Good Eats

A common misconception is that sugar gliders only eat sweet foods, but actually sugar gliders are omnivores, meaning they eat plants and animals. A wild sugar glider’s diet changes depending on the season and its location. Some frequent foods include sap, pollen and nectar from trees, a variety of fruits and insects, and, at times, eggs and small animals. Their natural diet is complicated and difficult to replicate. Gaining basic information about a sugar glider’s diet and consulting with a veterinarian about nutritional needs are the best way to choose a diet.
Calcium is an important element of a sugar glider’s diet and the recommended calcium-to-phosphorus ratio is 2:1 to prevent calcium deficiencies. Protein is also another important element of a sugar glider’s diet, the amount needed is uncertain, but a common recommendation is about 50 percent protein.
Sugar gliders often overeat sweet and fattening foods. They can become overweight, leading to medical complications related to obesity. Having fresh, clean water available at all times is vital, because sugar gliders are known to dehydrate quickly.
A variety of staple dry food diets, powdered mixes, supplements and treats are now available specifically for sugar gliders. These can be bought in select pet stores and readily online. A few dry food diets state that they provide all the nutrients needed, and they discourage any addition of fruits and vegetables, while other dry food diets are used along with daily fruits and vegetables. Powdered mixes and supplements are usually combined with familiar foods like eggs, chicken and honey, then mixed with water to make a moist diet, which is fed along with fruits and vegetables.
Sugar gliders extract moisture and nutrients from their food and then discard the remaining solid substances. Many sugar gliders and owners prefer a moist diet combined with fresh or frozen produce and daily treats. Treats include mealworms and other insects, nuts, yogurt drops and dried fruit. Treats are not necessary in maintaining sugar glider health, but they are a great tool to use with bonding.

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