Can Hedgehogs Eat Dog Food? All You Need to Know!

Hedgehog feeding may be challenging. Furthermore, in the wild, they are opportunistic feeders who take advantage of any insects that come their way. It is really difficult to replicate these dishes. You may naturally have some questions regarding dog food. After all, it is a typical high-protein food. Should you feed it? Let’s investigate.

Can hedgehogs eat dog food? Hedgehogs can eat either dry or wet dog food. Dry food (kibble) is preferred because it includes more fiber (an essential ingredient for hedgehogs), lasts longer, and gives crunch (which aids in tooth cleaning). All food should be crushed so that a hedgehog can eat it. For more information on hedgehog diets and whether they can eat dog food, see the detailed guide below. 

Can Hedgehogs Eat Dog Food?

Hedgehogs can eat dog food for nutrition, but it is better served as part of a more diversified diet. A diet that includes live insects, other protein sources (such as cooked chicken), vegetables, and a modest amount of soft fruit is optimal. Dog food is only one possible choice and source of nourishment. Naturally, this is assuming that the dog food is of a high enough caliber.

Dog food is not necessary by any means. Hedgehogs may find dog food to be a convenient source of protein, while pet owners may find it conveniently accessible. However, if hedgehogs eat certain dog food regularly, they may be harmed by chemicals, preservatives, or inadequate vitamin levels.

In addition to offering a variety of vitamins and minerals, high-quality dog food products also offer a respectable supply of meat-derived lipids. And that fits in rather well with the idea that a hedgehog’s diet should consist of 30–35% protein and 5–15% fat. Dog diets that are inexpensive and of poor quality, as well as those with a lot of additives, preservatives, and other questionable components, are to be avoided.

Exploring the Feasibility

Dog food is often produced to satisfy canine nutritional requirements, which might be very different from hedgehog dietary requirements. Despite being predominantly insectivores, hedgehogs may eat a range of proteins, including those included in some brands of dog food.

What Dog Food Is Best For Hedgehogs?

what dog food is good for hedgehogs

The best dog food for hedgehogs is high-protein dry kibble that has been thoroughly crushed. This allows a hedgehog to fit the food into their jaws and get the nourishment they require. Unfortunately, there have been several reports of malnourished hedgehogs. Each of them received kibble that was too big for them to consume.

However, dry food is preferable as long as a hedgehog can handle it securely and successfully. And here is the explanation. Dry dog food is far more fibrous. Its texture is firm and hard because of this. Hedgehogs also have a high fiber demand.

Simultaneously, the fiber included in dry dog food aids in the natural cleaning of a hedgehog’s teeth, much like the hard shells of insects, or exoskeletons, would. In these little animals, tooth and gum disorders have been linked to an excess of soft food in their diet.

Benefits and Risks

Dog food can give hedgehogs a simple protein source that is readily available to pet owners. However, caution is advised since many dog diets may include chemicals, preservatives, or uneven nutritional levels, providing possible health hazards to hedgehogs with frequent intake. Pet owners must carefully read ingredient labels and choose high-quality dog diets that are devoid of dangerous ingredients. 

Furthermore, moderation is essential; dog food should not be the main source of protein for hedgehogs; rather, it should be used as a supplement. Pet owners may contribute to the health of their hedgehog pets by choosing appropriate dog food carefully and introducing it into their diets sparingly.

What Do Dogs Eat?

Dogs require a well-balanced diet rich in high-quality protein sources such as meat, chicken, and fish to maintain muscular health. Carbohydrates from cereals and vegetables offer energy, but fats from sources such as chicken fat and fish oil promote skin and coat health. Essential vitamins and minerals are important for general health and are frequently included in commercial dog meals.

Onions, chocolate, and grapes are a few foods that should be avoided owing to toxicity. Any dietary adjustments should be made gradually, and speaking with a veterinarian will guarantee that the food is tailored to the particular dietary requirements of the dog.

Comparison of Hedgehog and Rabbit Dietary Needs

The following table compares the main nutritional requirements of dogs and hedgehogs:

For Hedgehogs:

Aspect Hedgehogs
Primary Diet Insects, high-protein cat food, fruits, vegetables
Protein Requirement High (20-30% of diet)
Fiber Requirement Moderate (5-15% of diet)
Calcium Requirement Moderate
Vitamin Requirement Vitamin E, Vitamin D3 (supplementation often required)
Water Intake Moderate
Special Considerations Avoid citrus fruits, grapes, raisins, and high-fat treats
Feeding Schedule Nocturnal; may require feeding at night

For Dogs:

Aspect Dogs
Primary Diet Meat, poultry, fish, carbohydrates, vegetables
Protein Requirement Moderate (18-25% of diet)
Fiber Requirement Moderate (5-10% of diet)
Calcium Requirement Moderate to High
Vitamin Requirement A balanced mix of vitamins and minerals
Water Intake High
Special Considerations Avoid chocolate, grapes, onions, garlic
Feeding Schedule Varies; typically fed during the day

How Much Dog Food Can A Hedgehog Eat?

Hedgehog Eat Dog Food

Hedgehogs can be given 1-2 teaspoons of wet dog chow twice a day. However, for dry crushed kibble, a modest quantity can be placed for a hedgehog to consume throughout the day. Hedgehogs succeed well on a free-feeding schedule, and dry food is perfect for this type of diet.

So long as no other animals, including dogs and cats, have access to or are enticed to such meals. Wet dog food is a little trickier since it spoils. You should be aware of this, especially in extremely hot or cold conditions. Consider that the advice of 1-2 teaspoons of dog food is only a guideline.

The exact amount of food a hedgehog should eat is determined by the brand of food, the hedgehog’s age, degree of activity, and health state. As a result, tiny and growing hedgehogs will have a greater appetite and require more food than an older, less active hedgehog, for example.

So, feeding will alter over time. Of course, a veterinarian can always answer inquiries and give professional advice on any nutritional concerns. One thing to consider is that hedgehogs should not be given dog food entirely. This is especially true for moist dog food.  If you can provide additional protein sources (such as lean meats) and a plentiful supply of live insects, your hedgehog will be able to get considerably more nutrients.

Remember that hedgehogs are naturally insectivores, therefore the more you can match their diet, the better. Finally, if you do not want to serve dog food, investigate the availability of specialist hedgehog food brands on the market. These have been created to fulfill the demands of these little mammals, eliminating difficulties such as kibble size and food spoilage.

Compatibility of Dog Food with Hedgehog Diet 

A hedgehog’s diet and dog food compatibility depend on several variables, including nutritional value, dietary preferences, and possible health problems. This is a compatibility analysis:

Nutritional Content:

A combination of protein, carbs, fats, vitamins, and minerals is often included in dog food to satisfy their nutritional requirements. Hedgehogs can withstand a wider variety of protein sources, including those included in dog food while being largely insectivores.

Dog food, however, could not offer the precise ratio of nutrients needed for the best possible health for hedgehogs, including increased protein content and specialized vitamins like D3 and E.

Dietary Preferences:

Hedgehogs naturally favor insect-rich, high-protein diets. While dog food can enhance their protein intake, it should not replace their basic diet of insects and specialist hedgehog food. Some hedgehogs may favor specific types or tastes of dog food, while others may reject it completely.

Health Risks:

If routinely taken, certain dog meals may include additives, preservatives, or incorrect nutritional levels that might be hazardous to hedgehogs. Additionally, owing to variances in nutritional needs, dog diets made for particular life stages or breeds might not be appropriate for hedgehogs. Giving hedgehogs dog food that is very high in fat, sugar, or salt might cause obesity, digestive problems, or other health concerns.


Dog food shouldn’t be the main source of protein for hedgehogs; it should only be used occasionally. A balanced diet of premium hedgehog food combined with insects, fruits, and vegetables should be the priority for pet owners raising hedgehogs. Choose premium dog food brands free of dangerous substances, and keep a careful eye on your hedgehog’s well-being and dietary habits.

What To Feed Hedgehogs?

hedgehog feed

Although hedgehogs eat a wide range of meals, mealworms and crickets are among their favorite insects. Additionally, they like eating the specialty hedgehog food that pet retailers sell. You may provide them with vegetables like lettuce and carrots, as well as fruits like apples and berries.

They may occasionally eat a small amount of cat food, but only if it’s not very fatty. Give them no junk food, nuts, seeds, or dairy products. Additionally, remember to keep fresh water available for them at all times. If you’re not sure what to feed your hedgehog, ask a veterinarian for advice.


Can I Feed My Hedgehog Dry Dog Food?

Hedgehogs may consume dry dog food as long as it is broken into small, manageable bits. Hedgehogs have relatively tiny jaws, and most kibble is too huge when it arrives. 

Which food do hedgehogs prefer for dogs?

Kitten-sized cookies are ideal supplemental feeds for hedgehogs because of their tiny teeth. These smaller portions are convenient and allow hedgehogs to consume their meals comfortably.

Which kinds of dog food are OK for hedgehogs?

Choose dry dog food that is low in fat and high in protein. Seek for companies that provide hedgehogs and other tiny omnivores with a portion of well-balanced food.

Is there anything in dog food that hedgehogs should avoid?

Hedgehogs should avoid dog meals with excessive fat content, artificial additives, or huge kibble sizes that are difficult for them to chew and digest.

Can hedgehogs rely only on dog chow for nutrition?

No, dog food should not be the only source of sustenance for hedgehogs. While it can be included in their diet, hedgehogs also require a range of other foods, such as insects, fruits, and vegetables, to ensure they get all of the nutrients they need to be healthy.


In summary, can hedgehogs eat dog food as part of their diet, but it should not be their primary source of nourishment. Choosing high-quality, low-fat, protein-rich dog food can help supplement their diet, but diversity is essential.

They require a wide variety of nutrients, including live insects, fruits, vegetables, and specially-made hedgehog food. It is critical to choose dog food carefully, avoiding dangerous ingredients and excessive fat content. A balanced and varied diet adapted to hedgehog requirements is critical for their general health and well-being.