoring Their Memory

There are many ways to honor the memory of your bearded dragon. Consider creating a memorial in their honor, whether it’s a small garden statue, a personalized plaque, or a photo album filled with cherished photos. This can serve as a reminder of the love you shared and a way to keep their memory alive.

You may also choose to donate to a reptile rescue organization or volunteer at a local shelter to honor your bearded dragon’s memory and help other reptiles in need. This act of kindness can help provide a sense of purpose and healing during the grieving process.

Seeking Support

Seeking Support

If the loss of your bearded dragon is particularly challenging, seeking support from others who have experienced a similar loss can be beneficial. Online support groups, forums, or local pet loss support groups can provide a safe space to share your feelings, memories, and struggles.

Additionally, consider reaching out to a therapist or counselor who specializes in pet loss grief. They can offer guidance and support tailored to your specific needs, helping you navigate the complex emotions that come with losing a beloved pet.

Remember, the loss of a bearded dragon may be a difficult experience, but it is essential to allow yourself to grieve and honor their memory. Take comfort in the special moments you shared, seek support when needed, and know that with time, healing will come.