My baby beardie won't eat

Discussion in 'Bearded Dragons' started by projectikara, Jul 21, 2010.

  1. projectikara Embryo

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    Hi, I actually just joined so I could get some help with this. My baby bearded dragon won't eat his crickets, and has been getting thinner. I just got him 3-4 weeks ago, and he was eating just fine. His tank mate, who is a little bit older that I just got 1-2 weeks ago, is eating fine and has a great metabolism, and is totally healthy aside from his gimp leg (which may get amputated when he's older.)
    Anyways, my unhealthy dragon just lays around and sleeps all day. When I try to offer him a cricket with some tweezers he just closes his eyes and tries to ignore it. He was looking really bad last night, so I force fed him about 3 Flucker's freeze dried crickets to keep him going (I know they aren't the best.) Right now he's also in a reptile carrier with 4 live crickets, but hasn't eaten them yet. Lately he's only been eating about 2-4 crickets a day, I know this isn't right because the other one can down at least 10.
    Oh yeah, other random question, will Vita Sand impact my dragons? What substrates don't impact them?

    This is my first bearded dragon.
    I live in Texas.

    Dragons name: Barba/Volvagia
    Age, weight and length if you know? Naymliss was born sometime in May. Not sure of his/her weight. Naymliss is about 6 or 7 inches long from the tip of his nose to the tip of his tail.
    How long with you? About 3 weeks.
    What is his condition recently and if it changed, when? Within the last week. His condition is as described above.
    Is he active, clear eyes and bright? Not very active. Eyes are clear and bright.
    Is the beard, chest or tail tip darker than the rest or than normal? Sometimes his beard gets darker, like last night when he looked awful. It's normal now.
    Walking/moving normally? Yes.
    Any physical features that do not appear normal? No.
    From Breeder or Pet Store? (this may make a difference) Pet store.
    Has he every been treated by a vet, No.
    If yes, for what and what meds were used/dosed and time if know?
    Basking or sleeping during the day? All the time.
    Is he going to the bathroom, how often? Neither of them poop very much, Naymliss poops less. I have no idea how often these guys are supposed to poop.
    If not, when was the last time? No idea.
    Is it formed/normal or runny/smelly? Normal poops.
    Alone or with others? With one tank mate.
    If with others, what sex"? Not sure yet.
    Soaking or misting at all and how often? They soak in their water dish for several hours a day, more or less.

    Set up info tank size? They have a rock cave, a climbing branch, and one of those half logs and a food and water dish. I forget how big the tank is and I don't have anything to measure it with. It's at least 24 inches x 9 inches x 9 inches, if I had to give an estimate. I suck at estimates Dx
    Temps -what do you use for heat? Infrared heating lamp, not sure what temperature.
    Basking point? No idea
    Cool area? Under a cave
    What are you measure it with? ??
    What Substrate? One of those terrarium liner mat things.
    UVB Lights type (detailed) what brand, model, and length or wattage is it? The bulb itself is a Zilla night red heat bulb. 2.5" L X 2.5" W X 4.5" H;Red;150 Watts
    How old? About 3 weeks.
    How close to UVB light when he bask? 6 inches away, but usually off center with it.
    What hours for day/night? ??
    Do you use any type of nighttime heat, if so what? Just the heat bulb.

    How is his appetite? IS there a change? His appetite has decreased a LOT. He used to eat the right amount of crickets, but now he eats 1-4 crickets on his own each day for less than a week.
    What size, kind and how many/much insects does he eat daily? Live small crickets gut loaded and powdered with rep-cal.
    What do you feed the insects normally? Flucker's cricket feed.
    Is the dragon eating greens/veggies? No, I offer these to him but he won't eat them. My other dragon does, however.
    What and how much? Collard greens, dandelion greens.
    Supplements? Just a sprinkle of rep-cal.
    What kind of calcium/how often? Rep-cal. Any time he eats.
    What kind of vitamins how often? No vitamins.
    How are these given to him? Powdered crickets, a little bit of powder on veggies too.

    Is there any additional information that might be of use? The more you can tell us, the better others can help you with suggestions. No additional information.
  2. Nessi Member

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    Welcome to the forum! First things first...beardies aren't meant to be housed together. They are definitely solitary animals. What is happening is that the stronger beardie is taking from the smaller one. It's survival of the fittest. They need their own cages complete with set up. Check out the care sheets here: and ask any questions you have once you have read up. There are some changes you will need to make in your set up but first, I would seperate them.
  3. projectikara Embryo

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    So they absolutely cannot be together? At any age?
    Thanks for the reply by the way. :3

    I actually changed the set up today. The log thing is out and replaced by a decorative skull. The mat was replaced with vita-sand. I'm getting a UVB light next paycheck. Does the other dragon need another tank entirely? I have access to another tank, I just need more supplies to put inside it, and I'm not sure if I have the space and money for that. If I just separated them for feeding, could that still work for a while? I don't know if I could get rid of either of them, I love them both too much to choose. ;-;
    I've got this beautiful nice sweet one, and this crippled one that's also really sweet that fell into my care. I don't know what to do. Dx
  4. Nessi Member

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    I would say the one is already not doing well because it's housed with another dragon. Any type of loose substrate is a no no. They ingest it when they are feeding or just when they are "tasting" their environment. Beardies "taste" their environment and when they get any type of loose substrate in their mouths, it doesn't digest. It causes impaction. You can even use paper towel for the bottom of their cage which is easy to clean and safe for them.

    You definitely need two seperate set ups for the health of your dragons. The stronger one will lay on the smaller one to rob them of the uvb as well as take all the food. Please read the care sheets. Beardies are wonderful animals and not too hard to take care of once you get the set up right. Maintaining the set up is the hardest part.

    You also run the risk of eggs when they are housed together. That's a situation you definitely don't want.
  5. projectikara Embryo

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    Thank you! I think my dragon (Barba) is impacted, but I just changed the substrate to vita-sand yesterday, so I think it was the couple mealworms I fed him. My wildlife rehabilitation boss is taking care of Barba now, and he will be in a completely different tank than Stallord when he gets back after he gets better. They also have a UVB light now.
    Vita-sand says it doesn't impact dragons over 6 inches long, but I'm not sure if I can trust it, so I'll probably change to something else.
  6. Nessi Member

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    Never never trust it! I thought the sand would be the coolest thing and I counted down the days until my first dragon could be on it. After a week, he was impacted and I was in a total panic. He was soooo sick. I couldn't get into the herp vet for a couple days (he only worked one day a week) so I soaked and soaked and soaked every couple hours until finally...success! That's when I found this forum. I dumped the sand immediately and haven't had a problem since and that was....6 years ago. The tiles look really cool and they are much safer.

    ...and meal worms are another no no. No nutrition and all shell. Blah...

    I hope you see some improvement soon.
  7. stacesam1 Embryo

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    Mealworms should never be fed to a dragon. They have a shell that is not digestible and can cause impaction. Loose substrate should not be used either. Non-adhesive shelf liner is good and easy to clean.

    I would not trust anything that the vita-sand companies or any loose substrate co. bag says on it. They just want you to buy their product.
  8. projectikara Embryo

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    Like what kind of tiles? I'm interested in using this instead. The mats are so hard to get clean because everything gets stuck to them and such, so something smooth with traction would be better. Crickets kept hiding under the mat anyways. We found that the problem with my dragon was that he had no UVB light, and after he was given UVB he was not lethargic any more and was perfectly healthy. Anyways, I'll dump the Vita-Sand as soon as I get a different alternative.
  9. Nessi Member

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    I use slate tile for both of mine. I do have one area that is about the size of a paper towel where they go to the bathroom. It's pretty awesome. For some reason they will go in the same place on the paper towel so it's very easy to clean. I got it at the local hardware store (Home Depot)
  10. projectikara Embryo

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    Wow that's really nice. So they're potty trained in a sense!
    I'll probably go look around home depot and see what kind of stuff they have there. They don't have problems slipping on the tiles?
  11. Nessi Member

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    Not at all. The slate tiles have a bit of a raised pattern to them. Mine are a dark brownish color and they have like a texture to them. I have some that are 12x12 and then the smaller ones...might be 6x6 to fill in the areas that are too small for the 12x12. The little bit of texture keeps their nails kind of trimmed too.
  12. stacesam1 Embryo

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    Non-adhesive shelf liner is a good substrate to use...and its cheaper and easier to fit into the tank.

    Did the place where you bought your dragon tell you that you needed a UVB light? It is very important that research is done before buying any kind of pet.

    Glad to hear that your dragon is doing better.
  13. 67 Embryo

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    You can't go wrong with Non-adhesive shelf liner...! It's great. If i'm not mistaken, I dont recall the basking area and cool area temps being discussed yet. It's my understanding that the two most basic and important things to be aware of to avoid any possible impaction issues is:

    What they eat or could have injested thats in their cage, and basking temps needed per age of the beardie..?


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