Sugar gliders are exotic animals and with any exotic animal, it can often be confusing knowing not only what they can and can’t eat but also what is considered healthy and nutritious for their daily diet.
Depending on where you live, bread can either be considered a diet staple or an occasional treat and while bread can be quite bad for some animals (due mainly to issues digesting it) you might wonder whether or not your sugar glider can eat bread.
Sugar gliders are omnivores, this means that they can eat a wide variety of food and this includes bread. It’s important however to ensure that your sugar glider has a well balanced diet and therefore, bread should make up no more than 10% - 20% of their daily diet and should be used as an occasional treat rather than a diet staple.
There are certain parts of your sugar glider diet which are essential and this includes a healthy balance of protein, fruits, and vegetables. When it comes to carbohydrate sources like bread, you need to be more selective about the types and quantities that you are feeding to your sugar glider.
In this article, we’ll let you know why it is ok to feed your sugar gliders bread and how you should look to manipulate their diet so that bread is an occasional treat rather than being a diet staple.
A sugar glider diet is not that complex however, it’s always best to be cautious when experimenting with food and diet choices and bread is often something that causes many animals discomfort and even illness in some cases.
As an omnivore, however, sugar glides are capable of eating a wide variety of food which includes protein sources (naturally insects), fruit, vegetables, grains, and cereals which means that sugar gliders can eat bread.
If you don’t want to just take our word for it then below is a quick video showing a sugar glider that seems happy enough to tuck into a rather large slice of bread.
Just because they can eat bread, however, does not mean that it is an optimal food choice and while many will agree that sugar gliders can eat bread, the overriding opinion is that it should be occasional and not a part of their staple diet.
An ideal diet has yet to be devised for sugar gliders in captivity as they are a relatively new ‘pet’ and this is why moderation needs to be taken when providing food that they wouldn’t otherwise consume in the wild.
In the wild, you’ll find they consume nectar, insects, sap, eggs, lizards, and even small birds and therefore this is the reason we advise taking a cautious and minimal approach when it comes to feeding them bread.
Sugar gliders have very small stomachs and the reason you should limit the amount of bread that they consume is that it can quickly fill up their stomach (for humans, this is more commonly described to be bloating).
Filling their stomachs is not really a large issue in itself but rather the fact that bread isn’t very nutritious and therefore the more bread that you feed a sugar glider (especially if they eat it first), the less nutrient rich foods they are likely to consume afterward as a result.
That makes bread sound quite bad however that really isn’t the case, carbohydrates are not only good for sugar gliders but essential and bread is a very carbohydrate rich food source.
What we instead want to emphasize is that your sugar gliders should only have bread in moderation alongside a well balanced and nutritious diet.
We (as well as others in this forum) feel that bread is best used as an occasional treat to break up your sugar gliders diet and give them something new to eat and enjoy.
You can experiment with coating the bread or using different types (banana, wheat, etc..) and just make sure you don’t give them too much to avoid bloating and discomfort.
Just because a sugar glider can eat bread it doesn’t necessarily mean that it should. Bread isn’t something that a sugar glider would eat in the wild and therefore when kept in captivity as pets, it’s always best to try and recreate their natural diet as closely as possible to keep them healthy and happy.
It doesn’t mean that we can’t give them an occasional treat though and bread is a perfectly acceptable food to provide them in moderation.
Just make sure they’ve consumed some nutritious diet staples first as if they fill up on bread then they’ll likely ignore the more nutritious foods that they should be eating.
Before you go we thought we’d leave you with one last video showing that sugar gliders can eat bread and that they do actually enjoy it (have you ever seen a more content looking pet?).