Hedgehogs are famous for their sharp quills and their ability to eat everything. Therefore, as hedgehog owners, we are always looking for little treats for our pets. However, it is important to look into whichever food item you think about giving your hedgehog.
While hedgehogs do not mind consuming certain foods, it does not mean they are good for them. So can hedgehogs eat dried fruit or not?
Hedgehogs can eat dried fruit, but you should avoid giving it to them.
Dried fruit pose benefits for humans, but they do not provide hedgehogs with any. It is best to stick to different forms of protein when planning your hedgehog’s diet. In addition, dried fruit is quite fatty, which can cause hedgehogs to gain weight. There is also a high chance for hedgehogs to choke on dried fruit. Hence, it is best to keep dried fruit from your hedgehog’s diet.
Why Can’t Hedgehogs Have Dried Fruit?
Some fruits are safe for hedgehogs to eat. However, since hedgehogs enjoy different varieties, some people think that dried fruits are safe for them.
On the other hand, one of the harmful foods to hedgehogs is dried fruits. Dried fruits come with preservatives that ensure that they do not decay naturally. Hence, the preservatives are what make the dried fruits harmful to hedgehogs. Over time, gradual consumption of dried fruits can make the preservatives toxic to hedgehogs. The preservatives build up, resulting in health issues in hedgehogs.
Dried fruits go through a process where the water content is removed. Hence, by doing so, the sugar level concerning the weight of the fruit increases. Hence, dried fruit contains twice the sugar level compared to non-dried fruit in terms of weight.
Excess sugar is harmful to hedgehogs. Excess sugar can cause hedgehogs to become obese and contract diseases like diabetes with time.
In addition, dried fruit is sticky when encountering the hedgehog’s saliva. Unlike other food items, like kibble, which the hedgehog can break down into smaller pieces, dried fruit can get stuck. Your hedgehog can suffer from dental issues if the dried fruit is stuck in its teeth. Moreover, the dried fruit is also a choking hazard, making it dangerous for your hedgehog to consume.
Can Hedgehogs Eat Raisins?
A popular kind of dried fruit is raisins. Raisins are beneficial for humans and consumed in various ways, combined with sweet and savoury dishes. Therefore, hedgehog owners assume that raisins can have the same benefits for hedgehogs.
However, hedgehogs cannot consume raisins. These dried fruits are toxic to hedgehogs and can cause damage to their organs. Consuming raisins constantly over a period can damage a hedgehog’s kidney and liver. In addition, raisins are also a choking hazard for hedgehogs as they are sticky. Raisins can likely get stuck to your in your hedgehog’s throat and mouth.
Like all dried fruits, raisins also include preservatives which make them edible for a long time. The preservatives make it difficult for hedgehogs to digest raisins and result in stomach problems.
What Other Fruit Can’t Hedgehogs Eat?
Other than dried fruits, there are more which your hedgehog should not be eating. While it is natural as a pet owner to give your hedgehog a variety of foods, some fruits simply harm them.
Hedgehogs love to consume berries such as blueberries and raspberries. However, you must avoid giving wild berries to your hedgehog. It is easy to give your hedgehog a poisonous wild berry accidentally. Hence, if you are unaware of the right kind of wild berries, you must avoid them. Moreover, even if a berry is not toxic, it may contain bacteria or insects which can cause harm to hedgehogs.
In addition, another fruit that is toxic to hedgehogs is grapes. Grapes can cause renal and liver damage in hedgehogs. There are other better options of fruit you can give to your hedgehog other than grapes. Even grapes in small amounts can have negative effects on your hedgehog’s health.
Citrus fruits also do not suit hedgehogs, and you should avoid them. For example, oranges are popular citrus fruit, but it is quite acidic. The acidity can cause digestive problems in your hedgehog, which will be in a lot of pain. Moreover, acidic fruits also damage the hedgehog’s digestive tract over time.
Many people believe that avocados are not harmful to hedgehogs. There is a lot of misleading information floating that these fruits are safe to give to your little pet. However, avocados are toxic to hedgehogs, and you must completely avoid them. Even giving avocadoes as a treat should be avoided.
Another acidic fruit that hedgehogs should not be eating is pineapples. The fruit is sweet and contains a lot of natural sugar. By consuming too many pineapples, hedgehogs can gain weight and contract diseases like diabetes. In addition, acidity can lead to digestive problems for hedgehogs.
Apart from avoiding certain fruits, it is also important to practice moderations. You can give your hedgehog fruits like apples, strawberries, and bananas if you control how much you give them. Even feeding your hedgehog too many fruits that are safe for them can cause problems in the long run. Moreover, you must never replace fruits for your hedgehog’s actual diet.
Hedgehogs are known to enjoy a varied diet comprising of meat, vegetables, and fruits. However, there are certain fruits that hedgehogs should not be consuming, like dried fruits. Dried fruits contain a lot of preservatives which can cause digestive issues.
Moreover, the sugar content is too high, which can cause hedgehogs to become diabetic. There is also a problem of dried fruits choking hedgehogs as they can get stuck to their throat and mouth.
Other than dried fruits, there are other fruits which you should avoid. For example, citrus fruits like oranges are too acidic. Similarly, pineapples are also acidic but are too sweet too. Other fruits include grapes, avocados and wild berries.
It is best to give fruits to your hedgehog in moderation. Even fruits like apples, strawberries and bananas, which are safe for hedgehogs, can be harmful in the long run if given excessively.