The Ultimate Guide to Ways of Caring for Indoor Hedgehogs

Hedgehogs are gaining popularity in the United Kingdom thanks to their cuteness and petite size. The hedgehogs were first breed in the United States. The most common hedgehog is the pygmy hedgehog. They were rare until recently when people started buying them willingly. Here is all you need to know about hedgehogs.

How to create an indoor house for your hedgehog

Before you bring your hedgehog home, make sure you meet its housing needs.

  1. Choose a cage
  2. Since hedgehogs require space to play and run around, you must find a big cage. The recommended size is four by two ft or more extensive such as the heritage rabbit cage 120 cm extra large. The enclosure should allow free circulation of air; thus, a cage with wired sides is ideal. Ensure the bottom of the cage is solid since a wired base can easily injure the hedgehog. A cage with multiple levels is appropriate since it will enable the pet to climb while it provides extra room.

  3. Position the cage
  4. It is essential to ensure the cage has a shade; this will protect it against direct sunlight. Place the cage in a calm and shady environment. It is recommended to place the cage near a wall rather than near a window or doorway. The ideal temperature for hedgehogs is 24 degrees Celsius.

  5. Line the bottom of the cage with hey or shred paper beddings
  6. Hedgehogs like nest-like structures, thus shredded paper and hey make great bedding. Make the bedding 2 to 3 centimeters thick. Use bedding that is easy to clean and avoid the following beddings:

    • Wood chips since they are dusty and may cause skin and eye irritation.
    • Corn cob savings as they lead to allergies.
    • Towels because the hedgehog might snag them, thus injuring its claws.
    • Pine shaving since they might cause allergies
    • Cedar shavings since they contain plicatic acid which causes allergic reactions, respiratory and liver problems
  7. Giving the hedgehog a hiding spot
  8. There are many options for hedgehog hiding spots. You can purchase hollow logs, small wooden boxes, or little superpet pet igloos. Make sure the cage has at least one hiding. Hedgehogs like to retreat to their hiding spot when they feel threatened. The hiding spot will also provide a sleeping and relaxing spot to the pet.

  9. Ensuring the cage has food and water
  10. Any habitat should have food and water. Hedgehogs eat low fat dry or cat food. Find a Riverside woodcraft hedgehog round food bowl for serving the food and a water bowl for serving water. Some fruits and vegetables such as peas, corn, and apples can be added to the feeding list.

    Foods no to give hedgehogs

    • Avocados
    • Chocolate
    • Fish
    • Raw meat
    • Eggs yolk
    • Any canned or processed foods
    • Onions
    • Grapes such as sultanas or raisins
    • Any nuts
  11. Provide them with toys and a wheel
  12. Hedgehogs like to play and run around, thus giving them a few toys will make them feel at home. Toys such as balls, tunnels, or ramps are great for them. Choose a ACWZX hamster running wheel with a flat bottom.

Can two hedgehogs stay together

Hedgehogs prefer solitary life; they prefer being on their own. Keeping them together can make them fight as each seeks for dominance which may lead to death.

Health and illness

Providing the hedgehog with the correct food, proper care, and an excellent habitat will keep it healthy. Unfortunately, the pet might still get ill or injured. Below are a few injuries and illnesses faced by the pet.

Cancer: it’s a common disease among hedgehogs and can affect any part of their body. The symptoms resemble other conditions or tumor.

Ear infections: fungus and mites cause the disease, and the symptoms are wax build-up and crusty ears.

Eyes: swollen and bulgy eyes is an indication of injury. The symptoms might also indicate an illness thus need to seek medical attention.

Feet: bloody or swollen feet is a sign of scraping or torn nails, thus make sure your cage is solid to avoid injury.

Fleas and ticks: if you keep other pets like dogs and cats, they are likes to infect the hedgehog with fleas and ticks. The symptoms include itching, rashes, and scratching.

Things to know before bringing a hedgehog home

They bond with their own

The more time you spend interacting and socializing with them, they start responding to your voice and appearance. Hedgehogs are adorable and loving pets that grow fond of people, the more you handle them well the bond gets stronger. If you don’t socialize with your hedgehog, it might be a little nervous.

The weather influences their behavior

During cold weather, the pets will hibernate to maintain their body temperature. In hot weather, they will reduce their activities and sleep more to reduce overheating.

They carry some human disease risks

The pets may have some diseases that are contagious to humans, such as salmonella bacteria found in their stool. They also carry fungal spores that cause ringworks to humans.

Hedgehogs are not mini porcupines

Porcupines are rodents while hedgehogs are not and thus are classified as insectivores. This doesn’t mean that they consume insects only since they consume a lot of foods such as berries, melons, and carrions.

They love the night

Domestic hedgehogs will sleep most of the day and play during the night. You will have to get used to them, thus plan your sleep patterns appropriately.

They are not silent

Most people assume that hedgehogs don’t produce sounds. The pets are vocal in that they snort, sniff, grunt, and squeal. They will make screaming sounds when in pain.

Hedgehogs are prickly

They have sharp spines to protect them from predators, although they cannot shoot them in defense. However, they will jump and twitch when caught by a predator to poke it to release them.


Hedgehogs make the best pets; they sleep all day, making it easy to look after. You should dedicate yourself to handling them better and play with them so that they become more friendly.

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