It’s a sunny day and you’re taking your dragon out for a walk in the park, or playtime in the yard. Suddenly your dragon chomps down a mouthful of grass. What do you do? Should you panic? Should you call a vet? Can bearded dragons eat grass? Let’s find out.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Grass?
Don’t panic. Dragons are usually fine if they eat a little grass. At the same time, it’s not necessary for their diet and you shouldn’t go out of your way to feed it to them. And there are some potential hazards to be aware of.
Potential Hazards of Grass for Bearded Dragons
- Chemicals. If your dragon was outside and ate some grass that you know was treated with fertilizer or pesticides, give your vet a call just in case. Keep an eye on your dragon for any abnormal behavior. The chemicals in lawn treatments can make them very ill.
- Wild bugs. When eating grass outside, a bearded dragon may accidentally ingest some wild bugs as well. Wild insects are quite dangerous (even lethal) for dragons because there’s no way to tell where they have been and if they are carrying anything harmful.
- No nutritional value. Grass is largely made of roughage, which bearded dragons are not able to digest. Unlike cows or other animals that graze regularly, dragons can’t convert grass into nutrients. So it really offers them no nutritional value.
- Impaction. Not all grass is created e qual. Depending how tough the grass is, it can cause gut impaction. This occurs when an object becomes stuck in a dragon’s digestive tract, causing pain, bloating, and potentially other issues. Babies and smaller dragons tend to be at a higher risk, but it can happen to any bearded dragon. Impaction can be serious and definitely warrants a call to your vet.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Wheatgrass?
Another common question many bearded dragon keepers wonder: What about wheatgrass? Can bearded dragons eat that?
Wheatgrass, or the fresh sprouts of the wheat plant, is safe for bearded dragons, and is quite healthy for them.
Wheatgrass benefits include:
- Antioxidant, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties
- Iron and calcium
- Digestive enzymes
- Vitamins A, C, E, K & B
Additionally, wheatgrass has a calcium to phosphorus ratio of 1:1, which is ideal because it won’t deplete your dragon’s calcium supply.
Wheatgrass is said to have many health benefits for people, too. A common way to consume it is to press and juice it and then drink the juice, since the leaves can be hard on the digestive system. Bearded dragons, however, can eat fresh blades of wheatgrass.
To serve it, you can chop it to make it easier for them to chew. Keep in mind that wheatgrass does taste like…well…grass. So some dragons may enjoy it, and some may not. Don’t worry if your dragon turns her nose up at the wheatgrass. There are plenty of other greens, fruits, and veggies she can enjoy!
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