Bearded dragons will happily feed on cherries due to their soft texture and sweet taste. However, you should only give your dragon cherries on an occasional basis as they are high in sugar and fruit acid, which can mess up with your dragon’s digestive functions.
I’ll also indulge in answering some other related questions in today’s post, so make sure you stay with me till the end. Let’s just get started.
Nutrition In Cherries
Here’s a table with the Nutrition Facts for one medium-sized cup of cherries [100 Grams] according to USDA National Nutrient Database:
|Nutrients [100 Grams]||Amount|
|Vitamin C||7 mGrams|
|Vitamin A||3 uGrams|
Source: USDA National Nutrient Database
There are a couple of things that stand out to me when I look at the information presented in the table above.
The first one is that cherries, in fact, aren’t that rich in Vitamin A. They do have a decent amount of Vitamin A, but nothing to write home about. They do have a decent content of potassium, however, they’re also rich in sugar, which is not a good thing.
Lastly, the calcium to phosphorus ratio doesn’t make me feel VERY good about cherries either. If you’re not aware of that yet, then know that bearded dragons need a positive calcium to phosphorus diet.
Phosphorus binds with calcium and can mess up with your dragon’s calcium absorption, which can lead to various diseases such as calcium deficiency or Metabolic Bone Diseases [MBD].
Metabolic Bone Disease, according to this article from PetMD, called Metabolic Bones Disease [MBD] & Disorders in Reptiles is one of the most common and yet VERY dangerous diseases in captive reptiles, including bearded dragons, and is often times the cause of a poor diet that lacks the right amount of calcium or that is way to rich in phosphorus.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Cherries?
Cherries make a GREAT treat for bearded dragons. They’re packed with a variety of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. All these are or should be, part of your dragon’s diet.
On top of that, cherries are a GREAT source of potassium as well. However, they do contain a decent amount of sugar as well as fruit acid, so moderation is key. No matter what you do, refrain yourself from feeding cherries as staple food to your bearded dragon.
If fed in excess, due to their sugar content and fruit acid, can lead to a variety of health issues in bearded dragons. We’ll approach the topic in more details as we go on, so make sure you stick with me.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Cherry Pits & Leaves?
Studies have shown that cherry pits and leaves can be toxic to reptiles. The pit and the leaves of cherries contain cyanide, which is a substance that can prove to be poisonous to reptiles and other pets for that matter.
According to a study conducted a few years back, cyanide can be toxic in most reptiles, birds, amphibians and many other pets or animals. Make sure to check out this study called Cyanide Hazards to Fish, Wildlife, and Invertebrates: A Synoptic Review, conducted by Ronald Eisler in 1991.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Cherry Blossom?
You shouldn’t feed cherry blossom to your dragon. In fact, you shouldn’t feed any type of blossom for that matter.In most cases, blossom contains small amounts of cyanide as well, and that’s a risk I wouldn’t take and neither should you.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Dried Cherries?
Generally, dried fruits have a way higher sugar content than fresh ones, which is why you should only go for fresh foods in regards to your bearded dragon’s diet.
In fact, dried fruits lose most of their vitamins and minerals, especially vitamin B and C, making them nutritional poor when compared to fresh fruits. The same logic applies to cherries.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Canned Cherries?
Canned cherries contain additional preservatives and other chemicals that have the power to REALLY hurt your dragon. I’d keep this one off my list as well.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Frozen Cherries?
Don’t do it. Generally, frozen fruits can lead to digestive issues in bearded dragons. Frozen cherries can lead to a variety of health diseases such as diarrhea or other digestive issues.
So, if I were you, I’d stay away from frozen fruits of any kind. If you do, however, decide to do it, make sure the fruits are brought to room temperature prior to feeding.
I just want to be clear on this one. Frozen fruits, if fed in moderation and brought to room temperature prior to feeding won’t kill your dragon or anything, but they can be dangerous, which is why I consider that serving them is not worth the risk.
Can Bearded Dragons Drink Cherry Juice?
Cherry juice, or any other type of juice, contain way TOO much sugar to be fed to bearded dragons. Some people will give their dragons a sip of two of diluted juice, but I’d stay away from juice of any kind as well.
In addition to that, the juice available on the market contains often times additional preservatives and stabilizers that can pose a real treat to a dragon’s health.
Benefits – Hazards
Due to their high content of fiber and other minerals, cherries can improve the digestive function in bearded dragons. Having a sensitive digestive system, bearded dragons need a balanced diet comprising a fair amount of vitamins and minerals. Therefore, if fed in moderation, cherries can help on that aspect.
Cherries contain a rare compound called Anthocyanins that can help reduce inflammation in bearded dragons as well. However, if fed in excess, cherries can also pose a number of hazards in bearded dragons that are better to avoid.
While diabetes is a disease almost unheard of in reptiles or captive reptiles, they can pose a number of hazards if fed in excess foods that are high in sugar such as but not limited to diarrhea, obesity of dehydration.
You’ll also want to keep an eye on the Calcium to Phosphorus ratio and ensure you’re not overfeeding your beardie with foods that have a disproportionate calcium to phosphorus ratio.
How OFTEN Can Bearded Dragons Eat CHERRIES?
I’d play this one safe and say that it’s BETTER to only feed your dragon cherries once or twice a month, assuming there are no other fruits around. If you ask me, I’d rather go for a variety of fruits rather than feeding cherries on a weekly basis.
When referring to bearded dragons, the key to a long and healthy life is a varied diet comprised of green leaf veggies, insects, and fruits as a treat from time to time.
Preparing Cherries For Bearded Dragons
With no further ado, here’s a SIMPLE process you can follow when preparing a cherry-based meal for your beloved lizard:
- First of all, make sure you choose fresh and ripe cherries for your bearded dragon. You should look for firm cherries with a fresh stem.
- Second of all, make sure you wash the cherry properly to ensure any dirt or chemicals are removed from their skin.
- Now make sure to remove the twig and the pit of the cherry prior to feeding.
- That’s it. You’ve done it.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Plums? Yes, but only on an occasional basis. Make sure to remove the pit of the plum prior to feeding as well as wash the fruit properly to make sure you remove any chemicals from their skin.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Almonds? Definitely not. Almonds are nutritionally unbalanced. On top of that, they have a disproportionate calcium to phosphorus ratio, which is not good for your bearded dragon. Lastly, due to their texture, almonds or nuts in general, can lead to a variety of health issues in bearded dragons such as chocking, impaction and indigestion.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Lychees? No. Lychees are way to acidic and sweet to be fed to bearded dragons. On top of that, they have a very disproportionate calcium to phosphorus ratio, which doesn’t recommend them to be fed to bearded dragons. Avoid feeding lychees to your dragon.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Dates? Occasionally but it’s better to avoid them altogether. Dates are quiet acidic, sweet and have a high content of phosphorus, which if fed in moderation won’t hurt your dragon but it’s better to go for other fruits. Plenty of options to choose from.