Is Spike's Delite enough nutrition? - Hedgehog Central Hedgehog pet care & owner forum
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Old 01-05-2014, 09:21 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Is Spike's Delite enough nutrition?

When I adopted Tuesday she was eating dog food. I read not to feed hedgehogs dog food so I switched her over to Spike's Delite and she seems to love it. I also feed her canned mealworms as a daily treat.

I've been trying to get her to try fresh fruits and veggies but she's not having it. Is it okay to only offer the one type of main food, the Spike's Delite, or should I be offering other types like cat food as well?

I just want to make sure she's getting the best nutrition since she's my little sweetheart.
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Old 01-05-2014, 10:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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There's varying opinions out there. Some people do prefer to feed hedgehog food over cat food. Spike's Delite is at least the best of the available hedgehog foods. However, personally I'm not a huge fan of it because it has a high price for a small bag ($24.60 for a 2-lb bag?? That would get you a 7-lb bag of Blue Buffalo, which is even a few dollars cheaper), and I don't like the ingredients - there's a lot of fillers in it that don't really offer much in the way of nutrition.

As far as number of foods...it's usually suggested to do at least two foods because we don't know hedgehog nutritional requirements. You have the best chance of making sure they're getting a complete diet from multiple different ingredients by offering a mix of two or more foods. Another good reason is in case you run out of a food unexpectedly (especially with Spike's Delite, since as far as I know, it must be ordered online), or if the food becomes unavailable (ingredient shortage, food recall, etc.). A sudden food switch is stressful & can cause an eating strike, which then requires syringe-feeding...even more stressful for everyone involved. Not always, but it happens often enough with hedgehogs that it's a concern.

Where did you read you can't feed dog food? The only problem I know of with it is that it tends to be larger (small breed puppy kibble is about the size of cat kibble, but that's all I've found), so you have to make sure you break it up into edible pieces. Many people do that with cat food as well, especially for babies and older hedgehogs.

So...personally, I'd find something else. Spike's Delite is more expensive than it's worth, in my opinion, and there's better quality cat foods out there for a cheaper price. There are people that like it though, and it's better than other hedgehog foods. So in the end, the choice is up to you.
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Old 01-05-2014, 10:28 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thank you for your thoughts on the Spike's Delite. I know there's a lot of choices in the ways of food so which dog or cat food would you recommend as the best choice for nutrition?
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Old 01-05-2014, 10:48 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Not much experience with dog food. The only one I ever got was a small breed puppy food (Wellness brand) in Lily's last six months - but it had higher fat, so unless your girl's a runner, it may be too high in fat for her. Typically the popular brands for cat food also have dog food available though, and the protein & fat are usually lower for dogs than cats, so it shouldn't be hard to find good ones. The main thing would be kibble size and making sure you can break it up without too much trouble (and that she'll eat it if it's broken up - some hedgehogs think this is unacceptable!).

For cat food...really, there's a pretty wide variety of choices! The most popular on the forum are Blue Buffalo, Natural Balance, Chicken Soup, and Solid Gold. There's plenty of other good brands though - you just need to make sure the ingredients are good, and that protein & fat are appropriate. This sticky explains what to look for - https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...nutrition.html There's some more ideas on good brands here - https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...oods-list.html and here - https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...food-list.html The second one is a bit out of date, so double check ingredients & percentages if you look for a food off that list. It's more extensive though. If you get to looking & you're still not sure if a food looks good, you could always post on here for second opinions.
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Old 01-05-2014, 11:23 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thank you for the links they really helped me a lot. Now it's off to the pet stores to see about changing Tuesday's diet.
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