What Do Hedgehogs Eat And Drink?
- 1 Do hedgehogs eat any fruit?
- 2 Do hedgehogs drink milk?
- 3 What is a hedgehogs worst enemy?
- 4 How long do pet hedgehogs live?
- 5 Will a dog eat a hedgehog?
- 6 Do hedgehogs like warm or cold water?
- 7 Should hedgehogs be out in daytime?
- 8 What do you give a dehydrated hedgehog?
What can you give a hedgehog to drink?
What do hedgehogs drink? – Hedgehogs will drink water from natural sources such as puddles, but leaving out a shallow dish of fresh, plain water is the best way to ensure they stay hydrated all year round. Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD) is caused by a hedgehog consistently eating foods which are too low in calcium and too high in phosphorus.
This can result in the hedgehog’s body leaching the calcium stored in its bones into the bloodstream to try to counterbalance. But this means that their bones then don’t get enough calcium, causing the bones to break or become misshapen. If a hedgehog fills up solely on peanuts, mealworms, oats and sunflower hearts, they won’t have a balanced diet and this can lead to MBD.
MBD in hedgehogs is harrowing: it’s a debilitating, excruciatingly painful condition that can lead to death. Much like we have to eat everything in moderation and only indulge in unhealthy foods as treats, hedgehogs should do the same. Hedgehogs need good-quality food with the appropriate calcium balance to avoid this condition.
Do hedgehogs eat any fruit?
General Pet Hedgehog Food Guidelines – Hedgehogs are considered either omnivores or insectivores, depending on the source referenced. If you look at the actual diet of a hedgehog you’ll see that the omnivore description is probably a more accurate one since hedgehogs in the wild will eat a variety of foods, not just insects.
Different species of hedgehogs will have slightly varied diets depending on the part of the world they are from, but most pet hedgehogs are African Pygmy hedgehogs so being a hybrid, their diet isn’t the same as a wild hedgehog. Hedgehogs have the unique ability to digest chitin from insects. Chitin is found in the hard exoskeleton of insects and is primarily a protein source but also provides some fiber.
Chitin is a necessary component to a hedgehog’s diet but it isn’t the only thing a hedgehog needs from its food, so various items should be fed in addition to insects.
Mealworms : Live or freeze-dried mealworms are a good source of chitin for hedgehogs. Live worms also provide a good source of mental stimulation since they move around and make a hedgehog have to work a little harder to catch its food. Waxworms: Live waxworms are higher in fat but lower in chitin content than mealworms so these should be saved as treats for hedgehogs. Crickets: Also available live or freeze-dried, crickets provide chitin as well as mental stimulation for a hedgehog. As with other insects, gut-loading should be done before feeding crickets to your hedgehog to ensure they are loaded with nutrition. Fruits: Dried fruit should be avoided, but a small amount of fresh fruit can be offered to your hedgehog as treats. Apples, bananas, berries, and melons are popular choices among hedgehogs. Vegetables: Fresh tomatoes, fresh green beans, and cooked squash are some options that your hedgehog may enjoy. Starchy vegetables, such as corn, potatoes, and carrots should be avoided as well as dried vegetables. Cooked meat: High protein, low-fat canned dog or cat food, as well as cooked chicken, can be offered in small amounts to a pet hedgehog. Cooked eggs: An occasional bit of scrambled or hard-boiled egg is a nice treat that’s packed with protein for a hedgehog. Pinky mice: If you aren’t grossed out by your hedgehog eating a baby mouse, you can offer the occasional pre-killed pinky mouse as a treat. Hedgehog or cat kibble: This should be the bulk of your hedgehog’s diet. A high-quality cat or hedgehog kibble should contain at least 30 percent protein and less than 20 percent fat. Hedgehog food is the ideal diet if it meets these nutritional requirements, but few formulated diets are available that don’t include things like raisins and seeds, which are not recommended to feed.
The Spruce / Adrienne Legault
Do hedgehogs drink milk?
Step-by-step guide – Find a safe place for your cafe, You will need a sheltered spot. Before they find shelter, hedgehogs need to be able to get in and out of your garden to start with. Start by creating nature’s highways and byways. Get a sturdy box (wood or plastic) with a removable lid for your feeding station.
- It needs to be big enough for a hedgehog to fit in, along with food and water bowls.
- A plastic storage box is a popular choice.
- You can also install a tunnel to prevent cats or foxes stealing the food.
- Create a hedgehog-sized hole at the base of one of the sides of your box.
- It should be about 13cm square so the hog can get in and out safely.
If your box is wooden, you’ll need a saw. If your box is plastic, carefully use a sharp knife. Cover the edges of the hole with duct tape to make sure there are no sharp bits that could hurt your hedgehogs. Add your grub. At sunset, lay shallow dishes of hedgehog-friendly food and water inside the box.
Only put out small amounts of food, as this is supplementary to their natural diet. Never feed hedgehogs milk or bread as they can’t digest it and it upsets their stomachs. Be aware that putting any food out will attract all sorts of wildlife including predators, not just hedgehogs. Look out for hedgehog poo around the outside of the box, to help determine if you have hedgehogs or rats.
Add your roof. Put the lid on top of the box and place a brick or two on top of the lid. This will stop a fox tipping the box up or dragging it away. Clear away any food in the morning and refill your dishes every evening, or for as long as the food is being eaten.
Do hedgehogs eat bread?
What not to feed hedgehogs – The following foods should be avoided when feeding hedgehogs:
Bread and milk: hogs are lactose intolerant so milk can make them ill and bread has little nutritional value.
Mealworms: thought to cause health problems when eaten in large quantities.
Your garden could provide much-needed hedgehog habitat. Credit: Richard Becker / Alamy Stock Photo
Is it OK to give hedgehogs water?
FAQ – Hedgehog Fleas and Ticks Hedgehog fleas do not live on dogs, cats, humans or inside houses, they are host specific, so your pet cannot catch fleas from a hedgehog. Ticks on hedgehogs (seen as greyish shiny lumps, often behind the ears) are not usually a problem unless there are dozens, which can lead to anaemia.
Removal of ticks should be avoided as it is very easy to leave the mouth parts behind which may lead to a serious infection. I have seen a hedgehog out during the day, what should I do? Hedgehogs are nocturnal and only come out at night. Generally, any hedgehog out during the day is probably in trouble and will need to be picked up and taken to a wildlife rescue centre.
You can pick them up using gardening gloves and put them into a cardboard box, although they are good climbers, so you would need to ensure it cannot escape. If you are local to us, then please bring it along to Tiggywinkles, there is no need to call first as we are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
- To find your nearest rescue centre, check www.helpwildlife.co.uk,
- However, please note that during the summer months female hedgehogs may come out in late afternoons to forage for nesting material and extra food for her young; she will be active and should appear bright and healthy.
- If you are not sure if a hedgehog needs rescuing please do call us on 01844 292292 and we will help assess the situation.
Too small to hibernate hedgehogs/overwintering Underweight hedgehogs will not survive hibernation, so need to be kept indoors until April time. These hedgehogs are usually juveniles, born too late in the year to put on the weight they need to survive hibernation.
- If these late babies haven’t reached the safe weight of 600g by the end of November and we experience a cold snap, they may go into hibernation and will quickly burn through their limited fat reserves.
- Overwintered hedgehogs need to be kept indoors in a constant-temperature room (around 65°F or 18°C) to prevent them from trying to hibernate.
Hedgehogs tend to start hibernating from late December, although this is dependent on the weather and the individual hedgehog. If you see a small hedgehog at this time and are worried it weighs under 600g, please get in touch with your local wildlife rescue centre, as it may need to be overwintered.
You can find your nearest wildlife rescue centre on www.helpwildlife.co.uk. To help hedgehogs build up their fat reserves in time for winter, please put out a shallow dish of water and some meaty flavoured tinned cat or dog food in the evenings. Hedgehog in enclosed garden Unfortunately an enclosed garden would only be suitable for a disabled hedgehog as these creatures are nomadic and can walk up to two miles of an evening in their natural environment.
We do not re-home any hedgehogs that cannot be released. If it has a permanent disability, meaning it could not survive in the wild, it would be kept in the Hospital grounds where it can live out its life in a near-natural environment and have regular checks by our veterinary team, to ensure it is thriving.
Releasing overwintered hedgehogs There is no definitive time for releasing overwintered hedgehogs, but once the frosts are over should be fine. These hedgehogs need hardening off like a plant. Initially keep indoors but turn heating off in the room. If all is well move to an outside shed or garage, and finally to the garden for release.
Ensure nocturnal habit is well established and should the hedgehog stop feeding at any time, take it back a stage and start again from there. Hedgehogs need to weigh at least 600 grams for their winter hibernation and they are much lighter when they awake from this.
Hedgehogs that get too big lose their ability to curl up tightly, their only natural defence. Can I move a hedgehog that is hibernating in an unsuitable place? No, they really should be left alone. A hedgehog that has gone into hibernation uses up valuable body fats if they are disturbed. If you do accidentally disturb a hibernation nest, cover it back over with a thick layer of dry leaves and perhaps leave some dog food and water nearby, so if the hedgehog does wake up, he can easily find something to eat before he goes to find a new hibernation spot and rebuilds his nest.
Do I need to clean out my hedgehog box? The only time that you could clean out a hedgehog box is early spring, after hedgehogs have woken from hibernation and before they start to mate and look for maternity nests, which really means April time only.
Check the box carefully during the dark evening, so any hedgehog using it for a day nest has had a chance to go off hunting, and if it is in use, then you should leave it alone, as the nesting hedgehog may decide to abandon the box. If you do clean it out, don’t forget to put in some new dry bedding ready for use.
How big does a hedgehog need to be to hibernate? We suggest that a hedgehog should weigh around 600 grams before going into hibernation to ensure it has a good body fat resource to see it through the long sleep. Hedgehogs much smaller than this will still try and hibernate, but if the body fat is too low, it will not survive and would not wake up again.
How do I know if a hedgehog is too small to hibernate? Hedgehogs should weigh around 600 grams by early December in order to have enough body fat to survive hibernation. From early November you might want to keep an eye on any visiting hedgehogs to see how much they weigh. It wouldn’t disturb them too much to weigh one on your kitchen scales.
At the start of November they should weigh around 500 grams, or they may need to go to a wildlife hospital for overwintering. How long do juvenile hedgehogs stay with their mum? Hedgehog mums will feed their babies for up to eight weeks and then will leave them to fend for themselves.
If the nest is disturbed during these first few weeks, then the mum may abandon or eat her babies, so you really do need to leave them well alone. Putting extra food near to the nest may encourage her to not stray too far and will help the babies put on extra weight when they start to forage for themselves.
How long should I continue to feed a hedgehog into the winter months? Autumn and early winter is the essential time to feed hedgehogs in your garden, as they need to put on enough weight to reach a safe hibernation weight before late December. However, hedgehogs might not be the only visitor to your garden who would appreciate an easy place to find food in those hard winter months, so do continue to put out food for several days after it stops being eaten.
- It might be that a hedgehog has just gone somewhere else to find food for a little while.
- Also hedgehogs can wake from hibernation if disturbed or the weather conditions change, so they might be about looking for food when the ground is frozen and easy meals are hard to come by.
- I have a hedgehog sleeping on my lawn, is it ok? No, hedgehogs will only sleep in a nest during the day, so any hedgehog lying out on the lawn will be very poorly and will need to be picked up and taken to your nearest wildlife hospital as soon as possible.
You can pick them up using gardening gloves and put them into a cardboard box, although they are good climbers when well, so you would need to ensure it cannot escape. If you are local to us, then please bring it along to Tiggywinkles, there is no need to call first as we are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
- Or look on yell.com or 192.com under ‘wildlife rescue’ or ‘animal welfare’ to find your nearest centre.
- What should I feed a hedgehog? Hedgehogs are insectivores, so the best diet is the bugs and grubs in your garden, which will also help keep the ‘pests’ down.
- Therefore, the best way to feed hedgehogs would actually be to encourage more insects into your garden.
You can do this by leaving some areas a bit wild, planting native plants and shrubs, creating log piles, putting in bug hotels and having fresh water available (ideally a wildlife pond with a ramp for mammals to climb out). However, to encourage them in to your garden you could offer a ‘top-up’ meal of a good meaty-based diet.
We recommend a small dish of any meat flavour dog or cat food, plus a handful of dog or cat biscuits to keep their teeth healthy. Feeding hedgehogs in your garden should only be a supplement to their natural diet, or to help them during the harder Winter months, so it is important to not offer too much of any one type of food.
Hedgehogs are lactose intolerant so milk can make them very ill and should never be offered. Instead, put out a dish of fresh water each night. Hedgehogs are active during the night, so the best time to put out food is just after dusk, when they are starting to search for food.
The Autumn and Winter months are the most important for them to find food to put on enough weight before hibernation, so always make sure you put out food at this time of year. When do hedgehogs hibernate? Typically, hedgehogs hibernate from late December / early January until late March time. However, this is very dependent on the weather and the individual hedgehog, as some will hibernate earlier or later and some not at all! What should I do if I disturb a hibernating hedgehog by accident? A hedgehog that has gone into hibernation uses up valuable body fats if they are disturbed.
If you do accidentally disturb a hibernation nest, cover it back over with a thick layer of dry leaves and perhaps leave some dog food and water nearby, so if the hedgehog does wake up, he can easily find something to eat before he goes to find a new hibernation spot and rebuilds his nest.
What is the hedgehog Favourite food?
Hedgehogs mainly eat creepy crawlies – Hedgehogs are generalists and feed on a wide range of things. The majority of their diet is made up of invertebrates (or creepy crawlies). We know what they eat from scientific studies that have analysed hedgehog poo or looked in the stomachs of hedgehogs killed on roads. As well as these, they also eat a wide range of other insects. More infrequently, they will take advantage of carrion, frogs, baby rodents, baby birds, birds’ eggs and fallen fruit. ‘Hog eating a frog by Barbara Witowska When you are putting out food for hedgehogs, you can replicate the hedgehog’s natural diet by providing any combination of meat-based dog and cat food, hedgehog food or cat biscuits. Studies suggest that hedgehogs only use food in gardens as a supplement to their natural diet and therefore there is no evidence to suggest you are causing them to become dependent on you for food.
Can hedgehogs bite?
Hedgehogs will generally try to run away from people or if shocked will curl up in to a spiky ball. They have sharp needles all over their backs which can penetrate the skin. It will often itch if a needle does and may cause a rash. I’ve personally never had a rash when the needles penetrate my skin but the area of skin will usually itches for a while. Hedgehogs can bite you, but very rarely will that happen. This usually happens when they are young and think your fingers are going to feed them (if they have been fed via a syringe as they had no mother). The youngsters can’t really bite too hard and when I’ve been bitten it’s more like a little clamp around your finger than fangs digging in to your skin.
The adult hedgehogs have a more powerful bits and have two small rabbit like front teeth that when bitten will penetrate your skin. They tend to latch on to you for a bit and if bitten, you will have a bit of tug of war to remove them. They are strong enough to dig their teeth in to your flesh, however, they very rarely bite.
I’ve only been bitten when I’ve woken up an adult hedgehog which was sleeping during the day. He was very unhappy with me and gave me a nice nip (see photo). Like any animal bites, if bitten you would need a tetanus jab should you not be up to date with that. Hedgehogs can make themselves seem nasty with defensive mechanisms including curling up in to a very spiky ball and pushing their needle spines out (much like the hair on your skin when you get cold). This makes them a lot harder to handle and tells you they don’t want to be bothered.
They also pump out hissing noises when they don’t want something to go near them and will push their bodies upwards as if they are about to run towards and ram you or whatever is close by. But if they do this and you get close to the hedgehog they will usually curl up and continue hissing at you. This is a distress and a way for a hedgehog to warn off other wildlife that may be dangerous to a hedgehog, it is an essential mechanism to protect themselves.
They can also make noises almost like a small dog but sound more like a grunt. The baby hoglets often make these noises to gain their mothers attention. Mothers protecting their hoglets will judder a sound like breathing in and out of their noses. I’ve noticed this when I had to clean out a pen and the mother is close to her hoglets (I try not to ever disturb her when this happens).
I feel it is a worrying sound from the mother and maybe a warning to the hoglets that something is close to them. As hedgehogs are wild creatures they carry lots of things which humans may catch. Probably the most dangerous things are ticks. Ticks are very obvious to see and generally don’t move very fast.
They are often on hedgehogs brought in to us that are in poor health. Ticks feed off the blood of hedgehogs along with most other animals such as dogs. If a tick manages to latch on to a human there is a chance of getting some horrid bacteria. You need to be very cautious of ticks as they can carry lyme disease which is a bacteria spread by ticks. Hedgehogs also carry worms, lungworm, and ringworm. But so long as you wash your hands after handling a hedgehog you should be fine. Just don’t stick your fingers in your mouth straight after moving a hedgehog off the road! Ringworm leaves a round circle of red rash on your skin which is itchy, if you see this you will need to go to your GP for medication. Finally, hedgehogs carry mites and flees which generally don’t cause any issues to humans as they don’t tend to jump from hedgehogs to humans. #hedgehog #ringworm #lungworm #dangerous #bite #tick #flee #spines #human #people
Do hedgehogs eat cheese?
What Not To Feed Hedgehogs – The ideal hedgehog’s total diet would have a calcium to phosphorus ratio of 2:1 to 1:1. Anything outside that range can quickly cause them a whole heap of health hazards. Take sunflower hearts, they have a disastrous ratio of 1:15! And mealworms one of 1:7. Avoid food with an improper calcium/phosporus balance Besides poor calcium:phosphorus ratio grub, another big no-no is dairy. Hedgehogs are lactose intolerant. Milk and cheese will give them bad diarrhoea and can lead to serious illness as well. As for sweet treats like raisins, sultanas, currants, dried berries and the like: go easy, or better still, leave it out completely.
- Hedgehogs will take any chance they get to daily gnarf down food with high sugar content, giving them serious tooth decay and further digestion issues.
- Bread : no, hedgehogs can’t digest it.
- No large chunks of meat either, especially not red meat: their tiny teeth can’t tear or chew large pieces.
- No bacon or corned beef: too salty.
Fish is hard to digest, they don’t come across it naturally either. Eggs are not recommended as they have a calcium:phosporus ratio of 12.12:1. No cheap cat or dog food as they can contain lots of chemical additives, sugar, and again, a poor calcium/phosphorus balance.
|BAD food for hedgehogs||Reason|
|Mealworms||Poor calcium:phosphorus ratio: 1:15|
|Sunflower hearts||Poor calcium:phosphorus ratio: 1:7|
|Peanuts||Poor calcium:phosphorus ratio: 1:6|
|Crickets||Poor calcium:phosphorus ratio: 1:6|
|Beetles||Poor calcium:phosphorus ratio: 1:3|
|Cheaper cat/dog food brands||Poor calcium:phosphorus ratio Chemical additives High sugar content|
|Dairy (cow’s milk and cheese)||Lactose intolerance|
|Raisins, sultanas, currants, berries||High sugar content|
|Bread||Hedgehogs cannot digest this well|
|Large chunks of meat||Hedgehog teeth are too tiny to tear or chew big pieces|
|Bacon or corned beef||Too salty|
|Fish||Hard to digest, not natural|
|Eggs||Poor calcium:phosphorus ratio of 12.12:1|
|Fruit/veg||High sugar and/or starch content|
Are hedgehogs good pets?
Hedgehogs are small nocturnal animals. They have a prickly coat and are naturally found in Europe, Asia, and Africa. They are considered exotic pets and are illegal to own in four states in the U.S. and the five boroughs of New York City. Before buying a hedgehog you’ll need to find out if they’re legal in your state or county or if you need a permit.
- The two most common types of hedgehogs kept as pets are the European hedgehog, Erinaceus europaeus, and the smaller African pygmy hedgehog, Atelerix albiventris,
- Hedgehogs live alone in the wild and are typically solitary animals.
- They may take a while to warm up to you when you first bring them home.
Patience and time will help them trust you. Hedgehogs can be a fun and low-maintenance pet for your household, but they do need some special care. They have sharp quills that can make handling difficult. Consistent and proper daily handling will help them relax and feel comfortable with you.
Hedgehog’s quills do not shoot out like a porcupine’s, but they are sharp enough to pierce your skin. Be especially careful when they are frightened. Hedgehogs are a unique pet that has gained popularity. They can be fun pets to have around, but there are some challenges you’ll have to work around. Nocturnal.
Hedgehogs are nocturnal and are most active at night. Bonding with them can take a while due to their solitary nature. Playing with them and letting them roam around before bedtime will help them get used to your touch and care. Active. Hedgehogs are very active.
- They can run for miles! They enjoy climbing, digging, and swimming.
- They’re nocturnal, so they’ll be doing most of their digging and running around while you’re trying to sleep.
- Providing them with a large enclosure away from your bedroom will help them blow off steam and you to get some rest.
- Can carry disease,
Hedgehogs can seem healthy, but they can transmit bacteria like Salmonella or Mycobacteria to their owners. One large Salmonella outbreak was traced back to a pet African pygmy hedgehog. Before your hedgehog arrives, you’ll want to make sure that they have a large, escape-proof cage.
The cage floor should be solid, not wire, so your hedgehog doesn’t get stuck. They’ll need newspaper or paper-based bedding in their enclosure. You should also hedgehog-proof your home. They love to run around and will need extra space to roam outside of their enclosure. Make sure there are no small items around for your hedgehog to swallow, or places that your hedgehog can get trapped.
You’ll want to keep an eye on your hedgehog while they’re out of the cage. They like to dig and burrow in places. This makes them difficult to find once lost. Hedgehogs can easily become overweight. Plenty of exercise and a healthy diet are important. Adding a smooth-sided wheel will help them run as much as they want at night.
- Let them settle in on their own when introducing your hedgehog to their new space.
- Give them a few days to get comfortable.
- A pet hedgehog’s diet consists of pellet formulas specific for hedgehogs.
- This is often supplemented with insects and small amounts of fruits and vegetables.
- These include beans, peas, cooked carrots, and apples.
Do not offer nuts, seeds, or hard foods such as raw carrots, as they may get stuck in the roof of the mouth (especially peanut halves). In the wild, hedgehogs may eat bird’s eggs, lizards, mushrooms, and berries. They also enjoy catching live prey. Giving your pet a limited number of live insects will let them use their instincts.
- Hedgehogs are not recommended for households with children under 5 years of age or adults over 65.
- They can carry Salmonella bacteria in their droppings.
- Even if they seem healthy, the bacteria can infect their bodies, habitat, toys, and anything they come in contact with.
- This makes them a risk for those vulnerable populations.
People with weakened immune systems are also at risk from the germs and bacteria that hedgehogs can carry. This is important to keep in mind before bringing a hedgehog into your home. If you do have one as a pet, take care to clean their enclosure and toys away from your kitchen so you don’t infect your eating space.
Do hedgehogs eat eggs?
Hedgehogs mostly eat invertebrates at ground level that are inactive. They are opportunistic omnivores though and will sometimes eat eggs, small mammals, chicks, frogs, flies and carrion.
What is a hedgehogs worst enemy?
Badgers – A badger and a hedgehog feeding together on a lawn. Badgers are hedgehogs’ main predators in the UK. They are the only animals strong enough to tackle a hedgehog’s spiny defences. Hedgehogs and badgers share what’s known as an asymmetric intraguild predation relationship, Badgers can affect hedgehogs in one of three ways:
- Competition ; the two species compete for many of the same food sources. These include soil invertebrates such as earthworms and beetle larvae.
- Predation ; badgers can predate hedgehogs.
- Avoidance ; hedgehogs will avoid areas where badgers have been active. Where there are many badgers, hedgehogs are likely to be less common.
While badgers do prey on hedgehogs, this is natural predator-prey interaction. Although badger numbers have boomed in recent years, there is little evidence that suggests they are the main reason why hedgehogs are in trouble. Indeed, hedgehogs are struggling in rural places where we know few badgers live, like East Anglia.
- Where conditions are favourable and invertebrate food is readily available, the two species can co-exist.
- The two species have co-existed for thousands of years, which suggests that recent human activity has been a more prominent factor in the decline of hedgehogs.
- We would never condone the killing of badgers to help hedgehogs.
Read our full statement on badgers and hedgehogs,
How long do pet hedgehogs live?
How long do hedgehogs live? – On average, when kept as a pet, the hedgehog lifespan is about 4 to 6 years — with some domesticated hedgehogs living about 8 years. “Hedgehogs can be prone to mites and parasites, certain cancers, heart disease, and obesity,” Dr.
Do hedgehogs have good memory?
Indeed, Morris mentions that hedgehogs typically seem to have a good memory, remembering associations for several months, that doesn’t appear to be adversely impacted by hibernation.
What can I leave out for hedgehogs?
Leave out foods like tinned dog or cat food and crushed cat or dog biscuits. Supply good quality, meaty hedgehog food from wildlife food suppliers. Never feed hedgehogs milk or bread – milk can cause diarrhoea and bread isn’t very nutritious.
Will a dog eat a hedgehog?
With their keen sense of smell, dogs often detect hedgehogs before we humans spot them. Sadly some dogs can harm or even kill hedgehogs, when instinct tells them to hunt prey. Try to keep dogs away from any hedgehogs in your garden as an encounter could lead to both animals being hurt.
If you know your dog is prone to attacking hedgehogs then try to warn hedgehogs visiting your garden when the dog is being let out e.g. turn on an outside light a minute or so before letting the dog out. For the dog’s final patrol of the evening consider putting your dog on its lead or supervising the trip into the garden to prevent any attacks.
Hedgehogs do also have their own routine i.e. they appear at a certain time from a certain point. If you know the routine of the hedgehogs visiting your garden then keeping your dog in during those times will also benefit your dog and the hedgehog. Cats are less of a threat as they will usually leave hedgehogs alone after investigating them. Photo by Hedgehog Champion Sheena Ballard.
How to take care of a hedgehog?
Housing and environment – Large terrariums or solid bottom guinea pig cages make good housing for hedgehogs. Because they like to explore the cage should be large in size, 4′ x2′. A larger size cage also has better ventilation. C and C cages are a budget friendly option and can be built large enough for your hedgehog to roam.
Only solid bottom cages are suitable for hedgehogs, any wire bottom cages could trap their legs or rip off toenails. Provide a soft bedding free of dust, such as recycled paper pellets or if you use wood shavings use only kiln dried pine or aspen. Do not use cedar shavings as they could irritate your hedgehog’s lungs.
Some people provide a very shallow litter box for their hedgehog (locate it in the place of the cage he prefers to soil) fill it with a soft pellet type litter or paper towels. Do not use clay or clumping cat litter. For exercise, in addition to a large enough cage, make a wheel available (also solid bottom without spokes to avoid injury) that is large enough for your hedgehog to use, there are some giant size ones made for chinchillas that would make good options for your hedgehog.
- Provide a place for your hedgehog to hide such as a sleeping pouch or igloo.
- Hedgehogs need environmental temperatures between 70 and 80 degrees.
- Eep your hedgehog’s cage away from drafts, direct sunlight, or cold areas.
- You may want to provide your hedgehog with a small warm spot in his cage where he can go to get warm but would also be able to get away from if he feels too warm.
Check the reptile section of a pet store for various options available. Hedgehogs are solitary creatures and need to be housed alone. Male hedgehogs in particular will fight to death if housed together. To amuse your hedgehog you can purchase a variety of cat or small dog toys.
Do hedgehogs like warm or cold water?
How to Bathe a Hedgehog Our in-depth step by step video tutorial is in the works. But until then here is a down and dirty list of step for bathing your hedgehog:
In a bath tub or sink, get the water going at a warm temperature. If it’s too hot or too cold for you to be comfortable, your hedgehog won’t be comfortable either Once the water is warm (but not scalding) place your hedgehog under the water stream to get them wet. Try not to get water in your hedgie’s eyes Squirt a drop of product in the center of your hedgehog’s back Using a toothbrush or other small bristle brush work the product throughout the quills, scrubbing any areas that need special attention Allow your hedgie to walk through the sudsy water Thoroughly rinse your hedgie under the warm water stream Towel dry Now is a good time to trim nails!
: How to Bathe a Hedgehog
Do you need to bathe hedgehogs?
Bathing Frequency – Many people get confused about how often they should bathe their hedgehogs. Your vet should be the ultimate authority here. That said, in general, about once a month is good. Don’t bathe your pet too often: this could dry out his skin!
Should hedgehogs be out in daytime?
This Hedgehog was foraging for food in our garden one late afternoon in July. You don’t often spot hedgehogs in the day but this one was quite happy rootling about. Hedgehogs are nocturnal animals and generally their being out in the daytime could mean there is something wrong. However, it is important to use your judgement on whether or not to intervene.,
How can I give a hedgehog water?
Water for wildlife is a vital life saver in this spell of hot weather. There are reports coming in from all around the country of mummy and baby hedgehogs suffering from severe dehydration. Please leave several shallow bowls of water around the garden and make sure they are topped up every day. If you don’t have a garden, you can still leave bowls of water out on the pavement edge. Also have a think about whether you could create a watering point at any local parks or green spaces.
- Your water bowl doesn’t have to be fancy.
- I love to use terracotta plant pot bases, which are only a couple of pounds.
- Make sure it is fairly shallow or young hedgehogs will not be able to drink or may even drown.
- This video shows how much just one single hedgehog needs to drink! Water bowls also prevent hedgehogs venturing into and drowning in ponds,
If you fancy a stylish water bowl for your wildlife garden, I love these mosaic bowls by Josara Design, another Yorkshire maker. They come in a wide range of wildlife inspired designs. I run a hedgehog hospital in York, England. I am also a keen wildlife gardener, My work is entirely self funded and I make handmade silver jewellery to raise funds to continue my work. If you have found this information useful, please consider making a donation or purchasing some handmade wildlife jewellery at www.littlesilverhedgehog.etsy.com If you’d like to find out more about how to help hedgehogs and create a wildlife friendly garden, why not join me on a hedgehog talk and wildlife garden night safari,
What can hedgehogs not drink?
Can you feed hedgehogs bread and milk? – Hedgehogs are lactose intolerant so please do not give them milk, Bread is low in energy so fairly worthless to them.
What do you give a dehydrated hedgehog?
HEDGEHOGS Every year we admit over 300 hedgehogs from the local area. All are hedgehogs that needed rescue due to the following reasons:
Out during the daytime and was not a nesting mother Too small to survive winter Genuinely orphaned – a nest or orphan is monitored for parent activity for some time. This however does not apply to daytime wandering babies. Injured or sick ‘Sunbathing’ – (this is not normal behaviour), limp or ‘lifeless’ Screaming – can be an indication of poisoning
For every hedgehog that is admitted, they get fluids by injection for the first 3 days. Nearly every single hedgehog is dehydrated to a degree. Every hedgehog’s faecal sample is also studied for internal parasites under the microscope and then treated accordingly.
How to Handle a Hedgehog Hedgehogs have spines and they can be very sharp so wear some thick gardening gloves or get a towel to lift it without harming your hands. Contain
Once you have your hog, place it in a deep box or cat carrier. Hedgehogs are good escape artists so please ensure the box is high sided and secure. Hedgehogs are also very messy so put some newspaper or a towel in the bottom. If you are using a cardboard box, any spilt water could destroy the cardboard and aid the escape of the hedgehog.
- Please keep the box somewhere warm and quiet.
- What you can do to help the hedgehog until help arrives If the hog feels cold to the touch, provide additional warmth.
- A heat pad or a hot water bottle is ideal but please wrap it in a towel so the hedgehog doesn;t get too hot and place it at the bottom of the box.
Place the hog on it and cover the hedgehog with a towel. Make sure there is room for the hog to get off the heat if it gets too warm. You can also give them a small bowl of water. The National Recipe for rehydration solution is 1 litre of warm water mixed with a tablespoon of sugar and a teaspoon of salt.
Can hedgehogs drink from a water bowl?
Water Bowls –
Baby hedgehogs or hedgehogs that have difficulty using a bottle may do better with a water bowl. Some hedgehog owners prefer using glass or stainless steel bowls for drinking. Water bowls will need to be checked frequently to make sure they are clean and full. Wood or paper bedding can make quite a mess in water bowls. Hedgehogs lap water from the edge of a pool of water in the wild. A hedgehog needs to put its long snout down into a bowl to drink. This can present a problem for your hedgie because it can aspirate on the water (inhale water through its nose into its lungs). (Martin).