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Uh, yeah - that takes that off the list of options. I never realized the number indicated protein count - so that's super helpful.

Yeah, there are quite a few options available. Being in a big city helps with that. Our issue has always been kibble shape - and my reluctance to buy a "big" bag of food without knowing he'll actually eat it. *sigh*

Many thanks. I'll hope the pet store folk know something about kibble shape/size tomorrow so I can get some new stuff to try out!
 

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If you buy his/her food from Pet Smart or Petco they will let you return an open bag of food (with receipt) if your little one don't like it.
I think you have like 30 day's to return it.
Other pet stores may do this as well, you could ask when you go to buy the food.

I hope this helps.
I know how it is I have some finicky eaters myself.
 

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Yeah, this was all helpful. For me, anything that the hedgies won't eat is more than likely something my cat would, so I'm not overly concerned .... would just prefer to avoid.

PetCo's selection is far from impressive, by any means. I ended up with Halo's Spot Stew as a "new" food to try. On surface level, it doesn't fit the guidelines of the list - the fat percentage is 18%, which in theory is too high.

But the ingredients list was actually quite good - and when I looked at the other bag of food I was buying, I realized this was more than reasonable to add to my mix.

I currently use Blue Buffalo's Indoor Cat (32% protein, 15% fat), Newman's Own Organics Advanced Active/Senior Formula (34/14), and Wellness Healthy Weight (30/8).

14, 15, and 8 as the fat percentages. So, adding in an 18% fat is actually an OK blend, because it's balanced out by the 8.

So, we'll see. It'll be a slow introduction, and I won't make it quite an equal proportion to the other three foods. I'll be keeping an eye to make sure they're not eating the Spot's Stew to the exclusion of the other foods, and we'll see how it goes!
 

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We use the Regular spots Stew AND the Indoor (indoor has 16% fat) but our little one is a champion marathon runner and the higher fat foods is the only way to keep weight on.
 

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AprilF said:
PetCo's selection is far from impressive, by any means. I ended up with Halo's Spot Stew as a "new" food to try. On surface level, it doesn't fit the guidelines of the list - the fat percentage is 18%, which in theory is too high.
If you have a slender hedgie that likes to run alot the 18% fat would be alright for him/her.
If it's a chubby little hedgie I'd just limit the amount of the higher fat food in the mix.
 

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AprilF said:
14, 15, and 8 as the fat percentages. So, adding in an 18% fat is actually an OK blend, because it's balanced out by the 8.
Actually I asked this awhile ago, when I found another food that meets all the requirements, but 18% fat(I wanted different flavours in the mix, rather than getting all chicken, as at least 80% of food out there is chicken).

This is the response I got:
Reaper said:
I wouldn't due to the hedgie probably picking out the highest fat and eating that first. Solid Gold is made from lamb, Innova is turkey and chicken but my hedgies favorite which isn't on the list due to the first ingredient not being meat is Natural Balance green Pea and Duck. I like to provide a variety of flavors as well.
But, like Shelbly's Mom said, if yours is a runner type, then the 18% would be fine. I opted not to add a higher fat because mine is teardrop shaped.
 

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They're both wheelers, but I wouldn't say either is a marathon wheeler... and they're both pretty average hedgies.

Spot's certainly won't be an equal player in the mix, and I'll be monitoring how the kibble goes. So far, Bramble hasn't so much as touched the Spot's. Linny, on the other hand, will eat just about anything I put in front of her, to be honest!
 

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well...I just learned that the food that I was given with my hedgie (science diet for kitten) is pure crap...

should I concider buying another type of food? I also read that I shouldn't switch to another type of food after taking him out of the breeder's home.
 

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AprilF said:
They're both wheelers, but I wouldn't say either is a marathon wheeler... and they're both pretty average hedgies.

Spot's certainly won't be an equal player in the mix, and I'll be monitoring how the kibble goes. So far, Bramble hasn't so much as touched the Spot's. Linny, on the other hand, will eat just about anything I put in front of her, to be honest!
I added Spot's stew to my mix when my hedgie started dropping weight. It turns out it was because she loved her new bucket wheel so much she was burning calories like crazy. If you're worried about them gaining too much weight just add a little bit of the spot's stew. My puff gets 15 kibbles which is a small percentage of her daily food and she doesn't even eat them all.

Your two hedgies sound like mine. Puff is like Bramble, takes her a long time to accept new foods, whereas Chloe sounds like Linny, eating anything that looks like food! One time she ate a piece of fluff off the carpet. Chewed it around in her mouth, I was like oh no what does she have and how do I get it out, then thankfully spit it out. Of course it got her so excited she absolutely drenched herself annointing. I had to pick her up with her hedgie hat because she was so covered in white foam I didn't want to get it all over myself :lol:
 

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I just got a hedgehog... I know this on the list but i want to be sure.

This is really the only thing i could find at petsmart/petco.... How is "Wellness Healthy Weight For Adult Cats" ?
 

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Nearly all of the foods on the list can be found at Petco/Petsmart. Wellness Indoor Health is a great food but is usually too rich by itself. You'll want another food or two to mix with it.
 

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LizardGirl said:
Nearly all of the foods on the list can be found at Petco/Petsmart. Wellness Indoor Health is a great food but is usually too rich by itself. You'll want another food or two to mix with it.
I just put in a bowl of the wellness healthly weight and i have a bowl of spikes hedgehog food. ive given her crickets but i still found one crawling around and one died in the water bowl, so i imagined it ate the other two.......
 

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I'm trying to come up with a food mix and am wondering if anyone sees problems with mixing the following for my hedgies:

Authority Indoor Formula
Blue Buffalo Spa Select Lite
Now! Grain Free Turkey
Purina Cat Chow Naturals
Spike's Delight Premium
Wellness Healthy Weight

I'm making a spreadsheet & am coming up with a final mix that has:

32.4% protein
12.7% fat
6.8% fiber

I'm looking for opinions on whether or not the hedgies will hate any of these foods, if the overall balance seems ok, etc. I'm still playing with some of the numbers, but that's what I'm settling on at this point.

The breeder I got my latest hedgies from spoke VERY highly of the grain-free foods & said she has had larger litters & longer life-spans feeding a mixture of Wellness CORE and Inova Evo. After doing more research, I'm a bit concerned that those are way too high in protein and way too low in fiber. The Now! Grain Free Turkey cat food looks like a good alternative, with a much lower protein % and higher fiber %, but I do think I would like to try more of a mix and I think it's good to give them at least a little "junk food" kibble too. Have any of you tried the Now! Grain Free food? Do the hedgies eat it? What about the others?

I would love to hear your opinions. I'm working on a "Lite" version as well as a version with a little higher protein & fat, for hedgies who need to gain a little weight. Any help you can give me is much appreciated. The information I've found on this thread & in this form has been extremely helpful so far.

Thanks,
Misty
 

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The list doesn't look too bad. The only thing I'd worry about is the NOW! Grain Free is 18% fat. However, you can switch that over to the senior which is 14% fat. Even though the 18% is part of a mix, hedgies tend to find the food that is higher in fat, and eat that first. However, if you notice that your hedgie literally runs the fat off of them, then the 18% would be fine.

Another thing I want to point out, is that(just counting the cat foods) you have 4 chicken and 1 turkey. While it's still a fine mix, you may want to think about taking out one of the chickens and think about adding a different meat.

For example, Solid Gold is lamb, Performatrin Ultra has a salmon and olive oil, and Natural Balance Green Pea and Duck is...well..duck :lol:
It just gives a wider variety of flavours for hedgies to chose from.

As for adding fiber, many here(including myself) add either GrapeNuts cereal, or infant rice cereal to the mix. The infant rice is easier to add, as it is a powder. Many, including my boy tend to push away the GrapeNuts chunks and ignore it. So with the infant rice, it sticks to the cat kibble and guarantees consumption.

Also, even after all this careful planning, some hedgies eat based on SHAPE :lol: There are some here who don't like the shape of the Wellness, while some prefer it. Some like flatter discs, etc etc. So I would suggest always getting the small bag/sample sizes first. And to keep your receipt, as some stores DO allow you to return opened bags.
 

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Thanks for your suggestions. I actually did have the Natural Balance Green Pea & Duck in my hypothetical mix, but I took it out when I added the Purina Cat Chow Naturals. I could add it back in if you think I have too many chicken-based foods. Have you tried any of these on your hedgies? Did they eat them ok?

I had my food names a little too generic on my spreadsheet, when I copied & pasted them for my post. I am using the Now! Grain Free Senior for my mix (the one with 14% fat). No one single food in my mix has over 15% fat, so I don't think I need to worry too much about them eating one fatty food over the rest of the mix.

I also had baby oatmeal on my list for a while, but I was finding that adding it in (unless I'm way off in my calculations on my spreadsheet somehow) didn't really change anything. I have baby oatmeal listed at 14% protein, 18% fat, & 7% fiber. So no matter how much is used, I'm not seeing how it could increase the average fiber to 15%. I keep reading everywhere that people are using Grape Nuts or baby oatmeal to add fiber, but how does that really bump it up? The way I'm doing my calculations (to obtain overall totals) is to add up each food's % multiplied by the % of mix that contains that food. Did that make sense? I'm basically averaging out the protein, fat, & fiber based on how much of each food I'm planning to use in the mix & that gives me the total %. So if oatmeal is 7% fiber, even if I used a lot of it, how could the average ever be the desired 15%? Am I thinking of this the wrong way? How much oatmeal or grape nuts are people adding to their mixes? I like that the oatmeal kind of sticks to the food....but if it's not bumping up the fiber and is actually just bumping up the fat, is it really worth it? I'm not bashing the idea...just trying to make sure I'm understanding this right.

Thanks for any help you can offer. It's good to know I might be on the right track.

Misty
 

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None of mine liked the baby oatmeal or the grape nuts.
So I add Multi Grain hot cereal by Hodgson Mill.
I sprinkle just a tiny amount on their food a few times a week and it work's for mine and they actually eat it.
I don't know what the % of everthing would be for it though.
It has:
Fat 3g or 5% %daily value
Dietary Fiber 6g or 24% %daily value
Serving Size is 1/3 cup. (of course you wouldn't give anywhere near that much to a little hedgie.) So I'm not sure how to figure up exactly how much they would be getting (math is NOT my strong point).


I haven't heard of anyone else using this so I don't know their thought's on it.
 

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I have tried grape nuts for additional fiber when they were recommended, but my boy will not eat them. I haven't tried the baby rice/oatmeal flakes... so can't comment there.

Inky is pretty skinny and needs a high fat diet to keep weight on. His diet is a lot of high fat foods, and he gets a lot of insects- that is what I use for additional fiber. Along with his regular three course meal (spoiled butt) he gets ten mealies, plus additional treats (mealie pupae/beetles, crickets, waxworms, wet cat food, meat, etc). So I use mealies mainly in hopes of more fiber.

Since you have gliders, I think you would have mealies on hand, so maybe that would work? (though I am NOT a suggie expert and maybe I am totally off about feeding them mealies... :lol: )

Just a thought, since I haven't had luck with other recommended supplements either. Personally even without the mealies Inky has great healthy poop, I'm not sure how much the fiber is really needed.
 

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Thanks. Yeah, we do often keep live crickets & mealworms and we have dried mealworms, silkworm pupae, & wax worms because we sell them in our glider store & use them for our gliders. So yeah, we are planning to feed insects to our hedgehogs as well and hopefully that will help bump up the fiber high enough.

I know it seems like I have a lot of foods in my mix. Does anyone see any problems with this? The highest-fat food is only at 15% & has good protein & fiber percentages, so even if they went for that first, I don't think that would be a problem. Is too much variety good or bad for hedgies? I want to give them variety but don't want to encourage them to be picky. With the hedgehog we've had for a little while, he does tend to eat one food out of his mix more than the others, so if he doesn't eat something one night, we only add enough mix to his bowl to make sure he has enough to eat, which means if he's hungry, he'll eat it all. And he does eat all of them, he just has an obvious favorite. With the new mix, all of the foods are pretty high-quality, so I wouldn't be too concerned about health issues if they liked one food more than the others. However, I don't want to be stuck with a giant bag of expensive food for nothing...lol. Maybe when we buy all of these, before we actually mix a big batch, I'll try putting a kibble of each into their bowls & see if there's one in particular that they don't eat. Then I guess I could try returning any that don't work out. It'll be a little hard to tell for sure though because 5 of our 6 hedgehogs are new to our house and they're still a little stressed out from the traveling & change of environment.....so some of them aren't eating too great in general right now.

I only have about 2 weeks of their other food though, so I need to either buy more of that or start making the change now, so I can do it gradually.

Any other opinions you have are greatly appreciated. In the sugar glider world, people are REALLY opinionated about diets, so I kind of come from that mentality where I don't want to mess anything up by selecting a diet (or recommending & selling a diet to people who buy my babies) that's not proven to work well or isn't accepted amongst other breeders. I'm getting the vibe with hedgehogs that in general, just about any mix of natural cat foods is pretty acceptable, as long as you keep the basic rules in mind (shoot for the right amounts of protein, fat, & fiber, and look for quality ingredients) & as long as your hedgehog will eat it.

Misty
 
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