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Ralphie: His Story of How He Came to The Reptile Nook


It’s hard to believe that it’s been 9 months since Ralphie came to us at The Reptile Nook. He may not have been with us for very long, but it’s hard to imagine not having an animal like him for our programs now.


When we first got Ralphie, he was about 8 months old and underweight. His previous owners could not afford to provide him with substrate or a proper diet. They wanted what was best for Ralphie, but unfortunately couldn’t provide it for him. That’s where we came in. We decided that we wanted to make sure he would be properly cared for before becoming emaciated or developing metabolic bone disease (MBD). The Reptile Nook’s owners, Zack and Jess, both have experience in reptile care and felt prepared to care for him after reviewing the most recent care standards for bearded dragon husbandry.


Once we got Ralphie, we got his enclosure set up and assessed what he had and what he needed to thrive with us. He soon had substrate, enrichment items, and a fresh and healthy meal in his enclosure for him to enjoy. When we moved him from his travel carrier to his enclosure, we quickly learned how sweet of a lizard he is.


Having gotten him in the middle of our program off-season, we gave him time to adjust to his new home, ensured he was healthy, and began training him for programs. His friendly personality made training easy. He also quickly began to gain weight to get to a healthy size while still growing and developing into an adult dragon.


Today, he is a program favorite and enjoys getting attention from his handlers. He loves to run around and explore when put on the ground to do so and will sit on his keeper’s shoulders for programs. He is now a healthy weight and is thriving in his enclosure.


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