Once you bring your hedgehog home, you will have to make sure that he eats a healthy diet so that he can live a long and comfortable life. The diet that hedgehogs as pets need consists of a variety of things, including insects and meats, as well as commercial pet hedgehog food.
Commercially Available Hedgehog Food
In some locations, you may be able to find commercial hedgehog food. These are suitable for your pet hedgehog; however, you still have to supplement his diet with other hedgehog food options. In the event that you don’t have commercial hedgehog food in your area, you can feed him dry cat food, which is actually the best option for him on a nutritional level. If you do feed him a hedgehog food or dry cat food, you can place these in a dish in his cage and leave it there, as these foods are considered free-range hedgehog food options since hedgehogs as pets can have access to them all day long.
Rodents as Hedgehog Food
Small mice and pinkies are good options for hedgehog food. It is important for you to watch the interaction between the hedgehog and the rodent. Because most rodents are captive bred, they don’t know that they can’t, and shouldn’t, mess with a hedgehog. This means that the rodent may try to attack your hedgehog. Although he can probably protect himself, it is still possible that your hedgehog may get hurt trying to protect himself.
Insects as Hedgehog Food
Beetles, mealworms, and crickets are some of the preferred hedgehog food options. In the wild, hedgehogs burrow into the ground in a search for hedgehog food. Some of the more common foods they eat are insects. Take care if you buy giant mealworms for your hedgehog, as these may stay alive after they are swallowed. To prevent this, cut the head off before feeding it to your hedgehog.
Other Hedgehog Food Choices
Your hedgehog needs a variety of fruits and vegetables to supplement other hedgehog food. When hedgehogs forage in the wild, they usually get into gardens and can dine on many of the fruits and vegetables there. While you don’t necessarily have to, it is a good idea to wash the fruits and vegetables, and cut them up before placing them in your hedgehog’s food dish.
While feeding your hedgehog a variety of hedgehog food items is very important, ensuring that he has fresh water is equally important. Place a water dish in your hedgehog’s cage or attach a water bottle to it. Check the water level at least twice per day to make sure that your hedgehog has water. If the water gets stale, bacteria and harmful organisms may colonize in the water, which may lead to your hedgehogs as pets getting sick.