Bearded Dragons-General Forum
Beardie not acting normal
Hey guys, Im a long time beardie owner and have a serious concern about my guy. Hes actually my fiance’s beardie who was drove up here to Seattle from California a few months back. Im not sure about his care prior to coming into my care but he arrived with a 40 gallon tank, a fluorescent uvb light, and a basking bulb. I since got him a nice mercury vapor, got him off the sand, and is being fed a steady diet of greens with crickets a few times a week.
He is about 9 years old, and seems a bit slow. He has trouble catching his crickets... kind of just sticks his tongue out for a few seconds and waits for one to walk by lol. He does ok though and eventually gets them all. He eats well and is slightly on the thin side but nothing completely abnormal in my experience.
Now, with his care out of the way, on to the main issue. Probably once a day for the last few months (since we got him up here) he will start opening and closing his mouth over and over and begin jerking his head to the side. It almost looks like an involuntary muscle spasm or seizure or something. He will then begin to lose his balance and fall off his basking spot. Sometimes he will catch himself, sometimes not, but has not seemed to hurt himself.... yet. His beard will be black and seem confused and its starting to really concern me.
Does anyone know what could be causing this? I have owned reptiles (including beardies) all my life and have never seen anything like it. My first thought was an onset of MBD since that seems to be the most common answer to this kind of thing, but Im not so sure. He never did it before (or so I was told) and since he came to me is getting the best care of his life. I know I should get him checked out by a vet, but to be honest I just don’t have the money right now.
Any help will be greatly appreciated.
Message To: Geckofeet In reference to Message Id: 2265234
Beardie not acting normal
Start reading about vitamin supplements ... vitamin A and E and others (Thiamine) or too much of it or lack of may be causing the issue.
I can get out the book (hardback) Reptile surgery and medicine, author R Mader, they speak of many nutrients and the symptoms ...it’s very hard to pinpoint. We have a male that struggles just as yours with his aim...but he doesn’t fall. He just misses until he gets it right, often I just hand feed him his insects. He is 7...maybe 8 now
If your dragon is falling it would be best to make a larger platform so he is more secure and won’t hurt himself. A cardboard box makes a great hide and basking platform....you can paint it and seal it with many craft store products that are water based.
Also too much D-3 can be a hazard as well...make sure he only gets plain/pure calcium and Calcium with D3 1 or 2 x a week. Sometimes it’s hard to find plain calcium at pet stores...we order ours online from LLL Reptile
Or you can go to a reptile expo as well.
MBD is more of a tremor and has nothing to do with balance and co ordination. Usually skeletal deformities will develop in advanced cases. Broken bones / joints/ toes / tail and spinal kinks.
See if you can e mail these folks for more help...we really have gained much from this site