Bearded dragons can have watermelon, but it should be served in a small quantity once a week. Bearded dragons are not heavy eaters, so whatever you serve them must be full of nutrition. Watermelons are delicious and we all look forward to them when summers arrive. This fruit is not only refreshing but also has many nutrients. Everyone loves it so it is natural for us to wonder if our pets can try it too. So, Can a Bearded Dragon Eat Watermelon? Every fruit is sweet, but let’s see if the results of feeding watermelons are also sweet for bearded dragons or not.
Watermelons have a higher water content, so one cannot rely on this fruit for a lot of nutritional value. For us, this fruit is good in summer because it fulfills our water intake needs. However, how do watermelons suit bearded dragons? To understand this we need to know what these bearded reptiles need on a daily basis, and also what the fruit has to offer.
CAN A BEARDED DRAGON EAT WATERMELON? COMPLETE NUTRITION GUIDE
Bearded dragons can have watermelons occasionally and they might prove harmful if fed daily. The main reason behind this is that this fruit is filling and your bearded pet might not want to eat anything after eating it. Moreover, there is low nutrition in watermelons so your bearded dragon pet would be eating less. Gradually, a daily intake of watermelons will result in weakness.
Watermelon contains fewer vitamins and minerals. You can feed them a small amount of watermelon very occasionally because fruits should only consume 20% of their diet and the other 80% should be meat such as worms. Moreover, you may also want to know Can Bearded Dragons Eat Apples.
NUTRITION IN WATERMELON FOR BEARDED DRAGONS
Watermelon has the following nutrients, which explain why it is not the best daily fruit for bearded dragons.
Sugar: The amount of sugar is high when compared to the other nutrients and there are 6.2 grams in 100 grams of the fruit. High-sugar foods are a big no for bearded dragons because their bodies have a slow metabolism and cannot digest high calories. Sugars can make bearded dragons obese.
Protein: The amount of protein in watermelons is extremely low, whereas it is an essential nutrient for bearded dragons. If these reptiles do not get enough protein, they cannot develop and their muscle strength is low.
Fiber: Another essential component of the bearded dragons’ diet is fiber. Unfortunately, that is also quite low in watermelon. This fruit consists of 90% water, which means that only 10% of the weight of the fruit will be other nutrients, and each of them is lower than what many other vegetables and fruits contain.
Vitamins: The vitamins found in watermelon are plenty. The advantage of eating watermelons can be that the bearded dragon will get its daily feed of vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and Beta carotene.
Calcium: Another essential nutrient for bearded dragons is calcium. However, watermelon does not offer a large enough portion. There are only 7mg of calcium in 100 grams of watermelon.
Phosphorus: This mineral hinders calcium absorption and therefore, whatever you feed your bearded dragon must have low phosphorus. The ratio of calcium to phosphorus should be 2:1 but fruits or vegetables that have more phosphorus than calcium must be avoided. In watermelon, there are 11 mg of phosphorus, which is more than the amount of calcium.
Watermelon contains almost 90% of water which makes this fruit a rich source of hydration for your bearded dragon. It also contains beta carotene and vitamin C which are important for your bearded dragon’s vision, immune system, and healthy growth. Watermelon also consists of a small amount of magnesium, calcium, and potassium. Magnesium maintains healthy metabolism and reduces the inflammation of a bearded dragon. If you want your bearded dragon’s blood pressure normal so potassium will fill your need.
Calcium is essential for muscle strength, body tissue strength, and bone and tooth health. Bearded dragons love the taste of watermelon because of its high sugar content. This fact can be very useful when your bearded dragon loses their appetite so you can feed them in a very limited amount to get its appetite back. Also, read Can Bearded Dragons Eat Corn?
QUANTITY OF WATERMELON TO FEED YOUR BEARDED DRAGON
We mentioned earlier that watermelon contains a high amount of water and sugar which is unhealthy and harmful for a bearded dragon. You cannot feed watermelon daily as a full meal to your bearded dragon if you do so you will have to face consequences. They can only eat this fruit as a treat and very occasionally, the maximum amount of watermelon you can feed to your bearded dragon is one to three small pieces a month, however, if the quantity is increased more than you will have to handle the health issues of your bearded dragon.
RISKS OF FEEDING WATERMELON TO BEARDED DRAGONS
There are many reasons why watermelons cannot be a part of the bearded dragon’s regular diet. As I said before, watermelon contains a high amount of sugar which can be harmful to your bearded dragon. The intake of high sugar can cause digestive issues, tooth decay, obesity, over-fermentation in the stomach, diarrhea, and dehydration. As a responsible owner, you have to balance the amount of sugar in the bearded dragon’s diet.
Calcium is very essential for a healthy diet for a bearded dragon and with calcium, they also need vitamin D to absorb the minerals in the bearded dragon’s blood. Many fruits and vegetables have an unbalanced ratio of calcium to phosphorus which can also lead to metabolic bone disease. The high amount of phosphorus can prevent absorbing the calcium into the blood of a bearded dragon. Sadly, Watermelon also comes in the category of low calcium fruits which is unhealthy for the bones of the bearded dragon.
Watermelon also consists of high oxalates which also prevent calcium from being absorbed into the blood of your reptile. As we talked about before, watermelon contains a high content of water which boosts your beard and keeps it hydrated. However, if this fruit is fed not in a restricted amount, then your bearded dragon can be overhydrated which can cause diarrhea to your bearded dragon.
Fruits and vegetables should only be considered as 20% of the bearded dragon’s diet and the remaining 80% should be meat such as worms because bearded dragons need calcium which can only be gained by meat. Watermelon also has low calcium and it also has many other drawbacks so you should only feed this fruit once a month and as a treat. Moreover, you can also read Can Bearded Dragons Eat Yellow Peppers. Moreover, you can also read Can Bearded Dragons Eat Yellow Peppers.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Can bearded dragons eat watermelon seeds?
Bearded dragons should never eat watermelon seeds because they can choke and if they possibly manage to swallow still the seeds can scratch their throat. It can also block the digestive tract. I prefer to feed watermelons without seeds so they cannot cause problems.
Can bearded dragons eat watermelon rinds?
No, the watermelon rinds are very hard; it is not possible for a bearded dragon to chew on them. Peel off the rinds and give your dragon red juicy small flesh of watermelon.
How to serve watermelon to a bearded dragon?
There are three simple steps to serve watermelon to your bearded dragon. The first step is to buy a fresh juicy watermelon for your bearded dragon, while also checking if it is free from chemicals. The second step is to cut the small piece of watermelon into three tiny pieces. The final step is to serve the tiny pieces of watermelon in a bowl and then let them enjoy their meal.
Emma is a pet enthusiast, and her way with words makes her an expressive writer. Her interests lie in healthcare and planning nutrition for various pets. She has two girls, and she’s passing her passion to them through occasional volunteer projects in the small neighborhood zoo. Emma joined our team as an enthusiast and has added more years to her experience by researching more about various creatures!