The Pros and Cons of Owning a Hedgehog As a Pet

Could it be that a hedgehog, that odd animal that curls into a ball of spikes would make a wonderful pet? Perhaps the best way to answer this question is through education about this particular animal. One may want to ask himself prior to actually owning one what he wants from a pet and if he has the time to be a pet parent.

Indeed, the hedgehog is quite an unusual, delightful animal to adopt, but one must hunt for a place that sells them, as it is not an easy task to find one since they are not commonly sold in pet stores. Also, the African Pygmy Hedgehog is the hog usually sold as a pet.

hedgehog pros and cons

What is more, one must be a responsible pet parent by allowing the porky out of his cage every day so he can explore a room set up for him. Remember that these critters urinate and defecate while running, so make sure there's no carpeting on his floor or all this will be absorbed into the floor covering.

Additionally, hoglets come into the world during June and July, and mama hedgehog delivers four or five babies, but only two or three get weaned the right way. Mama has been known to eat her babies or she has abandoned them totally whenever she has been bothered in any way.

The Pros of Owning A Hedgehog

  • They are really easy to care for.
  • They never make noise except a small purring sound sometimes.
  • They are inexpensive to keep as a pet.
  • Hedgehogs can entertain anyone for hours on end if they will watch.
  • They are adorable little creatures that are cute, entertaining and unique.
  • They love to get handled and they tend to snuggle up to their owners.

hedgehog in garden

Facts About Hedgehogs

  • They can live off fruits, vegetables and cat food.
  • Hogs live about three and one-half years but up to 10 years old.
  • Hedgehogs end up stretching from about six to 9 inches.
  • Poor vision plagues hogs but they can feel and notice apparent motion.
  • They are not smelly like some other creatures are, as long as they are kept spot cleaned.
  • Hedgehogs run up to five miles every night on a sturdy wheel made for just that. Clean the feces off the wheel by using hot, soapy, disinfectant water. This is to sterilize and disinfect so nobody gets sick.
  • Baby hedgehogs are called hoglets.
  • They are nocturnal so they will want their room time at night, ideally.
  • Hedgehogs seem to have a particular kind of Ringworm that only this animal usually has.
  • Simply fabulous, porkies can have up to 8,000 spines, and the hedgehog can roll himself up in a neat round ball when he feels afraid. This will make his spikes hurt the predator if he tries to open the ball, and no animal will want to mess with that.
  • All hedgehogs need plenty of room to move around and display their natural behavior. They simply cannot be confined to any cage.
  • A pair of hogs will endlessly mate and ruin many litters.
  • Hedgehog males will kill each other fighting, but females do not usually kill.
  • They are at risk for several zoonotic diseases, and major microbial infections correlated to bacteria, mycobacteria and other fungal and viral diseases.
  • Soap dries out their body, so only water is used to clean them about once a week.
  • They need to stay in 73-80 degree temperature.
  • They can swim well, but most of the time they stay right on the ground or they climb trees.
  • Freeze dried worms are a delightful treat for hogs, so when handling give him some treats, and he will learn to identify with his owner.
  • They lose all their baby quills at 8 to 12 weeks, and the adult ones come on, and it is a major ordeal.
  • Hedgehogs come in all different sizes, colors and shapes, and none of the hogs are the same, even if they were part of a litter.

hedgehog

The Cons Of Owning A Hedgehog

  • Must pay $200 or more to get one.
  • Possibly drive far away to pick up the animal.
  • They like to be alone, so plan on up to an hour a day with them and leave them alone the rest of the day.
  • Hedgehogs must be kept separated as a result of the way they carry out fighting if not alone. Do not ever put other hogs in with this pet!
  • They are nocturnal so they will want their room time at night, ideally.
  • One must be a responsible pet parent by allowing the porky out of his cage every day so he can explore a room set up for him. Remember that these critters urinate and defecate while running, so make sure there's no carpeting on his floor or all this will be absorbed into the flooring.
  • Do not kiss them and do not eat or drink around them, as they can get an infection called salmonella and pass it on. Contact urticaria has been reported in some handlers.
  • They are at risk for several zoonotic diseases, and major microbial infections correlated to bacteria, mycobacteria and other fungal and viral diseases.
  • Hedgehog males will kill each other fighting, but females do not usually kill.
  • There are no kennels for this animal, so going away can present a problem unless a family member or other trusted person can check on hoggie every day. he will be fine though.

Sometimes the new pet will bite to learn about the world around him and to adjust to his new owner and his new cage. Just like babies exploring the world to have found out about many things, the cute little hoglet will do the same.

Finally, be safe when picking him up due to the quills he has that are quite sharp. Just remember to be surefooted when handling him until it has been done a few times. The pros and cons here can be followed up on YouTube.

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