Loving beardie parents are always concerned about their beardie’s diet. Unlike humans, there are many food restrictions for them. Just like we can easily enjoy and gobble an avocado, can bearded dragons eat avocado too?
If you are planning the perfect meal for your beloved pet, then it’s best to have complete knowledge of its nutrients and their respective effects. Here we enlighten you with all the facts and answer all your queries about avocados and your beardie’s diet.
To answer your question right away, no, bearded dragons cannot eat avocados. To start with, avocado has no benefits at all for bearded dragons. It is nothing but harmful for a lizard and therefore is absolutely off-limits for them.
There are multiple reasons why avocado is considered to be a very harmful fruit for these lizards. The nutritional values show a crystal clear image of its adverse effects too. As a concerned caretaker, you can analyze the nutritional data and confirm the authenticity of our judgment too.
Nutritional Chart Of Avocado
The values below are confirmed by the US Department of Agriculture for 100 g of avocado.
|Vitamin C||10 mg|
|Vitamin A||7 ug|
|Vitamin E||2.07 mg|
|Folic Acid||81 ug|
7 Harmful Effects of Avocado
1. Oxalic Acids
Oxalic acids, what are they? The antinutrient compound oxalic acid, also known as oxalate, is found in plants such as avocados, cocoa, leafy greens, and nuts.
Taking in a small amount of oxalic acid is enough to seriously illen your bearded dragon or, worse, to kill them if they consume too much of it.
2. Mineral Binding
Oxalates are formed when oxalic acid binds with minerals and vitamins. Despite the beardies’ body’s ability to eliminate oxalates, it may be unable to do so if the pet consumes large quantities of the compound.
Among the sites of binding are the kidneys, colon, and urinary tract. This can even cause serious health problems like kidney stones.
3. Inhibits Mineral Absorption
Vitamins and minerals are essential to the health of your bearded dragon. However, when Oxalic binds to the minerals and vitamins, it actively inhibits the absorption of calcium and other minerals.
After the oxalic acid succeeds in its function, there begins a lack of essential minerals in the reptile’s body and so the bones, teeth, and overall skeletal development is badly affected. This results in a weakening of the body system, a condition known as metabolic bone disease (MBD). In such a situation, your bearded dragon may develop bone fractures, limb paralysis, shaky limbs, and severe weakness.
4. Poor Calcium to Phosphorus Ratio
Bearded dragons need calcium levels higher than phosphorus levels. Avocados, however, contain more phosphorus than calcium, which is not the right balance.
Moreover, when phosphorus is abundant in the body, it prevents calcium from being absorbed. Whereas, it is recommended that beardies consume 2:1 phosphorus and calcium.
Avocados are known for their high amounts of calories and fats. We all know how this fatty fruit easily causes obesity.
The same goes for bearded dragons, especially when they are kept as pets. Health concerns caused by this weight problem include dental decay, liver damage, and heart failure. It is therefore unwise and unnecessary to feed your pet lizard avocados.
6. Hazards of choking
Rather than chewing, bearded dragons swallow their food whole. Although avocados are ripe, they are rigid. Therefore, if the fruit is not completely mashed up, the bearded dragon will choke and maybe die.
These fatty fruits constitute chemicals known as Persins. These chemicals are lethal for the health of beardies. In most cases, these substances are present on the fruit’s skin and seeds, and they tend to penetrate into the flesh. There is a possibility that your bearded dragon will develop vomiting, respiratory failure, diarrhea, or even die.
What To Do If a Beardie Eats an Avocado?
Even though avocado is totally off-limits for your docile beardies, there are some measures that you can take if there’s accidental ingestion. These actions can help minimize the lethal effects and save your beardie from further trouble.
Here are some of the steps you should take if your beardie eats an avocado,
1. Call a Veterinarian
It is necessary to notify your veterinarian first and foremost if your pet eats even a bit of avocado, make sure you tell your pet’s age and how much avocado it consumed.
The skill of your reptile vet will determine if your beardie needs urgent medical attention. If he thinks you can cope with it, he may instruct you or take you through supportive aid therapy. If he believes an antidote is required for the beardie, you might need to see him in person.
2. Observe Its Behaviors
Keep an eye out for signs of abnormal behavior in your reptile friend. Check for signs of respiratory distress, lethargy, restlessness, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Avocado consumption may also cause dry heaves, increased salivation, mouth irritation, scratching, and decreased activity levels. If your pet behaves strangely, inform an experienced vet, explaining what the signs are, and informing them that you are heading their way.
3. Give It a Warm Bath
A warm bath can be very helpful to control the adverse effects of avocado. It will encourage your dragon to go to the bathroom and hence help to flush all toxins out of the body.
4. Make It Drink Excessive Water
Your lizard friend needs to drink a lot of water to help flush out toxins. Now that the beardie cannot drink much water on its own, use a syringe to help it drink as much water as possible to wash out or dilute the poison.
So, can bearded dragons eat avocados? No! If you want your beardie to be happy and healthy, then keep this fruit off-limits. Avocado is fatal for the health of bearded dragons to such an extent that may even cause death. However, if your bearded dragon mistakenly ingested avocado, take immediate steps to eliminate its effect.
What are some other foods a bearded dragon cannot eat?
There is a list of foods that are completely restricted in a beardie’s diet. These include lettuce, wild insects, garlic, onion, beet tops, rhubarb, fireflies, and oak nuts.
Can bearded dragons eat Avocado leaves?
No, bearded dragons cannot eat avocado leaves as well. Both the fruit and leaves contain persin compounds and so have the same harmful effects as the whole avocado.
What foods can beardies eat safely?
Beardies can eat many foods that include fruits, vegetables, and insects. These include crickets, king worms, mealworms, parsley, peppers, kale, sweet potato, and a little number of fruits too.
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!