What Foods Are Good for Bearded Dragons

Types of Foods Bearded Dragons Can Eat

To make sure that your bearded dragon stays healthy and happy, you need to know what types of foods it can eat. In this section, we’ll explore the various food options suitable for your little friend. We’ll cover three sub-sections briefly, such as Greens and Vegetables, Fruits, and Insects.

Greens and Vegetables

Bearded dragons have an appetite for leafy greens and nutrient-rich vegetables. These foods are essential for their growth. They provide fiber, vitamins and minerals that aid digestion and boost immunity.

Some ‘must-haves’ for your dragon include:

  • Collard Greens: Calcium, iron, Vitamin A & C
  • Mustard Greens: High in fiber, aids digestion
  • Dandelion Greens: Remove toxins
  • Squash: Vitamin A and antioxidants

But, watch out! Too much calcium or goitrogenic substances can harm them. Iceberg lettuce and spinach have no nutritional value and can deplete calcium levels.

To keep your dragon healthy, offer a variety of greens and vegetables. Supplement with commercial feed or insects.

Fruit is also a great way to add vitamins. Put overripe bananas to good use!

Fruits

Apples, peaches, strawberries, grapes, and bananas are all tasty treats that your bearded dragon can enjoy! However, citrus fruits like oranges and lemons should be avoided as they may irritate their digestive system. Additionally, avoid giving them avocados or rhubarb as these can be harmful.

Remember to only offer fresh fruit – avoid canned or packaged options as they may contain added sugar or preservatives.

For a variety of nutritional benefits, provide your bearded dragon with fruit of different colors.

When it comes to insects, don’t worry – you can easily catch a fly with your chopsticks!

Insects

Bearded Dragons need “Edible Arthropods” for food. These critters give important nutrients, like protein, which keeps them healthy. To show all the arthropod options, we made a chart. It has three columns: Insect Name, Nutritional Value, and Availability.

Insect NameNutritional ValueAvailability
CricketsHigh in protein and calcium.Widely available.
Dubia RoachesHigh in protein, low fat.Somewhat expensive.
MealwormsLower protein, higher fat than crickets.Widely available.

Important: Gut-load or add multivitamins to arthropods. Otherwise, they may hurt your dragon’s health.

Pro Tip: Crickets make noise at night. If this will be a problem, switch to quiet roaches like Dubia Roaches. Don’t feed vegan-unfriendly food.

Foods Bearded Dragons Should Avoid

To ensure your bearded dragon is healthy and happy, it’s important to know which foods to avoid. In order to guide you with your pet’s nutrition, we’ve created this section titled ‘Foods Bearded Dragons Should Avoid’ with a focus on the toxic foods and insects to avoid. These sub-sections will help you identify and eliminate harmful dietary choices that could negatively impact your beloved pet’s health.

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Toxic Foods

Bearded dragons should avoid eating certain foods which may cause them serious harm. Here’s a selection:

  • Insects with high fat content
  • Insects larger than the space between the dragon’s eyes
  • Raw meat
  • Avocado
  • Rhubarb
  • Tomato leaves

Keep in mind that this list is not exhaustive. Each dragon may react differently to certain foods, so it’s important to consult a vet if you notice any changes in your dragon’s behavior or physical health.

About 90% of medical emergencies related to bearded dragons are caused by eating inappropriate foods. So make sure to keep those crickets out of your tank – they might be planning a break-out!

Insects to Avoid

Insects are not ideal for Bearded Dragons. Knowing which ones to avoid is important for their health. Fireflies, Lightning Bugs, Cicadas, Monarch Butterflies and Pesticide-Infected Insects can be harmful.

Gut-loaded insects with proper nutrition is a must. Consider feeding mealworms, crickets or silkworms. Supplement their diet with calcium powder, too.

Moderation is key to a healthy and thriving Bearded Dragon. Just like with avocado toast!

How Much and How Often to Feed Bearded Dragons

To ensure your bearded dragon stays healthy, it’s important to understand how often and how much you should feed them. In this section, “How Much and How Often to Feed Bearded Dragons,” you’ll find all the answers you need. We’ll cover Feeding Frequency and Food Quantity in detail, so you can be sure that your scaly friend is getting the right amount of nutrition.

Feeding Frequency

Bearded Dragon Feeding Schedule!

Feed your dragon often, but not too much. Vary the feedings based on the age and size of your pet. Here are some guidelines:

  • Baby dragons (0-4 months): Twice or thrice a day with insects.
  • Juveniles (4-18 months): Once or twice a day with bugs.
  • Adults (over 18 months): Veggies mostly, but protein-rich food every now and then.
  • Crickets, mealworms, cockroaches, and waxworms in appropriate amounts.
  • Avoid lettuce and spinach; they don’t provide enough nutrients.
  • Insects should be gut loaded with nutritional supplements first.

Species-specific feeding frequencies may vary, so ask your vet if you have any questions. And remember: dandelions are a great source of calcium and vitamin A for your dragon!

Food Quantity

Maintaining Bearded Dragons’ optimal health and weight requires appropriate food portions. These portions depend on the reptile’s age, size, and daily activity.

For 0-3 months old ones measuring 5-7 inches, feed them 2-3 times a day with small insects.

4-11 months old ones at 8-14 inches need 2x daily insects and veggies.

12+ months old and +15 inches require a once-a-day diet with mainly veggies and occasional insects for protein.

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Avoid overfeeding as it can lead to various health issues. Gut loading the insects increases their nutritional value.

Fruits high in phosphorous (e.g. apples, bananas) should only be given occasionally or not at all. Leafy greens (e.g. kale, collard greens) should make up most of their diet. Feeding them crickets exclusively leads to vitamin A deficiency and metabolic bone disease. Hydrate them with ‘H2Oh yeah!’

Hydration for Bearded Dragons

To keep your bearded dragon hydrated, you need to provide it with adequate water sources and keep a close eye on signs of dehydration. That’s why in this section, “Hydration for Bearded Dragons,” we’ll be discussing the different water sources you can provide your pet, along with the common signs of dehydration among bearded dragons.

Water Sources

To hydrate bearded dragons correctly, it’s important to know the different water sources. Here’s a table of them and their advantages:

Water SourceBenefits
Tap WaterEasy to get, cheap
Filtered WaterCleans out harmful things
Bottled WaterHandy, quality stays the same

Plus, misting the enclosure or giving wet food can help keep them hydrated too. But did you know that misting too much can lead to too much humidity and breathing issues? (source: PetMD)

Dehydrated beardies? Not lizards – raisins with legs!

Signs of Dehydration

Signs & Symptoms of Dehydration in Bearded Dragons

Bearded dragons can display signs of dehydration if they don’t receive enough fluids. It’s important to be aware of these signs and symptoms.

  • Thick, discolored urine is an early sign.
  • It’s common to observe physical lethargy or reduced mobility.
  • Reduced appetite, sunken eyes, and wrinkled skin are other warning signs.

If your bearded dragon shows any of these signs, provide them with hydration immediately. Don’t delay it or their health might suffer.

Take good care! Monitor your pet’s water intake, provide them with water regularly and soak them in water for a short period every day. Fresh, hydrated pets are happy pets!

Feeding Techniques for Bearded Dragons

To ensure your bearded dragon gets the best nutrition, feeding techniques for bearded dragons with a focus on hand feeding or feeding dish placement are your go-to solutions. Hand feeding allows for bonding and ensures your dragon’s food intake is monitored while feeding dish placement can mimic their natural foraging instincts.

Hand Feeding

Bearded Dragons enjoy hand-feeding! It’s a bonding technique and ensures the meal has been eaten. But, take care when hand-feeding; they have powerful jaws and teeth. Wash your hands before and after feeding. Hold food with long forceps/tongs, where the dragon can easily reach it. If it refuses food, don’t persist. Try again later or switch food item.

Hand-feeding should not become a habit. Stress can be caused for both pet and owner. Bearded Dragons can accidentally ingest inedible objects like sand. This can cause fatal impaction issues needing expensive vet treatments.

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One friend hand-fed her Beardy without tools. It was agitated, but calmed when she approached with treats. It ate from her palm, but bit her finger and drew blood. Be safe when hand-feeding – use tools like long forceps! It’s amazing how the placement of a bearded dragon’s feeding dish can cause more debate than politics on Twitter!

Feeding Dish Placement

Feeding your Bearded Dragon requires knowledge of the optimal feeding zone. Here are some key points to consider:

  • Ensure the feeding dishes are accessible.
  • The bowls should not be too deep.
  • Have multiple dishes throughout their habitat.

These methods ensure comfort and stimulation for your lizard. Also, observe where your dragon likes to eat. Placing supplemental items near these areas may increase interest in food. All this effort leads to a satisfying eating experience! Oh, and don’t forget – feeding your dragon is not as hard as changing a baby’s diaper.

Conclusion: Final Thoughts on Feeding Bearded Dragons

Bearded dragons need a balanced diet packed with calcium and protein. Offer them a mix of bugs, veggies, and fruits to keep them healthy. As well as crickets and veggies, give occasional treats such as mealworms. Balance the right nutrients to steer clear of nutritional deficiencies or diseases.

For bearded dragons, it is necessary to give varied foods that suit their omnivorous nature. Insects should be 25% of their diet, vegetables and fruits should be the other 75%. Dark leafy greens, carrots, bell peppers, squash, and berries are great options.

Providing food that is too big can cause impaction and other digestive problems. Cut the fruits and veggies into bite-size pieces. Make sure they have access to clean water too.

The nutrition needs of baby beardies differ from adult ones. Also, feed your pet at the same time each day and watch their behavior to monitor their health.

Pro Tip: Refrain from giving wild-caught insects as they may carry parasites or harmful chemicals from pesticides. Choose gut-loaded captive-raised insect options instead.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some good foods for my bearded dragon?

There are many foods that are good for bearded dragons. Some examples include insects such as crickets, mealworms, and dubia roaches, as well as vegetables such as collard greens, turnip greens, carrots, and butternut squash.

Can I feed my bearded dragon fruits?

Yes, you can feed your bearded dragon some fruits in moderation. Some good options include mango, strawberries, and blueberries.

What should I avoid feeding my bearded dragon?

Bearded dragons should avoid certain foods such as spinach, avocado, and rhubarb. These foods can be toxic to your bearded dragon.

Can I feed my bearded dragon meat?

While bearded dragons are primarily herbivores, they can eat some meat in moderation such as cooked chicken or turkey.

What should I do if my bearded dragon is not eating?

If your bearded dragon is not eating, there may be an underlying health issue. It’s best to take them to a veterinarian who specializes in reptiles for a check-up.

How often should I feed my bearded dragon?

Bearded dragons should be fed once to twice a day. Younger dragons may require more frequent feeding, while older dragons may require less frequent feeding.