Can bearded dragons eat kiwi? One of my readers asked me this question. This post is a direct answer to this query.
It is true that bearded dragons can eat a variety of fruits. But every beardie owner knows that not all fruits are safe for bearded dragons.
So, can bearded dragons eat kiwi at all?
Yes, bearded dragons can eat kiwi on an occasional basis. This is mainly due to its oxalate content and other nutrients that are not good for beardies when consumed in large amounts.
Kiwi is not totally toxic to bearded dragons. But due to some nutrients and chemicals in it, it is not a good part of the regular diet of bearded dragons.
To understand more about this fruit, I have included a table below. Let’s examine why kiwi fruit should only be fed to beardies on an occasional basis.
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Nutritional Facts of Kiwi
Kiwi contains many nutrients. But I only included the most relevant for bearded dragons.
Nutrients per 100g
As you can see from the table, kiwi contains a number of nutrients that bearded dragons can get from eating it. However, not all of these nutrients are good for bearded dragons.
Let’s talk about each of the nutrient content in kiwi.
As you can see, kiwi fruit is a good source of energy. However, the level is not too high. This is good for bearded dragons in captivity.
Bear in mind that beardies in their artificial habitat barely engaged in physical activities. This is due to the limited space of their surroundings. So giving them too much energy-filled food is not a good idea.
The carbohydrate content is not too high. This is good for bearded dragons in captivity. With less physical activities, they don’t need carbohydrate-rich foods. Remember that carbohydrates will be converted into sugar and will be stored in the body if not consumed.
The fiber content of kiwi is okay for beardies. I don’t recommend feeding bearded dragons foods that are highly fibrous. It can be hard for the beardies’ digestive system to digest.
Protein is an essential nutrient for bearded dragons, especially for babies and juveniles. They need protein to gain growth momentum.
The level of protein in kiwi is pretty low. Although reptiles can get protein from eating this fruit, it is not enough. Young bearded dragons’ diet must compose generally of protein-rich foods such as live insects.
The vitamin A content in kiwi is pretty high. While vitamin A is essential for beardies’ health, too much of it is not healthy.
In fact, bearded dragons are prone to vitamin A toxicity if ingested many vitamin A-rich foods. The level of vitamin A is something to monitor especially if you are giving supplements to your reptiles.
Vitamin A toxicity can negatively affect the overall health of your bearded dragons. So you need to be careful not to go overboard.
Vitamin C is also high in kiwi. This is good for beardies. As you know, vitamin C is essential to boost the immune system. Bearded dragons need this to keep them stronger against potential diseases.
Kiwi has a low level of calcium. It is important to remember that calcium helps develop stronger bones. Without or less amount of calcium can be detrimental to bearded dragons. Their bones will be affected by a condition known as metabolic bone disease.
This condition is basically characterized by weak and brittle bones. It will cause changes in many aspects of bearded dragons.
The phosphorous content is also good. As you can see, it is equal to calcium. Remember that calcium and phosphorous content must be in an ideal ratio. As a rule of thumb, foods for bearded dragons should have a ratio of 2:1.
In this case, kiwi has a lower ratio of about 1:1.5. But it is okay. This means that the ratio for calcium to phosphorous in kiwi fruits is still healthy for bearded dragons.
Kiwi is also a good source of potassium. Potassium is essential in making all the cells in the body function well. This will keep the beardies in good shape.
The water content of kiwi is also high. This is, unfortunately, not good for bearded dragons. As you know, beardies’ digestive systems do not like watery foods. Watery foods could only cause digestive issues such as diarrhea.
The high water content ruled out kiwi as regular food for bearded dragons. But a small amount on an occasional basis will not harm your beardies.
Oxalic acid is not included in the table. But it is present in kiwi fruit. It actually has a high content of oxalic acid that is not good for beardies.
Oxalic acid binds with calcium which will in turn prevent calcium absorption. This will result in calcium deficiency in bearded dragons. When this happens, your reptile will be prone to another more serious condition known as metabolic bone disease.
As mentioned, the metabolic bone disease is characterized by weak bones. This condition could cause many behavioral issues in bearded dragons.
As a rule of thumb, always avoid feeding your beardies foods with high oxalate content. Choose healthier greens, fruits, and vegetables instead.
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Can Bearded Dragons Eat Kiwi Skin?
Unfortunately, bearded dragons cannot or should not be given kiwi skin. This is because kiwi skin is too hard for beardies to digest. Just give the soft part of the fruit.
I made a mistake with my first bearded dragon before. Since then, I always feed my beardies soft and easy to digest foods. Remember that bearded dragons are prone to choking and impaction if given hard foods.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Kiwi Seeds?
Yes, bearded dragons can eat kiwi seeds. They will be fine eating the seeds. Unlike other fruits, kiwi seeds are small and easy to swallow.
How Often to Feed Bearded Dragons Kiwi?
As you have seen from the table, it is clear with all the nutritional contents of kiwi that it should not be part of the staple diet of bearded dragons. The water and oxalates content alone is harmful to bearded dragons.
Your reptiles will be better off eating other healthier foods rather than feeding them kiwi.
That said, I recommend feeding your bearded dragon kiwi once a month. When you feed this fruit, make sure that it is not more than a treat.
Another thing to remember is that never feed your reptile with kiwi alone. It is a good idea to add other healthier greens and fruits. The good practice is to mix three to four kinds of fruits and greens in the salad. This will make the salad more colorful and enticing for beardies to eat.
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How to Prepare Kiwi for Bearded Dragons?
Although preparing foods for bearded dragons is simple, it is quite different compared to preparing foods for other pets. This is because beardies are prone to choking and digestive issues when ingested large and hard chunks of foods.
Here are the things you need to consider when preparing kiwi for your reptile.
1. Peel the skin
As mentioned earlier, the skin of kiwi is tough for bearded dragons to digest. To avoid any potential problems in your reptile, peel the kiwi before chopping it.
2. Serve it raw
Kiwi is served raw. Like other fruits, kiwi does not need to be cooked. It is basically soft and ready to go.
3. Chop the kiwi into bite-size pieces
When feeding fruits, especially those hard ones, it is very important to chop them into bite-size pieces. Bear in mind that beardies can choke when given large chunks of foods.
The best thing you can do is to take the distance between their eyes into consideration. Make sure that all the cubes or slices are not bigger than the space between the beardies’ eyes.
4. Add healthier greens
I recommend that, when feeding kiwi to your beardies, mix it with healthier greens. This will help make the salad balanced and therefore provide good nutrition to your reptiles.
If you can, add three to four types of greens. This will make the salad more colorful and more enticing for beardies to eat. This is great especially if you are dealing with a picky bearded dragon.
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Final Thoughts on Can Bearded Dragons Eat Kiwi
Bearded dragons can eat kiwi on an occasional basis. This is mainly due to its oxalates and high water content. Remember that kiwi should not be part of the regular diet.
But kiwi is a great source of vitamin C and A that could help boost the health of your beardies. Unfortunately, you cannot feed it often to your reptiles.
When feeding kiwi, it is always a good idea to mix it with other greens. This will balance the nutrients the reptile will get. I hope this helps. Thank you very much for reading.