What to Know Before You Buy a Hedgehog?


To the uninformed, keeping hedgehogs as pets may appear to be an unusual hobby; nonetheless, anyone who has spent even a short amount of time with these animals is acutely aware of what wonderful companions they make. Before bringing one of these animals into your home, there are a few things you need to be aware of first. You will need to make a commitment on your part if you want to ensure that your hedgehog has a happy and healthy life, just as you would need to do so if you want to maintain any other kind of animal as a pet.

Hedgehogs occur in a few different species, but only a few of those species are willing to live with humans as pets. It appears that two of the African species, in particular, take pleasure in the company of humans. These are not animals that require a lot of upkeep, and it is not difficult to ensure that they are well-fed; nonetheless, they do require your attention, and they will reward you for giving it to them.

When you are looking forward to buying a pet hedgehog, the process might appear to be comparable to buying a purebred Siamese cat. This is because these animals are available in a variety of various color types, including the well-known salt and pepper pattern. When keeping hedgehogs as pets, the color of the hedgehogs is not usually of the biggest relevance; however, if you are a breeder, the color can be of the utmost importance.

Breeder’s Descriptions Of Hedgehogs

  • A snowflake hedgehog is what you want to ask for if you are looking for a white hedgehog that is not an albino and is either fully white or mainly white. Some breeders will only refer to their hedgehogs as “snowflakes” if all of the quills on the animal are white, while others will call their animals by the same name even if only some of the quills are white. The undersides of their legs and bellies are often white or gray in color, depending on the species.
  • The quills of cinnamon hedgehogs are a cream tint with brownish-red stripes running through them. Champagne or apricot hedgehogs are two names that are occasionally used to refer to these hedgehogs. One is referred to as a fawn hedgehog if it wears a mask on its face, which is a common trait among hedgehogs.
  • You might anticipate the mocha hedgehog to have coffee or chocolate-colored quills, but they are actually a cream tint instead. A black mask is almost always present on a mocha hedgehog’s face.
  • It is possible for a cream hedgehog to have quills that are of an ivory or off-white tint. Although the eyes of a cream hedgehog are darker in color than the pink eyes of an albino, there is still a greater amount of red in the cream hedgehog’s eyes than in the eyes of most other varieties.
  • The species that you are looking at would be referred to as a smoke point or a silverpoint hedgehog if it had a mask and dark legs, and its quills were anywhere between white and pale gray.
  • Certain hedgehogs defy categorization based just on their color, but the patterns on their quills can be easily identified. These hedgehogs are occasionally categorized together and given the name pinto hedgehogs to distinguish them from one another.

When Owning A Hedge May Not Be Legal

Hedgehogs from Africa are not permitted to be brought into the United States under any circumstances. Domestication has resulted in the production of an adequate number of them to ensure that there will never be a scarcity of them. Despite this, the hedgehog is still considered an exotic animal, which is a designation that is entirely acceptable in this case. If you want to keep a hedgehog as a pet in some places, you need to get a permit first since some states do not allow their residents to own hedgehogs and others demand that you get a permit.

If hedgehogs are sold in the local pet store where you live or if there are one or more breeders of hedgehogs in the state in which you reside, it is likely lawful for you to keep one as a pet. Even though it is not against the law where you reside to keep a hedgehog as a pet, it may be difficult to acquire hedgehogs from breeders located in other states. The vast majority of respectable breeders will not ship these animals; you will need to pick them up in person at the breeder’s location. In any case, it is highly recommended that you get in touch with the breeder in advance. Some breeders may not sell hedgehogs to customers if they believe the new owner will not provide a suitable environment for the animal.

Interesting ‘Hedgehog Facts’ That Are Not True At All

Despite what you may have learned from reading Alice in Wonderland, you should not use a hedgehog as a croquet ball. The appearance of a hedgehog that is securely coiled up and hissing may give the impression that it is robust enough to perform that role; nevertheless, this is not the case.

Due to the fact that hedgehogs are sometimes observed with froth at the mouth, some people are under the impression that they are carriers of the rabies virus. One of the most peculiar behaviors that these organisms engage in is the production of copious amounts of foam from the mouth, which they subsequently employ to cover themselves and themselves only. This unique behavior, known as self-anointing, is typically followed by the flehmen response, in which the hedgehog raises its snout to an elevated position. It is hypothesized that the hedgehog experiences this behavior in response to fragrances or scents that it has not encountered before.

The idea that hedgehogs would occasionally roll on something that they believe will be edible and then use their spines to transport their food back to their nest is another example of common misconception about these animals. It would appear that no one has ever witnessed hedgehogs genuinely engaging in this behavior. However, it has been shown that wild hedgehogs will perform a self-anointing rite that involves rolling around in rotten fruit.

In some regions, particularly during the Middle Ages, hedgehogs were reviled and feared, while in others they were cherished as pets and in still other places they were consumed as food. As of right now in the United States of America, the word “beloved” is the one that most accurately describes how people feel about the animal, which is one of the reasons why keeping hedgehogs as pets have been popular for such a long time.

After looking at a few pictures of African pygmy hedgehogs, both when they were young and when they were grown up, the idea of not keeping one as a pet would be difficult to avoid thinking about. When you bring a pet hedgehog into your house, it won’t take long for them to find their way into your heart as well.

Hedgehogs That Make Good Pets – And Those That Don’t

Not all hedgehogs make good pets. If you consider all of the hedgehogs that currently live in the globe, the vast majority of them would not make good pets for anyone. There are currently 14 different species of hedgehogs that are recognized across the globe. The Middle East and North Africa are the regions of origin for three of these species, which are together referred to as desert species. None of them are suitable as pets, and one in particular, the Ethiopian hedgehog, which is often referred to as the Egyptian hedgehog, has a temperament that may be quite unpleasant. There are four different species of long-eared animals, and China is home to three of them while the Middle East is home to the other. Not only do these four species have big ears, but their legs are also relatively long for hedgehogs. There is not one of the four that would make a good pet. When fully grown, each of the three species of European hedgehogs is typically longer than one foot and is considered to be relatively large. Even though some of the species that are native to Western Europe, Scandinavia, and the British Isles can grow relatively tame or at the very least appear to be comfortable around people, it is not always possible to manage them in a way that makes it possible for them to be maintained as pets.

This leaves only four species of African hedgehogs, of which three are suitable candidates for keeping as pets. The African pygmy hedgehog, the fourth species, is a popular choice for keeping as a pet. Although it is most commonly associated with the southern region of Africa, the African pygmy hedgehog can in fact be found all across the continent. Although African Pygmy Hedgehogs make up the vast majority of hedgehogs available for purchase in pet stores and via breeders, you may on occasion come across a White-Bellied Hedgehog, which is indigenous to Central Africa, being offered for sale.

When you first encounter one of these adult African pygmies, the first thing that will strike you is the realization that you can now have a pet that is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand. When you see one coiled up into a tight ball, it can seem like the last thing you would want to do is hold it in your hand, and there are situations in which a pair of gloves could come in very helpful. However, when a hedgehog is content and comfortable, its quills will lie flat against its body, giving the impression that the animal is soft to the touch. A tame hedgehog will also appreciate being touched. It takes approximately a tenth of a second for it to transform into a thorny ball, so if it becomes startled while you are petting it, you should be careful.

Hedgehogs Can Be Highly Entertaining

Hedgehogs aren’t necessarily the most intelligent creatures, but they are capable of being trained to perform specific tasks, and they each have their own unique personalities. That translates to the fact that it can be entertaining for you to observe them reveling in their good fortune. It is not uncommon for hedgehogs who have been exercising by running around on the floor to eventually climb up onto one of their owner’s shoes in order to wait to be picked up and placed back in their cage. It appears that hedgehogs take pleasure in navigating their way through mazes. They have poor eyesight and will occasionally run into things head-on, but once they learn the way, they will not deviate from it even if it leads to danger. It appears that they take great delight in zipping through the tunnels.

In contrast to a mouse, which will typically stick near to a wall as it makes its way through a room, a hedgehog may frequently start off in any direction, making jarring turns of 90 degrees for no apparent reason as it moves from one location to another.

There is yet more way in which your hedgehog has the potential to be a source of amusement for you and other people. Take your pet hedgehog to a school, a youth organization, or any other place where you might find people who have never owned or even seen one of these little animals once you feel as though you have become an expert on hedgehogs, which may not take all that long. If you feel as though you have become an expert on hedgehogs. If your hedgehog has been properly socialized, other people will be able to experience the excitement of having it in their hands and gently petting it as it investigates its new environment.

Are You Ready For a Sick/Abandoned Hedgehog Adoption?

Every single hedgehog should have the experience of being loved and desired. It is fairly uncommon for people to have second thoughts after purchasing a hedgehog. Some folks simply lack the knowledge necessary to properly care for them. One way or another, a lot of hedgehogs are looking for new homes, and that’s where we want to make a difference in their lives.

Are you prepared to look after hedgehogs who have been injured or left behind?

Before you can legally adopt a child, you need to be aware of a few prerequisites and constraints. Please give them your due attention and consider whether or not you would be a good candidate.

  • You must be of 18 years or older.
  • You must have more than 1-year experience with hedgehogs.
  • You must have clean and adequate cages.  Only one hedgehog will be allowed in a cage.
  • You must provide high-quality food at all times.
  • You must be able to keep your hedgehog in quarantine for the first 21 days.
  • You must have an experienced veterinarian who will provide proper medical care if needed.

But most of all, you must love your animal. 

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