Can bearded dragons eat bananas? We all know that these lizards can eat bugs, insects, and vegetables, but not everybody knows they’re not allowed to eat certain fruits. Bananas may be beneficial for their health, but you still need to know a few things before letting them enjoy these sweet treats.
Just like how you need to control the light and heat using a thermometer like this in their habitats, you also need to remember that this fruit is not an everyday meal for your beardies. Of course, this may be tricky for new owners, but knowing whether or not your bearded dragons can eat bananas will be vital to their development. This page will go over the basics and know-how you need to feed your bearded dragons just enough to keep them healthy and help them grow to their fullest potential.
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What are in bananas that are so good for bearded dragons?
This yellow fruit is rich in nutrients and contains several essential vitamins and minerals that your beardie will need. Depending on how large your bearded dragon is, bananas in small doses will give them these key benefits:
- Potassium. This aids in their muscle function, helps prevent kidney problems, and lowers their water retention.
- Minerals. These are calcium, iron, and magnesium. These three together will help their bones and tissues become stronger as they grow older.
- Vitamin A and C. These help the bearded dragon’s immune system, reproduction, and most importantly, their growth.
- Antioxidants. These help lower their cholesterol levels and significantly decrease the risk of heart problems.
With all these in mind, it is no surprise that bananas are an amazing source of nutrients for your pets. However, since these fruits are packed with beneficial and damaging nutrients, feeding them too much may cause problems over time, and worse, even paralyze or kill your beardie.
Why can’t they eat bananas often?
Banana has a relatively high phosphorus to calcium ratio (3:1). This means that phosphorus in the fruit is enough to make it harmful for your pet if consumed regularly. Despite a dragon’s reliance on calcium in their meals to make their bones grow stronger, which is also why it is recommended for owners to sprinkle calcium powder in their means, but the phosphorus to calcium ratio makes it so that the phosphorus binds with the calcium instead of letting it be absorbed into your beardie’s system. This is among the main causes of serious calcium depletion that is dangerous for your pet lizard.
Aside from this, the amount of sugar in bananas can cause obesity for your dragon. Just as with humans, it is normal for these bearded dragons to consume small amounts of sugars, but too much can cause health issues. This is also why sugar is least prioritized when designing their diet.
What are the signs that you fed them too many bananas?
If you are worried about your bearded dragons being sick after eating bananas, here are some tell-tale signs that you need to keep a keen eye on:
- Stunted growth
- Weakening and Fatigue
- Paralysis of certain limbs
- Softening of the jaw and face bones
- Shaking in their limbs or abdomen
- Swelling in the rear legs
These are rare occurrences, but as long as you make sure to limit their banana consumption to around once or twice each month, there shouldn’t be any issues with their overall health. If you want to learn more about their diets, you can read up on it here.
How should you prepare bananas for your bearded dragons?
Now that you know how much and how often you can give your beloved pets this amazing fruit, you need to know how to prepare it. Here are a few options you can try:
- Slice them with the peel still on- just like other lizards, their jaws are strong enough to bite through banana peels, and eating them can give your lizards that extra boost of nutrition as a treat. Just make sure to slice the bananas into relatively bite-sized pieces depending on the size of your pet to help them as they eat through the banana. You can also add a few other fruits to make the meal pop more as a healthy and colorful salad that they are sure to enjoy.
- Peel and slice the banana- If you are concerned about the bananas not being organic, the safest way to feed them to your bearded dragons is by peeling them first before slicing them. Doing this can reduce the risk of feeding them pesticides that may have been left on the peel. Place the fruit in their food bowl and watch them enjoy their meal.
- Unsliced without peel- If you’re lucky enough to find a banana that is the perfect size for your beardie, this method is the way to go. Unpeel the banana and place it inside their enclosure and leave it for a few days. But, it would be best if you were vigilant about not leaving it for too long and letting it rot in the cage.
Of course, you can also try all of these options to know which one of them your pet likes most. Doing this will help you feed them better and make their mealtimes more enjoyable for them. After all, their happiness and overall health are the main reasons why you are giving them these bananas as meals.
Feeding your bearded dragons with the right food will ensure that they maintain a healthy and proper diet and help them live for a long time. Of course, if you are still not confident enough about giving your pet a slice of banana, you can always rely on supplements such as these just until you’re ready.
With all that in mind, you should be ready to introduce another amazing meal to your bearded dragon’s diet. Just remember all the pointers you learned to make sure that they are as safe as possible. Want to learn more you can take care of them better? You can find handy guides that can help you be a better owner through this page.