What solid food to feed a baby squirrel
Baby Squirrel Feeding Chart - An Ultimate Intro To Foods
Are you looking for an introduction to foods for baby squirrels? Read on for the ultimate food intro guide recommended by an expert squirrel rehabber! Our Baby Squirrel Feeding Chart is an excellent resource for rehabbers, squirrel owners, and wildlife rehabilitators to introduce new foods to baby squirrels. We also provide in-depth information about what age is suitable for different foods.Disclaimer: If you find a sick, injured, or orphaned animal, please don’t take on the responsibility of caring for it yourself. Please locate a licensed rehabber in your area and remember this is about the animal’s one chance at life.
Looking for a Rehabber? Here are 3 Resources
- Squirrel Rehab Locator Map – input your zip code or city into the search bar of the Google map.
- Animal Help Now – licensed rehabber directory
- Squirrel Connections – licensed rehabber directory by state
Baby Squirrel Feeding Chart: Feeding Tips
The baby squirrel feeding tips are the best practices of Karen C. , an expert rehabber in New Orleans, LA. If you would like to connect with Karen, you are welcome to send a message through Kitty City Squirrels or visit her Instagram page @omakoda.Formula
Squirrels need a quality formula from birth through self-wean, usually at 12 to 14 weeks of age.Water
Fresh drinking water is available as soon as the squirrels open their eyes, usually around 5 weeks old. My preference is to expose the squirrel to water, even though squirrels may not begin to drink water for one to two weeks after opening their eyes.Rodent Blocks
Starting daily at 4 weeks of age, Karen places a fresh piece of rodent block in their feeding dish. The squirrel gets accustomed to the smell by having a new piece daily. They may not eat the block right away but may begin to gnaw on it.
Rodent blocks are offered daily while the squirrel is in Rehabber Karen’s care. At the age of 8 weeks, the serving increases to two (2) blocks per day.Solid Food
When squirrel babies open their eyes, Karen offers solid food. When she first began rehabilitating squirrels, she witnessed babies having diarrhea and bloat. These unfortunate circumstances led her to develop a system to introduce new foods. This series of introductions work for Karen, and individual results may vary.
Baby Squirrel Feeding Chart 5 to 8 Weeks Old: Introduction to Vegetables & FruitsVegetables
At 5 weeks old, or when eyes are open, the squirrel is introduced to vegetables. Karen offers one kind of vegetable at a time. If there are no issues after 24 hours, another veggie is introduced. If any vegetable causes problems like diarrhea or bloat, the veggie is discontinued and introduced later.cut vegetables into big chunks to avoid choking. Continuallymonitor when introducing new foods. Fruits5 to 8 weeks old
The only fruit offered during this time (5 to 8 weeks old) is avocado. Most squirrels LOVE avocado. Avocados can cause choking because the squirrels become overzealous and put too much in their mouth.cut avocado into thin slices and hand-feed due to possible choking hazards. Please remember to Continually monitor when introducing new foods.
|5 to 8 weeks old: Vegetables & Fruit Introduction|
|Garbanzo beans (fresh)|
|Sugar snap peas|
| 5 to 8 weeks old: Fruit|
Baby Squirrel Feeding Chart 6 to 7 Weeks Old: Introduction to NutsShelled Nuts
Karen introduces shelled almonds and pecans at 6 to 7 weeks old. One piece is given as a bedtime treat.Unshelled Nuts
Introducing unshelled nuts to squirrels is tricky due to nut aggression. Karen saves unshelled nuts when the squirrels get transferred to the release enclosure. When in the release enclosure, Karen stops handling the squirrels.
Nuts in the shell can turn squirrels into little devils. If you’re not worried about nut aggression, then 6 to 7-week old squirrels can have 1 to 2 nuts, NO more than that if the squirrel is captive.
Baby Squirrel Feeding Chart 8 to 9 Weeks Old: New Fruit IntroductionsFruit
Karen offers apples to squirrels at 8 to 9 weeks of age. If no issues after 24 hours feed blueberries, followed by grapes. Please remember to give only one type of fruit at a time. If no problems, continue with other varieties like blackberries, cantaloupe, cherries, coconut, cranberries, citrus, kiwi, persimmon, pomegranate, raspberries, etc. watermelonLesson Learned
During a volunteer rehab shift, Karen witnessed an 8-week old squirrel struggling. A piece of apple skin was stuck to the squirrel’s palate, and removing the skin took two people. They considered themselves very lucky to be there during that emergency and used it as a lesson learned.Remove apple and grape skins until the Squirrel is 10 weeks old or until you are sure they can handle itWithout choking.
| 8 to 9 weeks old:|
|Apples (introduce first & remove skin)|
|Grapes (remove skin)|
Baby Squirrel Feeding Chart 9 to 10 Weeks Old: Animal Protein Introductions
At 9-10 weeks old, the squirrels are fed animal protein. This includes dried grasshoppers, crickets, live or dried mealworms, and live moths. Take note, that all squirrels are not into these, but giving them a try is a good idea.
| 9 to 10 weeks old:|
Animal Protein Introductions
|Live or dried mealworms|
Baby Squirrel Feeding Chart 9 to 10 Weeks Old: Wild Food Introductions
Squirrels love wild foods, offered at 9 to 10 weeks of age. As a rehabber, part of Karen’s job is to familiarize the squirrels with some of the local area’s natural foods. If you are a rehabber, have a captive or non-release squirrel, consider educating yourself on wild edibles.
The following list I offer includes: branches with lichen, camellia buds, oxalis (all parts), pine cones, rosebuds, rose hips, white clover (all parts), wild hibiscus, etc.
| 9 to 10 weeks old:|
Wild Food Introductions
|Oxalis (all parts)|
|White clover (all parts)|
When caring for baby squirrels, one of the most important things to know is what they need to eat. The diet a baby squirrel requires is complex. Learning to feed a baby squirrel can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. If you have any tips or tricks that have worked for you when feeding baby squirrels, send Kitty City Squirrels a message or leave a comment below.
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What do you feed a baby squirrel?
Spotting squirrels roaming the public parks and neighborhood trees are not unique to any single region. No matter what state you live in, it is easy to find these joyful little ones climbing a tree or scampering across the yard to get to that bird feeder. Fully grown squirrels are exciting to watch, especially if you left out some delicious surprises for them. However, contrary to popular belief, adult squirrels tend to have a slightly different diet than baby squirrels.
All squirrels need strong bones and a robust metabolism to keep them healthy. Without certain vitamins and minerals, they can develop severe illnesses that could impact their longevity. Some of the diseases that squirrels are prone to stem from extreme changes in their diet. So, what do you do if you come across a baby squirrel that needs assistance? Would you feed it the same menu as you would a fully-grown squirrel? The answer of course is no.
Avoid feeding baby squirrels, or any squirrels for that matter, foods that are detrimental to their health. In other words, do not give them artificial, fattening, or sugar-loaded treats. For a more critical understanding of what a baby squirrel’s diet should consist of, take a look at these choices.
How to Care for a Baby SquirrelFormula: 6 Weeks Old or Younger Squirrels
The nutritional diet needed for baby squirrels depends on their size and age. If they are less than six weeks old, they are not prepared to digest solid foods. It might be challenging to gauge, however, if the baby is less than six weeks old, they are still highly dependant on their mother’s milk. One’s first step should always be to try and reunite the baby squirrel with their mother. Unfortunately, if you are temporarily in charge of nursing this little one, make sure you use the recommended formula. Baby squirrels usually need to consume formula for the first 10 weeks of their life.
What foods to Feed a Baby Squirrel
Once the baby squirrel is around 6 to 7 weeks old, it’s safe to introduce solid foods. Do not neglect the formula, which is still needed every 4 hours. When it comes to adding solid foods, it's always best to pick the most natural options. There are three main categories to choose from, vegetables, fruits, and nuts like pecans. The healthiest route would be to provide a variety of these options.
Broccoli, kale, and sweet potatoes offer an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. They are also an easy solid food for baby squirrels to chew and digest. Broccoli is low in fat and calories but provides natural carbohydrates, proteins, and fiber. It also contains a high amount of water which can help keep the baby squirrel sufficiently hydrated.
Kale contains an astounding amount of nutrients, such as Vitamins A, B6, C, and K. It is also a great source of calcium, copper, magnesium, manganese, and potassium. A baby squirrel needs to develop and maintain bone and muscle density and a strong immune system. The vitamins and minerals in kale help support bone, muscle, and immune health.
Antioxidants promote a strong immune system by protecting the body’s cells while fighting off free radicals. Free radicals can cause DNA damage, including stress on the body’s cells, inflammation, or chronic diseases. Sweet potatoes not only provide a healthy amount of complex carbohydrates and fiber, but they are also chock-full of antioxidants. They are high in Vitamins A, C, and B6 and contain niacin, copper, pantothenic acid, potassium, and manganese.
Adding some fruit to the list of snacks for growing squirrels is a great way to keep them hydrated. Apples, for instance, contain over eighty percent water on top of being a great source of fiber, natural sugars, and carbohydrates. They also contain Vitamin A and C as well as high amounts of potassium. Potassium is essential to the body’s ability to synthesize proteins to help muscles recover and grow.
Baby squirrels, as with all squirrels, need a diet high in vitamins and minerals that support strong bones. They are prone to bone diseases if they lack sufficient nutrition. Grapes contain thiamine, riboflavin, potassium, copper, manganese, and fiber. They also provide Vitamin B6, C, and K. Vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin that the body needs for blood clotting, which is an integral step in helping wounds heal. It also supports healthy bones.Nuts
Hard-shelled nuts like pecans out of the shell are one of the top choices for integrating into the baby squirrel’s diet. Nuts are one of the best foods to incorporate because it is one of the most common foods available to them once they can live in the wild.
Do not be surprised if a baby squirrel gets a little hyperactive when presented with an out-of-shell nut, especially if it’s a pecan, acorn, walnut, or almond. Why are they so enthusiastic about nuts? Well, not only are nuts an excellent source of natural fats, proteins, carbohydrates, and fiber, but they are also simply delicious and a huge staple in a squirrel’s diet.
A squirrel’s zeal when consuming nuts and seeds is hard to miss. It’s also thrilling to watch them enjoy these little crunchy morsels. Pecans are a great source of fiber and contain over nineteen vitamins and minerals. Fiber promotes smooth digestion and is related to supporting cardiovascular health. Pecans also contain calcium and potassium, which support bone and muscle performance. If you are looking for pecan nuts to keep your baby squirrel healthy and happy, consider ordering some bulk pecans.
Baby Squirrels Need Variety for Food
Remember, if the little one is just a few weeks old, you may have to provide the recommended formula as a substitute for their mother’s milk. After six weeks, when it’s ready to begin nibbling on some solid foods, the formula is still required. When introducing solid foods, start small and create a tiny platter. For example, a piece of kale, an apple slice, and some fresh pecan halves is a perfect start.
As the baby squirrel grows and begins gravitating more towards the solid foods, it’s safe to wean them off of the formula. Just make sure you provide a variety of nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables to ensure proper nutrition and promote wholesome growth.
Sumy region veterinary - How to feed a baby squirrel?
What to feed the squirrel?
One of the products that I use in feeding baby squirrels is Esbilac milk replacer for puppies. You can purchase it at most pet stores.
Esbilac may be sold in powder or liquid form. I prefer to buy Esbilac powder. Do not buy instead of Esbilak its substitutes that you can offer in the store. At the same time, get a few syringes in the store (or pharmacy), but without needles.
You can pick up a gift for your loved one in the online store dom-podarka.ru.
Never, ever use bottles with nipples when feeding a squirrel! The squirrel can suffocate because of them!
Instead of bottles, you will need 1 to 3 unit syringes for feeding very young squirrels, and 5 to 10 unit syringes for feeding slightly older squirrels.
Instead of needles, you need to put small papillae on syringes, which can be sold in pet stores.
If you cannot find such small papillae, then use a pipette, but in this case, be extremely careful not to feed the squirrel too quickly, otherwise it may choke.
Mix 2 parts liquid esbilac with 1 part water (if using powdered esbilac add 2 parts water to 1 part esbilac). You can also add just a little fruity sweetener for kids. Only quite a bit! You can use fruit banana sweetener - squirrels really like this taste.
You can also add some yoghurt to the nutritional formula.
Mix the formula in a clean jar and then store the mixture in the refrigerator.
Then, for each feeding, heat only the part of the formula that will be used for that feeding.
When heating the mixture in the microwave, be careful not to heat the mixture too hot.
Then draw the formula into the syringe and feed the squirrel very carefully.
When feeding, I lay the older baby squirrels on a flat surface and feed them in that position. If the squirrels are still too small, then you can feed them by holding them in your hand.
Be very careful and slow to prevent the squirrel from drowning.
Sometimes a baby squirrel can suckle formula so fast that it starts to choke. In this case, you need to immediately stop feeding and hold the baby upside down so that excess fluid can flow back out. After that, you need to wipe the squirrel's nose and mouth and then continue feeding, only more slowly.
A very small baby squirrel with hair that is still completely missing or has barely begun to grow, needs to be fed regularly every 2-3 hours, as thin squirrels cannot eat enough at one meal.
Baby squirrels at two to three weeks of age should be fed regularly every 3-4 hours.
Three to five week old baby squirrels need to be fed every 4-5 hours.
At the age of five weeks, squirrels should be fully furred and their eyes should be opening. At this age, they can be fed every four hours during the day, and can no longer be fed at night.
The amount of food a baby squirrel needs at each meal is not strictly defined. The squirrel may eat a little more or a little less.
Here is an approximate feeding schedule for baby squirrels depending on their age:
- From one day to two weeks old: 0. 5-2 cc. see for each meal, 6-8 feedings per day.
- 2 to 4 weeks old: 2-4 cc. see for each meal, 5 or 6 feedings during the day.
4 to 6 weeks of age: 4-6 (or even more) cc. see for each meal, 4 meals during the day, you can no longer feed at night.
From the age of six weeks, squirrels can already eat more solid food (zu prem biscuit and small pieces of plant food) in addition to the nutritional formula that they need to be given in a volume of 6-12 cc. see at every meal. Squirrels of this age need to be fed 2-3 times a day.
I always give baby squirrels a nutritional formula until then. Until they give up on it.
Also squirrels are given goat's milk with the following calculation:
1 day - 1:4 (goat's milk:water)
Day 2 - 1:3 (goat's milk:water)
Day 3 - 1:2 (goat's milk:water)
If a baby squirrel is fed goat's milk, its feces are like yellow toothpaste. If the feces become more liquid, start giving the squirrel the mixture as on the first day (1:4).
Squirrel must always be clean. After each feeding, wipe around the mouth with a damp cloth. Gently clean the genitals and anus several times a day (more often if necessary).
Vitamins must be added to goat's milk mixture. Very tiny squirrels are given one drop twice a day during the first week of feeding. Squirrels of three weeks of age are given one drop 3 times a day. When the squirrel opens his eyes, give him two drops of vitamins 3 times a day.
Friday, May 14, 2010. Author: Andrey Kletsov Posted in News
Kletsov Andrey Mikhailovich
Veterinarian Kletsov Andrey Mikhailovich.
Graduated from the Sumy National Agrarian University in 2003 and received a diploma in veterinary medicine. From 2003 to 2005, he worked as a doctor, and a little later, as the head of the anti-epizootic department of the state veterinary hospital in the Sumy region. In 2007 he received a master's degree in veterinary medicine.
Clinic "Vetpomoshch", Sumy, Ukraine.
How to save the squirrel? | Animals
That baby squirrel was found in the forest, fell out of the nest - a small, defenseless red-haired miracle that immediately trusted the man. He lived in a light bulb box at work and in a hat at home. He slept all day and sometimes woke up to eat. And he ate white bread soaked in goat's milk. And at the same time he champed and smacked his lips so deliciously that we also wanted to eat bread in milk and in a box - to sleep.
Since then, a struggle has begun with a wild desire to have a squirrel at home and the understanding that no one will fall out of the nest especially for me. Asking myself the question: tell me honestly - why do you need her, I knew only one answer - "she is not like everyone else."
I will say right away: I have a squirrel. There were even two of them. I bought one from a dealer and buried it almost immediately. The squirrel was sold to me as a tame squirrel from an aviary, but in fact it was caught from nature and never reconciled to captivity. Although it was bought for a lot of money, the squirrel did not appreciate it. After the solemn funeral at home, we got a currency - one dusya (equivalent to 200 USD). That is, a flat-screen TV in the kitchen costs 3 dusi. But my cosmetics for a month - half a day, etc.
And the second squirrel appeared when we didn't expect it at all. Well, it’s not the season, the squirrels don’t fall out of the nests, they have already grown, and therefore we decided to wait for spring. The rut of the squirrels is about to begin, and then we will find it in the forest and start it. Even my husband was inspired, the desire was already mutual. In the end, we ... adopted the squirrel 3 days after the decision to “wait” was made. True, a week later we made another amendment - we adopted a squirrel. Here is such a zigzag of fate: there was Kuzey for half a year, and she became Kuzyusha.
Squirrels are born 2-3 times a year: in spring, autumn and sometimes in winter. The latter, as a rule, rarely survive, unfortunately. Blind and bald are born. Eyes open at 10-12 days. On the 30th day, a squirrel with fur already looks out with interest from the gain (nest). And, it happens that it falls out of it by negligence.
If you, while walking through the forest, park, garden, etc., suddenly find an exhausted, frightened, bald or not very little squirrel, help him survive. It's not very difficult. But it's so important to him!
So, you found a squirrel and brought it home:
1. The squirrel needs to be warmed up: it can be your hands, a hat, a handkerchief, a pocket. Even hot water in a bottle next to it will do.
2. The little squirrel needs to restore its water balance, and not try to feed it right away: put some water into the pipette (not from the tap, it's dangerous!). He needs to start drinking. Remember, squirrels are at risk: they have a very weak intestine and with improper feeding or drinking, the struggle for life goes on for minutes.
3. Then try to feed him. It is advisable to offer him goat's milk or a milk replacer for kittens (sold in pet stores). If the squirrel is already grown up, then white bread soaked in goat's milk is what you need. Cow's milk is contraindicated for squirrels! If it is not possible to feed other than cow, dilute it with water 1: 1. Remember that a very small squirrel needs to be fed like a baby - every 2-3 hours.
My friend used a pipette to feed both at home and at work (he is tiny, he slept in his own box most of the time). From a pipette - drop by drop so that it does not choke. If you hold him in your hands, he will quickly understand that you and your smell are a source of delicious treats. Consider that from now on and forever the squirrel is a friend.
If the squirrel is already grown enough to eat solid food, offer him pine nuts, only in the shell (less likely that the nuts were affected by some kind of fungus that is dangerous for the squirrel), seeds (only natural in the shell, not fried), twigs with leaves (apple, pear, willow), acorns, apple, carrot. In general, you can only offer a squirrel what he could find in nature. Sugar cookies from the hands of compassionate citizens in the parks, of course, do not count. And remember that his teeth grow all his life, he must grind them on solid food. It is enough to feed a grown and grown squirrel 2 times a day.
4. Designate a place for it, eg in a box. In no case should there be cotton wool, the squirrel can get tangled in it or suffocate. It is very good to put a terry towel as a bedding. If the squirrel has grown up and you are afraid to leave him at home alone on a free range, you will have to purchase a cage. Remember: the higher the cage, the better the squirrel. About 50x50x100 is fine, but it's better if you let him run around under supervision, and not just keep him in a cage.
The cage must have fresh water (again, not from the tap!). Secure the bowl or drinker so that the squirrel does not turn the water upside down. In no case do not lay the newspaper on the bottom, it is better without anything: ink on printed publications contributes to the accumulation of lead in the animal's body. Also provide a house where the squirrel can rest and another house where she will make stash for a rainy day. Lump chalk is needed for the formation of bone tissue, give a mineral stone, vitamins for rodents.
5. If, God forbid, your little squirrel has loose stools, help him. Brew oak bark (not much) and put it in a cage for half a day. You can give smects: we gave them directly smeared on the finger - the squirrel licked it himself. And most importantly - remove all fruits, only dry food.
In general, the little squirrel is a wonderful animal, but it likes to pull the blanket over itself. Try to teach him to live by your rules from childhood. Squirrels have the intelligence of an adult dog, they are just very small. Remember that the squirrel should feel at home in his rest house, like in a fortress: do not climb there, the squirrel cleans up there by herself - throws out the nut shells, spreads her bedding. By the way, cleaning directly in the cage at least 2 times a week will ensure that you don’t smell any (I just replace the bedding at the bottom of the cage).
The squirrel, which we fed with the whole team, has been living with my friend for almost a year. He went to work with her, sitting at her place. in a jacket pocket. And he is so tame that he can even kiss on the lips. But this did not stop him one day from running out into the street from the fifth floor of a high-rise building. Contrary to all forecasts, we still removed him, trembling, from the tree with the help of firefighters.