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Henry's Healthy Blocks were created 4 years ago when we found ourselves taking care of two nonreleasable squirrels, Henry and Hazel. Once they were weaned, we struggled to find healthy foods they would eat. Rodent blocks were the only nutritionally sound choice at that time. But there was a problem: like most pet squirrels, ours simply wouldn't eat rodent blocks! In fact, most squirrels will refuse to eat commercial rodent blocks unless they're introduced to them very young.
We knew nutritional deficiencies like metabolic bone disease (MBD) were all too common among captive squirrels and didn't want that to happen. So I started researching rodent nutrient requirements to see if we could come up with a healthy diet by just feeding a variety of healthy veggies. I quickly discovered that this was impossible. A squirrel would have to eat 7 entire heads of endive lettuce per week just to meet their calcium requirements. Finding a protein source was even harder; they wouldn't eat store-bought eggs, and picked at the mealworms we bought. Finally, we decided to create a tasty, nut-based nutritionally complete block that hopefully they would eat. We used the nutrient requirements of rats, just like in regular rodent blocks, but instead of high-carb cornmeal, we used fresh ground nuts as a base. Of course we also left out the preservatives, fillers, fish meal, meat by-products, and other "junk." We also consulted with top experts in animal nutrition to make sure our recipe was nutritionally sound.
Henry and Hazel loved them! What a relief to have a healthy block they would actually eat! And we saw the difference right away, especially in Henry, who had always had rather dull, coarse fur. After just a few weeks eating the blocks his fur became soft, shiny, and full. In fact, he earned a new nickname: "Mr. Silky."
After many requests from other squirrel owners, in 2009 we began to make and sell Henry's blocks, and so Henry's Healthy Pet Foods was born. We wanted to bring Henry's quality to other small pets, and so we developed formulas for other small pets as well, such as hamsters, rats and mice. We love our small furry friends and believe they deserve to eat healthy, natural foods so they can live a long, happy life.