Can Hedgehogs Eat Lettuce? (Must Read)

With so many possible fruit and vegetables to feed your hedgehog it can be hard to know which ones are both safe and healthy.

Lettuce is commonly found in most family kitchens but can your hedgehog safely eat lettuce?

Let’s take a look at 3 common types of lettuce and see if vets and experts recommend you add these to your hedgies food bowl or if you should be replacing them with healthier options.

So can hedgehogs eat lettuce? Romaine lettuce and leafy lettuce can be safely added to a hedgehogs diet. Iceberg lettuce isn’t recommended for hedgehogs due to the fact it offers little to no nutritional value and may even cause diarrhoea.  

Read on to learn…

Nutritional Data | Romaine, Leafy & Iceberg Lettuce

To better understand why it’s recommended that hedgehogs can eat romaine and leafy lettuce but not iceberg lettuce, we have put them all side by side in a handy table.

This way you can take a look at the key nutrients and also decide if romaine and leafy lettuce are something you would like to add to your hedgehog’s diet.

Check out the table below that contains the nutritional data courtesy of the USDA…

Source1: Source2: Source3:

Nutritional Information (Lettuce)

Note: We Have Included The Most Relevant Information Only
NameIce BergRomaineLeafy
Water94.64 g94.61 g94.98 g
Energy14 kcal17 kcal15 kcal
Protein0.9 g1.23 g1.36 g
Fat0.14 g0.3 g0.15 g
Carbohydrate2.97 g3.29 g2.87 g
Fibre1.2 g2.1 g1.3 g
Sugar1.97 g1.19 g0.78 g
Calcium18 mg33 mg36 mg
Phosphorus20 mg30 mg29mg
Iron0.41 mg0.97 mg0.86 mg
Potassium141 mg247 mg194 mg
Vitamin B-60.042 mg0.072 mg0.09 mg
vitamin A25 µg436 µg3.70 µg
vitamin A UI502 UI8710 µg7405 µg
BETA Carotene299 µg5226 µg4443 µg
Vitamin C2.8 mg35.3 mg9.2 mg
Vitamin K24.1 µg102.5 µg126.3 µg

Can Hedgehogs Eat Romaine Lettuce?

Romaine lettuce is safe for hedgehogs to eat and also contains some key nutrients.

It’s a good source of vitamin A which supports optimal eye health as well as a good immune system and strong bones.

Romaine lettuce also contains high amounts of beta carotene which is a precursor for vitamin A.

Healthline state that romaine lettuce also contains good quantities of vitamin K.

This is a food that you can add to your hedgies diet whenever you feel like it without having to worry about the sugar content or a poor calcium to phosphorus ratio.

This doesn’t mean that romaine lettuce should be the main green or veggie in the food bowl as all in all there are far better options out there but it can be added into your hedgies diet without concerns.

Later in this post, we will give you 5 highly nutritious greens that you can feed your hedgehog on a regular basis.

Can Hedgehogs Eat Leafy Lettuce?

Greens leafy lettuce is another type of lettuce that’s safe for your hedgehog to eat. 

This is backed up by Veteriankey, who added green leaf lettuce to their list of foods hedgehogs can eat in a report for hedgehog care.

The nutrient profile of leafy and romaine lettuce are very similar and leafy also offers decent amounts of Vitamins A and K.

Again, this is a food that you can safely add to your hedgies diet but you should consider offering more nutritious greens such as dandelion greens for the majority of your hedgehog’s plant-based diet.

Can Hedgehogs Eat Iceberg Lettuce?

Iceberg lettuce is probably the most common of the 3 lettuce varieties on our list but it’s also the one that many experts recommend you don’t feed to your hedgehog.

This is mainly due to the lack of nutrients it offers across the board.

Both romaine and green leaf lettuce are relatively high in vitamins A and K which makes them viable options to add to the food bowl.

Iceberg lettuce, on the other hand, is much lower in both these vitamins and for this reason, doesn’t offer any nutrients in a high enough volume that warrants adding it to your hedgehog’s diet.  

Considering that your hedgie only has a small stomach, every mouth full of food should be as nutritious as possible (even though hedgehogs can actually consume ⅓ of their body weight in food in one day)

Some owners that have fed their hedgie on iceberg lettuce have also reported that it has caused bouts of diarrhoea. This is possibly due to high water content and low nutritional value.  

It’s really not worth feeding your hedgehog iceberg lettuce when there are so many other safe and highly nutritious greens and veggies out there.

If you want to know the foods that your hedgehog can eat as well as the ones they should stay away from then check out our complete hedgehog diet guide here…

Is It Important to Feed Lettuce & Other Vegetables?

Even though the main part of your hedgehog’s diet is likely to be made up of either cat food or actually hedgehog food, it’s still important to offer fruit, veg and greens.

It’s widely documented by sites such as Vetmed that In the wild, as well as eating a variety of invertebrates, frogs, small mammals and even small snakes, hedgehogs still naturally consume fruit and vegetables.

We strongly believe that you should always try and replicate the natural feeding habits and behaviours of an animal as close as you can even in captivity.

The nutrients from the fruit and especially the veg and leafy greens are important to growth, bone health and much more.

Even highly respected authorities such as Pet-MD recommend that you feed your hedgehog on a diet consisting of…

  • Specifically designed hedgehog food
  • Small number of insects/worms
  • Small number of fruit & veg

We also agree with this style of diet as we think it best suits their nutritional needs.

We recently created a post where we found what we believe is the best hedgehog food and where you can find it for the lowest price.

5 Top Greens to Feed Your Hedgehog

Sometimes it can be difficult to know what foods are the best options to feed your hedgehog.

So many foods that we ate ourselves aren’t always considered good options for a hedgie.

We’ve created a list of 5 top greens that are highly nutritious and great foods to add to your hedgehog’s food bowl on a regular basis.

Here are the 5 top greens we recommend…

  • Dandelion Greens
  • Collard Greens
  • Carrots
  • Arugula
  • Kale

We’ve also put these 5 greens in a table so you can see the nutrients they offer and hopefully, this will also help you to lick out which greens you want to add to your hedgies diet.

Check out the table below…

Nutritional Information (5 Healthy Hedgehog Foods)

Note: We Have Included The Most Relevant Information Only
NameKaleCollard GreensDandelion GreensArugulaCarrots
Water89.63 g89.62 g85.6 g91.71 g88.29 g
Energy35 kcal32 kcal45 kcal25 kcal41 kcal
Protein2.92 g3.02 g2.7 g2.58 g0.93 g
Fat1.49 g0.61 g0.7 g0.66 g0.24 g
Carbohydrate4.42 g5.42 g9.2 g3.65 g9.58 g
Fibre4.1 g4 g3.5 g1.6 g2.8 g
Sugar0.99 g0.46 g0.71 g2.05 g4.74 g
Calcium254 mg232 mg187 mg160 mg33 mg
Iron1.6 mg0.47 mg3.1 mg1.46 mg0.3 mg
Phosphorus55 mg25 mg66 mg52 mg35 mg
Sodium53 mg17 mg76 mg27 mg69 mg
Vitamin B-60.147 mg0.165 mg0.251 mg0.073 mg0.138 mg
vitamin B-120 µg0 µg0 µg0 µg0 µg
vitamin A241 µg251 µg508 µg119 µg835 µg
Vitamin C83.4 mg35.3 mg35 mg15 mg5.9 mg
Vitamin E0.66 mg2.26 mg3.44 mg0.43 mg0.66 mg
Vitamin K389.6 µg437.1 µg778.4 µg108.6 µg13.2 µg

Adam Woods

Hi, My name is Adam. I'm the main author of Pocket Pets Forever. I'm a pocket pet enthusiast and I love sharing my knowledge and passion for these amazing animals. Thank you for supporting us on our journey as we continue to publish content with the aim of helping owners care for their pets in the best way possible!

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