It can be very tempting to share your pack of popcorn with your hedgehog. But before feeding your hedgehog on popcorn, you will want to know whether the popcorn is safe and beneficial to them. You will also want to know how much popcorn (if any) you can give to a hedgehog. Read on, for answers.
Can hedgehogs eat popcorn daily? Yes, hedgehogs can eat popcorn but not daily and only in small amounts. The popcorn you give to a hedgehog needs to be plain – without salt, sauce, butter or any other flavoring. And you need to remove the kernel, and only give the hedgehog the soft white part of popcorn.
Do Hedgehogs Eat Popcorn?
In answering the can hedgehogs eat popcorn daily question, perhaps the best place to start is by establishing whether the hedgehogs have the ability to eat popcorn.
That we will do by asking ourselves: do hedgehogs normally eat popcorn? And the answer is yes. When hedgehogs are presented with popcorn, they normally proceed to eat it.
Many people give popcorn to their hedgehogs. And the hedgehogs eat the popcorn with relish.
So, at the most basic level, the answer to the can hedgehogs eat popcorn daily question is yes for eating popcorn and no for eating it daily. They have the ability to chew, ingest and (to a certain extent) digest popcorn.
Is Popcorn Safe For Hedgehogs?
To put it differently, can hedgehogs eat popcorn daily safely?
Hedgehogs, as we have just seen, have the ability to eat popcorn. But not all popcorn is actually safe for them. For popcorn to be safe for hedgehogs, it needs to meet certain criteria.
Firstly, the popcorn needs to be free of seasoning: that is, free of salt, spices, flavoring agents… and so on.
Secondly, the popcorn needs to be free of hull (or kernel, as some may refer to it).
And thirdly, the amount of popcorn you give to a hedgehog needs to be quite small. Just a few bits of it here and there, and only once in a while as a treat.
Therefore if you have been wondering, can hedgehogs eat salt or sweet popcorn, now you know the answer. They can’t, because such seasoned popcorn can be unsafe to them.
Similarly, if you have been wondering, can hedgehogs eat caramel popcorn or can hedgehogs eat cheese popcorn, now you have the answer.
The answer is that hedgehogs can’t eat all those types of popcorn.
The only kind of popcorn that hedgehogs can eat safely is that which is completely plain, and from which the hull/kernel has been removed.
There are many potential health issues from hedgehogs eating popcorn that doesn’t meet this criterion.
For instance, popcorn with additives can cause stomach upsets in hedgehogs. Further, popcorn with its kernel/hull still on can stick to the hedgehog’s teeth, resulting in lots of discomfort.
And too much popcorn can make the hedgehog full. It can thus keep the hedgehog from feeding on other more nutritious foods.
Is Popcorn Beneficial For Hedgehogs?
Popcorn is only marginally beneficial for hedgehogs. There are things like fiber and antioxidants that popcorn contains, and which a hedgehog may benefit from.
Moreover, munching on the popcorn may give the hedgehog a chance to ‘exercise’ its teeth.
Nonetheless, popcorn is the sort of food you should only give to a hedgehog once in a long while, as a treat.
You should never go to the extent of feeding your hedgehog on popcorn on a regular basis.
Can Hedgehogs Eat Popcorn Daily?
So far, we have established that popcorn is safe for hedgehogs: as long as it is plain and hull/kernel-free.
We have also established that popcorn offers some marginal nutritional benefits to hedgehogs.
Considering those facts, can hedgehogs eat popcorn daily? The answer is ‘yes’ – but, as said earlier, only once in a while.
At this point, one may inquire about the proper preparation for the hedgehog’s popcorn. For instance, can hedgehogs eat roasted popcorn? And the answer would be that, ideally, the popcorn that hedgehogs eat should be air-popped.
Therefore roasted popcorn may not be very ideal for hedgehogs.
And just to be sure, someone may also ask, can hedgehogs eat popcorn daily with seasoning? Or, to be more specific, can hedgehogs eat salted popcorn in small quantities?
And the answer, in all these cases would be ‘no’. That is because seasoning agents, such as salt, can be extremely harmful to hedgehogs.
Another question that may arise in this context is this one: can hedgehogs eat popcorn daily kernels in small quantities?
And the answer would be no: because the kernel can get stuck in the hedgehog’s teeth, it is a choking hazard and it can cause stomach upsets.
This is why you need to remove the kernel, before presenting the popcorn to the hedgehog.
Seeing that hedgehogs can eat popcorn, and it comes from corn, one may ask – can hedgehogs eat corn? And surprisingly, in this case, the answer would be ‘no’.
That is because corn can be almost impossible for hedgehogs to digest.
How Often Can Hedgehogs Eat Popcorn Daily?
Ideally, hedgehogs should only eat popcorn like once or twice per week. And even then, it should be about a half handful of popcorn: no more than that.
Therefore you should only give hedgehogs popcorn as a treat. And even within this context, you need to understand that the popcorn is not one of the best hedgehog treats.
If you were to research on what snacks can hedgehogs eat (or what treats can hedgehogs eat), you would notice that popcorn is nowhere near the top of the list.
This is why you should only feed your hedgie on popcorn once in a while (like once or twice per week), and in very modest quantities.
Final Verdict – Can Hedgehogs Eat Popcorn Daily
Hedgehogs can eat popcorn but not daily. But it needs to be completely plain popcorn: without salt, sugar, oil, sauces or other flavoring agents. You should only feed a hedgehog on popcorn once in a while, as a treat, and in very small quantities.
Before giving popcorn to your hedgehog, ensure that you strip the popcorn of the kernel/hull. Therefore see to it that the hedgehog only eats the soft white part of the popcorn, without the kernel.