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Why Is My Bearded Dragon Shaking?

Is your pet bearded dragon shaking or twitching? At first glance, it may not seem like a significant concern, though if you notice your bearded dragon shaking frequently and consistently, it can be a symptom of a severe deficiency or disease. If you’re unaware of any medical conditions and you’re attentive to your bearded dragon, it may be concerning if you notice them shaking continuously for days. Here’s what you need to know.


Reasons Why Your Bearded Dragon is Shaking


If you notice consistent shaking in your exotic pet, this could signify a nutrient deficiency or a medical condition that needs immediate attention. There are a few common reasons and remedies to consider when you notice changes to your pet bearded dragon.


Vitamin D or Calcium Deficiency


One of the reasons your bearded dragon may be shaking is due to a calcium or vitamin D deficiency. While your bearded dragon needs a quality supplement for its overall health and development, calcium is essential to ensuring that they grow healthy, strong bones. When they don’t get enough calcium and vitamin D3, their bones may become deformed or weak due to metabolic bone disease.


Fortunately, you can quickly resolve this issue with a calcium powder mixed into the water bowl. You can also provide this mineral supplement by dusting your bearded dragon’s feeder insects. The food bearded dragons consume in the wild has a high calcium level, which gives them the solid bones and development they need for long-term growth and health.


If you use substrate, such as soil or sand, to give your bearded dragon minerals, they will likely not get enough calcium to develop properly. For this reason, it’s crucial for a bearded dragon owner to invest in a quality calcium supplement from a reputable manufacturer to ensure your bearded dragon receives the best source of minerals for its growth and development.


Vitamin B Deficiency


In some cases, vitamin B deficiency can lead to health problems and cause your bearded dragon to shake or shiver continuously. A lack of this vitamin is a common reason for this, which may be due to using a low-quality supplement or not providing sufficient vitamins for your bearded dragon, so it doesn’t get what it needs for proper growth and development.


Too Much Supplement and the Risk of Poisoning


If you’re feeding your bearded dragon too many supplements, there is a risk of poisoning them, which can impact their health and cause illness. It’s best to provide a multivitamin supplement once weekly, though this may vary depending on the size, age, and weight of your bearded dragon. Your veterinarian can provide suggestions on quality supplements, including the recommended dosage and frequency.


How to Prevent Your Bearded Dragon from Vitamin and Mineral Deficiencies


As a reptile owner, there are several measures you can take to ensure your bearded dragon receives the balanced diet they require to flourish and grow into a healthy adult with solid bones and muscles.


Dark Leafy Greens


Raw, leafy vegetables, including spinach, kale, and other greens, offer a tremendous amount of nutrients that support your bearded dragon’s development. While live insects and supplements offer an excellent source of nutrients to prevent deficiencies, it’s a good idea to include greens in your bearded dragon’s diet from an early age.


Unless you start feeding your bearded dragon raw spinach, lettuce, and other greens from a young age, they may refuse to consume vegetables once they grow older. This issue arises when you constantly feed your bearded dragons incorrectly, typically from using low-quality supplements or food.


Live Insects


One of the top sources of nutrients for your bearded dragon is live insects. When you feed live insects with healthy food, you’re gut loading your bearded dragon’s food by boosting the nutrient level in what they eat. Insects carry all the vitamins your bearded dragon requires for ultimate health and bone development.


Gut loading, or feeding the insects fresh fruit and vegetables, is a great way to increase the nutrient value. The insects hold these vitamins and minerals and are then fed to your bearded dragon. Live insects without adequate nutrients will not transfer sufficient value to your pets, making gut loading an essential part of a balanced, nutrient-rich diet.


Other Issues that Cause Shaking


If your bearded dragon is consuming a high-nutrient diet as prescribed by your veterinarian, without any deficiencies, there may be another reason that causes them to shake or shiver, like parasites or a disease that requires medical attention. If you suspect your bearded dragon is suffering from a severe condition, it’s essential to bring them to the veterinarian quickly. Early treatment is key to improving their health quickly.


A bobbing head may appear to be a shaking motion, though if your bearded dragon is making controlled, rhythmic motions, this is normal and doesn’t indicate any issues with mineral deficiencies or illness.


Summary


It’s always important to observe your bearded dragon’s behavior and motion to ensure they develop healthy, strong bones and enjoy good health. Fortunately, catching deficiencies or a possible illness early gives your bearded dragon the best chance at recovering quickly, so they can grow into healthy adults. Ideally, it’s best to visit your veterinarian if you notice any unusual or concerning symptoms, as this will provide your bearded dragon with the best chance of developing and living a long, healthy life.

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