View Full Version : How much is too much?

09-14-2006, 09:29 PM
My baby is now almost 8 weeks old. We've been introducing other foods in addition to the formula over the past couple of weeks and she has taken interest in some of them.
I thought I should increase the amount of formula from 8 ml 4x a day to 9 or 10ml due to her age and did so, but now she's not showing much interest in the other food and seems less active in general. She seems bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, as they say, but seemed to sleep more. She certainly did not object to the formula increase, but I am wondering if I should stick with less formula to encourage her to eat other foods.
I am mixing the formula with some whipping cream (have been all along) and began adding ground rodent block and plain yogurt after her eyes opened.
Also, should she begin to wean soon? Will she just refuse formula? She loves the stuff so much I can't imagine her not wanting it!

09-15-2006, 08:46 AM
she will wean herself dont worry about it continue giving it as long as she will take it, there is important things in that formula she needs right now. The yogurt is great for extra callcium! Maybe she seems like shes sleeping more because she's growing rapidly? Try sweet potato mine love it! It sounds like you are giving her good things! Have you given her any nuts yet? I dont mean peanuts. Wallnuts, some almonds, pecans pine nuts?

09-15-2006, 11:04 AM
How much does the squirrel weigh? Even 10 cc 4 times a day wouldn't be enough for my 8 weeker...he's eating a minimum of 15 cc 4 times a day and weighs over 300 grams... Now, Zeke, my 10 weeker is getting 20-25 cc 2 times a day and is almost weaned. He weighs well over 400 grams at this point.

Solid foods to try: banana (dried or raw), apple chunks, quartered grapes, baby carrots, leaf lettuce, pumpkin seeds, Iams puppy food, pears, broccoli, snow or sugar snap peas...I would limit nuts to two halves a day...and only one pecan half if that's one of the two I'm giving...pecans are squirrel candy. Try to find some in-shell nuts to give him...he may or may not be able to crack them, but he will wear his teeth down and have fun playing with them! Mine also really like dandelion greens...

Do you get him out in the sun at all? They need real sunlight (or the special FULL SPECTRUM bulbs) for at least 20-30 minutes a day to help them produce vitamin D which will allow them to absorb the calcium in the formula and solid foods.

I kinda wean my squirrels based on weight, health and age. I like to have them weaned (if possible) by 12 weeks, or real close. But sometimes it's less than 12 weeks (some are weaned by 9-10 weeks all by themselves) and sometimes it's more. But keep in mind that winter is coming and unless you plan to winter him over, you'd better get to weaning him. Here in Iowa we have a self-imposed (well, weather-imposed really) deadline for release of Halloween...maybe a few days beyond that if the weather is really nice and going to stay that way for a few more days...

Do you provide her with toys? Try hanging old socks tied together from the top of the cage and hanging just above the floor of the cage...also, some baby toys are ok for squirrels...hammocks are another fav of my gang...

Hope this helps!!

09-15-2006, 12:26 PM
Thank you both so much for all the great advice! I weighed her today and she's 225 grams. If I do the 5% of body weight thing she should be getting 11 or 12 ml per feeding, so I think I will ramp her up to that and see how it goes. She looks very healthy and is active again today so maybe yesterday was just an abberation - a squirrel day off.

She does get some nuts. She has an affinity for Brazil and hazelnuts, and she even loves the acorns we bring her in from outside. I will try sweet potato!

Her cage is in front of a west-facing window as we have squirrels on our first-floor roof all the time and I thought maybe she'd check them out at some point. She's not noticed them yet, but maybe she will.

I hope to be able to release her later next month. We live in Florida so winter is not a big deal.

The toy ideas are great - thanks! She has a tennis ball and a stuffed animal, and we have an oak log rigged up in her cage for climbing, but I was wondering about other toys as she's pretty playful-acting sometimes.

Thanks again to you both!

09-17-2006, 08:49 PM
You need to eliminate the yogurt. To much acidophylis is not a good thing. Yogurt should only be used when antibiotics are being used (primarily penicillins). Your squirrel is getting all the vitamin D and calcium she needs while she's on the formula, assuming your giving her Esbilac or Milk Matrix 33/40. Once weaning onto solid foods, rodent block and/or Zupreem primate diet have the vitamins, calcium, and other nutrients needed for proper growth. You should also be adding different fruits and veggies that are native to your area. I do offer my squirrels hard shelled nuts in and out of the shell, I usually introduce the nuts in shell at about 8-9 weeks of age, that's about the time they'll start trying to crack them. I never offer sunflower seeds or peanuts, neither are good for squirrels, only as a very occasional treat. Also offering a femur bone or antlers is necessary for proper teeth gnawing and they'll also get calcium out of the bones or antlers. I never use supplements, I personally don't feel their necessary if on the proper formula and weaning diet. To much of a good thing isn't always good. Nutz

Secret Squirrel
09-18-2006, 09:09 AM
Hey nutz....it's great to have you back.....I have missed the heck outta you!!!:thumbsup