This is the Story of Phoenix the Bearded Dragon
by Ashley Prichard
This is the story of Phoenix the Bearded Dragon, a pet lizard that was lucky enough to be rescued by Ashley and Richard Prichard one year ago. The following tale is told in Ashley’s own words. Enjoy. 🙂
My husband, Robert, found “Phoenix” through Craigslist. We thought we were getting a girl named “Lala.” We drove an hour one way to go pick her up.
When we got there, I wanted to cry because she looked so bad. She was underweight and dehydrated. We found out that the owners kept the live food in the tank. Hubby and the son went to take out the sand and crickets. “She” blew up when he tried to handle her. We could tell she’d been shoved in a corner and forgotten about.
The mother was telling me things like she goes into her log when she is ready for bed. So she probably didn’t get the 12 hours of day and night. We got her home and found out they kept her UVB (ultraviolet) light on a fish tank top with the glass still there. So for 9 months she had no UVB and with the way they fed her, no vitamins either!
Hubby was looking at her and realized she was a “he.” So we had to rename him. I got to pick out the name. I was thinking and looking up names and found “Phoenix” and thought it fit him. So Phoenix was his new name.
We thought he had MBD (* Metabolic Bone Disease – see below *) but the Vet said no. I was happy to hear that.
Then, shortly after that, hubby came home to him having a seizure. He called me at work and told me. I cried like a baby. I was worried about my baby. But we kept giving him his treatment of vitamins and getting the UVB light closer to him. He got better over time.
After that he got spoiled and is now very adorable! He gets loved on everyday and loves it! If we hadn’t gotten him when we did, he wouldn’t be here at all. It was a long stressful journey but he is very healthy now and his MBD is under control. I don’t know what I would do without him.
Thank you for letting me share my Phoenix’s story!!
Ashley & Robert Prichard
NOTE: *MBD* stands for “Metabolic Bone Disease”. It is a well recognized and all too common disease of reptiles. There is no single cause and the disease is not as simple a calcium deficiency. However, the primary problem is a disruption of calcium metabolism which causes a host of related problems. MBD is almost always a result of poor husbandry, but generally preventable by providing a proper environment and diet. This is not always easy or inexpensive, but is vital to the health of pet reptiles.
Metabolic Bone Disease can be prevented with a diet balanced in calcium and phosphorus, protein, energy and other nutrients, as well as exposure to the correct UVA/UVB bulbs for reptiles. Lizards also need proper heat gradients (day and night), proper light/dark cycles, and adequate enclosure/room to exercise.
MY QUESTION FOR YOU TODAY: Do you have any rescue stories you would like to share? I accept all stories, all species.
You might also like to read, Bearded Dragon Care Sheet | Caring for Your Pet Dragon
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