Bearded dragons are loved by many because of their cute looks. As a bearded dragon owner, I get this question addressed to me quite frequently. Can bearded dragons eat watermelon? Well, I was just as curious as you are probably are too because watermelon is ironically one of my favorite fruits. Turns out that the answer will make you sigh in relief.
Can bearded dragons eat watermelons? Yes! Watermelons are a great treat for bearded dragons. However, both the seeds and rind of watermelons are unsafe for your beardies and shouldn’t be fed to them. Watermelons do contain a lot of sugar and have an improper Ca:P ratio, so moderation is key.
This article will talk about all aspects of feeding watermelons to beardies in-depth, including their nutritional value, health benefits, risks involved, feeding ideas, and more.
Can watermelon be healthy for beardies?
While watermelons are juicy treats that most of us enjoy, particularly during the summers, many beardie owners are wary of feeding them to their pets.
The main reason behind this is often their lack of knowledge about how eating watermelons can benefit their pet’s health.
If you’re facing a similar dilemma, don’t worry, we’ve got you. In this section, we’ll discuss how these melons can contribute to the health of your pet reptiles.
Let’s begin by taking a look at the table below, which contains the nutritional information about the nutritional value of watermelons:
|Vitamin A||569 IU|
|Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)||0.033 mg|
|Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)||0.02 mg|
|Vitamin B3 (Niacin)||0.178 mg|
|Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)||0.221 mg|
|Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)||0.045 mg|
|Vitamin B9 (Folates)||3 mcg|
|Vitamin C||8.1 g|
|Vitamin E||0.05 g|
|Sodium, Na||1 mg|
|Potassium, K||112 mg|
|Calcium, Ca||7 mg|
|Phosphorus, P||11 mg|
|Iron, Fe||0.12 mg|
|Copper, Cu||42 mcg|
|Magnesium, Mg||10 mg|
|Manganese, Mn||0.038 mg|
|Zinc, Zn||0.10 mg|
|Total fat||0.15 g|
|Dietary fibers||0.4 g|
Serving size: 100 grams
As you can see in the table, watermelons are rich in many micronutrients as well as macronutrients.
These fruits contain vitamin A in abundance, which not only boosts your pet’s eyesight but also maintains the smooth functioning of their respiratory system and protects them from respiratory infections.
Vitamins C and E, both of which add antioxidants in your beardie’s body to help them prevent oxidative damage, are present in watermelons as well.
As far as minerals are concerned, watermelons contain all of the essential minerals for your pet’s well-being:
- Calcium and phosphorus strengthen their bones, muscles, and teeth.
- Potassium maintains their blood pressure level and regulates the fluid balance in their body.
The fat content of watermelon is ideal for your beardies, for they don’t gain any unnecessary weight by eating them. These fruits are also rich in fibers, which play a vital role in the smooth functioning of their digestive tracts.
In addition, they happen to have an abundance of carbs that are the primary energy source for your pets, and protein which is essential for their nutritional metabolism.
We hope that after learning about all these health benefits of watermelons, you would feel more confident about adding these fruits to your pet’s diet.
Risks involved with feeding watermelons to beardies
Despite all that watermelons have to offer to your pets, they can also be unhealthy when fed in excess. You must not forget that fruits, no matter how nutritious, should only be a small part of your pet’s diet. If you start overfeeding them these sweet treats, it could lead to many health issues in your beardies.
Let’s talk about the problems your pet reptiles could face if they’re eating watermelons too frequently.
The first concern, as you would’ve guessed, is the high sugar content of these fruits. As you must’ve noticed in the table above, sugar makes up 6% of a watermelon, which might not sound a lot for us, but for little reptiles like beardies, it can be a little too much.
Sugar can impact their oral health negatively and often leads to tooth decay. And since beardies’ teeth are fixed into their jawbones, tooth decay can be even more problematic.
In addition, beardies cannot digest sugar easily, so consuming too much sugar often leads to digestive problems like constipation and stomach cramps. Over time, the excess sugar deposited in the body converts into fat and can make them obese.
All lizards, including your little pets, ideally need foods with a Ca:P ratio ranging between 1:1 and 2:1 to stay healthy. And as you can see in the table, watermelon has more phosphorus than calcium, making its Ca:P ratio unsuitable for beardies.
In addition, if you feed them watermelons frequently, it could lead to a deficiency of calcium in their body, resulting in Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD), which can be quite painful for your pets.
Watermelons also have plenty of water, which can cause overhydration in your beardies, leading to diarrhea and ultimately dehydration.
If you want your pets to enjoy eating watermelons without suffering from these problems, moderation is key. Limit their watermelon consumption to once a month, and you will have nothing to worry about.
Are watermelon seeds safe for beardies?
Watermelons have two kinds of seeds: the small, white ones and larger, black ones. As many of you might already know, white seeds are simply the premature version of black ones.
So, are these seeds safe for the consumption of your pet beardies? No. The black watermelon seeds, although small, can be quite tough and pose a choking hazard for them. The tiny white seeds are not suitable for their health either.
Therefore, always remove all these seeds from watermelon carefully before feeding them to your pets.
What about watermelon rind? Is it edible for beardies?
Watermelon rind is far too tough, even for us. Therefore, trying to feed it to your little pets would be a bad idea. Even if these little guys manage to take a bite off the rind, its high fiber content can still create digestive issues for them.
Lastly, there’s always the risk of fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides present on the rind, which could have a disastrous effect on your beardies. Therefore, keeping the watermelon rind away from your beardies would be wise.
Is it safe to feed watermelon juice to beardies?
Many beardie owners out there let their little pet take a sip from their watermelon juice from time to time. However, just because there are no visible ill effects on your beardies doesn’t mean it’s a good idea.
Watermelon juice is basically the blended version of watermelons. Therefore, it is natural to wonder why you can’t feed your pets because watermelons themselves are safe for their consumption.
However, there are differences between watermelon fruit and juice that make the latter a bad option for your beardies.
The process of juicing watermelon removes its fiber content, thereby making its sugar more concentrated.
In other words, watermelon juice has less fiber (almost negligible) and more sugar than fruit, which is why drinking it can make your beardies suffer from digestive issues like constipation and diarrhea.
So, now you know why you shouldn’t be feeding watermelon juice to your pets.
Preparing watermelon for beardies: things to remember
Now that we’ve covered almost everything you need to know before feeding watermelons to your beardies, here are some quick tips and tricks that can help you in the process:
- Picking organic melons for your pets is always a smart choice.
- It would help if you also made sure that these fruits are fresh and ripened (not overripe or underripe). Don’t bring home anything that you wouldn’t eat yourself.
- Since you don’t have to feed watermelon rind to your pets, washing the fruits is unnecessary.
- Because your beardies need only a small portion of watermelons, the best way of feeding these fruits is to take out a scoop and serve it to them.
- If you want to feed your pets a more nutritious treat, add a couple of leafy greens to it and serve the salad to your pets.
Frequently asked questions
Can I feed nectarines to my beardie? Yes, you can feed nectarines to your beardie as long as you follow strict moderation. While these fruits are not outright lethal to your pets, they do have a Ca:P ratio that is highly unsuitable for your pets (3:1) and can lead to Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD) in them. Also, before feeding nectarines to your beardie, always remove their pit carefully as it can present a choking hazard to them.
Is oregano safe for my beardie to eat? Yes. Oregano is one of the herbs that are considered to be safe for your pet reptiles. The best way of feeding oregano to beardies is by mixing it in their vegetable treats. However, make sure you’re feeding them oregano as a rare treat (once or twice a month).
Conclusion: Can Bearded Dragons Eat Watermelon?
Watermelons are a much-loved summer fruit. They’re cooling, sweet and juicy, and make for a great centerpiece at any summer picnic. As you know by now, bearded dragons can munch on some fresh cut pieces of this juicy fruit, but the amount is carefully balanced and must be well monitored.
So, here we are, at the end of this article. The journey has been fun: we’ve explored some bearded dragon info and learned how to care for beardies, and you got a few tips on what bearded dragons eat.
I hope I was able to give you some useful insights into why watermelon is good for bearded dragons, and that you’ll find a new appreciation for this exotic reptile!
With that, I’m going to say thanks for reading this article and invite you to stay on the lookout for more valuable content that I have jam-packed on this amazing website.
Good luck and happy dragon-raising!