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JulieAnne 11-14-2012 04:51 AM

Making my own mix
I'm sure there are threads about this so I'm sorry for having posted this. I have been researching different cat foods to put into my hedgies mix. I just wanted to see what y'all thought of the foods I've selected before I go purchase them. I've never made a mix before, obviously, and don't know a lot about it. All my foods came from the "approved list" in the forums.

I've narrowed it down to 5. I don't know how many of them I actually want to use, maybe 3 of them? Anywho, I've narrowed it down to...

Natural Balance Green Pea & Duck
Crude Protein (30%), Crude Fat (12%), Crude Fiber (4%), Moisture (10%), Taurine (.16%), Omega 3 Fatty Acids (.4%)*, Omega 6 Fatty Acids (2.6%)*,

Innova Low Fat
Crude protein (min): 32%, crude fat (min): 8%, crude fat (max): %, crude fiber (max): 5%, moisture (max): 10%, linoleic acid (min): 1.5%, omega 3 fatty acids (min): 0.35%, taurine (min): 0.1%, vitamin E (min): 300 IU/kg, L-carnitine (min): 250 mg/kg, DHA plus EPA (min): 0.05%, total microorganisms (min): 90,000,000 CFU/lb

Wellness Indoor
Protein (min.) 30.0%, Fat (min.) 12.0%, Fiber (max.) 5.0%, Moisture (max.) 11.0%, Ash (max.) 6.5%, Magnesium (max.) 0.098%, Vitamin E (min.) 300IU, Taurine (min.) 0.20%, L-Carnitine* (min.) 100 mg/kg, Omega 6* (min.) 3.0%, Omega 3* (min.) .50%, Glucosamine Hydrochloride* (min.) 400 mg/kg, Chondroitin Sulfate* (min.) 300 mg/kg, Total Micro-Organisms* 80,000,000 CFU/lb. *Not recognized as an essential nutrient by the AAFCO Cat Food Nutrient Profiles.

Wellness Healthy Weight
Protein (min.) 30.0%, Fat (min.) 8.0%, Fiber (max.) 4.0%, Moisture (max.) 11.0%, Ash (max.) 6.5%, Magnesium (max.) 0.098%, Vitamin E (min.) 300IU, Taurine (min.) 0.20%, L-Carnitine* (min.) 150 mg/kg, Omega 6* (min.) 2.75%, Omega 3* (min.) .50%, Glucosamine Hydrochloride* (min.) 400 mg/kg, Chondroitin Sulfate* (min.) 300 mg/kg, Total Micro-Organisms* 80,000,000 CFU/lb. *Not recognized as an essential nutrient by the AAFCO Cat Food Nutrient Profiles.

and Solid Gold
Crude Protein 32%, Minimum. Crude Fat 12%, Minimum. Crude Fiber 4%, Maximum. Moisture 10% Maximum. Calorie Content (calculated): Calories (ME) 380 kcal/cup 3500 kcal/kg

I'm not sure which ones, or if there are other better options, to choose from and after that I'm not sure how much of each food to do in the mix. Prim is an avid runner. She runs on her wheel for hours at night so I imagine should have a higher fat diet. She is 4 months old and weighs about 270g. For snacks she usually gets some egg, mealworms, veggies and fruit every week.

Any suggestions/input would be welcome. I'm a total noob lol.

moxieberry 11-14-2012 05:41 AM

Re: Making my own mix
For her size and activity level I wouldn't suggest going lower than 12-13% fat overall, and she may need higher than that. So that takes the Innova and Wellness Healthy Weight off the list. Of the remaining two I would personally go with Solid Gold and Natural Balance. Wellness can be hit or miss, some hedgehogs will have minor poop problems from it, not just from the transition but something about the Wellness doesn't sit well with them sometimes. For others it's fine. So my suggestion would be to start out with one of those two (Solid Gold or Natural Balance), see how she likes it and how she does with the 12% fat content for a few weeks. Once she's fully transitioned to that first food, for long enough to see how it affects her weight and for her stomach to settle, you can decide to either add the second one, thereby keeping the mix at a total of 12% fat, or choose one that's slightly higher in fat if you feel that 12% isn't enough for her. Once you get her on two foods, and see how she does with those, you can consider adding a third. It's easiest to use equal portions of each - that makes it easier to be able to calculate the overall fat and protein, especially. I personally like having foods with different protein sources - the Natural Balance is duck and the Solid Gold is lamb, so if you add a third you could use a chicken option, or there are some turkey options also. (Fish is also a choice but can sometimes contribute to the odor of their poop.) I suggest using some probiotic (Benebac or acidophilus) on the food every day during the transition to help with digestive upset from it.

Lilysmommy 11-14-2012 10:43 AM

Re: Making my own mix
49 Attachment(s)
I also give big votes for the Natural Balance and Solid Gold. They're two of my favorite foods to recommend, mostly for the different protein sources, and because Natural Balance is a limited ingredient diet. They were also consistently Lily's favorite foods - Natural Balance was her first favorite, then they switched something about the kibble and while she still liked it, Solid Gold became her favorite then. If I remember right, Solid Gold was the food she was still eating a few kibbles of even when she wasn't feeling good last winter. For a third food, perhaps you could use Chicken Soup? I think they have one with a bit higher fat, I think it's the regular adult kibble. Lily wasn't personally a fan of Chicken Soup, but I've read a lot of other hogs love it. She was just weird! :lol:

JulieAnne 11-14-2012 12:55 PM

Re: Making my own mix
Thanks so much! You guys are awesome lol.

I considered Chicken Soup but it's not sold in any of the stores near me :( I will start her on the Natural Balance and see how that goes. I hope to use one of the foods in her mix for my cat. Just to make things easier and that way I'm not buying 10 different foods LOL. I wish I knew what the fat content on the food she's using now. It's the food she came with and she just stuck it in a baggy... didn't have any information about it or anything :(.

Thanks again. I really appreciate you guys :)

moxieberry 11-14-2012 03:50 PM

Re: Making my own mix
Check feed stores and local pet stores - privately owned, not the chain stores. Chicken Soup is pretty common.

LizardGirl 11-14-2012 04:29 PM

Re: Making my own mix
If you go to look for Chicken Soup, look at those same stores for Fromm cat foods! They have a variety of formulas with different fat contents, but it's a great food with a nice small kibble size that I highly recommend.

Christemo 11-14-2012 05:01 PM

Re: Making my own mix
I fed Chicken Soup up until that giant recall, and now I won't go near it. Amelia used to love it, but I'm not taking that risk again.

I have a runner too, and I throw a kitten food into the mix (either Innova Kitten or Babycat).

moxieberry 11-14-2012 09:32 PM

Re: Making my own mix
I don't think a recall that happened over 6 months ago is any reason to avoid Chicken Soup. In my opinion it's one of the best foods for hedgehogs. Recalls happen from time to time, it's just part of being a pet owner. At least 90% of the food types pulled during recalls are done so as a precaution, and it's not because that specific formula or even that brand was tested positive. I actually find Chicken Soup as a brand even more appealing because of how they handled that issue and how readily they made information available to customers during the recall. :)

JulieAnne 11-15-2012 12:42 AM

Re: Making my own mix
Sounds good :) I'll look around for it! BTW, Saw that you're from Washington Moxieberry, my boyfriend was born in Issaquah :)

JulieAnne 12-08-2012 12:30 AM

Re: Making my own mix
So, I found Newman's Own Organic active/senior food at the grocery store we usually go to. I am in the process of switching her to that since it's right in the store we're always at. After she's good and comfy with this I think I'll add the duck and green pea as well.

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