A huge portion of a beardie’s diet is composed of greens and vegetables. We all know how beneficial these veggies and greens are for the proper functioning of the working body. Luckily, there are lots of green options for these lizards to munch on. And from these options can bearded dragons eat parsley? Yes, bearded dragons can eat parsley, keeping in mind its benefits and downsides.
As a responsible caretaker, you must have sufficient knowledge about the foods you feed your pet. Here, we will enlighten you with the nutritional facts, nutrients, benefits, disadvantages, and essential tips on feeding parsley to your dragon.
NUTRIENTS OF PARSLEY
To begin with, you must analyze the nutrients and their respective amounts in parsley. The values below are all authentic and have been taken from USDA (US Department of Agriculture) for 100 g of parsley.
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HEALTH BENEFITS OF PARSLEY
All in all, parsley is very healthy for bearded dragons. Its unique benefits are hard to find in other vegetables. Here is why bearded dragons can eat parsley,
Firstly, parsley is rich in good vitamins. It contains a high amount of Vitamin A, Vitamin K, and Vitamin C. These vitamins work in spectacular ways to benefit the beardie’s body function. They strengthen eyesight and prevent night blindness. In addition, they help to maintain the body’s tissues and body systems. They also fortify the immune system and protect the lizard from many diseases. Not only this but these vitamins also boost the growth and maintenance of strong bones.
In addition, this superfood is also low in sugar, which makes it a very healthy option for your lizard. Foods low in sugar save beardies from many health issues that can result in fatal conditions. For instance, sugary foods cause obesity, heart problems, high blood pressure, kidney diseases, liver problems, and laziness. Moreover, parsley has a good water content so it is a hydrating meal for beardies if fed in the right amount.
Best of all, parsley has an excellent calcium-to-phosphorus ratio, unlike most vegetables, and fruits. It has a high amount of calcium and thus does miracles in strengthening bones. It also plays a key role in the growth and maintenance of bones and teeth. A good amount of calcium also helps in preventing metabolic bone disease (MBD), teeth problems, and weak bones. Plus, female bearded dragons can eat parsley for the need for high calcium in the formation of eggs. Also, read Can Bearded Dragons Eat Parsnips.
DOWNSIDES OF EATING PARSLEY
The biggest downside of eating parsley is that it contains a high amount of oxalates. It has about 1700 mg of oxalic acid in 100 g of parsley. The oxalic acid or oxalates bind to the calcium and prevent its absorption in the blood. Therefore even the high percentage of calcium in the parsley becomes of little advantage as the oxalates cause a calcium deficit.
Another disadvantage of eating parsley can be hypervitaminosis A. The excessive amount of Vitamin A in the vegetable can cause vitamin A toxicity and be harmful to the body. Therefore, parsley should be fed in controlled amounts to dodge its downsides of it.
HOW OFTEN CAN BEARDED DRAGONS EAT PARSLEY
After analyzing the benefits and downsides of eating parsley, it can be firmly said that this vegetable is not a staple food for bearded dragons. Hence it should only be fed occasionally and in controlled amounts to avoid the high amount of oxalates and vitamin toxicity. Therefore, it is only safe to feed parsley once a week to once a month to keep your beardie healthy.
CAN BEARDED DRAGONS EAT PARSLEY ROOT
Bearded dragons are prone to choking. Their small mouth and narrow throat are often problematic while ingesting too slippery, rough, or large pieces of food. One should never feed parsley root to his lizard. As parsley root is extremely rough in texture and causes choking. Moreover, it is very difficult to chew. Beardies have small teeth and are not really functional while chewing, hence it is best to avoid feeding them foods that are hard to chew.
Another reason for not feeding parsley roots to dragons is that they may contain chemicals and dirt particles. The root part of the vegetable is rooted inside the soil and is often coated with pesticides or other chemicals. Improper washing of the veggies may result in some chemicals going inside your pet’s stomach along with the parsley root, as the root is more difficult to wash than the whole parsley. Also, check out Can Bearded Dragons Eat Watercress.
CAN BEARDED DRAGONS EAT PARSLEY LEAVES AND STEMS
Yes, bearded dragons can eat parsley leaves and stems. You can feed them with other vegetables safely. The leaves and stems have the same benefits of parsley that are mentioned above. However, do not feed the parsley leaves and stems often. Always feed them occasionally, along with other foods.
Can bearded dragons eat parsley? Yes, they can! Parsley is of great benefit to your pet if it is fed occasionally. You can feed parsley once a week to once a month in small amounts. It contains calcium, vitamins, water, and low sugar content. However, the high amount of oxalates can be dangerous for the dragon. Also, check out Is Arugula For Bearded Dragons, A Good Choice?
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Can bearded dragons eat parsley flakes?
No, beardies should not be fed parsley flakes. The parsley flakes contain preservatives and other chemicals that can harm the bearded dragon.
What other vegetables can bearded dragons eat instead of parsley?
Parsley is a great option for dragons, but you should always feed a variety of greens to your pet to keep it healthy. These include dandelion greens, mustard greens, kale, bok choy, and swiss chard.
Can baby bearded dragons eat parsley?
Yes, bearded dragons can eat parsley just like adults as long as you are mindful of its benefits and downsides. Plus, always wash the parsley and chop it into finer pieces when feeding it to baby dragons.
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!