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Old 03-20-2018, 11:24 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Hedgehog food choice?

I am considering changing the cat food my hedgehogs are eating to Nutro Max Indoor Cat Weight Control, would this be a good choice. I listed the ingredients and nutritional facts down below.

Chicken Meal, Brewers Rice, Wheat Flour, Corn Gluten Meal, Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed Tocopherols), Whole Brown Rice, Dried Plain Beet Pulp, Natural Flavors, Tomato Pomace, Oat Fiber, Potassium Chloride, Yeast Culture, Choline Chloride, Menhaden Fish Oil (preserved with mixed Tocopherols), Sunflower Oil (preserved with mixed Tocopherols), Soybean Oil (preserved with mixed Tocopherols), Dehydrated Chicken, Salt, Taurine, Zinc Sulfate, Vitamin E Supplement, DL-Methionine, Dried Cranberry, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (source of Vitamin C), I am considering changing the cat food my hedgehogs are eating to nutro max weight control Magnesium Stearate, Iron Proteinate, L-Carnitine, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Copper Proteinate, Niacin Supplement, Sodium Selenite, Manganese Proteinate, Biotin, Riboflavin Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate, Potassium Iodide, Thiamine Mononitrate (source of Vitamin B1), Vitamin A Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (source of Vitamin B6), Dried Blueberry, Vitamin D3 Supplement

Crude Protein (min.) 30.00%
Crude Fat(min.) 10.00%
Crude Fat(max.) 13.00%
Crude Fiber (max.) 4.00%
Moisture (max.) 10.00%
Zinc (min.) 200 mg/kg
Vitamin E (min.) 150 IU/kg
Taurine (min.) 0.16%
Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C) (min.)* 18 mg/kg
L-Carnitine (min.)* 50 mg/kg
Omega-6 Fatty acids (min.)* 2.50%
Omega-3 Fatty acids (min.)* 0.20%
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Old 03-24-2018, 12:10 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Location: GTA, Ontario
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It looks like there looks to be a lot of filler/ingredients you don't want, such as rice, wheat and corn. You should check out Beginner's Guide to Hedgehog Nutrition, where Lilysmommy talks about that.

To better explain my point, here's a snippet from Advanced Nutrition Guide:

III. Ingredient Splitting
Ingredient splitting is where you see multiple ingredients that all come from the same food, e.g. corn, corn gluten meal, or peas, pea protein, etc. It doesn't have to be a deal breaker, especially in a food that has the right percentages & doesn't have any bad ingredients. But keep in mind that if you add up the weights of those different split ingredients, it's possible that the corn, rice, peas, whatever, may outweigh the meat in the food, which isn't ideal.

A similar issue to look out for is how many carb-loaded ingredients there are in the food. It's great to have a meat/meat meal as the first ingredient and that's what you should aim for. But take a look after that & see how many grains or other carb-heavy ingredients come after that. If you have chicken meal, followed by oats, rice, and barley, it's pretty likely that all of those grains outweigh the meat. While all of these grains are better quality than wheat and corn, you still don't want them to be the majority of the food for an omnivore or carnivore.

IV. Grain Free Food Ingredients

It's important to watch grain-free foods for the above issues as well. Grain-free is one of the newer trends in pet food. Personally, I prefer grain-free foods...if they're good quality. But manufacturers can use the same tricks to have less-than-ideal ingredients that end up outweighing the meat in the food. For example, these are the ingredients up to the first fat in Authority Grain-Free Adult cat food:

Chicken, Chicken Meal, Dried Peas, Dried Potatoes, Pea Protein, Potato Protein
Chicken and chicken meal, good! Unfortunately, that chicken probably loses most of its weight when the water in it gets cooked out, so that's one strike. Dried peas & potatoes means that they don't lose any water weight when the food gets cooked, so there's a good chance that there's already more of them than the chicken, even though it's the first ingredient. Then you see that there's both dried peas & pea protein, dried potatoes and potato protein. More or less these are the same thing, and it means that it's very likely potatoes & peas outweigh the chicken in this food, even with the chicken meal being present.
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Old 03-24-2018, 12:41 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Thank you! I have changed my mined and decided to go with a Blue Buffalo mix of cat food. I just couldn't figure out how to delete this post.
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Old 03-24-2018, 12:43 AM   #4 (permalink)
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And thank you for sharing that quote for me!
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