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We have 2 bearded dragons! One is doing great the other is…

We have 2 bearded...

We have 2 bearded dragons! One is doing great the other is not doing well at all. The one that is doing great is bigger than the one that is sick! It won’t eat much and seems like she can’t move very well! The smaller ones front elbows are swollen and she keep getting bloated!

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. Could be a lot of things that cause lethargy. The Expert will know how to help the Dragon. What is the Dragon's name and age?

Baby girl, we think she’s probably 2 months old.

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Baby?

Her tail is dark, crooked and looks brittle!

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Answered in 11 minutes by:
1/17/2018
Joan
Joan, Veterinary Technician
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 19,835
Experience: 35+ years experience as veterinary tech and 40+ years experience doing reptile rescues.
Verified

Hello,

My name is ***** ***** I have been a Vet tech for 35+ years and Have worked with Dragons for over 40 years.

Are the two Dragons housed together?

Can you tell me about tank set up?

Substrate?

UVB light, linear tube or compact coil, strength, age and brand?

Basking light?

Diet Veggies/Prey?

Supplements?

Temps in basking area, ambient temp and cool side?

Joan

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
Both are together! 40gal tank Zoo med tank! Substrate carpet from petsmart! Light is a tube 10.0 UVB ALSO ZOOMED! Basking light yes! Diet-crickets and veggie-Cabbage and kale some strawberry! Supplement repti calcium zoomed reptivite! 80* on the cool side 97-100 on the warm side! Mid range temp about 85*
Customer reply replied 7 months ago
Temps are checked with a digital thermometer!
Customer reply replied 7 months ago
We’ve only had them since November 24 of 2017

Thank you! It seems you were given poor information. Two Dragons should never be housed together. They are territorial and two male will fight, we see toe and tail nips as we as well as other issues.

THe UVB is fine as is the basking light. The Veggies you are feeding are no good. Cabbage is gassy and can cause the bloating and the Kale can bind calcium.

The swelling in the elbows can be one of two issues in the small Dragon. It can be gout which means there is a problem with Uric acid building in the body, ot it can be a sign of Metabolic Bone Disease.

The Dragons shouold be getting calcium 5 days a week and 2 days of the Vitamin.

The temps are also a bit off. The basking area should be 105-11, ambient temp should be 90's and cool side mid 80's

The first thing to help the small dragon is to separate him from the other one. He will need to also be checked by a Herp Vet for the swwlling and the bloating.

Dragon are stoic and are prey animals and hide illness. He is showing several serious and potential deadly issues that need to be addressed. He needs as little stress as possible and this means to separate him from a larger more dominant Dragon that can seriously injure him.

I can locate some Herp Vets for you with a State.

In the interim, lats give the smaller Dragon a nice warm saok in a 50/50 Pedialyte and warm water soak for 20 mins. This will help him pass some stool. and also hydrate him.

If he is not eating you can dry some chicken baby food with a pinch of calcium and drop on the snout and allow him to lick it off.

I am going to give you a nutrition sheet to help get the veggies corrected:

http://www.beautifuldragons.com/Nutrition.html

Please hit reply to discuss this information and your concerns/

Joan

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
We have pedialite but it’s flavored! Is that ok? Is it expensive to take her to a vet?

The Flavor is not a problem. Herp Vets differ in prices from state and area. Here where I am a Visit is 65-75 to walk in for an Exam.

Joan

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The Dry Brittle tail is most likely from a tail nip causing dry gangrene or tail rot. You should be able to rely on Pet shops for accurate information, but unfortunately they are more interested in makeing a sale than the animal getting proper care.

Joan

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
What can I do about the tail

After the soak you can try a little Neosporin on the tail. Again the Herp Vet will address that at the visit. I am very concerned about the little Dragon and what you have described going on.

If you would like I will give you my personal care sheet. It is widely seen online.

Joan

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
What about the temp? How do I raise this!

As far as temps, you can get a higher watt basking bulb or a Mercury Vapor bulb which gives UVB as well as Warmth.

Bearded Dragon Care Sheet

  • Bearded dragons should be housed alone.
  • Can live aslong as 10-12 years if well cared for properly.
  • Bearded dragons have a very good temperament as long as they are cared for and handled.
  • When you bring your baby home, it may be quite stressful to him/her to get use to new home. May not eat well the first 2-3 days. They may not need to be handled the first 2-3 days if skittish and nervous.
  • Never use sand or any other type of loose substrate: Loose substrates can cause impaction (not being able to go Poop) in all ages of bearded dragons- they lick their environment to explore .It is difficult to keep germ free and clean. Ceramic tile, newspaper, non adhesive shelf liner and reptile carpet is what is most recommended. Use paper towels for the little one and as they get bigger you can change to something else.
  • Be sure you keep your beardies home as clean as you can. Clean up by spot cleaning when needed. Clean & sanitize entire tank every 10-14 days. A good cleaning solution is a 20% bleach solution. If you choose to use wood climbing branches etc, these should be soaked in the bleach solution and rinsed well. Then bake in 250 degree oven for 30 minutes.
  • Need a climbing accessory: to bask and to warm up under basking heat light and lower branches or platforms to come down and cool off.
  • A hide of some sort like a cave.
  • A food dish and water dish.
  • Plastic spray bottle
  • Can use artificial plants when they get older- 3 months or so.
  • Digital thermostat and/or temp gun
  • Tank size: Minimal size tank for this age is 20 gallon long
  • Minimal size for older beardie: 4 months of age: 40 gallon breeder is the minimal tank size for older dragon. Can divide a 40 gallon breeder for a smaller dragon. Must have two lights for your beardie.

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.

  • Lights should be on for 12-14 hours each day. Follow the seasons and light timers are a great luxury if you can get them. 6 dollars at Lowe's. No lights or warmth needed at night unless your temperatures get below 62 degrees. If they do, there are ceramic heat emitters that put out no light, only heat. Use these at night if temperatures fall below 62 degrees.
  • Temperatures have to be kept at the following ranges during the day:

Basking area 105*-110*F

Wanm side mid 90's

Cool side: 85*-87*F

Measure temperatures with a digital probe type thermometer or a temp gun-these are most accurate. Stick on thermometers unreliable.

  • Feeding a Beardie: Beardies eat live prey consisting of crickets, roaches and/or silkworms. Never feed any size of mice to your beardie. Never feed meal worms. They also must be given greens/veggies everyday. The younger they are the more live prey they should have. As they grow older the live prey decreases and the veggies/greens should be the major part of diet. Never feed anything bigger, than the space between your beardie's eyes. This includes both live prey and pieces of veggies/greens,
  • A chopper or food processor is a huge help when your beardie is small. Always offer greens and veggies: collard greens, turnip greens, mustard greens, cabbage, red cabbage, fresh green beans, yellow summer squash, butternut squash, sweet potato, cactus pad. Apricots, strawberries, apples, blueberries, raspberries, cantaloupe- fruits are treats only.
  • What is live prey? The easiest and less expensive live prey is crickets when you have a young or first beardie. The other live preys you can feed are silkworms, and special types of roaches. You can learn to raise your own live prey. Treats can be wax worms, super worms, and tomato/Goliath worms. You may find that ordering live prey from the internet is the way to go..... Never leave live prey or greens/veggies in tank overnight. . Crickets can bite your beardie when sleeping.
  • Babies should get 80% live prey, and 20 % greens/veggies. But since the greens/veggies are a must when they are older, get them eating their greens/veggies very early. Give greens/veggies in small pieces everyday. You should eventually start decreasing your older dragon's protein intake when they are about a year to 15 months old. Their protein intake decreases to 20 % live prey and 80% veggies/greens.
  • A baby eat 50-75 crix a day depending on the size of the crickets. Never feed crix or veggies bigger than the space between your beardie's eyes. Use this guide when buying crix or chopping your greens/veggies.
  • You must provide calcium dust without D3 and multivitamin dust for your beardie. You should dust the live prey with calcium one time a day, and vitamins 3 times a week. Just collect your live prey into baggie and add enough calcium and vitamin to dust them. Then pour a few at a time into your tank. Some people feed their beardie in a separate tank so that no crickets can hide. Or some take out "furniture" from tank and feed this way. As they get older, 4-5 months or so dust live prey with calcium 3 times a week.
  • Feed the veggies/ greens 1st thing in morning after lights on for one hour at least. Then after 2-3 hours offer crix. Then freshen green/veggies. Then give more crix. Make sure after last crix feeding there is at least 1-2 hours of lights so that they can digest their food before night time.

*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.

Fruits and Vegetables

http://www.beautifuldragons.com/Nutrition.html

Walnut shell Graphic: http://mrskingsbioweb.com/beardeddragngrossanatomy.htm

Sexing bearded Dragons: http://repticzone.com/articles/sexingbeardeddragons.html

Metabolic Bone Disease: http://exoticpets.about.com/cs/reptilesgeneral/a/metabolicbd.htm

If I have addressed your concerns, please take a moment to rate my service 5 Stars. If you have questions, please hit reply.

Joan

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Did you have any further questions I can assist you with? I am here to help.

Joan

Joan
Joan, Veterinary Technician
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 19,835
Experience: 35+ years experience as veterinary tech and 40+ years experience doing reptile rescues.
Verified
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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
No thank you!
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