When you have a pet, you take on a huge responsibility to look after them and keep them in optimal health.
This means you’re responsible for ensuring they eat the right things and avoid things they shouldn’t consume.
If you’re asking, can bearded dragons eat grapes? You’re doing the right thing as a responsible owner and not just presuming they can.
Can bearded dragons eat grapes? The quick answer is yes, they can, but they must be adequately prepared.
Bearded dragons’ dietary needs are pretty specific because of how they process minerals and vitamins.
Ensuring you meet their needs will help prevent health problems like metabolic bone disease, which is irreversible.
In this article, we’ll tell you all about bearded dragons and whether or not grapes are allowed in their diet.
So, Can Bearded Dragons Eat Grapes?
As mentioned briefly above, bearded dragons can eat grapes. However, they need to be adequately prepared and shouldn’t be an everyday item.
Grapes contain many oxalates, meaning they should only be given as a treat.
Oxalates are tiny crystals that form when oxalic acid binds to minerals like calcium and magnesium. In humans, this causes kidney stones to form when consumed in excess.
When bearded dragons eat grapes too often, they struggle to absorb essential minerals like calcium and magnesium.
Grapes Should Be a Treat
Due to their levels of oxalic acid, sugar, and water, grapes are inappropriate as an everyday food for bearded dragons.
Moreover, grape seeds are a no-no, so choosing seedless varieties is essential.
If too many grapes are given, it is very easy for a bearded dragon to end up deficient in calcium due to the grapes affecting calcium absorption.
As a result, the bearded dragon’s body will compensate for this lack of calcium by leeching it from the bones.
Over time, the bearded dragon will develop metabolic bone disease. Unfortunately, this is a severe condition with no cure.
It causes deformities in the bones, jaw softening, bowed legs, and tremors.
In its later stages, a bearded dragon will struggle to hold his body up off the floor and will lose the ability to walk.
How Many Grapes Can Bearded Dragons Eat?
Don’t go splashing out on a kilogram of grapes if you’re not intending to eat them yourself. This is because most bearded dragons should eat grapes at a rate of one per week.
If you have a bearded dragon who is in optimal health and not overweight or overfed, you could stretch to two grapes per week.
If your bearded dragons eat grapes but don’t eat other greens very well, you could cut a grape in half and then rub it over the greens before putting them in his food bowl.
This will encourage him to eat the greens and reap their health benefits.
Another alternative is to chop a grape up tiny and mix it with the greens bowl to encourage those to be eaten alongside the grape.
The Problem with Too Many Grapes
We’ve already touched upon this, but let’s examine why bearded dragons can’t eat grapes in high quantities.
As previously mentioned, grapes contain oxalates. These bind to calcium, which means your bearded dragon can’t absorb.
Even though grapes are pretty low in oxalates, the fact that bearded dragons need a lot of calcium means that they can still be troublesome in high quantities.
You should never allow a bearded dragon to eat grape seeds. Even if you’ve bought seedless grapes. You need to check there are no seeds inside.
The problem with grape seeds is that bearded dragons can’t digest them well. As a result, they can become impacted.
Impaction is one of the most severe health issues for bearded dragons. If left untreated, it can cause death.
If you’re worried that your bearded dragon has swallowed a grape seed and is having trouble with a bowel movement, try a warm bath and gentle belly rub to see if you can get things moving.
Another thing you could try is providing a homemade laxative. Giving your bearded dragon between 3 and 4 drops of olive oil in a teaspoon of pumpkin puree and water is also known to get things going.
If, after 7 days, your bearded dragon hasn’t had a bowel movement, you should seek advice from a reptile vet.
Make no mistake, bearded dragons do need water to survive. However, too much water is not good.
The natural bearded dragon habitat is in the Australian woodland. As a result, these lizards are well-adjusted to not having much water. Most bearded dragons get all of the water they need from their diet.
This doesn’t mean they don’t need a water bowl but what it does mean is that you should be mindful of the water content of foods.
As grapes have a high water content, they can cause a bearded dragon to have diarrhea.
Diarrhea can dehydrate a bearded dragon, which can then cause other health issues.
Related: Can Bearded Dragons Eat Totamtoes?
Sugar and Acid Content
Though grapes contain a lot of fiber, they’re also high in fruit acid and sugar. This can be harmful to a bearded dragon’s health.
Due to the sugar content and fruit acid, grapes shouldn’t be included in a bearded dragon’s daily diet – just like other fruit.
Like humans, reptiles like beard dragons can also get fatty liver disease and diabetes, which they can die from.
What About Grape Leaves?
Grape leaves are much better than grapes if you can get hold of them. They should still not be a daily part of a bearded dragon’s diet, but they have a high nutritional value compared to the grapes.
Grape leaves are high in calcium and protein but low on phosphorous, which means they’re much more nutritious and have a good calcium to phosphorus ratio.
How to Serve Grapes for Bearded Dragons
If you’re going to feed them to your beardie, you should prepare grapes well.
This means buying organic grapes (to avoid contamination from pesticides) and rinsing them thoroughly first.
After washing the grape, cut them into four smaller pieces. This will mean your bearded dragon can digest and chew them more quickly and is less likely to choke.
Cutting grapes also allows you to check them thoroughly for grape seeds.
You don’t need to peel grapes, as bearded dragons eat the skin without problems.
When Can Young Bearded Dragons Eat Grape Pieces?
If you’ve had a bearded dragon from babyhood through adulthood, you’ll know their dietary needs change.
A bearded dragon should consume 20% plants and 80% insects as a baby. Around five months of age, the ratio is around 50-50.
Once a bearded dragon is officially an adult (18 months plus), he should eat 80% plants and 20% insects.
Adult bearded dragons need a different diet than babies because they are no longer growing rapidly. In addition, insects are much higher in fat than plants, which is why an adult’s diet should only be 20% insects.
To answer the question, young bearded dragons can eat half a grape each week while adults can eat up to two per week, provided the bearded dragon is healthy.
Bearded dragons of all ages can eat grape leaves.
All fresh grapes are the same to a bearded dragon. You can feed green grapes, red grapes, or black grapes. Many bearded dragon owners have noted that their pets prefer red and green grapes to other varieties.
Red and black grapes are high in anthocyanins, which are antioxidants. Green grapes don’t have these, but they contain other ingredients that aren’t in different grape colors.
If you’re going to feed grapes to your bearded dragon regularly (i.e., one or two grapes per week), it might be a good idea to vary the skin color each week!
As previously mentioned, beardies can eat grapes but not in large quantities. This is because they can cause calcium absorption problems and diarrhea.
Like many fruits, grapes contain things that are good for a bearded dragon, like vitamin c. However, bearded dragons should get this nutrient through gut-loaded insects or supplements containing other nutritional substances like beta carotene.
If you do decide to feed grapes to your bearded dragon, they should at most consume one grape per week. If your beardie is otherwise very healthy, two a week won’t cause harm.
Grapes should be seen as an occasional treat rather than a staple in your beardie’s diet.
There are a few precautions to take, however. To prepare them, wash them thoroughly and cut them into four pieces. This is to prevent choking.
Don’t forget that they should never eat the seeds, so even if you purchase seedless grapes, double-check there are no seeds. This is because seeds cause impaction.
Frequently Asked Questions.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Grapes with The Skin On?
Absolutely. Many bearded dragons eat grape skin! It causes no problems with the gut and isn’t a choking hazard, unlike the seeds.
What Happens if Bearded Dragons Accidentally Eat Seeds?
A single seed will likely not cause a problem. However, you should observe your beardie to ensure he can defecate as normal. If there are issues, you can give a warm bath.
Always seek advice from a specialist vet when a bearded dragon hasn’t had a bowel movement for over a week.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Grape Leaves?
Yes! This is a nutritious food for a bearded dragon and is much better than the fruit! What’s more, bearded dragons love grape leaves!