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Striving To Be Adenovirus Free

Dedicated to truly Healthy, and Hand Raised Bearded dragons!

Red Leatherback import from Germany

About Us

Honest Breeders

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Here at BloodMoon Dragons, we refuse to breed JUST to make a buck.  

     We DO NOT and WILL NEVER, breed visual to visual morphs. This includes: Leatherback to leatherback, Trans to Trans, Zero to Zero etc. We believe it is detrimental to the entire bearded dragon species to do so. Morphs are recessive traits. Naturally so. 

     Animals have evolved over thousands of years due to natural selection. 

Isolating genes that we find appealing, i.e trans and hypo etc, that have been buried in there genetics , and making those genes the new normal,  weakens the bloodlines and causes severe health problems. Not 'can' cause, Not 'Might' cause. does , in fact , cause health problems, and horrible birth defects as well.

Just because a babys looks normal, does not mean there is not something horribly wrong.

    Some babys , the ones that actually hatch, appear normal, until they grow up.

The main culprit is the Trans gene. Dragons from Trans/Trans pairings can develop tremors and neurological problems later in life. your seemingly Healthy dragon is 'suddenly' NOT.

                                                                That's why:


~We are completely Honest with all genetics, and provide genetics for AT LEAST 2 generations for each dragon we produce.~

~To our knowledge, we will NEVER breed directly related dragons. ~ 

~we grow out ALL of our breeders to make sure they do not develop  health issues that they could possibly pass to future generations~




Happy, Healthy Bloodline

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We strive for genetic diversity. With bloodlines form Ireland , Germany, Canada, and right here in the U.S.


SHIPPING

All of our shipping is done through FedEx, via Reptiles Express, priority overnight .

Your new dragon will be carefully packed an hour after 'lights out' to lower stress, complete with heat or cold packs as needed .

To lessen the time in the back of a delivery truck, we drive each dragon to the airport ourselves, and drop them at our FedEx airport hub, to be flown to their new forever homes. 


Our standard shipping day is Wednesday. Why Wednesday? well....

Mondays are busy with mail held over from the weekend, so chances for delays and mishaps are high. we do not ship out Thursady, because if something happens and the dragon misses a connecting flight for Friday morning, it could possibly be MONDAY before the dragon is finally delivered. So that leaves Tuesday and Wednesday. Honestly , both days are equally good. but to lower overhead cost of business stuff, we chose one day a week, and literally flipped a coin. We have your new babys delivered to your nearest FedEx hub to be picked up at your earliest convenience Thursday , with a full Live Arrival Guarantee . Babys usually arrive at the FedEx hub before noon on Thursday.


Once payment is processed, you will receive the FedEx tracking number for your Dragon. You can track all parts of their journey and can be notified the moment they reach the hub. 


                                                                        

We are working with Reptiles express to soon offer a 'real time' tracking option to literally know, down to the city street, where your dragon is, using an onboard GPS tracking system!

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BASIC CARE SHEET

Enclosures


This can be as simple as a fish tank or an elaborate custom built reptile cabinet.  

For small dragons, a 20 gallon tank should suffice. But as your dragon grows, a 40 gallon breeder tank (36 inches long, 18 inches wide, 18 inches high) is the minimum size for a single adult. (It is recommended that bearded dragons be kept only one per enclosure)

Temps

  Your dragon is cold blooded, and can not regulate its own body temperature . That is why you must have a 'Hot side'  in the mid 80's, and a "cold side' in the 70s. as well as something to hide under on the cool side.

Your dragon will also need a basking spot. You can provide this by having something to climb on (rocks, a log etc) placed under a basking bulb. There are many brands of bulbs  out there. The basking spot should be around 105 degrees Fahrenheit.

(no more than 110’ish, no less than 100)  

If the dragon can not get warm enough they won't digest their food, and it may trigger a burmation (similar to hibernation).  


Experiment with different sizes and use whichever maintains proper temps for your enclosure. ( always make certain your dragon is safe from accidentally touching any heat bulbs, for the safety of your dragon, and the bulb)

 

Always watch your dragon. If it stays in the basking spot ALL the time, the enclosure temps may be too low, if to stays in the cool side/ hide spot, it may be too hot.  Too hot is actually more dangerous than too cold.

So having an enclosure that is too small with a large basking bulb ,could easily kill your dragon.


Most cages do not need a night time heat source. If your home drops below 65 in the winter time, you may need a ceramic , non light emitting, heat bulb to maintain nighttime temps above 65. Do not use actual “lights” at night. It can disrupt their normal sleep cycles. 


 

UVB

 

You also need a source of UVB . UVB is the radiation we get from natural sunlight. It helps breakdown calcium and vitamin D inside your dragon, keeping it healthy and active. Without UVB your dragon will have a loss of appetite, hide or sleep a lot, and possibility develop a condition called Metabolic Bone disease(MBD) causing tremors and twitches and crippling bone deformity.

 Needless to say UVB is important! You can buy a wide array of different bulbs. The long tube or florescent ones are recommended. They also have mercury vapor bulbs that can provide heat AND UVB, but can be quite expensive. The coil type can cause eye irritation and should be avoided if possible.

If your enclosure is large, you may need additional lighting. Too many dark spots are bad for your dragons eyes. As long as it is not a colored bulb, or effects the overall temperatures of the enclosure, it should be fine. 


Timers for your heat and uvb are also a good investment. 12-16 on, 12-8 off. having a set 'daytime' and 'night time' is good for dragons. having inconsistent sleep cycles can cause brumatin or irritability.

Substraite

 

DO NOT USE SAND on any dragon under 12 inches, if at all.

 

Sand can cause an impaction ( can’t poo) that can be deadly! Most people have no issues, but better safe than sorry .


Newspaper (not pretty, but works) reptile carpet & tile, are all widely used, easy to clean, and are safe for your pet. Please keep the enclosure clean. I use a mixture of diluted Listerine, castil soap and F10 as a daily anti bacterial cleaner, but there many other commercial cleaners you can use, just make sure NOT to use harsh soaps or bleach that can harm your pet.


Bioactive setups are not recommended for dragons under a year old. But as long as proper husbandry is maintained, they seem to be okay for adults.

DIET

 

There are pellet type foods available, but I do not recommend them. I have taken in rescues that have almost starved to death due to just being fed ‘dragon food’.

Fresh greens and live bugs are actual ‘dragon food’ and I don’t see a way to keep a dragon healthy if you can not provide them.


GREENS:

lettuce in general should be avoided, just because it has no nutritional value what so ever.

I guess it could be used a “filler” with other greens, its up to you.

Kale, collard greens, mustard greens, turnip greens & dandelion greens are the base of all daily feedings at my house.

Chard can be used occasionally,

But NEVER use spinach or broccoli, because they contains stuff that blocks the calcium absorption in your dragon. Remember, calcium is GOOD.

Fruits & Veggies should include carrots, yellow squash, zucchini, strawberries, blue berries, apples, occasionally bell peppers.

Adding salad dressing, ( bearded dragon salad dressing by nature zone, NOT RANCH!) is also recommended.

Dragons sometimes eat their salads, sometimes they don’t, but always at least offer fresh greens daily.

BUGS BUGS BUGS

 (all bugs MUST be fed, before feeding them to your dragons, just toss in a couple carrots an hour before feeding them to your dragon )


Baby dragons are pigs, and can be expensive to keep fed.


Up until a year old , they should be getting live bugs daily.


~Crickets are what most pet stores offer. As long as you are guttloading or feeding them a lot of good veggies before feeding them to your dragon they are okay.


~DUBAI roaches are an awesome choice for a staple feeder, less crunch more good stuff.  


~BSFL or black soldier fly  larva are an awesome feeder due to the fact that they contain lots of calcium and do not need to be dusted.  


~SUPER worms are like candy for dragons. They should not be a staple food due to their high fat content but they are not too horrible for them. ( but should not be fed to dragons under 12 inches)


~Horn worm are the creme a la creme of the dragon feeders. They can be expensive, but they have no exoskeleton and dragons LOVE them.


  Bugs should be dusted with calcium and vitamins at least 2 times a week. some calcium has D3. If your dragon gets natural sunlight regularly, D3 is not needed.


“little” dragons (under 10 inches) should be offered bugs at least  2 times a day.  


Veggies and bugs should be offered to your dragon daily until about 12 months old,  


over a year old, veggies daily,  and bugs every other day or 3 times a week.  


Depending on the size of the bug and type of bug, quantity may very.  

6 crickets = 1 roach= 4 bsfl=2 super worms=1/2 horn worm ( sizes are for full size bugs) .


Bug size should be less wide than the space between your  dragons eyes. ¼ inch crickets/roaches and any size BSFL for most juveniles.


Under a year They should be eating at least 10 per feeding (roaches ) I’ve seen as many as 25 eaten at a time. You should let them eat as much as they can in 15 minuets. They are growing A LOT and need the fuel! 

So count on AT LEAST 75-100 a week.


most adults eat between 30-50 a week, so it gets a little better.

WATER

Please do not leave a water bowl in with your baby dragon. They can easily drown.


Misting them daily with a water bottle, ( literally watering your dragon, they will flatten out and lick the water that runs down their face)

or a quick couple minute soak in a shallow ( just touching their belly) bowl of water 3 times a week, is enough to keep them hydrated.


They get water from their daily greens as well.


Leaving a water bowl in an enclosure also significantly raises the humidity and can cause problems.

The first week home

 

I know it will be hard, but for the first week or two try not to handle your new dragon too much.

Dragons take a bit to get used to new surroundings, and sights and sounds.

It can be a bit overwhelming for the little guys....not to mention they just got MAILED!  


Sometimes it takes them a few days to start eating regularly again. (sometimes longer)

Partially covering the sides of their tank, (with paper or whatever) so they can not see out helps speed up the process.

  

Babys are jumpy. If you choose to handle your pet, please do so close to the floor, in case it tries to jump , possably hurting itself if it falls.

As they get older , they will calm down.

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Adenovirus

The ugly little secret of the bearded dragon world


ADV-1 ,Atadenovirus-Agamid, or Adenovirus-1, is unfortunately found in well over 90% of the captive bred bearded dragons in the U.S, and worldwide. Also unfortunately, not much is known about the virus. 

Chances are really good, that if you own a bearded dragon, that they are positive for ADV-1.  There are no known breeding collections that are completely negative of ADV-1. Many breeders do not even test for the virus due to its very high prevalence . Thus the attitude of ' everyone has it, why test' was born.


 Many claim that there is no test that can accuretly say if your Bearded dragon is positive or not (so why test, right?).

Many also claim that there are many forms of Adenovirus, and that testing negative to one does not mean they are negative .

There IS ,in fact, a reliable  test for ADV, the Real time PCR test . And there IS more than one form of ADV. But each form is species specific, so the chances of your bearded dragon having Tortoise ADV is pretty slim.


 The real time-PCR test  can measure , not only positive or negative results, but can also measure HOW positive or negative an animal is. We here at BloodMoon Dragons test all of our Breeders and babys through Research Associates laboratory. Since 1992 Research Associates laboratory has been providing state of the art molecular diagnostics to veterinarians, zoos, universities, restaurants, hotels, and the pet and pest industries.  They are the nation's oldest and most experienced veterinary molecular diagnostic laboratory. Which is why we are using them to achieve our goal of an Adenovirus Free future of bearded dragons.

 

~THE GOOD NEWS~


Adenovirus can have no symptoms.( which is why most owners are not even aware there pet is sick.)

A dragon, if proper husbandry is maintained,  can live its entire life symptom and problem free. So a positive test is NOT always a death sentence.


 ~THE BAD & UGLY~


Most breeders advertise 'healthy' dragons, and fail to address ADV, assuming that it is just common knowledge that ALL dragons have it. 

It is true that most dragons show no symptoms or problems, appearing 'healthy', but not being honest puts the dragon at a disadvantage. Failing to recognize the symptoms of a flair-up, could be disastrous .So if the buyer is unaware of what to look for, assuming they just bought a 'healthy' baby , symptoms can get overlooked and spiral quickly.


If a dragon is NOT properly cared for, i.e incorrect diet/temps/etc. or fall ill, it could have 'flare-ups' of Adenovirus symptoms. Diarrhea , anorexia & lethargy, are all common during these flare-ups, and palliative care must initiated.  

There is no known 'cure' for Adenovirus, and symptoms are treated as needed.

 

Adenovirus also makes the symptoms of other ailments much worse and harder to clear up. So Adenovirus may not have caused the death of your animal, but it made the respiratory infections, or parasites, (or enter a number of other common ailments here) effect them much harder  and they ended up passing away. 

  

Another common occurrence is that a dragon will be symptom free for most of its life, and then die suddenly from organ failure caused by the Adenovirus. It can cause inflammation of the digestive system, liver, kidneys, and nervous tissue as well as suppress their immune system. So saying Adenovirus is "nothing to worry about" is just a lie. But the first step is knowledge. And acknowledgement that there IS a problem. Which is why I still test.


~OUR ADV STORY~


I used to have an 100% ADV free breeding program. I was completely unaware that other breeders didn't even test until a series of unfortunate events turned my world upside down. 


Early last year I received a text message from a buyer that had just purchased a couple of babys from me, asking if there was any possibility that our dragons could be positive for ADV. She stated that one of her babys was acting funny, and when she googled the symptoms, ADV popped across her screen.

I answered honestly and told her that we had recently tested , due to a rescue passing away with what I suspected was ADV, and that No one came back positive, but I would retest to see.

After a few weeks of testing, tears  and investigation, we narrowed the exposure down to a handful of babys that came back from a reptile show with the 'gift' of ADV.


I spent the next few months, isolating, sanitizing, testing, retesting . Reading every article i could get my hands on, and questioning every breeder who would answer my emails. My complete operation on lockdown. 

 It wasn't until I tried to replace by lost breeders, that I realized my problem. I couldn't.

Over the course of last year I purchased 10 red females, from 10 different breeders, and ALL of them were positive for ADV.


I found The Pogona Adenovirus Testing Society ,  and through them, a new goal of helping spread awareness of the big dirty secret of ADV. They are also trying  to assist me in reestablishing a completely Adenovirus free breeding program. 


I still have ADV free breeders. I Have produced ADV free babys.  But unfortunately until the bearded dragon community as a whole, puts their foot down and acknowledges the problem that we as breeders have produced, 90% of all dragons,  including mine, will still have ADV.


So, I still test. I feel at times it is pointless. Looking for a needle in a stack of needles. But we have a vision of a completely ADV free program. We may not be there yet. But we will NOT stop trying. 




 





  

ADV-INFO-1         ADV-INFO-2          ADV-INFO-3    

 

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