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Home Forums Champions’ chat Whats in your dish? Reply To: Whats in your dish?

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Hi Hettie

I hope no-one misunderstands your last post and thinks that dried mealworms, sunflower hearts and peanuts might be good for hogs. Just to be clear for everyone else – they are best avoided completely. All have an imbalance of phosphorous to calcium which can lead to bone problems. Sunflower hearts and peanuts to a lesser extent than mealworms but are best not fed unless they are part of a properly balanced hedgehog food.

Dried mealworms not only have an imbalance of phosphorous and calcium, but they have low nutritional value and hogs can become addicted to them. This has, I understand been a problem for carers/rescues/rehabilitators in the past when hogs, especially young ones, refuse to eat anything else – when it is the mealworms which may have caused their problem to start with.

The site you mentioned seems to be a site for pets, therefore, presumably pet hedgehogs(?) – a different type of hedgehog. Wild hedgehogs do not need treats. It is treat enough for them that we are putting out supplementary food for them. But if we are offering them something, it needs to be of good quality. We don’t want them filling up on things which aren’t particularly good for them.

There is information on the main part of Hedgehog Street about feeding which is more reliable than much you can read elsehwere on the internet.
Quite a while ago, I think crushed peanuts were considered o.k. but knowledge advances and now we know there are better things.

Re. the slugs. It can look quite strange to someone who is thinking hedgehogs eat slugs! But they don’t tend to go for those really big ones, which are the ones which seem to go for the hog food here. A bit big for their little mouths to tackle, I think. The good news is that I understand it is the much smaller slugs which do most damage to plants and they are the ones hogs are more likely to eat. The hogs here never seem at all bothered by sharing a bowl with slugs!

I wouldn’t keep moving the food around too often, or the hog won’t know where to look for it. You really need to stick to one type of food for a while. If the hog is hungry it will eat it. Give it a chance to get used to one type of food. Alternatively, maybe you have got a good wildlife garden with plenty of other food! But if the hog is one you have fairly newly discovered, presumably it was getting food from somewhere else before either wild, or someone else feeding.

Personally, I would be more inclined to use cat food than dog food and probably chicken variety. I understand it’s more easily digested. But I know that others do use dog food.

Your garden sounds lovely – glad to hear you don’t use slug pellets. Best not to use chemicals at all, I always think, and let things sort themselves out. Then the ladybirds come in to eat the aphids, the birds to eat the caterpillars, etc.

Good luck with the hog.