Unsafe Food For Hedgehogs

Hedgehogs, are delightful pets cherished by many. However, while they may seem small and easygoing, hedgehogs have specific dietary needs that must be met to keep them healthy and happy. As responsible pet owners, it's crucial to understand what foods are safe and what should be avoided when feeding your hedgehog. 

Understanding Hedgehog Diet

The most common species of domesticated hedgehog is the African Pygmy hedgehog, a hybrid of the White-bellied or Four-toed Hedgehog and the Algerian Hedgehog. These cute critters have captivated pet enthusiasts since their domestication became popular in the early 1980s. However, despite their diminutive size, hedgehogs still retain many wild behaviors, including a fear of predators, especially humans. In the wild, hedgehogs primarily feast on insects. However, as pets, they require a diet rich in high-protein, low-fat pellets. To ensure a balanced diet in captivity, many pet owners turn to specially formulated hedgehog foods like Hedgehog Essential or Hedgehog Complete supplemented with Berries & Bugs or Premium Insectivore Diet to help vary the diet. Occasional treats like live mealwormsdried insects, or our Hedgehog Treat Variety Pack are great for bonding.

Unsafe Foods for Hedgehogs

While hedgehogs have adaptable palates, not all foods are safe for them to consume. Here are some items to avoid:

1. Dairy Products:

Hedgehogs lack the enzymes necessary to digest lactose properly, making dairy products like milk, cheese, and yogurt difficult for them to process. Feeding dairy to your hedgehog can lead to digestive issues and discomfort.

2. Sugary Treats:

Hedgehogs may enjoy the occasional sweet treat, but sugary foods like candies, chocolates, and sugary fruits can cause obesity, tooth decay, and other health problems in hedgehogs. It's best to avoid these altogether.

3. Raw Meat:

While cooked meats are generally safe for hedgehogs, raw meat poses the risk of bacterial contamination, which can lead to serious illnesses such as salmonella and E. coli infections. Always ensure meat is thoroughly cooked before offering it to your hedgehog.

4. Citrus Fruits:

Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, and grapefruits contain high levels of acidity that can upset your hedgehog's stomach and potentially lead to digestive issues. It's safer to opt for low-acid fruits like apples or bananas as occasional treats.

5. Nuts and Seeds:

While nuts and seeds may seem like natural treats for hedgehogs, they can pose a choking hazard or cause intestinal blockages if consumed in large quantities. Stick to commercially available hedgehog treats or carefully monitor portions if offering nuts or seeds.


As loving pet owners, it's our responsibility to provide hedgehogs with a safe and nutritious diet that meets their unique dietary needs. By avoiding unsafe foods and opting for high-quality hedgehog foods like those offered by Exotic Nutrition, you can ensure your prickly friend enjoys a happy and healthy life by your side. 

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Notice: Exotic Nutrition cannot provide specific care guidelines on an individual basis. Please consult a veterinarian or experienced breeder.

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