Can bearded dragons eat crackers? This is one of the most common question I often get from many bearded dragon owners.
Well, as a rule of thumb, the diet of bearded dragons in captivity should resemble their diet in the wild. This means that beardies should only eat healthy fresh foods.
Processed or cooked foods lose their nutritional values making them inappropriate foods for bearded dragons.
So, can bearded dragons eat crackers?
Unfortunately, bearded dragons cannot and should not be given crackers. This is because crackers do not have nutrients needed for beardies. In addition, processed foods can be harmful to them.
As mentioned at the beginning of this post, processed foods have no nutritional values for bearded dragons. And because beardies need to eat healthy foods, I suggest that you avoid feeding crackers to your reptile pet.
There are a variety of healthy greens and fruits you can offer to your bearded dragons instead. In this post, I included the list of foods you can choose from for your beardies.
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Best Healthy Foods for Bearded Dragons
I emphasize the importance of feeding bearded dragons with healthy foods. Avoid cooked or processed foods. Remember that reptiles are not accustomed to cooked foods in the wild.
However, choosing the best healthy foods is not an easy task. If you are a brand new bearded dragon owner, this can be a real challenge. Although they can eat a variety of greens, fruits, and live insects, bearded dragons are prone to several health problems if ingested the wrong food.
Another thing is that beardies can easily get bored and lost their appetite if fed with the same food over and over again. They could also develop some nutrient deficiency if given an unbalanced diet.
For instance, if you feed only greens to your bearded dragon, he may be lacking protein – an essential nutrient for their speedy growth. In the same manner, if you keep feeding your beardies with foods lack in calcium for a long period of time, they may develop a calcium deficiency.
So the key to good health in beardies is a balanced diet. And a balanced diet only means feeding your beardies with a variety of healthy foods.
This means that bearded dragons should eat fruits, greens, and live animals such as insects. However, beardies’ consumption of greens and insects may change as they age.
For the young bearded dragons, for instance, they tend to eat more insects than greens. This is due to their protein needs.
The adult bearded dragons, on the other hand, tend to eat more greens than insects. The main reason for this is that full-grown beardies do not need as much protein as they used to.
So your job as a bearded dragon owner is to figure out what is the best food you can give to our reptile. Fortunately, there are many healthy foods you can choose from.
In this section, I will share with you some of the foods you can and cannot give to your bearded dragons.
The list below is divided into several sections. Every section contains the type of food with regard to its serving frequency. Also, as you can see in the list below, there are greens, vegetables, and fruits that are dangerous to bearded dragons.
This is to provide you a quick guide in making good decision.
So, without further ado, let’s dive into the list.
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Staple Greens for Bearded Dragons
There are a variety of greens you can offer to your reptile on a regular basis. These greens are healthy and safe.
Some of them are:
- Collard greens
- Dandelion greens
- Mustard greens
- Turnip greens
Staple Vegetables for Bearded Dragons
When feeding beardies with vegetables, you need to be careful because not all veggies are safe for reptiles. Some of them are actually harmful.
But don’t worry, I will share with you some of the healthy veggies you can feed to your beardies.
Some of them are:
- Acorn squash
- Butternut squash
- Greens beans
- Snap peas
- Sweet potatoes
- Yellow squash
Occasional Greens for Bearded Dragons
Not all greens are safe for regular feeding. There are some greens that are only good for occasional feeding.
These greens are not totally toxic to beardies but they contain some nutrients and substances that are not so good for beardies.
Some of these greens are:
- Bok Choy
- Carrot Tops
- Celery Leaves
- Cucumber (peeled)
- Kohlrabi Leaves
- Swiss Chard
Occasional Vegetables for Bearded Dragons
Like greens, not all vegetables are safe for regular feeding. Some vegetables may be high in oxalate and other harmful constituents.
Some of these vegetables are:
- Bell Peppers
- Celery Stalks
- Green Peas
Greens and Vegetables that Should Only Feed to Beardies Rarely
There are greens and vegetables that should only be fed to bearded dragons rarely. Not more than that. Examples of these are:
- Beet Greens
Greens and Vegetables that You NEVER Feed to Bearded Dragons
There are some fruits, vegetables, and greens that are toxic to bearded dragons. You need to avoid them. Examples are:
Avocados and rhubarb are toxic to bearded dragons. Even in a small amount can already cause health problems in beardies.
Lettuce on the other hand is not totally toxic to bearded dragons. The reason it is not a recommended food is due to its lack of nutritional value. It is only high in water which in turn causes digestive issues in reptiles such as diarrhea.
Lettuce however can be helpful for dehydrated beardies. But too much of it can harm your reptile’s digestive system.
Staple Fruits for Bearded Dragons
As mentioned, fruits are often too watery for bearded dragons. But there are some fruits that are safe. In fact, you can offer them to bearded dragons on a regular basis.
Examples of them are:
- Prickly Pear (Cactus Leaves)
However, other bearded dragon owners would disagree with this. In many cases, these fruits are recommended for occasional feeding only. My suggestion is that just try a small amount first and see what happens. If your reptiles’ digestive system does not upset, then you may make these fruits a regular part of your beardies’ salad.
Occasional Fruits for Bearded Dragons
There are a variety of fruits that you can feed to your beardies on an occasional basis. But make sure that you don’t feed these fruits regularly because they could potentially cause health issues when consumed regularly by your reptile.
Examples of these fruits are:
- Apples (peeled)
- Grapes (remove skin on grape)
- Honeydew Melon
- Kiwi (peeled)
- Pears (peeled)
Fruits that Should NEVER Be Fed to Bearded Dragons
Like greens and vegetables, there are fruits that should be avoided. These fruits are not good for beardies and can potentially harm your reptile.
As a rule of thumb, avoid fruits that are high in citric acid. It can harm reptiles’ digestive system.
Staple Insects for Bearded Dragons
Aside from veggies and fruits, bearded dragons should also eat a variety of insects. This is to complete and balance their diet.
Some of the insects that are good staple food for beardies are the following:
- Dubia roaches
- Horn Worms (or Goliath Worms)
Goliath worms are best for adult worms. This is due to its size. As you might already know, bearded dragons are prone to choking. So when giving them food to eat, make sure that they can eat it easily without having problems.
Occasional Insects for Bearded Dragons
However, there are insects that should be fed in moderation. When feeding on a regular basis, these insects can cause health issues in bearded dragons.
Examples of these insects are:
- Butter worms
- Earthworms (rinsed)
- Phoenix worms
- Wax worms
Insects that Should NEVER Be Fed to Bearded Dragons
- Fireflies (lightning bugs)
- Boxelder Bugs
- Wild-caught Insects
Fireflies are toxic to bearded dragons so never give it to your reptiles. Other harmful insects are those caught in the wild. They might have chemicals in them that could cause health issues in your beardies.
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Final Thoughts on Can Bearded Dragons Eat Crackers
Bearded dragons cannot eat crackers. Crackers, like other processed foods, don’t have nutritional value to bearded dragons.
Another thing to remember is that beardies are not accustomed to cooked foods. So even in captivity, they should get natural foods. This may include greens, veggies, and live animals.
However, make sure that your reptiles get the balanced diet they need. That said, give them the right greens, fruits, and insects.
I hope this helps. Thank you for reading this post.