Yes, a bearded dragon can eat dandelions. These green vegetables are packed with nutrients that keep your beardie healthy. In addition, the greens are toxins-free, making them safe for your beardie to eat.
Leaves are the most valuable part of the dandelions for these reptiles. They are loaded with minerals including potassium, magnesium, calcium and iron.
The vitamins are vitamins A, C, K and E. You can find dandelion leaves in most grocery stores and are often 100% organic. An organic choice means that your beardie will not ingest chemicals.
Your backyard is also another suitable source of dandelions for your pet. Just ensure that you grow them without using fertilizers or herbicides.
It not only keeps your pet beardie safe but also provides an inexpensive source of food for your bearded dragon.
The dandelion stems and flowers are also safe for a beardie. However, these should be given in limited amounts because excess ingestion of the stems can cause indigestion and stomach upsets.
Further, excess intake of dandelion flowers can prevent the reptile from eating other foods.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Dandelions From Outside?
Dandelions from outside might not be a safe option for your beardie. Because dandelions from outside might be exposed to herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers.
Those near roads or other areas with high vehicle traffic or factory pollution might have chemical contaminants.
If you can verify that the wild dandelions have not been exposed to the above pollutants, then these wild dandelions are safe for your bearded dragon.
Is Dandelions Bad For Bearded Dragons?
No, dandelions are not bad for bearded dragons. Although most people consider them a weed, they are very nutritious for beardies and can make a great part of the staple diet.
The stems, flowers, and leaves are all safe for your pet, so you can go ahead and pluck them from your lawn and feed it with them. These parts are rich in calcium, antioxidants, and minerals for the pet’s well-being.
Are Dandelions Poisonous to Bearded Dragons?
No, dandelions are not poisonous to bearded dragons. They are totally safe. However, it is worth noting that the stems have a milky sap, which, although not poisonous, can cause stomach upsets in your beardie eats them in plenty.
For this reason, you should, try to remove dandelion stems when feeding the lizard.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Dandelion Weeds?
Most people consider dandelions a weed as they often grow on their lawns. Dandelion weeds are safe for your beardie. Similar to the grocery store ones, they too are loaded with vital nutrients for a bearded dragon.
For safety, ensure that the dandelion weeds you pick from your lawn or the wild are free of fungicides pesticides and are not near areas prone to chemical pollution such as factories and highways.
A bearded dragon can eat other weeds, including catsear, plantain, and dead nettle.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Dandelions Daily?
Dandelions are pretty nutritious, making them a safe staple green choice for your bearded dragon. The excellent combination of vital features such as high calcium content, ideal phosphorus to calcium ratio, and high amounts of beta carotene and vitamins makes them one of the best greens choices for a beardie.
The choice of feeding bearded dragons with dandelions daily or not depends on the age, size, and feeding schedule.
A baby bearded dragon’s diet consists of about 80% animal protein, with the rest being vegetables and other plants.
As such, giving them dandelions every day might not be feasible given the small portion of vegetables in their meals and the fact that you need to include a variety of vegetables.
On the other hand, there’s a bigger room for you to give the bearded dragon dandelions more frequently.
The diet of mature beardies comprises over 50% vegetables and other healthy and safe flowers and greens.
How Much Dandelions Can I Feed A Bearded Dragon?
These greens are a suitable choice for a bearded dragon’s diet and will play a great role in helping you give the reptile a balanced diet. Therefore, you can give as much dandelion greens to your beardie as it can eat.
Remember to provide it with other safe greens and flowers and adhere to the ideal ratios for a balanced diet depending on the beardie’s age.
Can I Feed My Bearded Dragon Dandelions Leaves?
Yes, it is safe to feed your bearded dragon dandelions leaves. The stems, leaves, and flowers are healthy and safe.
Dandelion plants will make a good staple choice for a beardie’s diet. The leaves are the most nutritious part and should be given more frequently than the flowers and stems.
What Is The Health Benefit Of Dandelion?
Dandelions are not only easily available but pretty nutritious for your bearded dragon. Their nutritional benefits are the main reason why you should highly consider including these greens in the reptile’s diet. To better understand the benefits, let us look at the nutritional value of dandelions greens.
|Name||Amount per 100 g of Dandelions|
|Vitamin E||3.44 mg|
|Vitamin C||35 mg|
|Beta Carotene||5854 ug|
|Vitamin K||778.4 ug|
Here are the main health benefits of dandelions to bearded dragons.
1. Great Source of Calcium
They are one of the most reliable sources of calcium. 100 grams of dandelion greens carry about 187 mg of calcium.
It is more loaded than other green vegetables such as broccoli and spinach, which carry about 47 mg and 99 mg per 100 g of each.
Calcium is a pretty important mineral for bearded dragons and most other reptiles.
The mineral aids in the growth, development, and maintenance of healthy bones. Baby beardies need more calcium as they are at a significant growth stage.
Lack of calcium is detrimental to a beardie’s health. A deficit can lead to metabolic bone disease and other illnesses.
Signs of calcium deficiency in bearded dragons include difficulty getting off the ground, lethargy, limping, difficulty in walking, bowed legs, lack of appetite, and poor bones development.
Dandelion greens play a vital role in ensuring that your pet beardie gets this vital mineral.
It is also important to add a calcium supplement to the reptile’s diet to ensure that they get sufficient amounts. Irrespective of their age, bearded dragons need calcium as one of the most important minerals.
2. Ideal Calcium to Phosphorus Ratio
We have established that dandelions are one of the most calcium-rich greens.
Another factor to consider is whether the plant contains other components that affect calcium absorption into the beardie’s bloodstream.
Dandelion greens have phosphorus, and this mineral binds with calcium, potentially hindering its absorption.
Experts recommend that the best foods for a beardie should have a calcium to phosphorus ratio of not less than 2:1. The ratio is safe, and luckily, dandelions meet this ratio and significantly exceed.
The 3:1 calcium to phosphorus ratio in dandelion greens makes them an excellent choice for a beardie.
It means that your pet will utilize a significant portion of the calcium from the greens; thus, it will get sufficient levels in the body.
3. High In Antioxidants and Betacarotene
Bearded dragons get their Vitamin A via beta carotene. Beta carotene, a precursor, limits the amounts of Vitamin A that the beardie absorbs.
Thus, beta carotene is vital in limiting the amounts of Vitamin A the beardie gets and prevents an overdose or an underdose.
The supplements you give your beardie should not have Vitamin A to avoid this.
Instead, they should have beta carotene, which converts into Vitamin A but ensures that your bearded dragon only gets the right amounts of the vitamin.
Antioxidants help the body fight harmful cells and thus, keep your pet beardie healthy.
4. Rich In Vitamins
Dandelion greens are loaded with Vitamin A and Vitamin K.
While we have discussed the benefits, and potential harm, of Vitamin A, it is vital that we also understand the essence of Vitamin K in these reptiles.
Vitamin K is important in bone growth and in wounds’ healing because it helps with blood clotting, thus preventing excessive bleeding.
What Part Of A Dandelion Can Bearded Dragons Eat?
A bearded dragon can eat the leaves, stems, and flowers of a dandelion.
Leaves are the most nutritious with loads of vitamins and minerals. The stems are also good but have a milky sap that can hinder digestion or cause stomach upsets when your beardie ingests in plenty.
Dandelion flowers are also good for a bearded dragon. They are soft, thus easy to chew. However, these flowers are very filling, meaning that your dragon might not eat other foods thereafter.
Proteins and vegetables are a vital part of the reptile’s diet and should comprise a significant percentage of their diet.
Can A Bearded Dragon Eat Dandelion Greens?
Yes, bearded dragons can eat dandelion greens. When choosing the greens for a beardie, you need to consider factors such as low oxalates, high calcium, low sugars, low fats, suitable phosphorus to calcium ratio, and vitamins and minerals.
Dandelions meet all these requirements making them a suitable staple greens choice for bearded dragons.
What Are the Best Greens for Bearded Dragons?
Other than dandelions, there are several other greens you can give your bearded dragon. They, too, are equally safe and healthy for the pet.
These greens provide your pet lizard with high calcium content, suitable phosphorus to calcium ratio, and beneficial vitamins and minerals.
Here are some of the best greens for bearded dragons you should consider adding to its diet.
1. Turnip Greens
Turnip greens are known for their spiciness, and surprisingly, most bearded dragons live it.
They have excellent calcium to phosphorus ratio of 4.5:1; thus, you don’t have to worry about calcium absorption when feeding your beardie with turnip greens.
In addition, they are rich in Vitamins A & C.
However, they have high amounts of oxalates, and if you give them to the lizard in high amounts, the oxalates’ downside of hindering calcium absorption might outweigh their benefits.
2. Collard Greens
One of the most impressive facts about collard greens is their extremely high calcium to phosphorus ratio.
At 14.5:1, these greens have one of the highest ratios, and you have little to worry about phosphorus preventing calcium from being absorbed by your bearded dragon.
Collard greens are also rich in fiber, Vitamins, K, A, C, and E.
The vitamins combined with the low calories and sugar content makes collard greens one of the best greens for a bearded dragon, and you should consider making them a part of their staple diet.
3. Mustard Greens
If you are concerned that your beardie might be having low calcium levels, mustard greens can help you increase this.
They are rich in calcium with significantly low phosphorus levels. In addition, mustard greens provide your pet lizard with fiber and various vitamins to keep it healthy.
4. Cactus Pad
Also known as prickly pear, a cactus pad is a desert delicacy that produces edible fruit. Both the fruit and pad are edible and safe for a bearded dragon. It is rich in calcium, antioxidants, Vitamin C, and fiber.
When preparing it, carefully remove the thorns and slice the inner flesh into small pieces to avoid choking.
Alfalfa is yet another good green for bearded dragons. It contains lots of fiber which aids digestion. It also has tons of Vitamins A and C, which help with vision and also boost the pet’s immune system.
It is worth noting that the alfalfa discussed here are the sprouts and not the hay. Due to the slightly higher phosphorus to calcium ratio than recommended, it is best to give these greens to the beardie less frequently instead of daily.
There are other great greens choices for bearded dragons that can be included in their meals every few weeks, although they may not form a part of the lizard’s staple diet.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Dandelion Stems?
The sap in dandelion stems contain a lot of latex. Stem sap is the white, milk-like liquid that oozes from stems when you cut them.
While the sap is not harmful to a beardie, too much of it can give the pet indigestion or cause stomach upsets. Both constipation and diarrhea are harmful to a beardie and should be avoided at all costs.
It is best to remove dandelion stems before feeding your bearded dragon to avoid the risk arising from excess intake.
Minimal amounts of the stems will not cause harm; thus, you should not panic if your pet ingests a bit of it by mistake.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Dandelion Flowers?
As for dandelion flowers, they are not as nutritious as dandelion greens. Even so, they are a great source of beta carotene and antioxidants. In addition, they are easy to chew because of their soft texture.
Fresh and young dandelion flowers are the best choice. They are much softer and free from parasites and diseases.
Because they are very filling, you should avoid giving your beardie too much of the flowers; they can avoid eating other vital foods such as greens.
Dandelion flowers will make a good treat but not an everyday meal for the beardie.
Besides dandelion flowers, other safe flowers for bearded dragons include roses without thorns, zinnias, daisies, carnations, daylilies, geraniums, hibiscus, and nasturtiums.
All these can be found in most pet stores and are packaged specially for bearded dragons. You may get them fresh or dried, with the dried ones requiring you to rehydrate them by either misting or soaking them in water.
What Outside Plants Can Bearded Dragons Eat?
Bearded dragons are naturally wild animals. Thus, they are accustomed to feeding on outside plants.
Some of the safest and good outside plants a bearded dragon can eat are prickly pear cactus, mini aloe vera, haworthia, oregano, basil, mulberry, and dwarf jade plants.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Leaves from Outside?
Yes, Dandelion leaves from outside are generally safe for your bearded dragon. They are often toxins-free, and you can give them to the pet.
However, you should avoid picking them from areas near factories or highways due to the resulting pollution.
Areas exposed to herbicides, pesticides, or fertilizers are also not ideal spots for picking dandelions for your bearded pet.
The best and safest dandelion leaves for your beardie and those grown in your lawn because they are free of pesticides or 100% organic ones from the grocery store or online shops.
Is Bee Pollen Good for Bearded Dragons?
Yes, Bee pollen is an excellent natural antioxidant and contains the most vital vitamins that boost the pet’s immune system. As an antioxidant, it also helps flush out toxins and destroys bacteria in the body.
It also smells great and attracts most bearded dragons. Therefore, sprinkling bee pollen on a beardie’s food will encourage it to eat.
You can use bee pollen for bearded dragons daily because it is not toxic, and there is no room for overdosing. Worth noting is that not all bearded dragons like bee pollen, so you should not force yours to eat it if not attracted.
Effective Tip On How to Prepare Dandelions for Bearded Dragon
Effective food preparation ensures that it is safe and retains as many nutrients as possible. Here are tips to help you ensure that your pet gets the dandelions in the most beneficial way.
The first choice involves choosing the most suitable dandelions. They should be fresh and free from pesticides, fertilizer residues, and herbicides.
If you are getting them from a grocery store, your best choice is the 100% organic ones. Wild ones are also okay, as long as there is no exposure to chemicals and pollutants.
You may also opt to get them from your lawn or garden if they are chemical-free.
Next, wash them to remove any chemical residues and dirt. You don’t need to cook dandelions. Raw ones are safe and more nutritious for your bearded dragon.
It is best to cut them into bite-size pieces ad make it easier for your pet to chew and swallow. You may mix these pieces with other safe and nutritious vegetables for your pet to eat.
If you opt to cook the dandelions, do not use seasoning or additives since the digestive system of these lizards is not adapted to digest such.
The additives may lead to stomach upsets and indigestion. In addition, most bearded dragons do not like the taste of cooked dandelions. Serving them raw saves you time and keeps their dish interesting.
Dandelions are pretty common, especially on lawns. These weeds are loaded with calcium, vitamins, and minerals, making them a good choice for bearded dragons.
Their stems, leaves, and flowers are all beneficial and safe. Unlike some of the other greens, dandelions are low on oxalates, so you don’t have to worry about calcium absorption.
A balanced diet is vital for bearded dragons. The composition of the diet varies depending on the age of the bearded dragon, with the babies eating fewer portions of greens.
However, dandelions are safe to include in all bearded dragons irrespective of age. Ensure to thoroughly wash them and chop them for safety and easier feeding.