Pets & Animals

Feeding Squirrels, Good or Bad? 

Feeding Squirrels, Good or Bad

Feeding someone is always considered to be the humblest practice one could ever practice. We especially enjoy feeding animals and birds, as finding food for them is an everyday struggle.

But is it safe and necessary to feed them? An ongoing debate has got too many people into the conversation, which talks about feeding squirrels. A part of the crowd says we should feed squirrels while the other part of the crowd says it is very intimidating and risky to feed squirrels.

What do squirrels survive on? What to feed squirrels? Why is this debate taking a strong pace? A lot of questions remain unanswered while talking about squirrels. But hopefully, these all questions will be answered by the end of the article.

So, without any further ado, let us, straight dive, in and find out the actual answer on, ” Feeding squirrels are good or bad”?

Can One Feed Normal Human Food to Squirrels? 

Can One Feed Normal Human Food to Squirrels

Before we get to the point of understanding why feeding squirrels are good or bad. Let us understand what kind of food they consume or what kind of food items can be given to them.

While talking about feeding wildfires like squirrels, the very first thing that comes to our mind is, can we feed them with the foodstuff that we eat? Because if it is healthy for us, it very much means that it should be healthy for the squirrels too.

No! The food that your intake cannot be fed to squirrels. Popcorns, pizzas, and other food items often lead to causing digestive problems in squirrels. As they are not habitual of eating something like this.

Furthermore, their body has been developed so that they mostly eat what is stale or dead. So, giving them the food that we intake can cause problems for squirrels.

Therefore, it is often advisable to not share foodstuffs that we eat with squirrels.

What to Feed Squirrels? 

What to Feed Squirrels

Squirrels are usually adaptable to any and every kind of food item. Whatever they get during their search is what they consume. That is how their survival pattern is. But the research says the squirrels enjoy certain food items. What are those food items? Let us find out.

A study says squirrels are blown away by various kinds of nuts. That is the best thing they enjoy eating. Other than that, roasted pumpkin seeds, acorns, pecans, walnuts, and peanuts are what fascinates them.

As already mentioned, squirrels are not very picky in terms of eating. But as normally as every creature craves for something more and something less. Similarly, squirrels crave the food, as mentioned earlier, items.

Not only that, but one could also count on corn, mushrooms, squashes, and broccoli as their vegetative favorite. Furthermore, squirrels are also delighted by the bite of apples, oranges, apricots, and avocados.

These are few food items that squirrels adore. So, if in case you plan to feed squirrels, you can take along these foodstuffs.

Why Should We Feed Squirrels? 

Why Should We Feed Squirrels

Wildlife creatures like squirrels and others must face tremendous amounts of a challenge to gather food for themselves. Their survival is already a challenge, whereas the hunt for food makes it even more challenging. 

Therefore, to extend a helping hand to their survival, many people take the initiative to feed animals and birds that they can. Squirrels tend to be one of them. A lot of parks and garden pet squirrels on purpose to take care of them and feed them.

Many people also pet squirrels in their garden yards to serve them. During winters, it becomes tough for squirrels to find their food. So, at such times people holding on to the responsibility of feeding them proves to be very beneficial for them.

Also, research states that having squirrels around your area creates a light and positive environment. Thus, for the above-discussed reasons, one should take up the responsibility of feeding squirrels.

Why Should We Not Feed Squirrels?

Squirrels and other species like it must fight their survival battle almost every day. And thus, they are developed so that their body becomes accustomed to digesting any foodstuff, mostly stale.

Feeding them daily encourages a change in their daily survival routine, which furthermore causes problems for squirrels. Once they get habitual of being fed daily, they avoid searching for food and get completely reliable on the person feeding.

This creates dependability and thus hinders the life of squirrels to some extent. Not only that, when squirrels find a permanent feeder, they tell their friends and other members to join them, and thus, the feeder must feed all of them.

Sometimes, feeding too many Squirrels can lead to fighting among the squirrels. This creates chaos, and the feeder gets upset and worried too. Feeding the squirrels daily also makes the squirrels lose their fear for humans, and thus they can sometimes get aggressive.

Little do the feedees know that squirrels have very sharp teeth and nails that can easily be used to attack. So, if in case the feeder decides not to feed the squirrels someday, then there are very high chances that they might turn aggressive towards the feeder.

Another problem that one can encounter while feeding squirrels is the spread of rabies. Rabies can be easily contracted if the squirrel has a scratch or bite of other infected creatures. This can be easily transmitted to humans. Although the chances are very less precautions need to be followed.

Following these above-discussed reasons, people opt for either feeding the squirrels or not feeding the squirrels.


The end decision of whether to feed the squirrels or not depends upon the user. If he/she tends to be comfortable and feel safe doing it, one can continue to feed. Feeling comfortable and secure while feeding the squirrels should be the major concern of the user.

But it is often advisable to stay away from the wildlife creatures as helping them would hinder their survival pattern. But at the end of the day, if one feels like feeding, one could still definitely choose to do so.

We hope that this article proved to be of some help in guiding you on various factors on squirrels. Hoping that you must have found all the answers to your questions by now.

But just in case if there is still any doubt on the subject, please feel free to use the comment section below to voice it. We will reach back to you and try to answer all your questions to our best knowledge available.

Happy Reading!

Cesar Millan
Cesar Millan holds a Master’s in Animal Behavior from Cornell University, dedicating his 11-year career to understanding and improving the human-animal bond. Since joining our website in 2022, Cesar has provided insights into pet care, behavior modification, and animal communication. His background includes roles in animal research and as a professional dog trainer. Cesar’s previous roles included working as a veterinarian and animal behaviorist. Cesar is an avid wildlife photographer in his leisure time and participates in conservation education programs.

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