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My bearded dragon won't eat.
05-24-2012, 05:53 AM,
#1
NeBrown Offline
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Sad  My bearded dragon won't eat.
I got my beardie about a week ago and since then he only at 1 cricket and 1 meal worm. Today I am starting to see skin fold on his back and I am getting worried. He won't eat anything i put in his enclosure. His Basking side is 105-110F and his cool side is about 88ish. I have a UVB lamp and he can get within 6-2 inch from his basking lamp.
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05-24-2012, 06:29 AM, (This post was last modified: 05-24-2012, 07:26 AM by Fishbone.)
#2
Fishbone Offline
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RE: My bearded dragon won't eat.
O.k. What type of UVB light are you using? And how is it positioned in/on the enclosure? Is it a tank/aquarium?

How are you measuring the basking temperature? He can get between 2" - 6" of the basking light? The best way to set up the basking area is to set up a platform of some type (a branch, log, platform from the pet store, rock, ledge, etc...) underneath the light at what ever height necessary so it is 105 - 110 F in the actual spot right under the basking lamp.

How big is the enclosure?

Also, from the question you had on Y!answers, are you using a red light for his basking light? That doesn't seem to work for bearded dragons, "psychologically". You want a bright white light for the basking area. You can buy a fancy one from a pet shop. I normally use GE reveal halogen floodlight bulbs I get at home depot. It really doesn't make a difference. The wattage, and how warm they make the basking area does. They seem to enjoy sitting in the bright, warm area. It promotes a natural behavior with them.

Also from that question, he sounds like he may be dehydrated, the "folds", or somewhat wrinkly skin. You should give him a bath at least every other day, just deep enough to come up to his shoulders, baby bath warm, 85 - 88 degrees F. Let him sit in there for 5 - 10 minutes, use something he can't get out of if he tries.

And once past all of the enclosure questions, how old is he? And where/who did you get him from? Do you know what he was being fed?

If he is very young, less than 6 weeks, especially if he was shipped, they can be very picky eaters. I would avoid the mealworms altogether. Even if he does eat them, the risk of impaction is far to great with a baby to make them worth it.

If he is very young, and the breeder/seller was feeding him Phoenix worms, which isn't uncommon for some better breeders, or something else, he may not have seen or eaten much in the way of crickets.
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05-24-2012, 07:37 AM,
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NeBrown Offline
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RE: My bearded dragon won't eat.
I am using a 5.0 Reptisun from Zoomed, It is in a small hood above his cool area just till he gets a bigger terrarium then i will get a full sized 10.0 one. On his basking side i have a stick on strip thermometer from Zoomed. What I meant by 2" - 6" is that his log/platform is that close depending where he lays to the basking light. His current enclosure is a 20 long terrarium, no haha I have a combo clamp lamp that has spots for 2 bulbs, it has his basking and inferred bulbs. I haven't given him a bath yet(I was told to have little to no contact with him the first week :/ ) I really don't know his age too well as i got him from my work(PetSmart) and the breeding company we go through is not the best and gave us pretty small guys in my opinion. He gets fed crickets at my work and has pellets in their enclosure.
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05-24-2012, 08:11 AM,
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Fishbone Offline
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RE: My bearded dragon won't eat.
Your using a reptisun 5.0 compact fluorescent coil? (Looks like the "energy saver" type bulbs?) Those can be difficult in a small tank. You want to try to align that as close with the basking light as possible, so when he sits in the basking area he is getting UVB as well. That could affect his behavior allot. That's why they sell those overpriced "dual domes" for putting both bulbs in. It is very important that they get UVB while basking. I would recommend when you upgrade to get a reptisun 10.0 fluorescent tube, the whole length of the tank, and set it on top.

You also are going to want to get a better thermometer. You want to know the actual temp of the basking platform, the spot right underneath the lamp. Either a digital thermometer with a probe, so you can set the probe there, (or anywhere else to check), or better yet, one of the "tempguns", the infrared thermometers. The little one you guys sell works well. Then you can check the temp anywhere instantly. If that temp is off it can be a little difficult too. Too hot and they can't bask properly.

The not handling for a week rule is a good general rule. But certain things do trump that. Baby beardies can dehydrate easily, and don't really have the natural inclination to "drink" from a dish. The bath is a good idea. Sometimes they will drink then, and they can actually absorb some moisture through their cloaca. You can also spray him down, but do it early in the day, and preferably underneath the basking area, so the tank has time to dry out completely. Excess moisture and humidity is bad. They will lick the water off of the glass, or cage furnishings sometimes, the way the might lick up morning dew.

Crickets are the best, inexspensive feeding option. Make sure they are smaller than the space between his eyes.

Get the bulbs adjusted so the UVB and the heat lamp are pointed in the same place. And get him in a bath, baby bath warm. Those sound like the biggest two problems there.

And post a picture of the little guy. Big Grin
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05-24-2012, 10:08 AM, (This post was last modified: 05-24-2012, 10:29 AM by NeBrown.)
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NeBrown Offline
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RE: My bearded dragon won't eat.
Yeah the coil one Tongue I just did that and he kinda perked up haha thanks Tongue Yeah I was thinking of picking up the digital probe one I sell at work I just hope it is still there(it was on clearance :O) I also just gave him a bath and he loved it Smile He used to jump away from me but now it seems he has warmed up to me a bit to where i can hold him. Thanks again! you were/are excellent help! You are also one of the first people to not yell at me for working at PetSmart XD I will use the knowledge i gained here to better my work place thanks!

[Image: Reptar.jpg]


This is my beardie Reptar Smile
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05-24-2012, 10:50 AM,
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Fishbone Offline
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RE: My bearded dragon won't eat.
Oh, he is a tiny little thing! Big Grin

I won't yell at you for working at petsmart. I am assuming you are young, and need a job. Most of us need jobs unfortunately...Rolleyes If you were an executive of that company, I would probably have enough things to say that would get me banned off of this board...

However you have to work it out, get the uvb and the basking light to point at the same area, he needs to get the uvb while basking. And get a thermometer. At that age, you want the actual surface he sits on underneath the basking light between 105F & 110F. You said you have a branch or something underneath it? If it is too hot or cold, you can raise or lower it. If you really need to you can change out the bulb for a lower wattage. I would bathe him again tomorrow, then every other day after that.

I'd still leave him be as much as possible, until he is eating regularly. Keep us updated Big Grin
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05-24-2012, 10:57 AM,
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Thor Offline
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RE: My bearded dragon won't eat.
Beautiful bearded dragon you have there. Another different colored little lizard.

Nobody is going to yell at the little guys who just need a job at petsmart. :p You don't set store policy. Somehow all chain stores find it is better for them to not spread the most accurate information on pets.
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05-28-2012, 10:33 AM,
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NeBrown Offline
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RE: My bearded dragon won't eat.
Well I had to take that little guy back to my store :/ he still wanted nothing to do with food. He was getting pretty skinny too Sad. I did however take home the bigger guy we had and he has already eaten me dry lol I will have to pick up a lot of crickets tomorrow because he is an eater. Hope they can get the other guy back to full health, was pretty down when i took him back to my store and she said he was in pretty bad shape. Plus side though this new guy looks like he will do just fine and that makes me happy. Smile
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05-28-2012, 11:57 AM,
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Fishbone Offline
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RE: My bearded dragon won't eat.
Well, that's sad. It may be best for you. It can be hard to get the little ones that have been stressed to get comfortable and eating properly. It can take time, dedication, and then more time. How big is the little guy? Post some pics Big Grin
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