Can bearded dragons eat avocados? It seems like a harmless fruit I could easily give my bearded dragon as a snack. But is it safe for them to eat?
According to experts, bearded dragons cannot eat avocado because it contains a toxin called Persin.  This toxin can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and difficulty breathing in bearded dragons. In severe cases, it can even lead to death.
In this article, I will take you through why avocados are not safe for dragons, what to do if they eat them, and some of the delicious and healthy alternatives you can give them as a treat.
- Bearded dragons cannot eat avocados.
- Avocado contains a chemical called Persin, which is toxic to bearded dragons.
- If your bearded dragon ingests avocado, it could experience vomiting, diarrhea, and difficulty breathing.
- In severe cases, it could even lead to death.
Are Avocados Safe for Bearded Dragons to Eat?
The avocados we eat are healthy for humans, but bearded dragons should NEVER eat them.
Here are some reasons why:
1. Fungicide Toxins
The avocados we eat are a healthy food choice for humans, but bearded dragons should NEVER eat them because they contain a fungicide called PERSIN that is toxic to lizards. 
This is because there is so much of it in the skin and seed that the toxins seep their way into the fruit.
2. Can Cause Obesity
Considering Avocadoes contain more than 75% of fat, this can be hazardous to beardies in captivity. The fat can lead to obesity which can then cause heart and liver failure.
3. Contains Oxalic Acid
Avocados contain a lot of oxalic acids . Too much of this can cause metabolic bone disease in your Beardie, which can be DANGEROUS.
Oxalic acid can cause calcium deficiency, making calcium absorption more difficult. When beardies eat avocados, they get inadequate calcium as a result.
4. Can be a Choking Hazard
If an avocado is not ripe enough, it can be a choking hazard considering beardie do not chew but rather swallow food.
This can cause your pet to suffocate and die.
Pro Tip: Avocados have poor calcium and are almost entirely made up of fat, which bearded dragons don’t need in their diet chart.
Now that I’ve answered, can bearded dragons eat avocado? what if someone accidentally feeds your beardie and avo toast?
What Happens When a Bearded Dragon Eats Avocado?
This fungicide can cause bearded dragons to experience vomiting, diarrhea, and respiratory failure.
In severe cases, it could even lead to DEATH. So, it’s best to avoid giving your pet beardie avocado altogether.
First, you will notice that they will struggle to breathe, which is caused by their inability to expel Persin from their systems.
It can digest quickly if there is only a tiny amount in its body, but if they have a lot, it can cause death after a couple of hours.
Here are some tips to avoid any fatality.
What To Do if Your Bearded Dragon Eats Avocado
If your lizard dragon has eaten avocado, you need to call your vet IMMEDIATELY and ensure they are seen quickly.
They will be able to give you personalized care that matches the severity of symptoms for your Beardie, and you will be able to make an appointment to go in as soon as possible.
There are also ways you can try and help them expel the toxins from their bodies.
Giving them a warm bath can encourage them to pass the Persin, and feeding them water with a syringe can also help to flush out their system.
Not to worry, there are tons of healthy alternatives that your pet lizard can enjoy.
What Can Your Bearded Dragon Eat Instead of Avocado?
There’s a wide range of other beardie food, so there is no need to worry about them not getting the nutrients they need.
Vegetables are critical for a beardie diet because of their high water content .
You should be careful when handling vegetables for your pet as they can cause food poisoning through bacteria strains and potential pesticide carriers.
However, vegetables like spinach are avoided because of the occasional treatment of pesticides.
Consider dark leafy vegetables to replicate a beardie natural diet.
Some beardie dragon-safe leafy greens include:
- Butternut squash
- Bell peppers
- Collard Greens
- Mustard Greens
- Beet Greens
- Sweet Potatoes
- Green onions
- Organic Celery
- Raw potato
- Dandelion Greens
- Squash piece
- Pumpkin piece
- Beet tops
- Celery sticks
Check out this video of a bearded dragon enjoying some vegetables.
Beardies love to snack on a fruit treat. Serve them with safe and nutritious fruits. Some safe fruits for bearded dragons they might like are:
- Juicy strawberries
- Citrus fruits
Grapes, blueberries, and blackberries can be given as an occasional treat as they contain a high calcium level. Do not be tempted to give your beardie wheat products like bread as a treat due to their high salt content.
Kiwis and chard should be avoided from the food list because of their high oxalate content.
A pet lizard can also eat wild insects (an omnivorous reptile), but they should not be their staple food; a balanced diet is crucial. Ensure you balance the animal-plant food ratio to about 1:1.
Some insects, such as meal worms and wax worms, have a high-fat content that can lead to weight issues with your pet. Opt for silkworms that have lower fat content.
Fireflies and other phosphorescent insects are also great options.
But remember that most nutritional charts have documented that feeder insects have unbalanced calcium to phosphorus ratio.
You should also avoid bait shop worms as a regular beardie food diet. They can have parasites and hazards that can cause health complexities.
One vital aspect of the beardie dragon is maintaining the Calcium To Phosphorus Ratio. The recommended ratio is 1:1 for proper metabolism.
Tomatoes have loads of Vitamin A and a tremendous calcium-to-phosphorous ratio.
But you should avoid synthetic vitamin A as it cannot be stored in a beardies body in a safe form.
For a boost in iron content, dust feeds with an iron supplement. Please do not attempt to provide your pet with cooked meat, as it’s not its natural diet. Raw meat also increases the risk of catching salmonella.
Eggs are a regular Beardie food diet because of their high nutrient density.
Adult bearded dragons don’t need as much protein, but regular veggies are perfect for Bearded Dragons Health.
Mushrooms should not be in Beardie’s diet chart!
Many bearded dragon types of food options are available, so you can find something that your bearded dragon will love.
Don’t forget to check our guide on the commercial bearded dragon food they love to eat.
Related: Can Bearded Dragons Eat Kiwis?
Do Avocados Have any Nutritional Value for Dragons?
On top of being toxic, avocados have practically no nutritional value for dragons. Adult beardies require a diet that consists primarily of protein and vegetables with a small amount of fruit.
Can I Feed my Bearded Dragon Avocado if it’s Cooked?
No, you should not feed your bearded dragon avocado even if it’s cooked. The Persin is still present in cooked avocado and can still make your bearded dragon sick.
What Should a Bearded Dragon Eat Daily?
A perfect Beardie menu should consist of about 80% vegetables, 20% protein, and 5% fruit. This ratio can change depending on the age of your bearded dragon.
So can bearded dragons eat avocados?
Avocados might be a healthy snack for humans, but they are NOT GOOD for bearded dragons.
The Persin in avocados can make bearded dragons sick; in some cases, it can even be fatal.
So, it’s best to avoid giving your lizard friend avocado altogether.
There are plenty of other bearded dragon food options available that are SAFE and nutritious, so your bearded dragon will not be missing out on anything by avoiding avocados.
I hope this has been helpful to you, and you should check out my other guides so that you and your Beardie can experiment with treats that are healthy and avoid dangerous ones.
So, did you ever feed avocado to your beardie? Let us know in the comments section!
- 1. Guide to Poisonous Plants – College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences – Colorado State University. csuvth.colostate.edu. Accessed October 12, 2022. https://csuvth.colostate.edu/poisonous_plants/Plants/Details/145
- 2. Foods High in Oxalates. WebMD. https://www.webmd.com/diet/foods-high-in-oxalates
- 3. Douglas KE, Saker KE, Smith SA, Robertson JL, Holladay SD. A Preliminary Feeding Study in Bearded Dragon Lizards, Pogona vitticeps. Bulletin of the Association of Reptilian and Amphibian Veterinarians. 1999;9(3):42-46. doi:10.5818/1076-3220.127.116.11
- 4. What fruits can my bearded dragon eat. idkuu.com. Accessed October 12, 2022. https://idkuu.com/what-fruits-can-my-bearded-dragon-eat/amp
Grigorina grew up surrounded by animals – dogs, cats, cows, goats, sheep, and horses and that has shaped her into what I am today – a crazy cat lady who always has a place for one more cat (or a dog). She has two female cats – Kitty and Roni, and two tomcats – Blacky and Shaggy, but she also feeds her neighbors’ cats when they come for a visit. I just can’t say no to them. Follow her on FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM
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