Both, really. Meat for bearded dragons should be in the form of insects like crickets, worms, roaches, and the like. Something a bearded dragon may discover in its natural habitat. Fish, meat, chicken, pig, etc. are all bad for bearded dragons. Their digestive systems aren’t designed to handle certain items, and feeding them to a bearded dragon increases the risk of illness or even death.
Crickets kept in a cricket keeper with fresh food and water added every few days would provide the greatest diet for your bearded dragon. This is, of course, predicated on the fact that you will be supplying all of your bearded dragon’s dietary needs on your own. You shouldn’t serve anything but crickets to your bearded dragon, even if you plan to feed it other things like veggies (the ones that they hunt for). To ensure that your bearded dragon receives enough calcium, you may mix some calcium powder with the crickets in the cricket keeper.
What Is The Nutritional Profile in Meat?
Meat is often a good source of protein and fat.
Meat’s high calorie density means that even a little serving will provide a significant amount of fuel. Vegetables are often advised in addition to meat since it might be challenging to extract nutrients from the meat itself owing to the cooking procedure.
Is It Safe For Bearded Dragons To Eat Meat?
Bearded dragons may safely consume meat from any source, including cows, pigs, and chickens. Bearded dragons require a diet rich in high-quality protein to maintain excellent health and promote rapid growth. Meat may be a healthy option for your bearded dragon, but it does come with certain hazards.
Risks of Feeding Meat to Bearded Dragons
Bearded dragons don’t need to consume meat to be healthy. It’s not a good source of vitamin C, therefore it’s best saved for special occasions. Overfeeding meat to your bearded dragon may lead to health problems like:
Because meat has so little moisture, feeding your bearded dragon too much of it at once might cause him to become dangerously dehydrated. Meat should be fed to your bearded dragon no more than twice weekly, and even then, you should try to dilute it with other meals as much as possible so he doesn’t gorge himself.
Overeating meat may lead to obesity in bearded dragons because it lacks dietary fiber and carbs. Heart disease, diabetes, and liver disease are just some of the issues that might arise from this.
Certain animal species are susceptible to developing diarrhea after consuming raw meat because their digestive microbes are not adapted to breakdown the proteins present in raw meat.
What Kind Of Meat Should You Feed Your Bearded Dragon?
Bearded dragons may be fed high-quality meat, but only if you make sure it was reared in a natural and humane way. Chicken, beef, pork, and even deer are all acceptable sources of meat. Bearded dragons aren’t fussy eaters, so feel free to feed them any meat you choose.
Since they sometimes include preservatives or chemicals, bearded dragons should also stay away from processed meats. Your pet’s health may be jeopardized as a result of this.
Red meat has too much protein for a bearded dragon’s digestive tract, and feeding it too much over time might lead to health problems including gout, renal disease, or heart failure.
Benefits Of Meat For Bearded Dragons
Bearded dragons may get a much of the protein they need from meat. Meat is not only a great source of protein, but also contains many essential vitamins and minerals. Bearded dragons may maintain a healthy appearance of their skin by eating meat.
Bearded dragons are omnivores, meaning they will consume both plant and animal products. Meat is a good source of protein and other nutrients that help them develop into robust adults. Meat has several positive effects for bearded dragons, including increasing their activity levels.
Helps Maintain Healthy Skin
Bearded dragons can maintain supple, silky skin because to the vital fatty acids found in meat. Fish oil’s omega-3 fatty acid content has anti-inflammatory and maybe anti-drying effects.
Protein is necessary for the development and maintenance of all living organisms, including bearded dragons. Muscle mass, and the ability to recover from disease or injury, are both aided by the protein they contain. If not treated promptly, a shortage of protein may cause weakness, weight loss, slow development rates, and even mortality.
Helps Prevent Obesity
While fruit and insects are lower in protein than meat, overfeeding your bearded dragon on these meals might lead to obesity. You can keep your pet lizard from becoming overweight by increasing the quantity of protein in his diet by giving him more meat.
Can Baby Bearded Dragons Eat Meat?
Bearded dragon hatchlings may be fed a meat-based diet. You must provide them with high-protein insects like crickets and mealworms. There are also roaches, waxworms, silkworms, and earthworms that may be used. Bearded dragon hatchlings may also benefit from a diet of vitamin- and mineral-enriched insects (which has the added benefit of making them taste better).
Baby bearded dragons are more likely to consume their food if you provide it with live insects rather than dead ones. Living insects are more engaging for your pet because of their movement, and they are healthier than their dead counterparts due to their recent death and subsequent decomposition. The only drawback is that some parents are uncomfortable with the idea of feeding their children or dogs live insects; if this describes you, you can always opt for canned or frozen alternatives.
How To Feed Meat To Bearded Dragons
You may give them raw meat if you choose, or prepared meat if you prefer. You should only give them freshly prepared raw meat. Beef that has gone bad might spread dangerous microorganisms and make your beardie ill.
There are a few options for providing meat to your bearded dragon. Several methods for providing meat to your bearded dragon are listed below.
Handfeeding Meat To Bearded Dragons
There are many methods for giving meat to your bearded dragon by hand. Tweezers are a popular choice, although some individuals also use their fingers or a spoon. No matter what method you choose to provide your bearded dragon with meat, there are a few things you can do to make sure it gets the nutrients it needs to flourish in captivity:
While feeding your bearded dragon, always use tongs or tweezers to avoid contaminating the food. In this way, you won’t have to worry about dropping any treats or food into your pet’s cage, where they may get polluted with feces or mildew and make your cat sick.
Placing Meat In A Dish For Beardie To Eat
Feeding your bearded dragon meat might be challenging if you’ve never done it before. Bearded dragons often consume their food by biting off and swallowing little pieces. Its forked tongues make it more efficient to rip off chunks of food rather than chew them.
There are a few things you can do to get your bearded dragon to eat out of a dish:
Prepare the dish by filling it with water. The water will make the meal more manageable, making it more likely that he will eat from it. A little plastic cup, such as the one that comes with juice boxes or snack packs, may serve as a bowl or plate if you don’t have enough space for a full-sized one (the kind kids use). It’s not perfect, but until you can afford something better, it’ll do!
To encourage him to eat, try including some snacks with the meat. Get him interested in feeding from a dish by offering him some crickets or mealworms.
How Often Can Bearded Dragons Eat Meat?
The kind of meat you feed your bearded dragon will determine the answer to this inquiry. The digestive tract might have issues if you feed them cooked meat every day, such as chicken or beef. Instead of feeding them cooked meat, which is higher in fat, you should feed them raw meat.
But if you want to treat them to some cooked meat every once in a while, that shouldn’t be a problem either (as long as they aren’t overfed).
Bearded dragons are able to digest both cooked and raw meat. But, raw beef is preferable since it doesn’t have too much fat. Meat should be fed to them in little bits to facilitate eating and digestion.