We all know that plant is an extremely essential part of lizard reptiles’ diet. But can bearded dragons eat squash?
Definitely yes, they can eat different kinds of squash, but certainly not every day.
Although lizards, in general, can eat a variety of fruits and vegetables, not all of them are good to consume frequently.
If you are a new reptile enthusiastic, you may find it difficult to figure out which is good or bad food for your beardies.
It is good, but only when feeding in small quantities. It can be harmful to the animal’s metabolism and stomach.
In the below article, we provided helpful information about these fruits in order to help you have a clearer understanding. Let’s take a look!
On This Page
- Nutritional Values Of Squash Fruits
- Should I Feed My Dragon Pets Squash?
- Can Bearded Dragons Eat Squash? Yes, But Not Every Day!
- How To Prepare Squash For Bearded Dragon To Eat?
- Can Bearded Dragons Eat Squash: Frequently Asked Questions
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Nutritional Values Of Squash Fruits
What Is Squash?
Generally defined, this is the common name of different types of plants in the same family. It grows from the flowering part of plants and has seeds inside.
Therefore, squashes are fruits, not vegetables.
They can be sorted into two groups: winter and summer type. Winter group includes butternut, pumpkin, acorn, kabocha, Hubbard, etc.
Summer ones are known as zucchini and yellow squash, either straight or crooked.
(Source: Earthbound Farm)
Nutrition facts of three popular ones (Source: Verywell Fit)
Should I Feed My Dragon Pets Squash?
Yes, but we suggest you feed them once a month or less to reduce the chances of health issues for your pet. To a proper amount, this plant still offers good vitamins and minerals:
- Vitamin A and C: These are essential to development, the healthy immune, vision, breeding, sustaining, and restoring organs and tissues.
- Vitamin K: This helps control blood clotting and bone’s wellbeing.
- Fiber: It facilitates smooth digestive flow.
- Vitamin B6 and folate: This increases vitality and keeps the nervous system alive.
- Thiamine: This helps retain healthy nerve tissue.
- Manganese: This contributes to metabolism.
- Magnesium: This promotes the wellbeing of the muscles and the brain.
- Potassium: This regulates nerve and blood pressure.
In short, there is no right or wrong in feeding this food to dragons. A small amount every month does not matter.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Squash? Yes, But Not Every Day!
To the human, almost all kinds of squash are tasty and good.
They also provide bearded dragons with some essential nutrients. But basically, this fruit is short for beardies due to two calcium problems:
There is only about 16 mg of calcium each 100g.
Meanwhile, for bearded dragons, calcium is extremely important.
They need it for sturdy bone development, as well as to be stable and productive overall.
Since they normally get more calcium from plants than insects, they frequently consume vegetables as a main source of this mineral.
Thus, you should not use the squash as a basic meal.
High phosphorus ratio:
Compared to phosphorus, the average calcium ratio in this kind of fruit is 1:4.4.
However, the recommended ratio is 1:1 or 2:1 of calcium to phosphorus. Too much phosphorus can cause musculoskeletal disorders.
Since this kind of fruit is not rich in calcium and too much phosphorus, it can cause health problems if your pets consume too much.
Phosphorus may stop the dragon’s bloodstream from absorbing calcium, which leads to metabolic bone disorder.
Shrinking bones and misshapen limbs, paralysis, and death in extreme cases are caused by this condition.
Unfortunately, pet beardies are very easy to get this issue. But with healthy food habits and the right supplement of calcium, it is preventable.
How To Prepare Squash For Bearded Dragon To Eat?
Basically, they can eat raw fruit without being cooked, as cooking reduces its nutritional value.
Moreover, beardies are used to eat raw and fresh ones in their wild.
If you want to serve this fruit, you can follow these basic preparing steps:
- Firstly, wash the squash and remove its peel. Peel can be trapped in bearded dragons’ throats that are not only difficult to take it off but also can be harmful.
- Secondly, cut it into small pieces. In fact, beardies can take a whole plant at one time. But small pieces are easier to eat, therefore encourage your animals to be more active.
- Lastly, feed it alone or make salad dishes with other ingredients. You can make whole vegetarian dishes with different kinds of fruit and green, or add some crickets or worms for an extra protein source.
See the detailed tutorial in this video: How We Prepare Our Bearded Dragons Salads! What To Feed – YouTube
In case your animals get stuck with squash skin in their mouth, you may coax him to drink water from a syringe to push it down.
Or you can try to open the mouth of your dragon with one hand and use the other hand to take to food out with your fingertips or a tweezer.
Be very careful not to scratch the animal’s throat while using tweezers. Furthermore, the animal can be very uncomfortable at that moment, they may bite you suddenly.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Squash: Frequently Asked Questions
1. Can Bearded Dragons Consume Cooked Squash?
It is important to note that beardies are used to wild and fresh food.
They should have the same form of diet in captivity.
Therefore, do not feed the cooked ones to your pet. Give them raw food instead.
2. Can Bearded Dragons Consume Flower Squash?
He will tear out the plant completely with squash blossoms and eat them as well as in his natural habitat.
He will take the tops of the chives, baby breath, snapdragons, some marigolds, and chrysanthemums.
For red clover or some same plants, he may eat once at a time.
3. Can I Serve My Pet Baby Food?
Beardies can eat some types of baby food, such as staples, butternut or pumpkin, etc. But please do not serve foods that are not fresh or contain so much sugar.
Fruit baby food with a high sugar rate is not recommended, too.
4. How Long Can A Dragon Live Without Food?
The answer depends significantly on your animal’s age and health condition. For example, for a baby young beardie, it is not good to go without food for longer than 24 hours.
Adult ones can be without food for about 4 weeks if they have some extra weights, but this is not recommended.
They should be feed every day for healthy growth.
5. Why Does My Dragon Eat Less When They Grow Older?
When a beardie is young, he grows rapidly and requires much energy.
Consequently, they need to eat a lot. When they are fully grown-up adults, they clearly do not have to feed as much as before.
They eat less than they used to.
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To conclude, can bearded dragons eat squash? The answer is yes. They contain some good minerals and vitamins that support the sustainable growth of dragons. However, as mentioned above, it is not advisable to become a daily meal since it can cause serious health problems due to its high ratio of phosphorus. Thus, you have to be careful when feeding them to your beardies.
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