Bearded dragons are popular pets, and there are a variety of foods they can safely eat. Many beardie owners take great joy in preparing salads and snacks for their pets, but it’s important to know what’s safe and unsafe before preparing meals for your bearded dragon.
During the summertime, pineapple is a favorite treat for people, so it’s no surprise that you might wonder if you can share some with your bearded dragon. While yes, bearded dragons can technically have pineapple, there are some things you should know before introducing this food.
Is Pineapple Safe for Bearded Dragons?
Pineapple is safe when offered in small quantities as an occasional treat. However, fruit is considered something that should be offered on occasion, especially fruits that are high in sugar, like pineapple. Too much sugar in the diet of a bearded dragon can lead to obesity and metabolic diseases.
Another thing to consider when feeding pineapple is that it is a high oxalate food. Because of its ability to bind to calcium, making it unusable by the body, oxalates should be minimized in your beardie’s diet. As a treat, a couple of bites of pineapple won’t cause an issue, but routine feeding of high oxalate foods can lead to serious medical conditions, like metabolic bone disease.
On the positive side, pineapple is a nutritious fruit. It’s an excellent source of vitamin C, which supports immune system function and iron absorption. It’s also a good source of potassium. On paper, pineapple is a good source of calcium as well, but because of its oxalate content, the calcium content of pineapple shouldn’t be considered for bearded dragons.
How Much Pineapple Can My Bearded Dragon Have?
Limit pineapple consumption to only a few bite-sized pieces at a time. This is not a food that should be offered daily due to its oxalate content, and it ideally shouldn’t be given too routinely either. Aim to offer pineapple as a special treat only a couple of times per month, offering lower sugar and lower oxalate foods as treats more regularly.
What Kind of Pineapple Can My Bearded Dragon Have?
Ideally, you should only offer fresh pineapple to your bearded dragon, although frozen pineapple that has been thawed is also a good option. Canned pineapple can be offered, but it’s important to avoid canned pineapple that has added sugar. Most canned pineapple is packed in pineapple juice, making it very high in sugar. You could consider rinsing canned pineapple to reduce some of the sugar content, but it will likely still be higher than fresh or frozen pineapple.
When using frozen pineapple, make sure to thaw it first to reduce the risk of choking. Also, if the pineapple is in a mixture of other fruits, ensure that all fruits in the package are safe for bearded dragons.
Pineapple is a yummy treat that your bearded dragon will likely love, but it should be fed sparingly. Due to its sugar and oxalate content, it’s not a healthy food to be fed on a regular basis. Keep pineapple on the list of foods you only offer as a special treat. If fed too frequently, there are multiple medical conditions that can occur in bearded dragons.