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New Beardie Mom... Requesting advice!

chardust

Bearded Dragon Egg
Hi everyone!

My name is Charlotte, and I just got a new Beardie yesterday! I have never owned one myself, but am a little familiar with them/caring for them because my cousin owns a Beardie and a leopard gecko and another I can't remember the name of... but anyways I've been really anxious because I want to give him the best care I can, but I have many different sources online and in person telling me many different things, and my most pressing issue is I don't know how much I really should be feeding him...

So, after getting him from the pet store, I forgot to ask how old he was, so just an hour ago I measured him and he's about 6.5 inches and his tail is about half his length (if that matters ahaha). I looked up a sizing age chart and he seems to be on the lower end of 2 months old. I was given some crickets and they seem to be pretty big, and I did some research and apparently they shouldn't be fed anything bigger than the space between their eyes and I haven't gotten a good look but I have a feeling they might be too big... HOWEVER the guy at the store, who owns bearded dragons himself seemed to have no problems with giving me them in that size... and I don't think he would give them to me if they weren't meant to be eaten at his age...

My second problem is how much I'm supposed to feed my Beardie... the pamphlet I got talked about the diet but not the amount... I'm 95% sure that the guy at the store said two of those big crickets a day... but online it says 30-80 crickets a day but I'm not sure how big they're talking about.

So... based on experience and/or opinion, how many large crickets should I be feeding him a day? (also accounting age!) An answer back would be amazing!! Thank you! Also just because I'm gonna attach a picture of the sweetie here :) (also, no the mat is not only sand, it's a mat made for beardies that has the sand and rocks attached, more for texture! I was told it's fine!)

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Knowinghades63

Bearded Dragon Egg
I recommend the smaller the better on the crickets why take a chance. You don’t have to go tiny but small. If you have a separate container put the beardie in the with several crickets. Keep adding crickets until it stops eating. Don’t have to many in the cage with it as it will stress it out. And they actually bite and can overwhelm your dragon. If you don’t have a separate container then just place a few crickets in his cage at a time but take them out when he has finished eating. The mat should be ok but don’t put anything looser in woth him as he can ingest it when he eats. My current bearded is is a little bigger than yours and eats 3-4 crickets twice a day. Congrats on the beardie.
 

chardust

Bearded Dragon Egg
I recommend the smaller the better on the crickets why take a chance. You don’t have to go tiny but small. If you have a separate container put the beardie in the with several crickets. Keep adding crickets until it stops eating. Don’t have to many in the cage with it as it will stress it out. And they actually bite and can overwhelm your dragon. If you don’t have a separate container then just place a few crickets in his cage at a time but take them out when he has finished eating. The mat should be ok but don’t put anything looser in woth him as he can ingest it when he eats. My current bearded is is a little bigger than yours and eats 3-4 crickets twice a day. Congrats on the beardie.
Awesome! Thank you so much! And they bite?! I don't like the thought of that haha!
 

Knowinghades63

Bearded Dragon Egg
Awesome! Thank you so much! And they bite?! I don't like the thought of that haha!
Yeah. That was actually my turning point was I was hand feeding crickets. Which is a great bonding exercise but don’t overdo it or they will come to depend on it. And they’ll stop chasing prey. Which I think is one of the funnest parts. anyways. the cricket took a bite on her nose. And she wasn’t interested in eating anymore at that time even though it was the second cricket and she always eats more than that.
 

chardust

Bearded Dragon Egg
Yeah. That was actually my turning point was I was hand feeding crickets. Which is a great bonding exercise but don’t overdo it or they will come to depend on it. And they’ll stop chasing prey. Which I think is one of the funnest parts. anyways. the cricket took a bite on her nose. And she wasn’t interested in eating anymore at that time even though it was the second cricket and she always eats more than that.
Awe that's actually really cute...! except for getting bit... I'll keep that in mind. Also, just curious: do they only eat live crickets and worms because of their hunting instinct?
 

Knowinghades63

Bearded Dragon Egg
Awe that's actually really cute...! except for getting bit... I'll keep that in mind. Also, just curious: do they only eat live crickets and worms because of their hunting instinct?
Different with each animal. My beardie a picky one. And refuses dead crickets but I’ve read that if you try wiggling them to make them look alive that it helps them accept dead ones as a feed source. Meal worms are great because you can just keep them in the fridge but they shouldn’t be the only form of protein you give because they are high in fat and not actual protein. Plus the exoskeleton or “chitin” is harder to digest.
 

Bostonfinest

Hatchling Dragon
I recommend the smaller the better on the crickets why take a chance. You don’t have to go tiny but small. If you have a separate container put the beardie in the with several crickets. Keep adding crickets until it stops eating. Don’t have to many in the cage with it as it will stress it out. And they actually bite and can overwhelm your dragon. If you don’t have a separate container then just place a few crickets in his cage at a time but take them out when he has finished eating. The mat should be ok but don’t put anything looser in woth him as he can ingest it when he eats. My current bearded is is a little bigger than yours and eats 3-4 crickets twice a day. Congrats on the beardie.
What I use to do when my boy was younger is get 2 bags of small crickets 35 in each bag ad feed him like 20 in the afternoon, I feed him his salad in the Am a hour or two after the lights go on in the morning and a mixture of his veggies and bugs 2 four before the lights go off got the night. Now he just eat 20 large crickets or 15 medium Dubia roaches (5/8) along with his salad and a treat once a week wax worms or horn worms. Offer fresh veggies through out the day as well because babies should eat 80% bugs and 20% veggies and when they reach a year it should be 80% veggies an 20% protein and they grow fast.
 

Katieveee

Bearded Dragon Egg
Just popping in here to say remember calcium dust if youre feeding him crickets, also feed the crickets greens. I personally get calci worms online so i dont have to use calcium powder and i dont have to feed them.
 

Silver dragons

Bearded Dragon Veteran
Hi everyone!

My name is Charlotte, and I just got a new Beardie yesterday! I have never owned one myself, but am a little familiar with them/caring for them because my cousin owns a Beardie and a leopard gecko and another I can't remember the name of... but anyways I've been really anxious because I want to give him the best care I can, but I have many different sources online and in person telling me many different things, and my most pressing issue is I don't know how much I really should be feeding him...

So, after getting him from the pet store, I forgot to ask how old he was, so just an hour ago I measured him and he's about 6.5 inches and his tail is about half his length (if that matters ahaha). I looked up a sizing age chart and he seems to be on the lower end of 2 months old. I was given some crickets and they seem to be pretty big, and I did some research and apparently they shouldn't be fed anything bigger than the space between their eyes and I haven't gotten a good look but I have a feeling they might be too big... HOWEVER the guy at the store, who owns bearded dragons himself seemed to have no problems with giving me them in that size... and I don't think he would give them to me if they weren't meant to be eaten at his age...

My second problem is how much I'm supposed to feed my Beardie... the pamphlet I got talked about the diet but not the amount... I'm 95% sure that the guy at the store said two of those big crickets a day... but online it says 30-80 crickets a day but I'm not sure how big they're talking about.

So... based on experience and/or opinion, how many large crickets should I be feeding him a day? (also accounting age!) An answer back would be amazing!! Thank you! Also just because I'm gonna attach a picture of the sweetie here :) (also, no the mat is not only sand, it's a mat made for beardies that has the sand and rocks attached, more for texture! I was told it's fine!)

View attachment 22469 View attachment 22470
Hello, I definitely would not feed him large crickets as they can potentially hurt him or because they're so big cause an impaction. So normally you want to feed small crickets, since he's just a baby you're going to want to offer crickets two to three times a day he should be eating anywhere from 10 to 40 crickets a day. A lot of times pet store employees don't know the right care and just because someone owns a dragon does not mean that they know the proper way to care for it. I mean I had one pet store employee tell me that I could keep my bearded dragon in a plastic Critter keeper with just a heating pad and a log, no UVB, nothing.
 

Barb.Littlefield

Juvenile Dragon
Hello, I definitely would not feed him large crickets as they can potentially hurt him or because they're so big cause an impaction. So normally you want to feed small crickets, since he's just a baby you're going to want to offer crickets two to three times a day he should be eating anywhere from 10 to 40 crickets a day. A lot of times pet store employees don't know the right care and just because someone owns a dragon does not mean that they know the proper way to care for it. I mean I had one pet store employee tell me that I could keep my bearded dragon in a plastic Critter keeper with just a heating pad and a log, no UVB, nothing.
Agree with Silver. Ur baby looks to be the size of my Dexter and I feed him the small crickets and small roaches. So far, he hasn't become impacted. Right now Dex only eats about 4-5 crickets and 1-2 roaches about 4 times a day which is not close to 40, but when he's done, he's done. He also gets baby food veges with a pinch of calcium and vitamins twice a day, as well. About 1-1.5 ml is all he'll do before he moves away from the dropper which is his sign for I'm done. So far not much luck on the fresh veges still. Sigh. He's growing quickly and is very active so it's hard to keep the weight on him right now it seems. Like a teenager hitting a growth spurt. Plays, poos, and consumes everything and doesn't gain weight. Ahhhh the good ole days. lol

Egads, Silver! Really! A critter keeper and heating pad. WOW! No wonder some of these babies end up looking so poorly. Good thing we have forums like this one where we can ask tons and tons of questions from experienced peeps. :)
 

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