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FOR AGES 3 YEARS TO 18 YEARS
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Unlike various other pet reptiles, bearded dragons aren't very choosy eaters, they can churn insects like beetles and at the same time soft fruits also.
Blueberries are one such fruit just like apples or strawberries and bearded dragons appreciate the taste of blueberries, thus, it won't be difficult to feed blueberries to them if you wish to. Even though fruits like blueberries do not play a very important role in the development of a beardie, consuming it occasionally would benefit it to some extent.
Blueberries contain a wide variety of vitamins and minerals which can prove to be beneficial for our beardies but at the same time, they lack some essential nutrients which are critical for bearded dragons. With adult bearded dragons adopting a herbivorous diet, the greens obviously are more essential for them and so blueberries must be fed in a controlled amount. Bearded dragons in their juvenile stages tend to be carnivores consuming around 80% of animal material and only 20% of plant-based. This is due to the high protein content in animal food which helps in the growth of baby beardies. It, therefore, won't be a good decision to feed blueberries or other vegetables to juvenile beardies. Giving this fruit as a treat to the adult beardies is perhaps the best use of blueberries when it comes to bearded dragons but keep in mind to only feed fresh blueberries and properly wash them to remove any sort of pesticides or insecticides. Moreover, when you go to the market to purchase the pack of blueberries for your bearded dragon, always check for the date of expiry or the best before date.
If you enjoy this article, why not also read about if bearded dragons can eat kale and if bearded dragons can eat mango here on Kidadl?
A bearded dragon's diet can have the occasional blueberries, perhaps once or twice a week but any more than that can prove to be harmful. Moderation is the key whenever we add fruits such as cherries or blueberries to the diet of a bearded dragon. The same rule applies when you feed blueberry leaves to your beardie, there will be a leaf or two when you feed fresh blueberries to your beardie and that is fine.
What you should not do is use the blueberry leaves as a significant component of your bearded dragon's diet. Blueberry leaves might not be that harmful to humans but it is not necessary that the same rule applies to beardies as well. Not a lot of in-depth research has been conducted on whether bearded dragons can eat blueberry leaves or not but preliminary tests and knowledge dictate that mistakenly consuming a leaf or two wouldn't cause any harm but consuming a significant amount probably will. Talking about feeding leaves to a bearded dragon, in place of blueberry leaves, you can feed kale leaves or collard green leaves to bearded dragons. These greens can be a part of your beardie's healthy diet as they contain nutrients and other vitamins, minerals essential for the good health of a beardie.
Over the years, bearded dragon owners have had a lot of discussions and debates about whether frozen blueberries are better than fresh blueberries. Interestingly, it isn't that simple in this case. Nowadays, with the constant increase in population and increasing globalization, various edible items including blueberries are made by non-organic procedures.
When you are feeding organic blueberries which have been certified by certain agencies it doesn't really matter a lot whether you feed frozen or fresh blueberries to your beardie as there isn't any pesticide or other chemical. Even the nutrient content in organic frozen blueberries and organic fresh blueberries are more or less the same but at times the frozen blueberries have had an edge over the fresh ones. On the other hand, when it comes to non-organic blueberries, researchers have opted for frozen blueberries over fresh ones as the former is believed to contain lower amounts of pesticides than the latter owing to the difference in storage and processing methods. Supermarkets these days contain blueberries of both organic, as well as, inorganic origin in the grocery section so getting your hands on them shouldn't be an issue. However, be careful that when you give frozen blueberries to your bearded dragon to eat as they shouldn't be very hard. It has been noted that hard blueberries can at times act as a choking hazard for bearded dragons.
Whether it is frozen or fresh, organic or non-organic, a bearded dragon must not eat a lot of blueberries at one time. Blueberries are pretty high in sugar, their sugar content is one of the main reasons why bearded dragons cannot eat them more than once a week. This high sugar content fruit can have several ill-fated consequences on bearded dragons and can lead to obesity, diabetes, heart issues, and also tooth decay. This isn't the issue only with blueberries, other berries such as raspberries also have much sugar in them and can thus be eaten only once per week. Apart from the high amount of sugar, blueberries do not have the ideal balance between phosphorus and calcium content. Bearded dragons require healthy amounts of calcium in their food for survival, calcium deficiency in beardies can lead to issues such as metabolic bone disease. Phosphorus, on the other hand, acts as a counterbalance of calcium, every food item which bearded dragons eat contains some amount of phosphorus and it doesn't trouble the bearded dragon till the calcium content is more than phosphorus. Blueberries have slightly more content of phosphorus in them than calcium, it is thus better to keep a check on the blueberry consumption of beardies.
The process of feeding blueberries to bearded dragons isn't a very cumbersome one, what is important is regulating the number of blueberries they are fed. A series of three to four steps would make it easier for you to understand and then execute the steps in feeding blueberries to your bearded dragon.
Your mindset while feeding blueberries to your bearded dragon should be that you yourself are going to eat the blueberries. Thus, the very first step in the process is to pick the best blueberries, they must not be overripe or on the verge of rotting. You can look for blueberries that have a shade of dark blue, this is a good rule of thumb for picking the best quality berries. Additionally, it is always better to go for organic blueberries rather than non-organic ones. The lower the chances of pesticide content, the better it is for your bearded dragon. In case you are feeding frozen blueberries, make sure that they aren't very hard and are properly thawed. At times bearded dragons tend to choke on hard foods.
Now the next step is to thoroughly wash the blueberries to remove any pesticide residue or dirt or stem. The best way to carry out this step is to place the blueberries in a strainer and then wash them with cold water. This will eliminate any manure or dirt present on the blueberries and make them fit for bearded dragons to eat. Moreover, after washing these fruits, dry them with a towel and then put them in the refrigerator as this reduces the chances of mold formation on the fruits.
Now when the time has come to treat your beardie with this fruit, you would have to chop them into bite-sized pieces or into halves or if your beardie is big enough, you can also feed them berries as a whole. Chances are that the beardie will appreciate the taste of the fruit and encourage its inclusion in its diet. It is better if your chop the berries in half as it is then easier for the bearded dragon to eat, it also minimizes the risk of any health hazard such as choking.
The berries are now ready to be mixed with the other healthy foods of the beardie such as vegetables and other leafy greens. Following a vet-recommended diet would healthy diet would ensure good health for your pet. As long as you use the berries as an occasional treat and mix them with the other regular foods, your bearded dragon will be in a healthy condition with enough calcium in its body.
Fruits like blueberries have a lot of benefits for us humans such as increasing metabolism, good eyesight, a healthier immune system, and many more as well. This might make us think that our pet bearded dragon should be eating these berries on a regular basis instead of the greens but what might be beneficial for us might not be beneficial for them.
The high amount of sugar and high phosphorus to calcium ratio are the two major reasons why a bearded dragon should not eat blueberries, at least, not on a regular basis. If bearded dragons eat blueberries frequently, the sugar content in them can affect their heart health and also decay their teeth. Eating fruit like blueberry once per week is good for bearded dragons. Owners can slice up the berries and mix them with their daily food. We all know that bearded dragons need vegetables and other greens in their regular diet rather than berries, it is thus best to use this fruit only as an occasional treat. Even though this fruit is not toxic for bearded dragons, so keeping a regulation will only ensure the good health of your pet beardie.
Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for can bearded dragons eat blueberries, then why not take a look at if bearded dragons eat orange or bearded dragon facts?
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