How To Bathe A Hedgehog? 10 Steps (with Pictures)

If you own a hedgehog as a pet, you’ve undoubtedly observed that he may grow filthy and smelly, especially on his feet. A vital component of caring for your hedgehog is giving him a safe and adequate bath. The people ask a simple question  “How to bathe a hedgehog?”.

Some hedgehogs will love taking a bath, while others may find it upsetting. You can keep him clean and healthy by being careful and watchful. Getting a hedgehog used to being handled is the first thing you should do before considering how to bathe it. That is a complex procedure. Keep in mind that it is a species of prey. 

Hedgehog baths don’t have to be a struggle. Following some simple steps will make the process a whole lot easier for both of you.

Why Should You Bath A Hedgehog?

The other thing you must consider is whether you should bathe your hedgehog in the first place. The Western European Hedgehog and the African Pygmy Hedgehog are the two most popular pet species. The former lives in temperate zones, whereas the latter lives in desert climes. The message is that you should do it rarely rather than as a routine.

Some hedgehogs even enjoy being cleaned! Bathtime can be pleasurable if you’re one of the fortunate owners of a hedgie who finds it enjoyable.

Is It Safe To Bathe A Hedgehog?

Although the reduction in temperature affects us all, your hedgehog is especially vulnerable to the winter’s harsh cold spells. Your hedgehog may even try to hibernate if it gets cold enough, which is risky and could be deadly. The easiest approach to keep your hedgies healthy and avoid hibernation is to keep them warm. But it doesn’t mean they can skip bath time!

Indeed, bathing your hedgie is safe; in fact, it’s crucial to maintain their bathing schedule. Ultimately, the justifications for bathing your hedgie do not vanish with the arrival of winter! 

How To Bathe A Hedgehog?

can you bathe a hedgehog

Because of their naturally dry skin, hedgehogs shouldn’t be bathed too frequently. Occasionally, they might stumble upon something new and smelly, and they might feel the strange urge to spread it across their quills and make a mess. This is known as self-anointing, and it can result in a filthy and weird-looking creature, depending on what your hedgehog has discovered. I should take a bath now.

Your hedgehog can be washed in a separate wash basin, the tub, or the sink. I like to use the sink since it’s simple. It is advisable to run the bath water before putting your hedgehog in it since otherwise, the water could become too hot or frighten them. Hold your hand beneath the running water to ensure it doesn’t burn your hand if you must run the water while your pet is in the bathtub.

Steps to Bathe a Hedgehog

Follow these steps to bathe a hedgehog correctly.

1-Put a bath mat that is non-slip under the sink or bathtub. 

In your home, you can give your hedgehog a bath in a tub or sink. Hedgehogs, though, trip easily. Your hedgehog will be safe when taking a bath if a non-slip mat is placed inside the tub or bath. A silicon baking mat can be used as a substitute. These are affordable, easy to clean, non-slip, and tiny enough to fit in a sink.

2-Add four inches of water to the tub

hedgehog in bathtub

This volume of water is sufficient to allow your hedgehog to stand in the water without feeling too drenched. For the safety of your hedgehog, do not fill your sink or tub higher than this.

3-Check the water temperature

For their comfort, hedgehogs should take warm water baths. Without being too hot to touch, the water should be warm. Aim for a temperature where a human baby would feel comfortable.

4-Place the Supplies close to the bathroom

Hedgehogs that are taking a bath may wriggle or get apprehensive. Organizing all of your supplies in advance is a good idea. Put the following next to your bathtub or sink:

  • Baby shampoo without tears.
  • A cloth
  • An amiable toothbrush 
  • Nail trimmers 

5-Apply shampoo

Put about a dime-sized amount of shampoo in your hand. Work the shampoo into a thick lather by rubbing your hands together. Rub the shampoo gently over the legs, belly, and back of your hedgehog.

Avoid getting shampoo in your hedgehog’s eyes or on its face. Use caution and sparingly when shampooing your hedgehog’s spine’s sharp quills. More shampoo should be slathered onto the hedgehog’s fuzzy underside. 

6-Use a toothbrush to clean the feet and the quills

Can you bath hedgehog with soft brush

Grab your toothbrush with gentle bristles. To keep your hedgehog calm, slowly and gently scrape down its feet and quills with the brush. Better control is possible when using a toothbrush to reach places that are difficult to reach with your hands.

  • Never brush against the quills; instead, always brush in their direction.
  • Once more, avoid getting shampoo in your hedgehog’s eyes or face.

7- Rinse off your hedgehog

Make sure there is no shampoo residue in your hedgehog’s fur as this can irritate its skin. Pour a cup of warm, clean water over your hedgehog and repeat as necessary until the water runs clear.

8- Examine your hedgehog’s limbs while it’s in the tub

how to give a hedgehog a bath

It’s a good idea to perform a routine foot and leg check during bath time since you’re already touching your hedgehog. A hedgehog may get hurt if something, such as hairs or loose threads, wraps around its foot or leg. Take care to remove anything that may have become entangled in your hedgehog’s foot when taking a wash.

9-Dry your hedgehog

Take your hedgehog out of the water and dry off with a towel. Tumble the towel gently over the hedgehog until its fur and quills are completely dry. While drying your hedgehog, keep one hand on it and one on the towel. While you’re finishing your bath, if you have assistance, ask them to use a hair dryer to warm the towel.

10-Trim your hedgehog’s nails

It’s an excellent time for a hedgehog’s nails to be trimmed because they usually get softer after a bath. Grasp your hedgehog’s paw firmly and carefully remove each nail tip using a baby nail cutter. To keep against striking the quick, only clip off a small part of the tip.

  • Have someone else assist you if your hedgehog wriggles a lot. The hedgehog can be held by one person while the other trims its nails.
  • Apply a blood-stopping powder, such as Styptic powder, on the nail if you do manage to strike the quick to stop the bleeding. Consult a veterinarian if the bleeding does not cease on its own.
  • If you are afraid you could damage your hedgehog, simply cut off the sharp tip of the nail and stop there.

Take a foot bath 

You might feel that you need to clean your hedgehog’s feet more frequently if it has dirty feet. Walking through the filth in his home will frequently result in a hedgehog’s feet getting dirty, therefore it’s important to clean them. You can attempt a simpler foot bath instead of a weekly full bath. All you have to do is add half an inch of warm water to your sink.

  • Put your hedgehog inside and assist him in wiping his feet.
  • When you’re done, make sure to completely dry his feet with a gentle towel.
  • He can stay clean if he keeps his room tidy and changes his bedding often. 

Think about taking a bath with towels

hedgehog bath towel

Towel baths are a quicker option than a full bath. To accomplish this, add a few inches of warm water to the sink and submerge a towel in the water at the bottom of the sink. After that, set the hedgehog on the towel and use it to give his tummy, legs, and back a gentle cleaning. Once more, be careful to stay away from his face and ears.

  • The water level in a towel bath shouldn’t reach his legs.
  • Dry him with a gentle towel, just like you would after taking a bath.

How Often Should You Bathe to Hedgehog? 

Although your hedgehog could get dirty frequently, you shouldn’t bathe him more than once a month to avoid drying out his skin. You can discuss your concerns with your veterinarian if you have dry skin. You can use a variety of treatments for dry skin to assist avoid any issues after taking a bath. These include adding a few drops of flaxseed or olive oil to food or applying it physically.

As with a regular bath, combine whatever oil you wish to add with the water and pour it over your hedgehog’s back.

Care After Taking A Bathe

Even on a warm day, never take your pet outside after a wash. Since hedgehogs are sensitive to temperature, you don’t want your child to become cold. After around ten minutes, replace any snuggle sacks or cage liners. Your pet will only become uncomfortable and chilled from wet stuff.

Just one hedgehog at a time, please. When hedgehogs are in the bathtub together, they run the risk of injuring one another through biting, climbing, or “holding on” with their mouths.


Q1. How often should I bathe my hedgehog?

It’s recommended to bathe your hedgehog no more than once a month to avoid drying out its skin. However, frequency may vary depending on individual needs and circumstances.

Q2. What temperature should the water be for bathing a hedgehog?

The water should be comfortably warm, similar to what a human baby would prefer. Aim for a temperature between 100-104°F (37-40°C).

Q3. What type of shampoo should I use for my hedgehog?

Use a mild, unscented shampoo specifically formulated for small animals or sensitive skin. Avoid using shampoos meant for humans, as they may be too harsh for hedgehog skin.

Q4. How can I prevent my hedgehog from getting cold after a bath?

It’s important to dry your hedgehog thoroughly after a bath and provide a warm environment for it to dry completely. Avoid taking your hedgehog outside immediately after a bath, even on warm days, to prevent it from catching a chill.

Q5. Can I bathe multiple hedgehogs together?

It’s not recommended to bathe multiple hedgehogs together as they may become aggressive and injure each other. It’s safer to bathe them individually to avoid any potential conflicts.


In conclusion, How to bathe a hedgehog? Bathing a hedgehog is an essential aspect of their care routine, helping to maintain their cleanliness and overall health. By following the proper steps, ensuring a warm and safe environment, and providing post-bath care, you can make the bathing experience comfortable and stress-free for both you and your hedgehog. Regular baths, along with appropriate grooming practices, contribute to a happy and thriving hedgehog companion.