PRIMARY DIET, aka STAPLE FOOD
High protein, low-fat hard cat foods with just a little grain recommended
Avoid foods with by-product meal or brewers anything in the ingredients
First ingredient should be meat, first five ingredients should be ‘real’ ingredients
A little grain is recommended for fiber in the diet
Visit our shop to purchase “Spikes Ultra” or see the link below. If buying from the link below DO NOT purchase “Spikes Delight” as it is filled with fillers. “Spikes Ultra” is a very high quality food.
There is much debate as to what constitutes proper hedgehog nutrition. But there are certain things that most people agree on. First, unless there is a medical reason to feed something else, your hedgehog should eat a diet low in fat, low in iron, and moderately high in protein. And remember, while babies are growing fast and may need more calories, an adult hedgehog’s needs are different.
Your breeder will give you a sample of the food your baby hedgehog is used to eating. If you chose to change this food, do it gradually, mixing a little more of the new food in every few days. For adult hedgehogs, most people choose a mixture of several low-fat, adult, or senior cat foods and some hedgehog foods. In general, look for a high-quality meat based protein source listed as the first ingredient and a lower percentage of fillers. For most adult hedgehogs, 1-2 tablespoons of this staple mix should will be eaten daily.
The staple food should be supplemented with a variety of other foods. Depending on your animal’s weight and the size of the insects, you can feed: 1-4 freeze-dried or live mealworms OR 1-4 wax worms; 2-4 crickets; 1-3 silkworms; two half-teaspoon servings of protein sources (lean cooked chicken, salmon, trout, turkey, tuna, boiled egg whites, etc.); and rice cooked in broth, sweet potatoes, watermelon, banana, kiwi, steamed broccoli, green beans, carrots, corn, etc. Make sure all food (except insects) is cut into small pieces, and all seeds are removed. Avoid treats or staple foods containing whole or large pieces of nuts or dried fruits as they can cause dental problems or choking, and NEVER feed VitaCraft brand Hedgehog food. It has been known to cause many problems with Hedgehogs.
DO NOT USE “Super Worms” because they do bite and can injure your Hedgehog if not chewed completely!
DO NOT FEED your Hedgehog fresh/yard-caught bugs as they can carry parasites, pesticides and other chemicals. Even if you don't spray in your yard, your neighbor might. Outdoor bugs can also carry parasites that can be difficult to kill with medication once infected.
Recommended Daily feeders
Click above link for Live Insect Store
Live Meal Worms
Live Black Soldier Fly Larvae
Dried Meal Worms
Dried Black Soldier Fly
Unseasoned Cooked Meat (baked, boiled, steamed): Chicken, beef, pork, turkey, fish
Unseasoned Cooked Eggs (scrambled, hard-boiled)
Fruits (diced into small bits): Apple, banana, watermelon, cantaloupe, mango, peach, nectarine, plum, pear, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries
Vegetables (diced into small bits or steamed): Carrot, sweet potato, pumpkin, squash, bell pepper, asparagus, green beans, cucumber, spinach, zucchini, broccoli, peas, dandelion greens
Baby Food: Any made from fruits, vegetables, or meats. Avoid “meal” varieties that contain things like pasta or rice
Wet Cat Food: Because it’s typically high in fat, feed only in moderation. Be sure to select a brand with high quality ingredients
Select Dairy Products: Cottage cheese, plain yogurt. Hedgehogs are lactose intolerant, but these can be offered in small amounts
Insects (store-bought only): Mealworms, crickets, dubia roaches, waxforms. Be mindful of fat content
Citrus: Orange, lime, lemon, grapefruit, pineapple, tomato, pomegranate. Acidic food can cause upset stomachs, ulcers, and mouth sores
Dried Fruits: Choking hazard
Nuts & Seeds: Choking hazard
Grapes & Raisins: Toxic
Avocado: Likely toxic
Onions & Garlic: Toxic
Chocolate & Candy
Human Junk Food: Chips, pretzels. Not dangerous in small quantities, but use with extreme moderation
Anything Seasoned: Deli meats, canned vegetables. Not dangerous in small quantities, but use with extreme moderation
Water and Food Dishes
We recommend heavy food and water dishes. Heavy dishes are less likely to get tipped over. Try to find dishes that measure 1.5”-2” in diameter. It is also okay to use a water bottle that attaches to the side of the cage like a gerbil would use.
DO NOT USE bowls that may contain lead-based paint.
Be sure to sterilize their dishes or water bottles weekly, and inspect them daily, to prevent bacteria from building up.