Ed dragon, surrounded by nine foods, with an X over each one

10 Foods You Should Never Feed Your Bearded Dragon

Bearded dragons are a popular choice for pet owners and can make a great addition to any home. However, there are certain foods that should never be fed to these animals as they can be potentially hazardous.

This article will provide an overview of 10 foods that should never be fed to bearded dragons. It will discuss:

  • Vegetables and fruits: While bearded dragons can eat a variety of vegetables and fruits, there are some that should be avoided due to their high oxalate or phosphorus content.

  • Meat: Bearded dragons are primarily herbivorous, so feeding them meat can be harmful to their digestive system and overall health.

  • Dairy products: Bearded dragons are lactose intolerant, so dairy products should never be given to them.

  • Processed foods: Foods that are high in salt, sugar, or artificial additives can be harmful to bearded dragons and should be avoided.

  • Insects: While bearded dragons do eat insects, it’s important to choose the right ones and avoid those that are toxic or carry parasites.

  • Herbs and spices: Some herbs and spices can be toxic to bearded dragons and should be avoided.

  • Sugary foods: Bearded dragons have a low tolerance for sugar, so it’s best to avoid giving them sugary foods.

  • Alcohol: Alcohol is toxic to bearded dragons and should never be given to them.

  • Toxic plants: There are many plants that are toxic to bearded dragons and should be kept out of their reach.

By being aware of these foods and avoiding them, you can ensure the health and well-being of your bearded dragon.

Key Takeaways

  • Some vegetables and fruits can be harmful to bearded dragons due to their high oxalate or phosphorus content, so it’s important to choose safe alternatives that provide essential nutrients.
  • Feeding bearded dragons meat can be harmful to their digestive system and overall health, so it’s best to provide them with healthier sources of protein such as insects.
  • Dairy products should never be given to bearded dragons as they are lactose intolerant and can cause digestive issues and toxin build-up.
  • Processed foods lack the necessary vitamins and minerals for a healthy bearded dragon diet, so it’s important to avoid them and opt for a variety of insects, vegetables, fruits, and commercial foods.

Vegetables and Fruits

Vegetables and fruits should not be included in a bearded dragon’s diet. Organic produce and wild harvesting can pose risks to the animal’s health due to potential contaminants, parasites, or toxins. Such foods do not provide essential nutrients necessary for their proper growth and development. Feeding them these items could lead to deficiencies, obesity, or even death.

Therefore, it is important for owners to understand that providing safe alternatives for their dragon is key to having a healthy pet.


Meat should not be included in the diet of a bearded dragon due to its high fat content. Eating meat is not recommended for reptiles, as it can lead to obesity and other health conditions. Instead, bearded dragons should be fed with alternatives such as insects, vegetables, fruits, and commercial foods that are specially formulated for them.

High-protein options such as crickets or worms are an excellent source of nutrition while avoiding the risks associated with eating meat. Feeding a variety of proteins and other nutrients will provide the best nutrition for your bearded dragon’s diet.

Dairy Products

Bearded dragons should never be fed dairy products as they are highly toxic for them. Milk is unsafe for bearded dragons as it contains lactose which can cause digestive issues and toxin build-up in their system.

Cheese, although a favorite of many humans, is especially toxic to bearded dragons due to its high fat content.

Lastly, yogurt with all its health benefits for humans can be lethal for bearded dragons and should never be given to them as part of their diet.

Milk Unsafe

Milk is generally considered unsafe for bearded dragons. Flesh consumption can be difficult to digest, and milk does not provide any nutritional value for them. It is also a common cause of illness in reptiles, due to the abundance of bacteria found in dairy products.

Alternatives such as leafy greens, vegetables, fruits, and insects are all much healthier options that can provide balanced nutrition while avoiding potential health risks.

Cheese Toxic

Cheese is thought to be toxic to reptiles, including bearded dragons. Predatory feeding should be avoided as it may upset the delicate balance of nutrients and adversely affect digestion.

UV light is essential for proper health as it helps convert calcium into useful vitamins.

Unfavorable outcomes may include:

  • Inability to properly absorb nutrients
  • Dehydration
  • Gastrointestinal issues

Yogurt Lethal

Yogurt is generally considered to be a potentially lethal food for bearded dragons. Consumption of yogurt can lead to calcium overdose, a dangerous condition that could result in serious health complications.

Crickets should also not be fed to these reptiles as they contain chitin, which is difficult for them to digest and can cause intestinal blockage.

Therefore, it is prudent for owners to avoid feeding their beardies yogurt or crickets so as not to risk the health of their beloved pet.

Processed Foods

Processed foods such as canned meats, potato chips, and other convenience food items should not be included in a bearded dragon’s diet. These products usually lack the necessary vitamins and minerals needed for a healthy diet. Furthermore, there is also a risk of nutrition labeling being incorrect or misleading due to portion sizes.

Therefore, it is best to avoid processed foods when feeding your bearded dragon:

  • Processed meat products
  • Potato chips
  • Convenience food items


Bearded dragons require a variety of insects in their diet to ensure they receive the proper amount of nutrition.

Many different types of insects can be offered, which helps add variety to their diet and provide essential nutrients and minerals that are not found in processed foods.

When selecting insects for your bearded dragon it is important to research each type thoroughly regarding nutritional value, availability, and ease of preparation.

Nutritional Value

Highly processed foods often lack the essential nutrients necessary for a bearded dragon’s diet. To achieve proper nutrition, feed sources should offer a balance of vitamins and minerals, including:

  • Protein
  • Carbohydrates
  • Calcium-phosphorus ratio

Ensuring the right combination of these key components will help your dragon stay healthy and strong.


In order to ensure proper nutrition, it is important to provide a varied diet for bearded dragons. Grains and wild plants should not be offered as staples in their diets; instead, they should be supplemented with a variety of fruits and vegetables, including leafy greens, sweet potatoes, squash, bell peppers, apples and pears.

Variety ensures that the dragon receives all the essential vitamins and minerals needed to maintain good health. Offering a wide range of food also helps stimulate appetite and encourages them to explore different tastes.

Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds should be avoided as a food source for bearded dragons due to their high fat content. They are not part of the natural diet of these reptiles and can lead to weight gain, which in turn affects the health of the beardie.

Habitat requirements: they contain little nutritional value.

Gut loading: they do not provide adequate energy.

Nutrient density: they contain too much fat for daily consumption.

As such, bearded dragons should only have access to nuts and seeds on rare occasions, if at all.

Herbs and Spices

Moving on to herbs and spices, it is important to note that these should not be fed to a bearded dragon.

Herbal remedies are powerful and organic spices can contain toxic compounds that may be harmful to the reptile.

It is best to avoid feeding herbs or spices as they could cause digestive issues due to their potency.

Sugary Foods

Sugary foods should be avoided when providing food for a bearded dragon, as they can cause health issues. Meal planning and portion size control should be taken into account to ensure that sugary foods are not over-consumed. Here are a few reasons why:

Excessive sugar can lead to obesity.

Sugar can interfere with the absorption of vitamins and minerals.

It may encourage unhealthy eating habits in dragons.


Alcohol consumption should not be included as part of a bearded dragon’s diet, as it may present health risks. Feeding moderation is essential when providing any type of beverage to a bearded dragon.

Alcohol has significant effects on the body and can be harmful in large doses, even for humans. Social drinking is an activity that should not involve reptiles, and providing alternatives such as water or calcium-rich juices are much better beverage choices.

Reptiles do not metabolize alcohol like humans do and this can lead to serious medical issues.

Toxic Plants

Bearded dragons are unique and require specific environments and diets to remain healthy.

Unfortunately, there are some plants that can be toxic to these animals if ingested. Therefore, it is important to understand the effects of plant toxicity on bearded dragons as well as which varieties may be hazardous.

Knowing the dangers of certain plants can help ensure that your pet remains happy and healthy in its environment.

Plant Toxicity

Certain plant species have the potential to be toxic to bearded dragons, thus should be avoided.

While grains are generally safe for consumption, they should not be a primary source of food.

Wild foraging can be risky, as many plants are toxic and may cause serious health problems in your dragon.

Therefore it is important to understand:

  • Which plants to avoid altogether
  • The signs of plant toxicity
  • How to treat minor or severe reactions

Toxic Varieties

It is important to be aware of the potentially toxic varieties of plants that should be avoided when caring for a bearded dragon. Plants such as foxglove, buttercup, and oleander can cause serious issues with a dragon’s feeding habits, calcium balance, water intake, and temperature control.

Other plants to avoid include yew, lily of the valley, and nightshade. It is best to research any plant before introducing it into a dragon’s environment in order to ensure their safety and freedom from harm.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Often Should I Feed My Bearded Dragon?

When considering the diet of a bearded dragon, it is important to plan for adequate nutrition and maintain a suitable feeding frequency. Depending on the age and size of your pet, this could mean one or two meals per day. It is also important to research nutrition basics and consult with an experienced reptile veterinarian for advice.

What Kind of Housing Is Best for a Bearded Dragon?

When choosing an enclosure for a bearded dragon, the size and type are important factors. Generally, a tank that is at least 40 gallons should be used. Additionally, glass aquariums or plastic tanks with secure tops are recommended as they provide adequate ventilation and easy viewing.

What Kind of Lighting Do Bearded Dragons Need?

Bearded dragons require both UVB lighting and basking lamps to receive the necessary spectrum of light for optimal health. Basking lamps should emit a bright white light, while UVB bulbs should provide exposure to UVA/UVB rays that are essential for metabolism and skin health. Ensuring proper lighting is important for maintaining the wellbeing of your bearded dragon.

How Do I Tell if My Bearded Dragon Is Healthy?

To assess a bearded dragon’s overall health, it is important to observe dietary requirements and reptile nutrition. Look for a well-rounded diet with variety of vegetables, insects, and occasional fruits. Ensure proper lighting and temperature. Monitor weight gain or loss, activity level, and general physical appearance.

What Kind of Substrate Should I Use for My Bearded Dragon?

When caring for a bearded dragon, the type of bedding used is an important consideration. It is best to opt for non-toxic substrates that can absorb moisture and provide diet variation. Popular choices include calcium sand, reptile carpet, and newspaper.


Bearded dragons are omnivores, but that doesn’t mean they can eat anything. It is important to understand which foods should be avoided to ensure the health and well-being of your pet.

Vegetables and fruits, meat, dairy products, processed foods, insects, herbs and spices, sugary foods, alcohol and toxic plants should all be avoided when feeding your bearded dragon. These foodstuffs often contain harmful components that can harm the digestive system of your pet or lead to nutrient deficiencies.

To keep your bearded dragon healthy and happy it is best to provide a balanced diet with plenty of fresh vegetables and an occasional treat of safe insects such as crickets or mealworms. By following these guidelines you can help ensure that your beardie will live a long and healthy life.

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