New and concerned beardie owner

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New and concerned beardie owner

Postby Callista » Wed Jan 11, 2017 1:45 am

Hi everyone,

I'm probably being overly cautious, but I've never owned a bearded dragon before, and I have no baseline for his behaviour and/or health... I just want to do right by my beardie, I want what's best for him.

[Click image to enlarge]


I got Sarkan (an adult beardie, age unknown) from the reptile rescue centre on Saturday. He's not super active, mostly basking, but he seems to enjoy being out of his tank and among people, as he is reluctant to go back. The first couple of days he ate some salad (mostly when I hand-fed him, though I've seen him go to his food to get a bite), but not a lot. On Monday I gave him roaches and he ate 13 adults, with a lot of enthusiasm. He has not shown any interest in salad since. Yesterday I got him to eat two small pieces of salad by putting it in his mouth as he was basking and gaping. Today so far he hasn't eaten. Is he just being stubborn, hoping for more roaches?

He has also been rubbing his beard agains rough surfaces, so I think he might be nearing a shed... He has a grey spot on his back, that means it's a shed, right?

[Click image to enlarge]


(sorry for the crappy pic, my camera isn't great)

He has been sitting with his mouth open a lot, even outside his tank, is that normal? And he occasionally closes one or both eyes. Is the UV lamp too bright in comparison to the basking bulb? I had to dim the basking bulb to get the right temps.

Sarkan has also been pooping every day, except for yesterday, and his poops are runny:

[Click image to enlarge]


Does that look normal? They are stinky, but I don't know how much a beardie's poop is supposed to smell...

Also, this morning he was sitting on the cold side of his tank, and he felt cold to the touch. I put him under the basking lamp, where he has stayed (until he had to poo).

UVB: reptisun 10.0 T5 HO tube
Basking temp: 40-41°C
cold side: 25-27°C
substrate: tile
food: dubia's for proteine, salad from the foodlist on beautifuldragons

Sarkan is 45 cm and 435 g.

I'm sorry for the long post, I just want the best for my dragon...
Callista
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Posts: 47
Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2015 7:55 am
Location: Belgium

Re: New and concerned beardie owner

Postby kingofnobbys » Wed Jan 11, 2017 2:53 am

Callista wrote:Hi everyone,

I'm probably being overly cautious, but I've never owned a bearded dragon before, and I have no baseline for his behaviour and/or health... I just want to do right by my beardie, I want what's best for him.

[Click image to enlarge]


I got Sarkan (an adult beardie, age unknown) from the reptile rescue centre on Saturday. He's not super active, mostly basking, but he seems to enjoy being out of his tank and among people, as he is reluctant to go back. <<< :) sound like he's pretty good and likes socialising with his pet humans and has started bonding with you already , and not wanting to go back in unless he's had his fill of adventure or is starting to feel the need to warm up, get some UV rays is good too.
The first couple of days he ate some salad (mostly when I hand-fed him, though I've seen him go to his food to get a bite), but not a lot. On Monday I gave him roaches and he ate 13 adults, with a lot of enthusiasm.
<<< excellent indicators .

<<< if he's over 400g he can handle adult crickets , but 2/3 size crickets (LARGE) are better - they live longer / less die off - who have gut loaded with vitamin rich foods and calcium rich greens .
I think adult roaches are a fair bit bigger than adult crickets so he has pigged out and probably over did it on the adult roaches.

He has not shown any interest in salad since.
<<< he was still full and probably would have preferred more live bugs (they always do
Yesterday I got him to eat two small pieces of salad by putting it in his mouth as he was basking and gaping.
Today so far he hasn't eaten. Is he just being stubborn, hoping for more roaches? <<< likely hanging out for what he really wants , because he's really not all that hungry.

I give my 4 yr old girl Rex some live bugs every day , but only about 1/2 - 2/3 what I give my young ones Peppa and Toothless , because they are still very active and still got fair bit of growing to do.
8 adult crickets or 10-12 medium crickets per day is more than sufficient for a full grown beardie, many advocate 80% greens and veg and only 20% live insect protein for adult beardies, but really depends on the beardie and what it likes - some hate their vegs and greens and only eat them under sufferance or if it put them in their mouth.

He has also been rubbing his beard agains rough surfaces, so I think he might be nearing a shed... He has a grey spot on his back, that means it's a shed, right? <<< he's definitely got an itch, likely in preshed, adults shed a lot less frequently than hatchlings, juveniles and pre-adults , can be a scale here or there, or a full shed sometimes.

[Click image to enlarge]


(sorry for the crappy pic, my camera isn't great)

He has been sitting with his mouth open a lot, even outside his tank, is that normal? <<< normal , he's trying to cool
And he occasionally closes one or both eyes.<<< very common, I get the beardie one eye quite regularly
Is the UV lamp too bright in comparison to the basking bulb? I had to dim the basking bulb to get the right temps. <<< can be , but keep in mind they have evolved to cope with tropical sunshine and extreme UV in their natural range.

Sarkan has also been pooping every day, except for yesterday, and his poops are runny: <<< the runny poos are dietary , a change in diet , and some greens (lettuces and cabbages) can cause sloppy poos. So can some bugs (especially silkworms) , never used roaches so I'm not sure if roaches have a higher moisture content than crickets do .

IS very good he's going most day.
He's trying to get rid of excess hydration.


[Click image to enlarge]


Does that look normal? They are stinky, <<< they can be stinky , they are poos and contain protein metabolisation byproducts
but I don't know how much a beardie's poop is supposed to smell...

Also, this morning he was sitting on the cold side of his tank, and he felt cold to the touch. I put him under the basking lamp, where he has stayed (until he had to poo). << he probably slept there , I've a habit of placing all my lizards in their hides if on occasion they fall asleep elsewhere or it's going to be cool overnight, all my beardies have 7W heatpads (see viewtopic.php?f=75&t=224976 ) under their hides which are set and controlled by a thermostat to maintain 36oCelsius 24/7, in general they love their warm hides and mostly go there when ready for bed.
UVB: reptisun 10.0 T5 HO tube
Basking temp: 40-41°C
cold side: 25-27°C
substrate: tile

>>> All sounds good to me.
food: dubia's for proteine, salad from the foodlist on beautifuldragons

Sarkan is 45 cm and 435 g. <<< he may have some growth in him yet as he may be under 2 years old.

I'm sorry for the long post, I just want the best for my dragon...
CBDs: Puff ( RIP 10Dec2015 (3.2 years old (aneurism)) ,Rex (RIP 16Mar2017 at 4.6 yrs old (unexplained death)) , both adopted at 6wks old..Toothless & Peppa : (5 wks old 19dec2015).
Eastern BT Skinks : George & Mildred (born Sept 2010).
Eastern Water Skinks : Lucky (wild juvenile), rescued from a cat.Taken by a SI and far too soon, 9mths with us. RIP 21Jul2010.Wriggles - (rescued injured), small lizard thought she was a big lizard, 7-8 yrs old, died in her sleep, RIP 2Feb2016.)
kingofnobbys
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Re: New and concerned beardie owner

Postby Callista » Wed Jan 11, 2017 5:01 am

Thank you, Kingofnobbys, you've set my mind at ease. I thought I was prepared to get a beardie, since I've been learning about them for about a year (this forum has been a great help), but I find there is still so much to learn and discover... And I already love Sarkan so much!
Callista
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Posts: 47
Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2015 7:55 am
Location: Belgium


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