Bearded dragons, or sometimes shortened as beardies, are omnivores. They eat wide arrays of foods, such as small animals, plants, vegetables, and fruits. Because of this eating habit, many people think that beardies can eat all the foods eaten by humans, such as onions. As a result, many of them try to add onions in the reptiles’ diet. However, can bearded dragons eat onions?
Understanding More about Onions
When it comes to cooking, the onion is one of the most essential ingredients in most recipes. Many people around the world use this vegetable to make their cooking more delicious. Therefore, it is no wonder that you can easily find onions sold and cultivated in different countries.
The onion or Allium cepa is closely related to shallots, garlic, and leeks. This bulbous vegetable is available in several varieties that produce different colored onions. They are white onions, red onions, and yellow onions. Those bulbs secrete pungent smell when they are chopped. In addition, the chemicals in these bulbs cause watery eyes when you cut them.
These bulbous vegetables are acidic. Based on the acidity test, the average onion has a pH level of 5.5. On the other hand, onions have good nutritional value for humans. In 100 g of onions, there are:
- Carbohydrate: 9.34 g
- Protein: 1.1 g
- Fat: 0.1 g
- Vitamin C: 7.4 mg
- Vitamin B6: 0.12 mg
- Calcium: 23 mg
- Phosphorus: 29 mg
Onions in Bearded Dragons Diet
According to the onion uses and nutritional value above, these bulbous vegetables are good for humans. But, can bearded dragons eat onions? Many bearded dragon experts do not recommend this vegetable for beardies. There are several reasons why you must not feed onions to your beardies.
- Onions are highly acidic
In general, bearded dragons have a sensitive stomach. They must be warm enough in order to be able to digest their foods. But, these lizards cannot produce body heat so that they must get enough sun or UV light exposure to be warm.
If your beardies eat acidic foods, they will likely suffer from a digestive problem or difficulty in digesting foods. This problem can lead to more serious problems, especially if the beardies won’t eat any foods later on. Therefore, you must not give onions to them.
- Onions have a higher amount of phosphorus than calcium
The bulb onions contain 29 mg of phosphorus compared to 23 mg of calcium. This ratio is bad for bearded dragons. Phosphorus will prevent the beardies’ bodies to absorb calcium, especially if its amount is higher than the calcium.
Meanwhile, bearded dragons require lots of calcium to stay healthy. Getting enough calcium will prevent them to suffer from metabolic bone disease. As a result, you must not add onions in the list of your bearded dragon’s food.
- Onions do not have enough nutrients needed by bearded dragons
Your beardies need calcium, vitamin D3, and A, iron, protein, and fat. However, onions do not offer all those nutrients to your bearded dragons. It is better for you to choose other foods for them.
In short, “can bearded dragons eat onions?” is no. Feeding onions to your beardies will cause some health problems. These problems can make them feel stressed out or lose their appetite. Therefore, beardies cannot eat onions.