Bearded dragon dying.

J.huff23

Arachnoking
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A friend of mine has had a young bearded dragon for about a month or so. He has been feeding it moslty crickets and occasionally meal worms. He said that it ate fine last night, but he was holding it today and his (the bearded dragons) back legs are not moving and his tail is shaking. I got to see him today and the lizard is not moving at all. His back legs are stuck in the same positing and he only moves his front legs occasionally.

Im not sure whats wrong because I know very little about bearded dragons.

If anybody could it help it would be appreciated.
 

Caramell

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Most of the time, when bearded dragons have paralyzed legs, that means they are impacted. Mealworms are not something to feed a beardie; the chitin is nearly indigestable.
Is he using any calcium or vitamin supplements? Is he feeding the beardie any veggies? Also, is there a basking spot of 100 degrees F or higher? Temperature can also be a cause of paralysis in the legs.
For now, I would refrain from feeding him any more mealworms,not even when the blockage passes. I would also soak the beardie in warm water and massage the bottom of his belly a little bit to help him pass the impaction.

Edit: Here's a site that may help: beardeddragon.org
 
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J.huff23

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He has a heat lamp with a zoo...(something or other) bulb placed over a basking area. He also puts veggies in with him. I will tell him to try the warm bath.
 

Caramell

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Okay good. Does he know what kind of UVA/UVB lamps he is using, if any?
 

stevetastic

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This is somewhat common in little beardies. It happens a lot when you feed them a prey item that is too large. The rule of thumb is to not feed them anything larger than the area between there eyes.
 

bliss

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I agree with everything that is said here.

Make sure that the dragon is given a good UVB bulb (10.0 preferably), plenty of calcium supplement at every second feeding, and is given a good multivitamin supplement at least once a week. A very hot bath would help.

This is also what happens sometimes when a dragon is given enough calcium (or isn't absorping the calcium), and is the precursor to MBD (metabolic bone disorder). Also be sure that the calcium supplement has D3. Unless the dragon is raised outdoors in natural sunlight, d3 in the supplement is a must.
 

Jmugleston

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Paralysis can be caused by a number of things. Though impaction is one of them, another common cause is from improper diet resulting in a deficiency. If the lizard is pooping regularly, you can rule out impaction for the most part. Their are other husbandry issues that can cause this result. How warm is the basking spot? The ambient temperature? What level is the humidity set at? What is being fed other than the crickets and mealworms? What supplements are being used if any? Are there any other dragons in the cage? What substrate is in the cage? The symptom mentioned is caused by a number of factors, so there may be another issue at play. Honestly the shaking tail sounds more like a calcium issue, but more data would be needed before I could be certain.

As a side note, mealworms are fine for lizards. I've used them for years on species including geckos, agamids, chameleons, and monitors. If they are the proper size and the lizard is warm enough, they'll be fine.
 

J.huff23

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I agree with everything that is said here.

Make sure that the dragon is given a good UVB bulb (10.0 preferably), plenty of calcium supplement at every second feeding, and is given a good multivitamin supplement at least once a week. A very hot bath would help.

This is also what happens sometimes when a dragon is given enough calcium (or isn't absorping the calcium), and is the precursor to MBD (metabolic bone disorder). Also be sure that the calcium supplement has D3. Unless the dragon is raised outdoors in natural sunlight, d3 in the supplement is a must.
I know that he uses some kind of white calcium poweder to dust the crickets with before feeding.
 

J.huff23

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Paralysis can be caused by a number of things. Though impaction is one of them, another common cause is from improper diet resulting in a deficiency. If the lizard is pooping regularly, you can rule out impaction for the most part. Their are other husbandry issues that can cause this result. How warm is the basking spot? The ambient temperature? What level is the humidity set at? What is being fed other than the crickets and mealworms? What supplements are being used if any? Are there any other dragons in the cage? What substrate is in the cage? The symptom mentioned is caused by a number of factors, so there may be another issue at play. Honestly the shaking tail sounds more like a calcium issue, but more data would be needed before I could be certain.

As a side note, mealworms are fine for lizards. I've used them for years on species including geckos, agamids, chameleons, and monitors. If they are the proper size and the lizard is warm enough, they'll be fine.
Im not sure on the temps and humidity, but its the only one in the enclosure. The substrate is some type of sand.

I should clarrify though, they were super worms, not meal worms. They were definitly way too big for the lizard.
 

bliss

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Im not sure on the temps and humidity, but its the only one in the enclosure. The substrate is some type of sand.

I should clarrify though, they were super worms, not meal worms. They were definitly way too big for the lizard.

Well, between the sand and the over-sized food, I'd say one of those is the problem... well,that would be my guess anyway.

I personally wouldn't recommend sand for any dragon under 12" in length, and if I did use sand, I would use the fine sifted playsand, never the Calci-sand... it's made of calcium carbonate if i'm not mistaken, and that stuff turns hard as rock when wet. But I avoid sand altogether, only newspaper and paper-towels for me. Sand is a very debatable subject when it comes to dragons..
 

ZephAmp

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This happened to my first beardie! I was terrified!
I called the breeder up since I'd checked him for impaction and he had no signs of it (raised spine bump, etc)
She said to get him in sunlight IMMEDIATELY. I didn't have a UVB bulb and since baby beardies grow so much daily his poor little bones weren't getting enough calcium. Literally minutes after I put him outside in the sun (just evening sunlight!) he was back to normal.
 

NevularScorpion

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I think the dragon is suffering from either dehydration or MBD. Make sure she is well dehydrated and all its food should be dusted with calcium. If the dragon is kept in the sand their might be a high chance that it is impacted.
 

pouchedrat

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well dehydrated? lol

Anyway yeah.. soak the dragon in water, and spray some water on the dragon with a water bottle and see if it laps at it. I know our little beardie refuses water from a water bowl, but while he's soaking he'll take a good long drink.

sand's also thought to cause impaction in the babies like was already mentioned.
 

tjmi2000

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This happened to my first beardie! I was terrified!
I called the breeder up since I'd checked him for impaction and he had no signs of it (raised spine bump, etc)
She said to get him in sunlight IMMEDIATELY. I didn't have a UVB bulb and since baby beardies grow so much daily his poor little bones weren't getting enough calcium. Literally minutes after I put him outside in the sun (just evening sunlight!) he was back to normal.

The first thing I thought was MBD as well. These guys grow at a phenomenal rate and even with supplementation, without exposure to high levels of the proper UV lighting they will exhibit these leg tremors and paralysis. An hour or so of natural sunlight a day should put things back in order. Just make sure it is protected from predators and escape while outside.
 

NevularScorpion

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well dehydrated? lol

Anyway yeah.. soak the dragon in water, and spray some water on the dragon with a water bottle and see if it laps at it. I know our little beardie refuses water from a water bowl, but while he's soaking he'll take a good long drink.

sand's also thought to cause impaction in the babies like was already mentioned.
i said make sure she is well dehydrated, unless my grammar is wrong please correct me lol
 
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