Why You’ll Love Hedgehogs as Pets

The woman one of the African hedgehogs in hand.

Fall in love hedgehogs and bring one home today.

Hedgehogs are the best. It’s amazing how delightful these spiky little companions are. However, we know how hard it can be to introduce a new pet into your life. That’s why we came up with this handy guide for you. Find out why bringing a hedgehog home will be the best decision you will ever make.

Wonderful Personalities

Hedgehogs are similar to hamsters when it comes to how they act. At first, they will be hesitant to do anything because they are adjusting to a new environment. If you learn to be patient and give them positive attention, the both of you will grow to have a positive relationship. You’ll find them to be shy at times but willing to interact with you if you are kind.

Hedgehogs Are Unique Creatures

There are plenty of reasons to love hedgehogs. They are cute, adorable, and their mousy little faces will melt your heart. They are also the perfect pet to show off to friends and family. People love to pet and look at their unique spines. The spines are what protrude out of their back, giving them their distinctive look.

Easy to Manage

Usually, most pets are troublesome to manage. However, you will find that hedgehogs are quite easy to maintain. For instance, they make very little noises and are less likely to cause mischief. Other small pets like rodents or hamsters love to chew on any and everything. You won’t find the same problem with a hedgehog.

Allergy-Friendly Pets

Another great aspect of hedgehogs is that they are allergy friendly. They don’t leave any pet dander around to trigger allergy symptoms. You’ll be able to hold them, play with them, and clean their cage with no issues.

We hope this convinces you to come down to the Pet Shop and bring home your very own spiky little friend. In fact, we are offering $100 off of all hedgehogs this month! Just mention our online pricing offer when you visit.

Caring for and Feeding Your Pygmy Hedgehog

A pygmy hedgehog sitting and staring into the distance.

Here is how to do everything you can to care for your pygmy hedgehog.

The pygmy hedgehog is an uncommon miniature species of hedgehog that can be very endearing. There’s always something cute about a miniature animal, and hedgehogs are no different. You will have a tough time finding a cuter pet to have as a companion.

But you may wonder if the pygmy hedgehog require special care. What does it eat? Here are a few things to help you get started.

Caring for Your Pygmy Hedgehog

First of all, it is important to know that this is a tiny and fragile animal. It is, therefore, not the greatest pet for kids, who at times can be fairly rough. The hedgehog also take a little bit of time to tame, and you don’t want a child being bitten if the animal gets hurt.

This is a pretty solitary animal, so unlike many other animals, you don’t need to get a few so they can keep each other occupied. Even if you decide to get more, you want only one per 3 x 1.5-foot cage, at a minimum. Make sure it doesn’t have a wire floor for the hedgehog to get hurt on. If the cage does have a wire floor, cover it with a flat walking surface. Make sure the wires are close enough together so this tiny guy won’t get his head stuck or even be able to sneak out. Also, make sure the bars are vertical, not horizontal. The hedgehog might try to climb horizontal bars and get hurt. An exercise wheel is a great toy. Just make sure the running surface is flat and not just horizontal bars.

Feeding Time

Hedgehogs need a well-balanced diet. Fortunately, a high-end dry cat food with plenty of protein may do the trick. Make sure the food is meat and not fish-based. In the wild, this little guy usually eats insects, so if you want it to feel like home, you should include mealworms, silk worms, wax worms, or other insects from a hedgehog’s natural diet.

Pygmy hedgehogs take a little TLC, and you may have to search to find a vet with experience, but they are an adorable and enjoyable little pet.

 

When a Hedgehog Loses Quills

What Does It Mean When a Hedgehog’s Quills Fall Out?

You should know the problem signs when caring for your pet hedgehog, starting with quills.  Sometimes referred to as spines, quills cover the majority of a hedgehog’s body. Occasionally, the quills will begin to fall out during a period known as “quilling.” Meanwhile, owners may wonder if the large amount of shedding is normal when a hedgehog loses quills.

What Is Quilling?

This shedding process called quilling is normal in baby and junior hedgehogs. Quilling will first occur when a hedgehog is about two months old when finer quills are shed—and longer, thicker quills are grown. When the hedgehog is about four months old, this process takes place again. It is difficult and uncomfortable for the newer, larger quills to pass through the old holes. Throughout their lifetime, about 90% of a hedgehog’s quills will be replaced. If owners do not know this, they may be shocked by the amount of quills shed. Adult hedgehogs shouldn’t lose large amounts at one time.

When to Be Concerned

At times, there may be complications with reproducing the quills, displaying redness, swelling, scabbing, or discharge where a new “spine” is trying to come through. If so, it may be necessary to lightly clean and even assist the new spine in coming out by gently pulling on it. This is important in preventing infection and worsening of the condition.
Changes in behavior may occur when a hedgehog loses quills. However, continue to handle your pet hedgehog. Try to comfort him, rather than excessively handling him.
Be attentive to newer spines coming out, making sure the ends have a bulb shape. If this bulb is missing, this could mean damage to the quill, and the broken piece could still be inside your hedgehog, making manual extraction a necessity.

Other Things to Watch for

The major reason for abnormal quill loss in hedgehogs is mites. Mites can enter in through food, bedding, and other items, and can irritate the skin, resulting in quill loss. Although it can’t be seen by the naked eye, the local veterinarian can use a microscope to determine whether your hedgehog has mites.
Inappropriate diet, an imbalance in hormones, stress, allergies, or the dry air may be other contributing factors in excessive hedgehog spine loss. In any case, if your adult hedgehog is experiencing quill loss in large amounts—especially when bald spots are visible—a veterinarian exam is necessary to determine the root issue.