Hello and Welcome to Justanswer,Can you tell me about the set up?Diet prey/veggies?
Temps and how measured?
UVB light? Tube or coil? How old is the bulb and strength?
Do you have a basking light?
The basking area should have 110*-115*F and the cool side of the tank in the 85* range. This is important for digestion and passing of stool. If the temps are not correct, this can also cause a problem.
You need to have 2 lights, a day time basking bulb as well as a UVB. I recommend a Reptisun 10.0 and UVB lights do not put out heat. The UVB bulb is needed to stop Metabolic Bone Disease. The UVB needs to be changed every 6 months.
The UVB should be a tube type. You do not have a UVB bulb which is a major problem leaving the Dragon open for Metabolic Bone Diease. The UVB needs to bereplaced every 6 months and needs to work with an oral calcium supplement fed on the Veggies and prey. You are not using a caclium supplement. You need to update the UVB light and start using a Calcium supplement 5 days a week as well as the Vitamin 2 days a week.
Coil UVB bulbs can injure the eyes.
Compact UVB problems: http://www.uvguide.co.uk/phototherapyphosphor-info.htm
The UVB bulb should not have any plastic between it and the Dragon, it needs to run the length of the tank and be no more than 12" from the Dragon. Both lights should run daily for 12-14 hours a day.
Limit the Romain lettuce, since Lettuce does not have nutritional value. You should be feeding Collard greens, mustard greens, dandelion greens, escarole and curly endives. Butternut squash and various berries are great for a treat.
The Veggies should be put in fresh daily, and done about an hour after lights on. The Dragon needs 80% veggies daily and 20% live prey over a year of age.
The live prey should include crickets, silk worms, roaches, goliath worms and phoenix worms.The canned prey looses the nutritional value and is high in chitin which is the outer shells and can cause a blockage.
Super worms and wax worms are like giving the Dragon candy. All veggies and prey should be dusted with calcium daily 5 days a week and vitamins 2 days a week.
The Dragon may be having some digestive issues due to diet and the sand substrate. For now we need to give him a soak in 50/50 warm water and plain Pedialyte to prevent dehydration. Please soak at least 30 mins. I do suggest a Herp vet visit to help rule out a parasite issue. I can locate a Herp Vet for you with State.
I am also giving you my care sheet to help with the husbandry.
Bearded Dragon Care Sheet
1. 0-3 months- baby 2. 3-12 months-juvenile 3. 12-18 months- sub adult 4. 18 months + -adult
1. A UVB light source-best is 10.0 Reptisun that runs the length of your tank. Your dragon must have this light to metabolize calcium. If not he will get metabolic bone disease, a serious condition. You can also take your beardie outside to bask in the sun for 15 minutes each day if your temps are 80 degrees or above outside. You can purchase cages or reptariums from your pet store. Never leave a beardie outside unattended. 2. A basking type light that puts out heat and warmth above basking spot. Your beardie must have warmth to digest food & thrive.
Babies: Warm basking log: 105-125 degrees F Cool side: 85-90 Adults: Warm basking spot: 110-115 Cool side: 80-85 Measure temperatures with a digital probe type thermometer or a temp gun-these are most accurate. Stick on thermometers unreliable.
*Beardies over the age of one year old during the winter months will go into a Brumation like most Reptiles and Herps. It is a form of Hibernation that is governed by the weather and time of year. The lights should be on a shorter period at this time. Fresh greens should be available during this period. Do not feed live prey during Brumation.
Water: Mist your little one with the spray bottle 3-4 times a day. You can also offer a small dish of water in your enclosure but be sure your dragon is not too small to drown in it. It is recommended that when your beardie is 2 months old you can bathe your baby in a small plastic container with warm water- not hot. It will help them to stay hydrated. As they get older you can move up to the bathroom sink and then to the bathtub. Very important for bath enclosure to be thoroughly cleaned and rinsed prior to bath time. Clean between dragons too if bathing more than one.
If you have any further questions feel free to ask. I like to start people off with proper husbandry and then see if I can further assist.
Walnut shell Graphic: http://mrskingsbioweb.com/beardeddragngrossanatomy.htm
sexing bearded Dragons: http://repticzone.com/articles/sexingbeardeddragons.html
Pet shops are not Reptile Experts and give very poor information at best. I explain about loose substrates because it is usually suggested and I did not mean to put in about the sand because you use cage carpet, but I always let people know what can cause issues. The Reptivite is a vitamin with a little calcium, but the Dragon needs a Plain calcium supplement as well as a Vitamin. A Good CA:P ratio is very important. As far as being black, this is mating season and we start seeing some strange dominant behaviors during this time of year and I believe that may be part of this situation. As far as the open mouth, if not constant that is called gaping, and is a way to thermoregulate the body temperature.
If you have any questions, please hit reply and I will be happy to answer. I usually have more than one question I am working on and I do appologize about outting in about the sand, but I am very passionate about Dragons and their care. Many of the rescues I get come from owners who have gotten poor info from Pet Shops. joan
I just want you to know Pet shops sell these wonderful creatures as disposable pets and their money comes from the products that they sell. I recently lost two Rescue Dragons at 14 and 15 years old. When I had gotten them they were a result of poor advice. Please feel free to ask for me any time you need help. Joan