Many mammals (including humans) adapt to a wide variety of food sources. Mammals in general, can thrive by consuming proteins, fats, carbohydrates etc. in many different forms. Sugar gliders are no exception. Certainly, any single food source that contains the exact nutrition necessary to sustain life would be adequate to keep them alive, but as you know, humans, and our animal friends, prefer to eat a variety of foods. Sugar gliders do not prefer, nor, are they healthier eating the same food over and over again, day after day, week in and week out.
In the wild, Sugar gliders consume a wide variety of foods. This varied diet provides adequate nutrition for their species to propagate and prosper.
If you have read or heard promotional material from a pet food company, Sugar glider breeder, or veterinarian that hints of offering ‘only their food’...then you have been exposed to a ‘marketing ploy’ used to promote a product that company, breeder, or veterinarian is touting.
This just is absolutly not accurate information. It's a ploy.
If Sugar gliders, thrived on only one specific type of extruded 'man made' food, then the wild populations of Sugar gliders would diminish in a short period of time, since a varied diet is exactly what they feed on in the wild. The fact of the matter is, they survive just fine consuming blossoms, flower nectar, sap from eucalyptus trees, acacia gum, and insects.
By consuming their native food sources, the Gliders don’t need a separate vitamin source to stay healthy!
So, why then do certain companies/veterinarians... persist at informing the public that their food product/vitamin is the only product that will keep your Sugar glider healthy? The answer is simple, they have a financial interest in promoting the food and attempt to persuade you into feeding that product.
The fact of the matter is: Sugar gliders can, and will, sustain an adequate nutrition balance using many different food sources. Just as humans can sustain excellent health by eating a variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, meats etc. … Sugar gliders do the same by eating a variety of fruits, vegetables, insects and nectars. They thrive on this diet it in the wild … and they thrive on it in captivity!
We at Exotic Nutrition are appalled at the misinformation and misleading suggestions made by some self proclaimed experts with ties to the Sugar glider trade. They remind us of doctors who push certain brands of medications because of the ‘perks’ that pharmaceutical manufactures offer them. It really amounts to a conflict of interest.
We at Exotic Nutrition, maintain the belief, that variety in the diet of a Sugar glider is not only welcomed, but much more nutritionally complete than some extruded food products that are pumped out by machines and left to sit in warehouses for months or even years, losing it’s nutritional value, before it is shipped to you.
Exotic Nutrition Sugar glider foods (we make 10 varieties) are produced fresh. Most ingredients used in the pelleting of our diets is grown locally, and the ones we can’t grow here in Virginia are imported from reliable sources abroad. The dried fruits used in our blends... are human grade. Exotic Nutrition acacia gum blends are mixed right here in our warehouse by hand, as are most of our other foods and treats. We have been producing and supplying Sugar glider foods to breeders, institutions, and pet owners for over 10 years with exceptional results, and healthy animals.
In conclusion … we suggest that you follow common sense principles. Offer your pet Sugar gliders quality foods that are fresh, a diet that contains the suggested nutritional balance. Your pet Sugar gliders will not only thrive, but they will flourish by consuming a healthy variety of fresh nutritional foods, rather than stale extruded foods ... day after day.
Dirty Secrets about Sugar glider foods
Pellet type Sugar glider foods …
The majority of Exotic Nutrition foods are pelletized. This means, the ingredients used in our foods including grains, proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals, fruits, vegetables etc. are initially mixed together in large mixing bin with an auger. The ingredients are then put through a pelleting machine. Basically
the pellets are formed from the exact ingredients provided; there is no ‘puffing’ therefore the finished product is solid food (no air). This finished pellet contains an extremely large amount of nutrition per volume. One ounce of a pellet food can provide as much nutrition as 4 ounces of an extruded product.
In reality, offering a ¼ dish of pellet food is similar to offering an entire dish of an extruded food. Our pellet diets are nutrient-dense, made fresh with locally harvested ingredients, and shipped direct to your door. http://www.sugar-glider-store.com/sugar-glider-foods.html
Extrusion process Sugar glider foods …
Extrusion processing is a manufacturing method that some companies elect to use to produce their Sugar glider foods. Unbelievably, even some of the Sugar glider foods currently sold as ‘Vet Recommended’ are manufactured this way. Some veterinarians are highly knowledgable about food ingredients and nutrition, but do not know much about pet food manufacture, nor do they take into consideration the processing methods involved to arrive at a finished product ... especially how manufacturing processes affect the nutritional values of the ingredients. Here at Exotic Nutrition ... we are experts in this field. Our 10 years of hands on manufacturing experience and sucessful pet food formulations, have enabled us to develop some of the highest quality, freshest exotic pet foods available.
Examples of extruded sugar glider foods are:
1) Pretty Pet
3) Happy Glider
4) Vets Pride (Nutrimax)
5) Wholesome Balance
Extrusion processing destroys much of the nutrients in the grains. It destroys the fatty acids; it even destroys the chemical vitamins that are added at the end. The amino acids are rendered very toxic by this process. The only advances made in the extrusion process are those that will cut costs … regardless of how the processes will alter the nutrient content of the final product. The amino acid lysine, a crucial nutrient, is especially denatured by extrusion. Cooking and other processing of meat and by-products used in pet food can greatly
diminish their nutritional value.
To make extruded pet food nutritious, pet food manufacturers must “fortify” it with
vitamins and minerals. Why? Because the ingredients they are using are not wholesome, their quality may be extremely variable, and the harsh manufacturing practices destroy many of the nutrients the ingredients had to begin with.
Proteins are especially vulnerable to heat, and become damaged, or “denatured,” when
cooked. Because dry food ingredients are cooked twice — first during rendering and again in the extruder — problems are much more common than with pelleted, canned, or homemade foods. Altered proteins may contribute to food intolerances, food allergies, and inflammatory bowel disease.
During extrusion the food expands or “puffs” into its final shape. An extruded food is ‘puffed’which means high volume and low weight … a cup of extruded food can weigh half as much as a cup of pellet food. Less weight per volume also means less nutrition for the same volume of food.
The microscopic effects of extrusion on the proteins "Zeins," which comprise the majority of proteins in corn, are located in spherical organelles called protein bodies. During extrusion, these protein bodies are completely disrupted and deformed. The extrusion process breaks down the organelles, disperses the proteins and the proteins become toxic. When they are disrupted in this way, you have absolute chaos in your food, and it can result in a disruption
of the nervous system.
In conclusion, most extruded sugar glider foods are extremely hard. Extruded foods will typically last for up to a year, but be aware of companies that try to sell you a large volume ‘2 year supply’. This is typically done because the food is not very palatable (doesn’t appeal to your pet’s taste) hence you are stuck with 2 years worth. Along with that, the entire 2nd. year … you would be feeding a product that has been sitting around, getting stale, for a long time.