Can Hedgehogs Eat Other Pet Food? A List of 35+ Items

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This is the 3rd article in this series. To check the previous articles in this series, go over here and here.

Can Hedgehogs Eat Other Pet Food

Hedgehogs can eat other pet food. But, as hedgehogs are quite different from most other animals, the food label should be checked for ingredients and nutrients before providing to the hedgy. It should also be checked whether the food is hard or soft. A check should also be done for preservatives and harmful elements.

There is so much more to know. And, hence we have created both small lists and detailed statements to help you out.

Pet Foods and treats that Hedgehogs can eat safely:

  • Cat food
  • Dog food
  • Baby food
  • Tuna cat food
  • Wet dog food
  • Fish cat food
  • Dry cat food
  • Kitten cat food
  • Dog food in jelly
  • Dog food in gravy
  • Cat food in gravy
  • Cat food in jelly
  • Wet cat food
  • Dry dog food
  • Canned cat food
  • Fish flavored cat food

Pet foods and treats that should be avoided:

  • Hamster food
  • Ferret food
  • Dog kibble
  • Rat food
  • Vegetarian cat food
  • Any cat food
  • Rabbit food
  • Guinea pig food
  • Bird food
  • Chinchilla food
  • Gerbil Food

Pet treats that hedgehogs can eat:

  • Kitten biscuits
  • Cat biscuits
  • Dog treats
  • Cat treats

Pet treats that hedgehogs should avoid:

  • Dog biscuits
  • Hamster treats
  • ferret treats
  • Yogies
  • Gerbil Treats
  • Chinchilla treats
  • Rabbit treats
  • Guinea pig treats

Other pet food (details)

Cat food and hedgehogs

Yes, hedgehogs can definitely eat cat food but try to provide good brands that have high nutritional value like wellness et cetera. Also, avoid anything canned or stored in sugary/salty water.

Products from wellness, blue buffalo, and wild calling are considered high quality by us. Here is the complete chart with nutrients.

Dog food and hedgehogs

Hedgehogs can eat dog food, but do look at the label and check out all the nutrients/macronutrients before providing that to your hedgehog. Do make sure that the food is in small chunks. Else, your hedgehog will not be able to chew and digest them properly. It could also create digestive problems if the food is frozen in salty water or has high amounts of sugar in it.

Hamster food and hedgehogs

Hedgehogs and hamsters are entirely different animals and have different diet requirements. Therefore, Hedgehogs should not be provided with hamster food. There aren’t many nutrients in it, and the food is mostly full of sugars. It could also cause teeth problems. And, do remember that hedgehog’s teeth don’t grow like rodents.

Ferret food and hedgehogs

Ferret food is quite high in proteins and fats. The average range of ferret food protein is around 35 to 40%. This is not suitable for hedgehogs. An adult hedgy should get around 30 to 35% of proteins and 15% or less in fats. Ferret food also contains dangerous elements like BHA, which could cause cancer in hedgehogs in the long run.[1]

If your hedgehog is on a ferret food diet and is not willing to eat anything else, try to slowly shift his diet by adding small pieces of cat kibble with the currently provided food.

Baby food and hedgehogs

There are different types of baby foods available in the market. Some can be provided to hedgehogs, and some shouldn’t be. You should not provide baby food that contains onion powder to hedgehogs. Similarly, some baby foods contain citrus-based fruit products. They also should be avoided. All the ingredients in baby food should be checked before putting them in front of the hedgie.

Tuna cat food and hedgehogs

Tuna-based cat food can be provided to hedgehogs as hedgehogs eat fish in the wild. But, do remember that you could face some smelly poops. Do also check the amount of proteins in them. Some tuna-based foods can exceed the 35% protein mark, which is not suitable.

These types of fish-based cat foods can contain high amounts of phosphorus as well. So little pieces wouldn’t do much damage.

Also, always check the required nutrient values as there are tons of foods available in the market, but everyone would not suit your hedgie’s needs.

Wet dog food and hedgehogs

It should be fine to provide wet dog food to hedgehogs. You can include some portions of it with the existing diet. Do remember that it is slightly expensive than the dry foods available in the market. Also, thoroughly read the nutritional values in the food before providing it to the hedgie.

Fish cat food and hedgehogs

You should not face any problems with providing fish-based cat foods to the hedgehogs. Some people have suggested that their hedgehogs usually poop a lot more with these, but in case you face such problems, stop providing them.

Do remember to always read the nutritional label before doing anything.

Dry cat food and hedgehogs

Dry cat foods are one of the most staple ingredients of the hedgehog’s diet. They are also quite cheap to buy in large quantities. Do remember that there are good and bad brands as a lot of companies make them.

So, choose wisely based on nutrients available. Some of the most preferred dry cat foods are listed here.

Dog kibble and hedgehogs

You should not provide dog kibble to hedgehogs as most of these are based on corn, which hedgehogs cannot digest. They are also low in protein values and come in large chunks, which would be harder to chew or digest for the hedgehog. If you still want to provide, crush them into smaller pieces.

Rat food and hedgehogs

Most rat foods available in the market are quite low in proteins and fats. Rats are quite different from hedgehogs, and so their diets are different as well. Rats can easily digest corn and other grain-based foods, while hedgehogs can’t. So, you should not provide rat food to hedgehogs at all.

Vegetarian cat food and hedgehogs

Most vegetarian cat foods available in the market are quite low in nutrients. Also, hedgehogs are naturally insectivorous[2], and making them live on a vegetarian diet would be cruelty.

They also cannot process plants as we do. Hence, you should not provide vegetarian/vegan cat food to hedgehogs.

Any cat food and hedgehogs

Do not provide any random cat food to hedgehogs. Cat foods come in a lot of varieties and are made by different companies with higher and lower standards. Some cat foods could cause digestive issues in your hedgehogs and can be incorrectly labeled as well. Hence, only provide high-quality cat foods to your hedgehogs.

Brands such as Wellness, Blue Buffalo, and By Nature create quality cat food products.

Kitten cat food and hedgehogs

Adult hedgehogs should not be provided with kitten cat food as kitten food is quite high in fats. Though, baby hedgehogs can be kitten food as babies need a high-fat diet to grow. There are two recommendations in this category – Royal canine baby cat food and nutrition kitten growth mix.

Dog food in jelly and hedgehogs

There is no problem in providing jelly-based dog foods as long as they contain all the essential required nutrients and minerals for hedgehogs. In fact, jelly-based foods are much preferred when providing wet foods to hedgehogs.

Dog food in gravy and hedgehogs

You can definitely provide dog food in gravy as long as it checks all the essential ingredients on your list. Do make sure that these foods do not contain any nuts or dried fruits. Sometimes, hedgehogs do have a preference for foods, and they could accept or reject food based on that. So, test and try.

Cat food in gravy and hedgehogs

Cat food in gravy can be provided to hedgehogs as long as it contains all the nutrients that your hedgehog needs. It is less preferred compared to jelly-based foods, but there should be no harm in providing it to them.

Cat food in jelly and hedgehogs

Jelly based cat foods can be provided easily to hedgehogs, and they are actually preferred among wet foods. Do make sure that all the nutritional requirements are covered within the cat food. Sometimes, hedgehogs may reject foods based on their personal preference. So, start small and test whether your hedgie likes it or not.

Wet cat food and hedgehogs

Hedgehogs can eat wet cat food in control quantities. Wet cat food, although slightly higher in price than dry cat food, has suitable amounts of proteins and fats for hedgehogs. You should serve them with other foods to test them out. Do remember that hedgehogs can make a mess when provided with wet foods.

Rabbit food and hedgehogs

Rabbits are herbivorous animals; they eat a vegetarian diet. Hence, providing rabbit food to hedgehogs would not be a great idea. Their diets are completely different. Also, many rabbit foods contain hay, which is not suitable for hedgehogs. Rabbit teeth are quite strong, and hence rabbit food pellets are quite hard as well.

Guinea pig food and hedgehogs

Guinea pigs are herbivorous, and therefore their foods should not be provided to hedgehogs. Also, as the requirements are different, hedgehogs are not going to find any nutrients in guinea pig food. Guinea pig food also does not contain any meat, which is required for the hedgie to sustain itself. It also has hay, which is a big no-no.

Bird food and hedgehogs

Birds and hedgehogs are quite different animals. Bird food has a lot of seeds, and seeds are completely off-limits for hedgehogs. They could get stuck and could cause digestive issues. They will also have preservatives and could have parts of raw meat, which should never be provided to a small insectivorous like a hedgehog.

Dry dog food and hedgehogs

There is no harm if you hedgehog tries some pieces of dry dog food. However, as dogs have big teeth, their food chunks are also larger. These chunks will be harder to chew for the little hedgy. Therefore, unless you can crush them, avoid providing them to the hedgehog.

Canned cat food and hedgehogs

Hedgehogs can eat canned cat foods as long as they do not contain any harmful preservatives. Also, make sure that they do not contain poultry by-products which are not suitable for hedgehogs. Otherwise, you can provide them once a week. Do also make sure that they are not freeze-dried.

Fish flavored cat food and hedgehogs

Hedgehogs should not have any problems in eating flavored cat foods as long as the flavoring is not problematic or contains preservatives harmful to hedgehogs. Do check all the nutrients contained in the flavored cat food as sometimes these flavored ones contain fewer nutrients than the normal ones.

Chinchilla food and hedgehogs

It is not recommended that you provide Chinchilla food to your hedgehogs. Chinchilla foods generally have very different nutritional values compared to what your hedgehog requires. They also contain things like nuts and seeds, which should not be provided to hedgehogs. After all, chinchilla’s are herbivorous animals, and hedgehogs are omnivores.

Gerbil Food and hedgehogs

You should definitely not provide gerbil food to your hedgehogs as they can contain nuts and grains which are not suitable for hedgehogs. Also, the macronutrients in them are not sufficient for your little hedgie to survive.


Kitten biscuits and hedgehogs

Hedgehogs can eat kitten biscuits as long as they complete the nutritional requirements. Do remember to buy only those kitten biscuits that are not hard to chew and are available in small chunks. Sometimes, kitten food is high in fats, and therefore it should only be provided to a young hedgehog (six months or younger) and never to an adult.

Cat biscuits and hedgehogs

Cat biscuits are quite suitable for hedgehogs to eat as they have very acceptable nutrient values. However, some of them could contain ingredients like poultry by-products and corn in high amounts, and hence providing them in large quantities is not advised.

Dog biscuits and hedgehogs

Most dog biscuits have a high amount of grain and are low in essential nutrients like proteins and fats— they are made for a completely different animal. And hence, they should not be provided in larger quantities to the hedgehogs. In case you still want to go ahead, crush them before making them a part of your hedgie’s meal.

Hamster treats and hedgehogs

Hamster treats should not be provided to hedgehogs. Hamsters are vegetarian animals and love to eat sugar-based treats. They also can regain their teeth once they have fallen. This is not possible for hedgehogs.

The only treats that you should provide it to hedgehogs are listed in this series.


Ferret treats and hedgehogs

Hedgehogs and ferrets are quite different animals, and therefore hedgehogs should not be provided with ferret treats. The only acceptable treats that hedgehogs should be provided with are insects, prepared meats, fruits, and vegetables.

Dog treats and hedgehogs

Surely, you can provide dog treats to hedgehogs as long as they contain an ample amount of nutrients and do not contain any harmful elements. Some dog treats are quite hard to chew as they are meant for powerful dog teethes. A good recommendation would be wellness pure rewards jerky for dogs[3].

Cat treats and hedgehogs

Some cat treats are quite fine for hedgehogs. But, it depends on a case to case basis. Do check all the nutrient requirements and whether they contain any harmful elements. Feline Greenies (chicken flavor)[4] and pure bites’ freeze-dried shrimps[5] can be a great example of cat treats for hedgehogs.

Yogies and hedgehogs

Yogies are yogurt-based treats for small animals. They should not be provided to hedgehogs as hedgehogs are lactose intolerant and would not be able to digestive yogurt-based foods properly. Yogies also do not contain many nutrients. They are also opposite to hedgehogs’ nutritional requirements – they are high in fat and low in protein.

Gerbil Treats and hedgehogs

Gerbils are rodents and therefore need different macronutrients compared to hedgehogs. Their teeth are also quite strong and can grow after decay. Hence, gerbil treats should not be provided to hedgehogs.

Chinchilla treats and hedgehogs

Chinchillas do not require that much amount of proteins and fats as hedgehogs do. They are also quite friendly towards plant-based meals as those are a part of their natural diet. Hence, providing any chinchilla treats to hedgehogs would not be suitable.

Rabbit treats and hedgehogs

Rabbits, and other small animals, treats are filled with grains. They have very little macro nutritional value to hedgehogs. Hedgehog treats should be from insects, prepared meats, and some vegetables. Therefore, you should not provide rabbit treats to hedgehogs.

Guinea pig treats and hedgehogs

Guinea pigs are vegetarians by nature, and therefore, their treats contain a lot of plants, vegetables, nuts, and grains. This is not a suitable diet for hedgehogs. And hence, guinea pig treats should not be provided to hedgehogs at all. In the long term, such treats could do severe damage.

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