One of the problems that you can encounter when caring for a bearded dragon is constipation. This happens when a bearded dragon won’t poop for a couple of days or so.
If this is your first time, you might be worried about your bearded dragon. But you shouldn’t. You can easily fix this problem by giving your pet the right type of food.
So, what can you feed your bearded dragon to make him poop?
A few drops of olive oil are some of the most effective foods you can give to your bearded dragon to make him poop. 3-4 drops per day will do for adults. For juveniles, give them half teaspoon. Do not give vegetable oils just olive oil.
You can also give your bearded dragon some purees. These will act as laxatives. A little bit of banana, pumpkin, or apple sauce is a good choice.
Possible Causes Why Bearded Dragon Won’t Poop
Normally, bearded dragons poop one to four days. However, the pooping schedule is somehow dependent on their age, the quantity of food they eat, and their health. Healthy bearded dragons do follow a seemingly normal pooping schedule.
Younger bearded dragons poop more often than their older counterparts. They can poop several times a day. Partly because younger bearded dragons tend to eat more than the older ones.
If you notice your bearded dragon not pooping, it is probably a different story. There are several reasons why your bearded dragon won’t poop.
In this post, I will share with you some common reasons why your bearded dragon won’t poop.
Related Article: Bearded Dragon Poop Runny: What Causes It?
Reason (1) Your Bearded Dragon Might Not be Eating Enough Food
Obviously, if your bearded dragon only eats less food, it will also poop less frequently. There are two main reasons why this happens. It is either you give less food or your bearded dragon does not eat at all.
Young bearded dragons, those that are only 16 weeks tend to eat three to four times a day. Those that are 28 weeks eat about two times a day.
If your bearded dragon does not eat enough food, there might influential factors that you need to consider in this case.
One of the most common causes behind this is stress. If your lizard is stressed, its diet is often affected.
The common sources of stress for bearded dragons are extreme temperatures (low or high) in their habitat.
When the temperature inside the tank exceeds normal, bearded dragons will seek ways to escape. Low temperatures too could cause indigestion and instability.
Aside from temperatures, the humidity inside their habitat can also cause stress to bearded dragons. For instance, under high humidity, bearded dragons could be vulnerable to fungal infections.
Brumation could also cause bearded dragons to eat less. During this whole time, these lizards eat less and sleep a lot.
Parasites also contribute to the factor of why a bearded dragon does not eat enough food. Internal parasites are some of the common problems with bearded dragons that eat less.
Every factor discussed above could potentially be the cause of why your bearded dragons won’t eat enough food.
If you are not sure what causes the issue, consulting a vet is the best option. I suggest that you seek professional help for your pet before everything is too late.
Reason (2) Dehydration
Hydration is essential for a healthy bowel movement. If your bearded dragon is not properly hydrated, it may poop less.
The signs of dehydration may include sunken eyes, loose skin, thicker saliva, and poor appetite.
A quick trivia here. Bearded dragons do not drink water in a bowl. Instead, they drink from moving water. If you can provide a small fountain it would be better.
Bathing can also boost hydration. You can bath your bearded dragons a couple of times every week. But if you want to give your bearded dragon good moisture, you can bath it every day.
Providing your bearded dragon with good food will also help improve hydration. Salad can be a good source of moisture. Older bearded dragons tend to need more salad than the younger ones.
Reason (3) Less Physical Activities
When I was started caring for a bearded dragon, I was surprised at how less physical activities cause less pooping. Less activity means poor digestion. Unless your bearded dragon is in brumation, it should move around.
Motivate your bearded dragon to move around. You can do this by adding new accessories and playing.
Reason (4) Low Temperatures
Believe it or not, low temperatures in the bearded dragon’s cage hinders proper food digestion. Remember that bearded dragons are accustomed to dessert temperature and it helps for their food digestion.
When exposed to low temperatures, bearded dragons tend to become constipated, lazy, and probably not eat as much.
The ideal temperature at night is between 65-70 degrees Fahrenheit. When the temperature suddenly drops significantly, make sure that you have contingency plans that will provide a heat source to keep the temperature stable.
If you are using heater under the tank, make sure you monitor, or at least it has a control mechanism to control the temperatures. Better if it has a thermostat.
Related Article: Bearded Dragon Turning White: The Real Causes
Reason (5) Constipation
One of the most common causes, why a bearded dragon does not poop, is constipation. This is due to loose substrate, using gravel, coco coir, alfalfa, and bark. If you have these materials in the tank, you better remove them. They can cause impaction to your bearded dragons.
A constipated bearded dragon may have a round belly. It is mistaken as full but will not poop for many days or over a week.
In addition, an impacted bearded dragon gains weight because it eats but won’t poop. Bathing could help relax the bearded dragon. In most cases, it can poop in the water while taking a bath.
The reason behind this is that water could stimulate pooping. While bathing, gently massages your bearded dragon’s belly and have it sit in the water. Do this until it poops. If it still not pooping, you can give a few drops of olive oil.
Some people recommend other types of oil. But I don’t. Just olive oil and nothing else.
In extreme cases, do not hesitate to bring your bearded dragon to a vet. An x-ray may be necessary to determine what is going on inside. Foreign objects, if there’s any, will also be identified and the right intervention will be done.
Things to Do If Bearded Dragon Won’t Poop
If your bearded dragon won’t poop for several days, you can do the following:
- Check the temperature, humidity, and possible substrate ingestion. As mentioned, too high or too low temperature and humidity could affect the digestive functioning of the bearded dragon. The ingested substrate can also affect the digestion therefore it needs to be checked if your lizard ingested it. Make sure that you remove the loose substrate from the tank.
- Check the diet of your pet. Is it receiving the balance consumption of insects, salad, greens, and bugs? Modify or change the diet if necessary.
- Check the changes you previously made if any. Check whether it potentially affects the pooping behavior of your bearded dragon. A simple set up change could cause stress to the lizard.
- If you can’t figure it out and your bearded dragon still not pooping, you can bring it to the vet for proper care. Do this immediately before everything is too late.
What can you give a constipated bearded dragon?
In this case, you can give your bearded dragon pureed pumpkin or plain baby food mixed with olive oil. Just olive oil and no other types of oil. This should loosen the thing up. When feeding with worms, choose the softer ones and not the super worms. These should help improve pooping.
Can you give a bearded dragon laxative?
For my bearded dragons, I don’t give them synthetic laxatives. A pureed pumpkin or baby food mixed with olive oil will do. And do not give your beardie laxative that is meant for humans. For safety, stay with natural foods.
How long is too long for a bearded dragon to not poop?
Bearded dragons could go several weeks without pooping. In this case, however, bearded dragons are in critical condition. If not treated immediately, they could die.
Can bearded dragons survive without pooping for three months?
In normal situations, I believe bearded dragons won’t survive three months without pooping. However, if this happens during brumation when bearded dragons are less active, it is normal for them to not poop. As long as their weight remains stable, they are fine.