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Is Watermelon Good for Bearded Dragons?

Can bearded dragons eat watermelon or is it toxic?

As tempting as it is to give our pets a taste of our favorite summer treat, we have to make sure it’s in their best interest first!

So today, we’ll go over everything you need to know about beardies and watermelon!

Let’s jump right in!

Can Bearded Dragons Eat Watermelon?

bearded dragon crawling towards the watermelon but can bearded dragons eat watermelon?

Short answer, yes…but only as an occasional treat. Watermelon has too much sugar to feed it to your beardie more often than that.

All of that excess sugar increases the odds of your beardie developing tooth decay.

Problems with your dragon’s teeth can extend to the jaws and bones, causing pain and inflammation.

There’s also an increased risk of developing diarrhea, obesity, or worse. Metabolic bone disease is another major concern, thanks to the excess phosphorus, which inhibits the absorption of calcium.

Any fruit with more phosphorus content than calcium content could cause skeletal deformity, weakness, reduced physical activities, and even paralysis.

As strange as it sounds, the high water content in this fruit can also be problematic, as it disrupts your beardie’s hydration balance.

Ultimately this can actually cause dehydration! Weird, right? Still, just like in humans, there’s such a thing as overhydration in beardies, too.

Is Watermelon Good For Bearded Dragons?

slices of watermelon in a white plate

Yes and no. As we saw above, when included as part of their overall diet, it’s not really good for them.

However, it does have a few benefits as an occasional treat. Let’s explore those a bit.

Watermelon has several nutrients that are beneficial to your dragon. For example, it contains Vitamin C and Beta carotene The latter is an essential nutrient for vision, improved immune system functionality, reproduction, and growth.

Potassium in watermelon also regulates the blood pressure of your pet, while magnesium, on the other hand, aids metabolism and prevents inflammation in your beardie.

However, I feel like I need to remind you again that you should never rely on watermelon for these nutrients. Think of it as a healthy snack to share during a bonding activity once in a while.

Can Baby Bearded Dragon Eat Watermelon?

curious baby bearded dragons

Baby beardies need lots of essential nutrients because they are in their growth phase.

Once again, it’s smart to rarely feed them watermelons or feed them as occasional treats.

 When you feed them as occasional treats, ensure they are used as salad toppings rather than a main ingredient.

In other words, add a few very small pieces sprinkled on top.

Baby dragons need more nutritious greens, foods with high calcium levels, or calcium supplements for growth and development.

Can bearded Dragons Eat Watermelon Seeds?

seeds removed from the watermelon

No.

Seeds in the watermelon can affect your beardie’s belly or cause choking.

During the preparation to serve watermelon to your beardie, you must remove all seeds from the pieces you serve to your pet.

Whether you purchased a seeded or seedless watermelon, ensure you double-check for and remove them. 

I’ve bought many so-called “seedless” melons that still had quite a few of both the black and the smaller white seeds in them, both of which are bad for your beardie.

Can Bearded Dragons Eat Watermelon Rind? 

watermelon rinds

No. Just like seeds, watermelon rind is bad for this reptile. It is very hard and difficult to chew.

Your dragon would find it difficult to eat or swallow watermelon rinds irrespective of how small a piece it is.

If it successfully gets a bite, the odds are high; it would swallow the whole piece. This would harm the digestive system and possibly get stuck in the gastrointestinal tract (gastrointestinal issues) of your pet.

Can Bearded Dragons Eat Watermelon Leaves?

a whole watermelon with leaves on it

Vets have not assertively declared watermelon leaves either safe or toxic for bearded dragons. However, I prefer to err on the side of caution and avoid it.

There are so many other leaves that are beardie-safe. These include collard greens, mustard greens, turnip greens, kale, parsley, beet greens, broccoli, alfalfa hay or chow, bokchoy, Swiss chard, watercress, clover, red or green cabbage, savoury, cilantro, kohlrabi, bell peppers, green beans, escarole, and dandelion.

As a rule of thumb, dark green leaves (make the bulk of the servings) and leafy greens are usually suitable for your pet.

Avoid feeding them leaves high in fiber, low in essential nutrients, and deficient in vitamins. You can also include a few yellow, red, and orange vegetables.

How Often Can Bearded Dragons Eat Watermelon?

fresh slice of watermelon and watermelon shake

We have agreed that watermelon shouldn’t be served more than occasionally because it is deficient in crucial nutrients your pet needs.

So how often should you serve these reptile watermelons?

First, whenever you serve your dragon, it should be a treat.  No fewer than 3-5 tiny pieces once or twice a month are good enough as a treat.

As a rule of thumb, you should feed your beardie watermelon based on how many other fruits it has consumed in the month. 

Watch the intake of other fruits (especially the ones with few beneficial nutrients) to decide when it’s good to serve watermelon as a treat.

Remember, overall, fruits should make up less than 5% of your bearded dragon diet.

Alternatively, you can serve bite-sized pieces of watermelon as salad toppers or for loss of appetite. This is more nutritious and effectively baits your pet into eating when it has no appetite.

Nevertheless, you shouldn’t use this trick often, so it is continually compelling. This reptile can begin to consume only the watermelon and leave other nutritious greens in the treat. 

How Should I Serve Watermelon to My Bearded Dragon?

We have agreed that watermelon would be bad as a regular diet. Alternatively, they can be served as a salad topper alongside greens. 

Before you think of serving your pet watermelon, ensure you have purchased organic watermelon and nothing less.

Why organic watermelon? There is reduced contamination from pesticides or herbicides used during agricultural processes.

Now that you have ascertained that you purchased organic watermelons, you can prepare them for this reptile. First, rinse the watermelon.

Most people think it isn’t necessary to rinse the watermelon because the outer covering protects the inner fruit your dragon would eat.

Although this is correct, you can introduce germs from the outer part of the fruit into the edible parts through contact with your hands. So rinse the outer parts thoroughly, and ensure you clean your hands afterward.

You can now dice the watermelon and serve the fleshy pink parts of the fruits to your pet. This part of the fruit is tasty and has a soft texture unlike other parts of the fruit.

Dice the watermelon into tiny edible pieces. You can now add the small pieces as a salad topper or with greens as you deem fit.

Other Fruits Safe For Your Bearded Dragons

Bearded Dragon owners have questions like: can bearded dragons eat blueberries, or can bearded dragons eat bananas?

Fruits usually contain lots of sugars and are low on the essential nutrients required by your pet. Nevertheless, vet doctors recommend these fruits for this reptile.

These healthier fruits include; strawberries, dates, raspberries, figs, and apricots. 

Safe fruits for salad toppings include; apples, figs,  mango, papaya, and cantaloupe. Each of these fruits contains the essential nutrients required by your dragons for growth and development.

Check out our new e-book for more information about the bearded dragon’s diet.

Bearded Dragons Feeding Guide
  • Hartley, Alina (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 132 Pages - 07/14/2021 (Publication Date) - Independently published (Publisher)

FAQs

Can beardies eat watermelon seeds?

No. Whether white seed or black;  watermelon Seeds can disrupt the digestive system of your beardie. They could make your beardie choke or cause digestive issues and impact their guts negatively.

Can beardies have watermelons? 

Yes. Watermelon is good enough as an occasional treat for your pet. They love it, but this isn’t enough reason to feed them on a regular basis often.

Can beardies eat watermelon rinds?

No, they cannot. Grinds are too hard to chew, and this means your beardie can swallow them whole, where they can cause choking or gastrointestinal blockages.

Should I feed my baby beardie watermelon?

We recommend that you scarcely feed your baby beardie watermelon. Baby bearded dragons need food loaded with essential nutrients for growth and development. 

Can beardies eat watermelon juice?

No. Watermelon juice doesn’t contain the nutrients your beardie needs. Plain water is better.

Conclusion

Your pet love watermelons. Nevertheless, you should feed a slice of watermelon occasionally as treats. Also, watch them see how well their body reacts to the small portions of watermelon you serve them. Any signs or symptoms that indicate that they are not enjoying watermelons as treats mean you should stop feeding them watermelons.

References

  • A Guide to Exotic Pet Dental Care. 2021a. “A Guide to Exotic Pet Dental Care.” Vetstreet. 2021. http://www.vetstreet.com/our-pet-experts/a-guide-to-dental-care-for-exotic-pets.
  • ———. 2021b. “A Guide to Exotic Pet Dental Care.” Vetstreet. 2021. http://www.vetstreet.com/our-pet-experts/a-guide-to-dental-care-for-exotic-pets.
  • “Bearded Dragons – Feeding.” 2021. Vca_corporate. 2021. https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/bearded-dragons-feeding.
  • “Guinea Pig Feeding.” 2021. The Humane Society of the United States. 2021. https://www.humanesociety.org/resources/guinea-pig-feeding.
  • “Guinea Pigs – Nutritional Requirements.” 2020. Pfma.org.uk. 2020. https://www.pfma.org.uk/guinea-pigs-nutritional-requirements.
bearded dragon and slices of watermelon

Can bearded dragons eat watermelon? Please share your thoughts about it below!

Alina Hartley
Alina Hartley

Alina Hartley is a small-town girl with a ginormous love of bearded dragons. It all started with Winchester, a baby bearded who was abandoned at the shelter by his former owners because of a birth defect that caused one front leg to be shorter than the other. Alina originally went to the shelter looking for a guinea pig, but one look at Winchester and it was love at first sight. From that day on, Alina has dedicated her life to learning everything she can about bearded dragons. She loves helping new beardie parents start their incredible journey with these magnificent reptiles.
Follow her on:
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Learn more about her HERE.

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