What Foods Can Bearded Dragons Eat

Introduction to Bearded Dragons

Bearded Dragons are amusing pets with exclusive temperaments. These reptiles can be found in Australia; they look like small dragons with spikes on their back. They are omnivores, meaning they eat both plants and animals.

Their diet usually includes various leafy vegetables, fruits and bugs like crickets, mealworms and waxworms. As they require high protein content, insects are essential for their diet. The food varies depending on their age; for instance, baby bearded dragons need more protein than adults.

These cold-blooded animals benefit from ultraviolet light. This is because they digest calcium through skin exposure. Thus, you should give them UV bulbs to absorb Vitamin D.

One astounding fact is that when frightened or threatened, bearded dragons can change their color intensity (color morph), which is fascinating! Now, let me tell you a funny story. A friend used to have about 10 pet bearded dragons that would often perch on branches and watch TV together – as if they were meditating together!

Bearded dragons may not have the best taste in food, but at least they don’t have the same taste in fashion!

Foods for Bearded Dragons

To make sure your bearded dragon is getting all the necessary nutrients, it’s important to know what foods to feed them. In this section, we dig into the foods for bearded dragons with a focus on fruits and vegetables and protein sources. You’ll see how these foods provide different benefits to help keep your bearded dragon healthy and happy.

Fruits and Vegetables

Bearded Dragons need a balanced diet of fruits and veggies to stay healthy. Leafy greens like collard greens, kale, and spinach provide calcium for bone growth and strength. Bell peppers, squash, broccoli, carrots, and sweet potatoes have vitamins A, C, and K. Fruits like berries, bananas, papayas, and mangos should be given in moderation, due to sugar content.

Feeding your Bearded Dragon? Cut fruits and veggies into small pieces to avoid choking hazards. Serve them raw or lightly steamed. Beware of food not recommended by vets like lettuce and citrus fruits with high acidity.

Veggies shouldn’t be given daily, rotate combinations every day. A good ratio is 70% vegetables and 30% fruit, depending on dragon’s age.

Be careful not to feed your pet anything poisonous or harmful! Some household plants or wild insects could harm them. Especially live beetle types.

Did you know that in ancient Egypt, honey was stored in jars with reptiles, knowing they like sweetness! An apple a day doesn’t always keep the vet away – unless your bearded dragon doesn’t climb the tree.

Apples

Apples are a great treat for bearded dragons! They have natural sugars, vitamins, and fiber which can benefit these reptiles. Apples can also help digestion and keep your pet hydrated.

When feeding apples to your bearded dragon, make sure to remove the seeds and core. Too much could cause diarrhea or digestive issues.

Bearded dragons like the sweetness in apples, but should only be given as an occasional treat. Don’t make them a staple in their diet.

Overall, when given in moderation, apples can provide some nutritional benefits for bearded dragons. It’s best to consult a vet or nutrition specialist before making changes to your pet’s diet. Blueberries are also a great guilt-free snack for bearded dragons’ sweet cravings!

Blueberries

Blueberries – A Delicious Snack For Your Bearded Dragon!

Blueberries are yummy and nutritious treats for your bearded dragon. Here’s 6 key points to remember when you feed blueberries to your pet reptile:

  • They are a good source of vitamins and minerals – like vitamin C, vitamin K, and manganese.
  • Plus, they contain antioxidants that can help boost your reptile’s immune system.
  • Make sure you give them fresh blueberries, not dried or canned ones.
  • Because of their high sugar content, they should only be an occasional snack – not part of the daily diet.
  • Cut the blueberries into small pieces, so they can eat it easily.
  • If you notice any adverse reactions after feeding them, stop giving them and see a vet.

You can also give wild lowbush or cultivated highbush blueberries. Just avoid giving them leaves or stems as they can be toxic.

Did you know? Wild blueberries have more phytochemicals than commercially grown berries! (Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2850944/) So give your pet reptile this tasty fruit today and they’ll be happy and healthy!

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Collard Greens

Collard Greens are a must-have for Bearded Dragons! Packed full of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals, these leafy greens are essential for keeping these reptiles healthy and active. They contain Vitamin A, C and K, plus Calcium, Iron, Fiber, and Protein. Plus, they are low in Oxalates, promoting gut health and preventing kidney stones. Plus, they are easy to digest, making them an ideal dietary option for pet owners too.

But, it’s important to feed Collard Greens in moderation, as overfeeding can lead to goitrogenic effects – hindering the thyroid gland’s functioning. And, they don’t interfere with calcium absorption, making them an ideal meal for bearded dragons. Pet owners should offer these greens every couple of days, alongside other veggie options.

One pet owner even mixed Collard Greens with diced fruits like strawberries and blueberries to make an appetizing meal for her dragon. It just goes to show that with a bit of creativity, nutritious meals can be both tasty and fun for pets and pet parents alike. Meanwhile, carrots just make for a crunchy snack that helps keep scales looking nice and shiny!

Carrots

Carrots are a nutritious treat for bearded dragons! Packed with Vitamin A and dietary fiber, they promote healthy vision, immune function, digestion, and regular bowel movements. 100g of carrots contain 16706IU of Vitamin A and 2.8g of fiber. But be careful – too much Vitamin A can be bad for them. Include other vegetables and proteins in their diet to create a balanced meal. Plus, don’t forget to rotate the vegetables to keep your dragon full and happy! Squash is not only a delicious veggie, it’s also a powerful weapon in the hands of a hungry bearded dragon!

Squash

Squash is a great staple food for bearded dragons. It has lots of vitamins and minerals that their health needs. Check out the table for more info!

NutrientQuantity per 100g
Vitamin A1600 IU
Vitamin C15mg
Calcium16mg
Potassium262mg

Squash also has a high water content. This makes it great for hydration. But, introduce it gradually. An abrupt change can cause digestive issues.

Pro Tip: Always wash fruits and veggies before giving them to your dragon. This removes any harmful chemicals. And get ready for some impressive biceps!

Protein Sources

Bearded dragons need protein in their diets to help with muscle growth and repair. Here are some nutritionally balanced, protein sources for them:

  • Crickets, mealworms and Dubia roaches.
  • Low-fat canned dog and cat food.
  • Pieces of cooked chicken or turkey.
  • Boiled, scrambled, or raw eggs.
  • Frozen pinkie mice or rats.
  • Waxworms, butterworms and silk worms (as occasional treats).

Veggies like kale, collard greens and carrots should always accompany these protein sources. Don’t forget to gut-load feeder insects before feeding them to your dragon for optimal nutrition.

Oh, and why did the bearded dragon cross the road? To get to the cricket buffet on the other side!

Crickets

Crickets are so yummy for bearded dragons! Chasing them and eating them provides them with lots of protein, plus it satisfies their hunting instincts. Consider these five points when feeding crickets to your pet:

  1. Gut-load or feed a nutritious diet to crickets before offering them to dragons.
  2. Adult dragons can eat crickets up to 5/8 inch. Juveniles need smaller ones.
  3. Sprinkle calcium and vitamin supplements on the crickets.
  4. Remove any uneaten crickets after some hours. This stops overfeeding and avoids stressing the dragon’s digestion.
  5. Brown house crickets, black soldier fly larvae, and silent crickets are all suitable for dragons.

It’s good to vary their diet! Insects like Dubia roaches and mealworms, plus leafy greens, help balance the dragon’s nutrition.

Wild populations don’t become domesticated pets, but many people adopt them as exotic pets because of their unique look and personality. If your bearded dragon wants a crunchy snack, give them Dubia roaches! Watching them squirm is so much fun.

Dubia Roaches

Dubia Roaches are key for a Bearded Dragon’s Diet. They are high in protein and low in fat. Plus, they provide calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin B12. Here is a table of their nutrients:

NutrientAmount per 100g
Protein7.4g
Fat0.3g
Calcium22mg
Phosphorus26mg
Vitamin B120.44μg

Dubia Roaches have other benefits too. They are quieter than crickets, less likely to escape, don’t have parasites or diseases, and have little odor. Make sure to buy them from a good source, not pet store scraps. Plus, humans, birds, and reptiles all enjoy mealworms!

Mealworms

Mealworms are a vital source of nutrition for bearded dragons. They’re high in protein and fat, helping keep your pet’s weight healthy. You can get them at most pet stores and online retailers, either live or freeze-dried.

Adult dragons need 10-20 mealworms per feeding, while juveniles require 5-10. Gut-load them for best nutrition, by feeding them veggies like carrots or sweet potato. Remove any uneaten mealworms, to prevent spoilage. Variety is key – mealworms should not be the only food.

Be warned – some dragons may become addicted to the high fat content of mealworms, so a balanced diet of veggies, fruits, and other proteins should be maintained.

Feeding time offers a chance for interaction with your pet. One owner reported their dragon catching mealworms mid-air, like a professional! However, always supervise feeding times for safety.

And for extra excitement, try Superworms! Perfect for your dragon’s cravings.

Superworms

Superworms are a yummy treat for Bearded Dragons! They are a great source of protein and can be fed to adult dragons. Superworms are an ideal choice if your dragon has difficulty digesting fatty foods like waxworms or butter worms.

Here are five key facts about this food item:

  • Superworms need to be alive when eaten. Otherwise, they can bore holes in the dragon’s stomach.
  • Avoid recently molted superworms because of their tough exoskeletons.
  • These worms are large and can be given two or three times weekly based on the size and age of your dragon.
  • Keep superworms alive longer by storing them in the refrigerator at 50-60 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Remember to provide variety in your dragon’s diet – superworms should not be the only food.

Fun fact: Superworm larvae can be kept in bran or oatmeal before they pupate into beetles.

Be aware of overfeeding your Bearded Dragon with superworms, as it may cause obesity. A pet owner once shared how her dragon ended up overweight after eating only superworms. Regular vet visits are important for monitoring your dragon’s health. Who needs Mickey when you have Pinkies? Bearded dragons sure know how to dine in style!

Pinky Mice

Pinky Mice are a great protein source for Bearded Dragons. They offer essential nutrients for healthy growth. Half a Pinky Mouse is fine for adult Bearded Dragons. Feed sparingly, no more than once a week. Remember to use frozen and thawed Pinky Mice – don’t feed live ones, they can hurt the dragon. Take away any uneaten portions after 15 minutes. Overfeeding on Pinky Mice can cause health concerns like obesity.

Be aware of how much and how often you give your Bearded Dragon Pinky Mice. Pro Tip: Think about offering other protein sources like crickets or mealworms to avoid relying on Pinky Mice too much.

Feeding Tips for Bearded Dragons

To ensure a healthy and happy bearded dragon, feeding habits should be carefully considered. With “Feeding Tips for Bearded Dragons” as your guide, you will learn all you need on the frequency of feeding, amount of food, and preparing food for bearded dragons. These sub-sections provide the necessary information for ensuring your pet’s nutrition is up to par while keeping them satisfied.

Frequency of Feeding

Bearded Dragons have special mealtime guidelines for maintaining good health. Feeding frequency is key for preventing obesity and malnutrition. Juveniles (up to 12 months old) should be fed twice a day, while adults require feeding once a day or every other day. Younger Beardies below six months prefer more insects than veggies; however, those above six months require an equal balance of both. Water must be provided every two days.

In their natural habitat, these reptiles are omnivores who consume various diets. They eat insects like crickets and earthworms, as well as plant materials like leaves and flowers. The right balance of proteins, fats, and fibers is essential for their growth and development. Beware: overfeeding can turn them into dragons from Game of Thrones!

Amount of Food

Bearded Dragons need food portions that vary depending on age and activity level. Generally, offer what they can eat in 10-15 minutes. Here’s a table with the recommended amounts for different age groups and activity levels:

Age GroupSedentary (Frozen)Active (Live)
Hatchling3-5 Pinhead Crickets/Day4-7 Pinhead Crickets/Day
Juvenile40-60 Small Crickets/Day50-70 Small Crickets/Day
Adult20-30 Large Crickets/Day25-35 Large Crickets/Day

But beware! Overfeeding can lead to health issues like obesity and impaction. Vegetables and fruits should be given in moderation. The bulk of their diet should be insects for the protein.

Wait until the insects reach suitable body temperatures before feeding, for better digestion. To make the food more tasty and hydrate them, provide fresh greens like kale or collards with some water. Keep a shallow dish with fresh water available at all times, too.

These dragons have high culinary standards, so get ready to chop and cook like a pro!

Preparing Food for Bearded Dragons

Bearded Dragons need a balanced diet for their well-being. Preparing different types of food depends on their age and size. Fresh fruits and vegetables are essential for them. Insects should be gut-loaded with high-nutrient veggies before feeding them. High-quality commercial diets can be supplementary meals, but not the staple. Avoid toxic foods like avocado, rhubarb, spinach, cicadas, fireflies or citrus fruits, as they can cause serious health issues.

It’s necessary to watch your pet’s eating habits, and also consider the temperature requirements. If one species refuses to eat fruits, try changing fruit choices. This can help restore nutritional balance. Keep adventurous foods away from Bearded Dragons.

Foods to Avoid for Bearded Dragons

To ensure your bearded dragon’s health, it is crucial to recognize the foods that should be avoided. In order to provide the best diet for your pet with this section, titled “Foods to Avoid for Bearded Dragons,” we’ll introduce two sub-sections: “High-Fat and High-Sugar Foods” and “Insects that are Harmful to Bearded Dragons.” Briefly, both sub-topics will help you in selecting the healthy foods and insects for your bearded dragon.

High-Fat and High-Sugar Foods

Bearded dragons must have a special diet to stay healthy. Foods with a lot of fat and sugar can hurt their wellbeing. Here are some things to think about when feeding your bearded dragon:

  • Do not give them sweets or processed foods. They have too much sugar which can cause laziness, weight gain, and a decrease in appetite.
  • High-fat things like nuts, seeds, and avocado can lead to liver problems and digestion troubles which affects their health.
  • Fried food should be avoided. The fats are bad and the oil used for frying stops the body from absorbing nutrients.
  • Canned food often has sodium levels that are not safe for bearded dragons.

It is important to remember that even though fruits are good for humans, some fruits have a lot of sugar which is bad for bearded dragons. Papaya, mangoes, and bananas should only be given sometimes.

To keep your bearded dragon happy and healthy, do not give them food with a lot of fat or sugar. This is the key to a long and happy life with your pet. Don’t let your bearded dragon try dangerous insects. Stick to safe options like crickets and mealworms.

Insects that are Harmful to Bearded Dragons

Insects are an important part of a bearded dragon’s diet. But, not all insects are safe for them and some can be harmful or even deadly. It’s essential to know which ones to avoid. Fireflies, boxelder bugs, lightning bugs and centipedes are all dangerous. Crickets and mealworms are safe when fed appropriately.

Accidentally consuming harmful bugs can have permanent effects. Many pet owners mistakenly think fireflies are a good food source for their reptile pets. Knowing the difference between beneficial and dangerous insects is important for keeping your pet healthy and happy.

Years ago, a friend of mine bought a juvenile dragon from a breeder without knowing its dietary needs. He fed it a firefly, unaware of the risks. The dragon had seizures, breathing issues and passed away despite veterinary care. That taught me to research our pet’s health requirements before making decisions.

Avoid these dangerous bugs and stick to the approved menu – it’s responsible pet ownership.

Conclusion and Summary of Foods Allowed and Not Allowed for Bearded Dragons

Bearded dragons’ diets must be carefully watched. Here are 3 points to remember when picking out food for them:

  • Allowable Foods – dark, leafy greens, fruits, insects, and vegetables but exclude high-fat or high protein food.
  • Prohibited Foods – grapes, avocado, rhubarb, onions, garlic, chives or spinach should not be ingested, even in tiny amounts.
  • In Moderation – Fruits such as papaya and melons should be given sparingly due to their high sugar and phosphorus-calcium ratio. Beans, too, contain a lot of lectin, which can be harmful to bearded dragons in the long run.

It is essential to only feed your bearded dragon its approved food. Other factors such as age or underlying medical conditions may lead to adverse effects. Keeping a clean terrarium, with proper heat and light, is also important for your bearded dragon’s health.

Pro Tip: It’s best to always consult your vet before introducing new foods into your bearded dragon’s diet.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What kind of food can bearded dragons eat?

A: Bearded dragons can eat a variety of foods such as leafy greens, vegetables, fruits, and insects.

Q: Can bearded dragons eat fruits?

A: Yes, bearded dragons can eat fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, and mangoes. Just make sure to remove any pits or seeds and to only give them in moderation.

Q: Can bearded dragons eat meat?

A: Bearded dragons are omnivores and can eat meat such as insects, worms, and even small amounts of cooked chicken or beef.

Q: Can bearded dragons eat lettuce?

A: While lettuce is not toxic to bearded dragons, it is not the best option as it has a low nutritional value and can cause diarrhea. It is better to feed them leafy greens such as collard greens or kale.

Q: Can bearded dragons eat crickets?

A: Yes, crickets are a great source of protein for bearded dragons. Just make sure to give them the appropriate size based on their age and to gut-load the crickets before feeding them to your pet.

Q: Can bearded dragons eat tomatoes?

A: While tomatoes are not toxic to bearded dragons, they are high in acid and should only be given in moderation. It is better to feed them other fruits and vegetables such as bell peppers or carrots.