Can bearded dragons eat Thyme and Basil? Find out now

Time to read 7 minutes

Thyme is a low-growing, aromatic plant belonging to the mint family. Its small leaves are used as a culinary herb and produce medicinal oil all around the world. Many pets love herbs and vegetables in their diets. We’ll look at two questions: can bearded dragons eat thyme? secondly, can bearded dragons eat basil?

Can bearded dragons eat Thyme

Let’s get to it.

can bearded dragons eat thyme or not?

Yes, thyme is delicious to them. They are very fond of vegetables, but they should only make up about 30% of their total diet when they are young, and up to 70% when they are older. So it should be fed to them as part of a balanced diet. Remember to wash and rinse any thyme you give them and don’t give them too much as too much may upset their stomachs. However, they eat as much thyme as you give them.

Can bearded dragons eat dried thyme?

Bearded dragons can safely eat dried thyme too, however, since is known that dried herbs contain a higher amount of nutrients when compared to fresh ones, we recommend only feeding fresh herbs to your pet beardie. For reference, we’ll add the nutrient data sheet for dried thyme.

Pay attention to the Calcium content, then the phosphorus content. Remember, the rule of thumb of calcium/phosphorus is recommended to be 1:1 or 2:1. The calcium/phosphorus ratio of dried thyme according to the USDA nutrient datasheet will be at a whopping 9.5:1.

NameAmountUnit
Water7.79g
Energy276kcal
Energy1160kJ
Protein9.11g
Total lipid (fat)7.43g
Ash11.7g
Carbohydrate, by difference63.9g
Fiber, total dietary37g
Sugars, total including NLEA1.71g
Calcium, Ca1890mg
Iron, Fe124mg
Magnesium, Mg220mg
Phosphorus, P201mg
Potassium, K814mg
Sodium, Na55mg
Zinc, Zn6.18mg
Copper, Cu0.86mg
Manganese, Mn7.87mg
Selenium, Se4.6µg
Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid50mg
Thiamin0.513mg
Riboflavin0.399mg
Niacin4.94mg
Vitamin B-60.55mg
Folate, total274µg
Folate, food274µg
Folate, DFE274µg
Choline, total43.6mg
Vitamin A, RAE190µg
Carotene, beta2260µg
Source: USDA

Can bearded dragons eat thyme- Is it safe?

Thyme is considered one of the safer choices among bearded dragon herbs. This aromatic herb is rich in vitamin C and therefore keeps bearded dragons’ immunity high.

In addition, it is a rich source of vitamin A, which protects vision. Bearded dragons need vitamins for their overall health.

If you count the other benefits that thyme provides, there are many. It is a rich source of minerals such as copper, iron, and manganese. All of these minerals help promote the health of various organs and body parts of the bearded dragon.

In addition to this, thyme also contains fiber, which does not help bearded dragons much. But when it comes to other nutrients, thyme seems to be a rather beneficial herb for bearded dragons. This can be part of a bearded dragon’s meals three times a week.

Its common species include lemon, orange, lime, parsley, wild, hairy, creeping, and English (summer, winter, or French) thyme.

The leaves, including the flowers of the thyme plant, are safe for beardies. I see no problem for occasional hospitality as long as you are 100% sure it has not been exposed to pesticides.

And now for the second part of the question, can bearded dragons eat basil?

Can bearded dragons eat basil?

To determine if bearded dragons can safely consume basil leaves without any adverse effects, we first need to know their protein, calcium, phosphorus, sugar, water, fiber, vitamins, and acid content. Ideally, foods suitable for bearded dragons should have a calcium to phosphorus ratio of 1:1 or 2:1.

USDA nutritional data shows that 100 grams of basil contain the following nutrients – We are only including the most important nutrients according to our research.

NameAmountUnit
Water92.1g
Energy23kcal
Energy94kJ
Protein3.15g
Total lipid (fat)0.64g
Ash1.49g
Carbohydrate, by the difference2.65g
Fiber, total dietary1.6g
Sugars, total including NLEA0.3g
Glucose0.02g
Fructose0.02g
Galactose0.27g
Calcium, Ca177mg
Iron, Fe3.17mg
Magnesium, Mg64mg
Phosphorus, P56mg
Potassium, K295mg
Sodium, Na4mg
Zinc, Zn0.81mg
Copper, Cu0.385mg
Manganese, Mn1.15mg
Selenium, Se0.3µg
Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid18mg
Thiamin0.034mg
Riboflavin0.076mg
Niacin0.902mg
Pantothenic acid0.209mg
Vitamin B-60.155mg
Folate, total68µg
Data source: USDA

Basil is rich in folic acid, manganese, calcium, iron, vitamins A, C, and K. This delicious herb has antibacterial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory compounds that optimize your beardie’s health.

In addition, this nutrient-rich herb helps boost bearded dragons’ immunity, eye health, kidney function, tissue growth, digestion, muscle building, and more.

From the information from USDA, basil’s calcium to phosphorus ratio is approximately 3.16: 1, which isn’t ideal. However, this bit of information means your bearded dragons can safely eat basil in small amounts and not as a staple or whole food.

Can bearded dragons eat basil?

Basil is non-toxic, and bearded dragons can safely consume it but in moderation. Excessive amounts of basil can make your precious lizard sick because of its high acidity and calcium content.

Bearded dragons can eat basil.

So, if your beardie eats basil from your garden, you need not be alarmed as long as it does not happen often; the herb is harmless.

Therefore, it is wise to include a limited amount of basil in your bearded dragon’s salad. Basil is very healthy and has many health benefits for dragons.

How often do bearded dragons eat basil?

While basil is suitable for bearded dragons, it is beneficial to them when in limited quantities. Bearded dragons should not overeat basil because it is too high in calcium and is acidic too.

Bearded dragons should also not eat basil daily or as a staple food. It’s just an herb that they can eat once or twice a month and in small amounts.

The truth is that if bearded dragons eat basil every day, similar to dogs, too much calcium can lead to calcium toxicity. Hypercalcemia is dangerous because it can make the dragon sick or even dead.

Basil also contains several acids, including kafta, chicory, and rosemary acids. Excessive acidity can poison your dearest lizards.

You can prevent such problems if you use basil carefully and treat it as a rare food. Even if your lizard enjoys eating this herb, limiting its intake is better than regretting it.

With that said, we recommend that you offer your bearded dragon basil at most once a week.

This will allow them to get most of their diet from staple vegetables like dandelions and occasionally offer some variety through basil.

Can bearded dragons eat dried basil leaves?

Dried basil leaves contain more nutrients than fresh basil leaves. They are rich in calcium because they have a Ca:P ratio of 8:1. In addition, dried basil leaves are too high in sugar, and many other nutrients spike when dried.

Dried basil leaves require you to use them sparingly, but seriously, these nutrients are very high for your bearded dragons, particularly calcium, fiber, and sugar. It would be best if you avoid this leaf and stick to feeding fresh leaves.

It is best to consider offering fresh food to your lizard friend at all times to prevent any possible health problems. Bearded dragons can eat fresh basil flowers as they are also very nutritious.

What other herbs can be eaten by bearded dragons?

Herbs can play many healthy roles when it comes to the health of your bearded dragons. You can use herbs as decorative plants in glass containers or include them in your pet’s vegetable mixture.

Herbs have many benefits for bearded dragons, and it is wise to allow them to eat them occasionally.

In addition to basil, bearded dragons can eat other herbs, including cilantro lavender, rosemary, thyme, parsley, fennel, sage, bell pepper, chicory, chicory, and fresh dill leaves.

Most of these herbs are nutritious but highly acidic, which is why you should limit their intake; use them occasionally for your pet’s safety. You can also use any of these herbs as live plants in glass containers. Bearded dragons like to chew on them.

Can Bearded Dragons eat basil seeds?

Basil seeds are nutritious because they are rich in fiber, minerals and contain many beneficial plant compounds. However, these seeds have a coarse texture and high-fat content, dangerous for bearded dragons.

These seeds may pose a choking hazard to bearded dragons because they are poor chewers and cannot handle hard foods.

Therefore, bearded dragons should not eat basil seeds, and you should avoid feeding them any seeds to prevent choking problems.

Can baby bearded dragons eat fresh basil?

Juveniles or baby bearded dragons primarily need insect protein when they are young to support the fast-paced growth they experience.

During this time, the need for vegetables and food high in calcium is sometimes neglected.

Baby bearded dragons cannot grow properly unless their plant-based diet contains the right amount of calcium and other required nutrients.

The main focus during this time should be to provide staple vegetables such as kale and dandelions, as they are the best choices among beardie owners.

With that said, bearded dragons can safely consume basil as part of a balanced diet that includes the other greens we just mentioned.

How to prepare basil for bearded dragons

The beauty of serving vegetables and herbs to your bearded dragon is that they usually don’t require much preparation before they are ready to be served.

With that in mind, you still need to do a few simple things to ensure that herbs like basil are safe for your bearded dragon to consume.

There are different ways to prepare various foods for bearded dragons. When planning to feed basil leaves, the first thing you need to do is choose fresh leaves. If you can get organic basil, that’s even better.

Pesticides can be highly harmful to reptiles (like bearded dragons), so it’s always best to spend a little extra on organics if you can.

Thorough washing: Whether you’re buying basil leaves from the store or growing your own at home, you should wash them thoroughly before adding them to your pet’s salad bowl.

No cooking: This may sound obvious, but there’s no need to cook basil. Cooking wilts basil and reduces its nutrient content, so always provide fresh plants.

To chop or not to chop?: Depending on the size of the basil leaves you have, you may choose to cut them into smaller pieces or offer them as is. Ideally, they should be smaller than the width of a mustache’s eye.

Some owners chop up basil leaves and sprinkle them over other vegetables and greens (the final choice is yours.)

Time to serve: that’s all you need to do to give your beardie some delicious basil in their diet. 

Understanding the needs of your bearded dragon well will help you take better care of them. 

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