Don't Kiss or Snuggle with your Bearded Dragon

According to the Huffington Post there’s been an outbreak of salmonella among Bearded Dragon owners in 25 states. So the CDC is warning folks about getting too up closee and personal with the lizards.

Cats are still OK, though.

…unless maybe your cat does this:

According to the first article, I’m now too old to own a bearded dragon. Darn.

I remember when they outlawed selling tiny turtles because of salmonella when I was a kid. The local flea market ended up with several dealers who sold small plastic aquariums—which happened to come with a bonus free tiny turtle.

This has pretty much always been the advice among herp fans - it’s a known issue, and just about any snake/reptile/amphibian guides will tell you to wash/disinfect after handling your fatty pancake (favorite name for a beardie).

Granted, it’s worse for amphibians, because of everything that goes into a tank, even with the most fanatical cleaning - but that’s the risks you take. For that matter, when I added cats to the household, we were told to be careful with kisses and snuggling since as they clean with their tongue, anything their mouth touches is in contact with their fur . . . including their cute little butts.

HH pets: 2 lizards, 5 snakes, 2 cats. The snakes and lizards were first and live in their own room.

I had two beardies. I wouldn’t have dared attempt to cuddle with one of them. I didn’t even like reaching into his tank. He had a bad habit of nipping at you (and those teeth have the potential to do a bit of damage to your fingers). The other one, however, was really friendly. I typically gave him the run of the house. It wasn’t uncommon to find him laying right in the middle of the couch, or even to be watching TV and have him suddenly end up in your lap (or in your hair).

Also had a water dragon that got along really well with the beardie.

This reminds me of something Wendy Henson said in 9th grade math class!

Nobody tell King Richard!