How To Take Care Of A Sugar Glider
Sugar gliders are the adorable little squirrel-like creatures that leave many people wanting one after they see one in pictures and videos or online. However, these delicate creatures have very specific care needs and not everyone is equipped to give them the care they need. Providing an improper environment is extremely stressful to sugar gliders and can lead to poor health and a shortened life expectancy. If youre interested in bringing a sugar glider into your home, make sure youre ready to care for their sensitive needs. With proper care, these social creatures can make great pets.
Accessories For Your Sugar Gliders Cage
Now that you have an idea of the dimensions you need, what do you put into a sugar gliders cage? Some accessories to consider adding to the cage include:
- Shelving: Some cages are sold with shelving, while others are sold bare. Adding shelves to your cage will increase the surface area on which your glider will be able to play and jump around, or even rest if it so chooses. Just be careful not to overcrowd the cage with too many shelves.
- Bedding: There are multiple choices of bedding for your glider. You can either set up a layer of cedar shavings at the bottom of the cage and on a shelf or two or set up a hanging nest pouch. A nest pouch will provide a cozy place where your glider can nap and keep warm.
- Toys: Toys are incredibly important for enrichment purposes. Giving your glider toys such as dangling, wire-free vines, ropes, wheels, and treat balls. Note that if your glider is young or has babies, youll need to hang the toys lower in the cage to prevent injury if they fall.
- Plants : Having leafy vines in your sugar gliders cage is a great way to make the set up feel significantly more natural to both you and your pet. You can choose to buy pouches and toys that have fake leaves already or opt to add real plants instead. Sugar gliders are natural pollinators and enjoy eating flowers such as hibiscus and roses.
Can Sugar Gliders Drink Milk
Meat and Dairy While some gliders may be able to tolerate small amounts of flavored yogurt, they are generally lactose intolerant and cannot consume dairy products such as cheese or ice cream. Wild sugar gliders do eat insects for protein, but captive sugar gliders should not be allowed to eat insects around the house.
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Happy Glider Fruity Flavor Sugar Glider Food
This food features a variety of toasted grains and several types of proteins that will help keep your sugar glider full until their next mealtime. Like most sugar glider foods, this one comes in the form of pellets but does not have added ingredients, like dehydrated fruits, so those need to be added if your sugar gliders expect them.
Happy Glider Fruit Flavor Food is coated with fruit juice to entice your pets senses and make them feel as if they are eating fresh fruit in the wild. Unfortunately, it does contain artificial flavors, which may be of concern if your sugar glider has any preexisting health conditions.
Exotic Nutrition Instant-HPW sugar glider food is unique in a few different ways. First, it does not come in pellet form like most other options do. It comes in powder form and is mixed with water right before serving, providing a vitamin-enriched meal that sugar gliders simply cannot resist. Ingredients include real honey, eggs, and natural bee pollen to support immune functionality and a healthy coat.
One teaspoon of the powder is all that is needed to create a complete meal for your little pet. In a concentrated power form, this food is easier to store than most other options on our reviews list too. One downside is that it does not include any real fruit or vegetables, so you will have to provide those yourself.
- Does not include any real fruits or veggies
Where To Get A Sugar Glider
Depending on where you live, some local pet stores or specialty pet stores may have Sugar Gliders. If you are looking to adopt one you might have to do some research as well as calling around to your local pet stores to see if they have any Sugar Gliders.
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Where Can I Get A Sugar Glider
Sugar gliders may be difficult to come across in pet stores, but some do carry them from time to time. Your most likely source for a sugar glider will be finding one through a breeder or an online distributor. Some pet stores may be able to special order one for you as well. Sugar gliders are usually captive-bred, but illegal capture and trade of sugar gliders is part of the multibillion-dollar illegal animal trade. Wild capture can be disruptive to the ecosystem and stressful for the animals, so its important to thoroughly vet anyone you purchase a sugar glider from. Oftentimes, wild animals are used for breeding so the babies can be sold as captive-bred or farmed, so asking about the origin of the parents is important.
What To Put In A Sugar Glider Habitat
Sugar gliders enjoy eating from up high so feeding bowls that attach to the side of the cage are the best option. They also require a nesting place to sleep throughout the day. A wood birdhouse, cloth pouch, or plastic hamster wheel are all good options. A bedding of paper towels, wood shavings, or shredded paper should be laid upon the bottom of the tank to collect urine and droppings. You should make sure that whatever you use to line the bottom of the cage is nontoxic incase it is ingested.
They enjoy toys such as chicken toys, bells, ladders, tunnels, and balls. Branches can also be placed in the cage so they can climb.
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Important Keys To Feeding Your Sugar Glider
Alright.NOW lets back to actually FEEDING your Sugar gliders. After the first SIX weeks of sticking to the basic diet of Glide-R-Chow , Glide-R-Gravy and APPLES ONLY that we just went over a couple minutes ago, you should slowly start to introduce OTHER types of fruits and vegetables into your Sugar gliders daily diet, and just keep an eye out for any signs of diarrhea. Then, as soon as you feel confident that your little babys tummy is working properly, go ahead and add 1 or 2 small pieces of other fruits and vegetables to its food every night. A few examples of some good healthy foods like this would be a grape or two, a green bean, a chunk of carrot, a slice of cantaloupe, broccoli, or sweet potatoes..
Exotic Nutrition Berries And Bugs
Sugar gliders also love eating fruits like how they love eating treats and sweet foods. Each pack of this sugar glider diet food contains ingredients such as omega 3 fatty acids, bee pollen, honey, omega 6, wombaroo high-protein supplement, flax seed oil, and eggs.
It also has the vanilla bean flavor that your glider would love.
You can either leave it in its powder form that could last for one year or store it for up to six months.
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What Do Sugar Glider Babies Eat
For the first 100 days or so of a baby Sugar Gliders life he will feed off of his mothers nipple.
Her nipples are conveniently located inside of the pouch where the baby is carried during that time.
As he grows and emerges from the pouch he will begin to feed on many of the same things as his mother.
Baby Sugar Gliders seem to be especially happy with sliced fresh apples and since they have opposable thumbs it is also very entertaining to watch them chow down!
They should be consuming a sufficient amount of fruits, vegetables, and protein just like his parents and he should avoid the same that are dangerous to Sugar Gliders.
If you are raising a Sugar Glider baby that has been abandoned by his parents then you may need to provide him with Sugar Glider formula if he is not yet old enough to feed on solid foods.
Unsafe foods for Sugar Gliders
While it may seem like Sugar Gliders can eat nearly anything, this is not the case. In fact, there is a substantial list of foods that should always be avoided in the diet of a Sugar Glider.
The following list of foods should never be offered to a Sugar Glider under any circumstances.
Exotic Nutrition Assorted Treats
Sitting on #10 of our best sugar glider food review is the Exotic nutrition assorted treats.
Is your oet getting bored of the same treat for the last few days? If yes, then you might like the idea of getting this assorted healthy treats pack made for sugar gliders.
Not only will your pet love its treats, but it gets to consume a variety of treats every other day.
This assorted treat packs a delicious mix of coconut/yogurt drops , pineapples, island blend, and papaya.
The treat can lend a monotonous or variety of diet and can add a behavioral enrichment. The treats are purely made from fruits to ensure your pets overall health.
The treats and food above are indeed the best lists that you can feed to your pet. Each food product has their own healthy features that can perfectly fit your gliders diet plan, just select the product that you like and feed it to your pet depending on its required a diet.
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Allow To Cube To Melt Before Feeding
Once the mixture is frozen, simply place one cube of the BML diet in your sugar glider’s food dish a few hours earlier than feeding time to allow the cube to melt a bit. Remove it the following morning to avoid any food spoilage or attracting any unwanted insects.
The BML diet should be fed along with fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables at each meal. If you are using frozen food items then you can place them in the food dish at the same time as the frozen cube of BML diet to allow everything to thaw together. By the time your sugar glider is ready to eat, its food will be soft.
Best Sugar Glider Foods And Diet
Sugar gliders are both insectivorous and omnivorous. This means that they can feed on vegetables, insects, and meat, but not all foods are suitable for them to eat.
These animals are so named because of their preference for sweet foods, as they love drinking tree sap and sweet nectar in the wild.
Here are ten healthy and cheap sugar glider foods to try.
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How Many Times Do You Feed A Sugar Glider A Day
You should ideally feed your sugar glider once a day in the afternoon or early evening they sleep a lot during the day, so feeding time should usually be right after they wake up.
Try to make sure that their daily meal is made up of 1 part vitamins , 1 part protein , and 1 part calcium . Also, make sure they have fresh bottled water in their cage and change this out daily.
What Foods Are Harmful To Sugar Gliders
Sugar gliders are wild pets, hence, their typical food patterns might be hard to replicate at home when you are a new pet owner of these marsupials. Sugar glider care is different and not difficult. So, if you make sure to maintain the nutritional value of your pet sugar glider’s diet, you will excel in sugar glider care.
As the name suggests, sugar gliders feed upon sugary things like honey. They are omnivorous, and their diet must include boiled eggs and meat. As a supplement, vegetables like sweet potatoes, fresh fruits like apples, and tree nuts should be added in small amounts to their diets. They also need extra nutrients from sugar glider pellets, which you can buy from pet stores.
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What Do Pet Sugar Gliders Eat
Pet sugar gliders eat insects, invertebrates, fruit, meat, commercial foods, and vegetables. Sugar gliders are common exotic pets around the world, but their natural diet is hard to replicate since they have access to a different set of food in their native lands of Australia and New Guinea compared to the United States.
Some of the most common foods that sugar gliders eat in captivity include:
- Specialized commercial foods
Keep in mind that these creatures do not eat a lot of food. Most of it will be a mix between commercial food, Leadbeaters mix, fruits, and insects. When feeding sugar gliders some insects, it is necessary to gut-load, or pre-feed, the insects a nutritionally loaded diet before feeding them to the sugar glider.
When caring for these exotic pets, its necessary to consult experienced owners and specialists to gain insight on the insights to caring for them.
It is also important to note that not all places around the world allow people to keep sugar gliders or have certain rules for keeping them, such as requiring two or more of the marsupials to live together.
Other Foods Appropriate For Pet Sugar Gliders
Sugar gliders are known to be quite picky eaters, so its always good to be prepared with other foods to offer them to get a sense of what they enjoy.
As strange as it sounds, some owners have suggested dry cat and dog food this can be similar in taste and texture to the recommended pellets in a sugar gliders diet and offer a lot of the same nutrients and protein they need. If you decide to use dried dog and cat food to feed your sugar glider though, wed recommend using it sparingly and asking your local vet about the appropriate amounts to feed them based on their age, weight, etc.
In addition to feeding your sugar glider a mix of the recommended fruit and vegetables, pellets and treats, many owners swear by a formula known as the Leadbeaters Mix that has been specially designed for sugar gliders, and it is one that has been widely advised by exotic animal experts, including veterinarian and author on the subject of exotic animals Dr. Cathy Johnson-Delaney.
Dr.Johnson-Delaney developed this formula by studying the natural diet of sugar gliders in the wild and has worked with Australian zookeepers and fellow vets to produce the Leadbeaters Mix.
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What To Feed Your Sugar Glider
A Sugar Gliders diet should contain at least 75% fruits and vegetables, as well as about 25% proteins from animal sources.
proteins from animal sources
Their diets should have protein, fresh fruits, and vegetables, and plenty of vitamins and minerals.
Sugar Gliders do not require a level of carbohydrates and therefore crackers and other sources of carbohydrates should be good sources of fiber and kept to a minimum.
While they do require a level of protein in their diets it is important that their protein sources from animals be kept to a minimum.
This is due to the odor that is produced by a Sugar Glider when they consume animal proteins.
However, there are quite a lot of options of foods that you can feed a Sugar Glider in captivity as long as their nutritional needs are met.
Proteins that you can feed your Sugar Glider
Liquids that your Sugar Glider needs
Yes, Sugar Gliders require liquids in their diet. These liquids are essential to keeping your Sugar Glider hydrated and healthy.
With this in mind, make sure that you purchase a cage water bottle to attach to the side when you decide to adopt a Sugar Glider.
You should also be prepared that your Sugar Glider may not drink from his water bottle immediately upon arriving home with you.
He will likely need to become more familiar with the sights, sounds, and smells that his new home comes with before he is comfortable.
What Are Good Treats For Sugar Gliders
Treats should only make up around 5 percent of a sugar gliders diet, so try to be quite sparing with them. . Sugar gliders love insects, so crickets, earthworms, and mealworms all make great treats and are a great source of protein .
A small portion of chopped fruit like pear or figs is a great treat option too, as are raw, unsalted nuts another favorite food of sugar gliders, but like insects, they have a high fat content, so only give them out sparingly. Pet stores online and local to you will also have a range of preservative-free treats that are most appropriate for sugar gliders.
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Sugar Glider Dietary Needs
Sugar gliders have very specific dietary requirements that keep them healthy and happy. A diet lacking in calcium and appropriate vitamins, for example, may contribute to your sugar glider developing metabolic bone disease , like reptiles commonly get, and make their legs more prone to fracturing. Diets lacking in honey or sugary nectar do not provide enough energy for sugar gliders who need it for all the jumping and gliding that they do. They may not be as active, mentally stimulated, and strong without it.
The Recipe For The Leadbeaters Mix Is As Follows:
- 25 g of a high protein baby cereal
- 1 tsp of a vitamin or mineral supplement
Mix the warm water and honey, Blend the egg, then gradually add in the water and honey mixture. Next blend in the chosen vitamin or supplement powder until the mixture is smooth, and finally, add the baby cereal until smooth. You can then keep this mix refrigerated and serve 1 tablespoon of this mix daily to your sugar glider in the evening, alongside its daily portion of fruit/veg and pellets.
Theres no getting around it a sugar gliders diet can be notoriously difficult to mimic in captivity, but if youre prepared to make a little effort with their feeding, then theres no reason why you wont be able to keep a healthy and happy sugar glider as a pet.
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