Pet lizards can be great companions, same as dogs. But what happens when the two meet? Check out our article to learn more about them below!
For those with love for animals in their hearts, cats and dogs are not enough to satisfy their animal longing. This is precisely why most dog owners often find themselves keeping lizards as pets as well.
While the idea of owning lizards may seem exciting, you might be wondering how you can bridge a friendship between a lizard and a dog. Well, this is where we step in – with a list of lizards that are perfect for dogs and easy ways you can introduce them! So, let’s get right into it:
The Bearded Dragon, is a fine and excellent choice to have as a beginner reptile pet.
Thanks to their laid-back and friendly nature, you won’t need much experience to maintain them. They are generally happy creatures and get along great with both humans and dogs.
Since they’re so adaptive, it’ll take no time for them to adjust to meeting your dog. In fact, they can become such great friends with dogs that they’ve been known to not only play tug of war but also cuddle with them as well.
Feeding bearded dragons is not that big a hassle but you will need to ensure proper nutrition for them. When it comes to feeding a Bearded Dragon, Dubia Roaches can be a great source of protein!
It’s important for you to stay close by them when two pets are interacting. There’s a possibility Beardies can accidentally bite your dog with playful intent. But, in doing so they might also release a mild venom.
As far as the bite goes, they are harmless and can be treated at home, however, it’s worth protecting the two pets all the same. When you’re introducing the dragon to your dog, make sure to do so while they are in their enclosure.
Keep this up for a few more meetings until it’s safe to transition to a more open area, for instance, your living room. Watch them as they interact and learn about each other.
When enough time passes, Beardy and the dog should feel comfortable enough to start playing together.
Similar to Beardies, Leopard Geckos are also fantastic beginner pets. Taking care of them is super easy thanks to their friendly and docile nature. They also love to be held once they’ve gotten familiar with their owner.
Leopard geckos are also quite vocal and they’ll usually hiss, bark, or chirp to express themselves. The male leopard can be territorial towards other male leopards, but apart from that, they also get along well with dogs.
For the first introduction, you have to hold your gecko in your hand. Lay your hand down flat and slowly guide the gecko onto your palm. Once they’re settled in, make sure to keep your palm flat and their feet and tail fully supported.
Move slow, so as to not stress or startle either of the animals. To express that your gecko is stressed, they will either hiss, bark or wave their tail. When you notice this, send the interaction immediately.
The key is to keep taking breaks and using positive reinforcement during the interaction. Keep your dog on a loose leash, just in case, and remember to be patient. They won’t become friends overnight but with enough time, they’ll start to get along eventually.
While Blue-tongued skinks are not as social as leopard geckos and bearded dragons, they are just as docile. They’re known to be skittish when they’re in the primary stages of getting to know their owners, however, they are impressionable. With time, they’ll grow to be comfortable around you.
Despite being rarely aggressive, there’s a possibility your dog might scare or stress them. When Blue-Tongued Skinks are threatened, they’ll usually puff their body to make them look bigger and stick out their blue tongue.
Similar to leopard geckos, they also drop their tail when they’re frightened.
In order to introduce your dog, first put them on a loose leash. Remember to use positive reinforcement. Next, hold your gecko gently in the palm of your hand for the entire time.
It’s vital the lizard is comfortable with you before you introduce it to your dog. This isn’t going to work if they are afraid of you as well as the dog. So, make slow movements and try to be extra careful. It’s a good idea to keep the interaction short and keep trying one day at a time.
Now that we’ve covered the 3 beginner lizard pets you can introduce to your dog, let’s talk about the dos and don’ts of managing two different species as pets.
If your dog hasn’t been trained already to respond to basic commands, now is a good time to start. It’s imperative your dog follows your command, even when they’re distracted.
Commands like, “stay”, “quiet” and “sit” can help to protect both your pets if there’s any trouble. Especially when your dog lunges at your reptile when they’re walking outside their enclosure.
As a dog owner, you’re in the best position to judge your dog and pick up any signs of aggression or stress they might be showing. Observe how your dog behaves when they’re around animals smaller than them.
Being able to detect hostility and know whether your dog will listen to your commands or not is crucial before you decide to introduce your reptilian friend to your dog.
In order for reptiles and canines to coexist, it’s vital you set up the enclosure for your lizard separate in a place away from your dog. If you keep them close then there’s a chance your dog might feel provoked and make your lizard nervous.
We recommend you choose a room that your dog rarely visits. Also, place the enclosure on a table that your dog can’t reach. It’s best to choose a room with a door that can easily keep them separated.
There’s a misconception about dogs not getting along with lizards, but that’s not true at all.
The Blue-Tongued Skink, Leopard Gecko, and the Bearded Dragon are great examples of being excellent companions to both you and your dog. All you need to make this friendship a success is time, patience, and a lot of effort.
We hope the knowledge we’ve shared with you comes in handy and inspires you to think more openly about having lizards as pets. Best of luck with your pets!