Male vs Female Hedgehogs: Temperament and Behavior

Do you currently own a hedgehog or are you thinking of obtaining one as a pet? For your hedgehog’s general care and welfare, you must be aware of their gender.

But it can be challenging to distinguish between Male vs Female hedgehogs. Whatever the kind of animal or species, males and females typically differ in a few ways, and hedgehogs are no exception. Over the past few years, hedgehogs have become more and more popular as unusual pets. They are fascinating little creatures.

We’ll look at the distinctions between male and female hedgehogs in this article. We hope this information helps you find the right sex for you if you’re considering obtaining one.

Importance of Male vs Female Hedgehog Gender Knowledge

It’s crucial to know your hedgehog’s gender so you can give them the care they need and comprehend their behavior. Why it matters is as follows:

1. Health considerations

Certain health issues and reproductive conditions are gender-specific. Knowing the gender of your hedgehog can make it easier for you to recognize and take care of any possible health issues.

2. Social interaction

Depending on their gender, hedgehogs have distinct social requirements. Knowing the gender can help you provide appropriate socialization opportunities and companionship for your pet.

3. Understanding behaviour

Male and female hedgehogs may exhibit different behaviors and temperaments. Knowing their gender can help you interpret their actions and make better decisions in terms of handling and training.

4. Personalization of care

Certain care routines may need to be adjusted based on the gender of your hedgehog. For example, males may require extra attention to prevent certain conditions, while females may need specific care during their reproductive cycle.

5. Preventing breeding:

Hedgehog males and females should be kept apart to prevent unforeseen breeding and possible problems.

Hedgehog Gender Differences

difference between male and female hedgehogs

Determining the gender of your hedgehog can be challenging, but if you know what to look for, you can identify whether you have a male or female.

External Differences Between Male and Female Hedgehogs

In general, male hedgehogs are bigger than female ones. While females often have a more elongated and narrow head shape, they frequently have a rounder and broader head.

The existence of a “belly button” or little indentation on the lower abdomen of female hedgehogs, which is absent in males, is another outward distinction.

In addition, males have a larger distance than females between the anus and the urine entrance. You may figure out your hedgehog’s gender with the aid of these outward variations.


  • Because hedgehogs have small statues, their stretched penises are even more proximal to the ground.  As a result, bedding may adhere to an elongated penis and become entangled in the penile sheath.
  • This irritates the hedgehog as well as being a potential cause of infection or other damage.
  • Redness and/or swelling are the initial indicators of irritation. To get rid of foreign objects, a bath, and some light cleaning can be all that is needed.
  • More severe irritations could need veterinary attention.


  • A female hedgehog’s urinary and reproductive problems appear to be closely related.
  • In females, proximity to the ground may contribute to urinary tract and reproductive infections.
  • On the other hand, breeding also increases the risk of problems due to pregnancy, birth, and postnatal care.
  • Some veterinarians recommend preventative spaying of females.  However, every invasive procedure and the use of anesthesia carries risks.

Behavioral Traits Of Male Hedgehogs

male hedgehog

Male hedgehogs have several distinctive behavioral traits that can help you identify their gender. Here are some key characteristics:

Vocalizations: Especially when it comes to mating season, male hedgehogs are more talkative than female ones. They may produce a variety of sounds, including grunts, hisses, and snorts.

Anointing Behaviour: Male hedgehogs tend to engage in anointing behavior more frequently than females. They may do this to identify their territory or to entice partners by coating their spines with saliva and other fluids.

Roaming Behaviour: Males are often more adventurous and territorial compared to females. They may exhibit more wandering behavior, exploring larger areas and seeking out potential mates.

Aggression: Male hedgehogs can behave aggressively towards other males, especially when competing for mates or territory. They might flex their backs, emit menacing sounds, and come into contact with you physically.

Behavioral Traits Of Female Hedgehogs

Female hedgehogs have certain behavioral traits that can help you identify their gender.

Nesting Behaviour: Female hedgehogs have a strong nesting instinct. They will often build nests using leaves, grass, and other materials to prepare for giving birth or hibernation.

Maternal Behaviour: When a female hedgehog is pregnant or has recently given birth, she becomes more protective and may exhibit nesting behaviors. She may also display aggressive behaviors if she feels threatened.

Social Interaction: In general, female hedgehogs are more gregarious than male ones. They often interact with other hedgehogs, groom each other, or form small groups.

Vocalizations: Especially in the breeding season, female hedgehogs tend to be more talkative than males. To attract possible mates or to protect their territory, they may make high-pitched squeals or growls.

Male vs Female Hedgehog Temperament Differences

Hedgehog male temperament

Territorial Behaviour: Hedgehog males occasionally engage in territorial behavior, particularly when interacting with other males. This could trigger protective or aggressive behavior.

Solitary Nature: In the wild, males tend to be more solitary, and they may also behave in this way when kept in captivity. They might not be as gregarious with humans or other hedgehogs and instead prefer to be left alone.

Temperament of a female hedgehog

Sociability: Compared to male hedgehogs, female hedgehogs frequently display more sociable activity. They might be easier to handle and form bonds with since they might be more willing to engage with people and other hedgehogs.

Motherly Instincts: Even in the absence of progeny, female hedgehogs may exhibit maternal traits. They may behave like they are building a nest or show greater care toward toys or other items.

Do Male and Female Hedgehogs Stay Together

male or female hedgehog

Most hedgehogs prefer to live alone in their cages and are solitary pets. After weaning, males in particular shouldn’t be kept in the same home. Although women often get along well with one another, this isn’t a need. When hedgehogs are by themselves, they don’t grow bored or depressed. Although males and females can coexist, this should only be done for breeding.

Hedgehogs are lone animals in the wild. They don’t build enduring relationships with other hedgehogs; they hunt alone. The male, known as the boar, leaves the female, known as the sow, to raise the baby hoglets by themselves after they have mated. Hedgehogs are not territorial and can live with one another. Usually, disputes arise over food or possible mates.

What is a Male and Female Hedgehog Called?

One male hedgehog is referred to as a boar, while a group of male hedgehogs is referred to as a boar. Because male pigs are also referred to by this phrase, male hedgehogs are dubbed “boars.” It is appropriate to refer to a male hedgehog as a boar.

This is because, like pigs, hedgehogs grunt, have snouts resembling those of pigs, and regularly burrow through the undergrowth—hence the term “hog” in their name. Therefore, it makes sense that male hedgehogs, like male pigs, would likewise be referred to as boars.

Female hedgehogs are known as sows, and they will give birth to a litter of 3-4 or 5-6 newborns, depending on the species of hedgehog. The name for a baby hedgehog is a hoglet.

It’s important to distinguish between male and female hedgehogs, so knowing the proper name for each one is essential, especially if you’re an animal lover, hedgehog enthusiast, or owner.

Not knowing the proper names for the different genders of hedgehogs can confuse them, especially when speaking with other animal lovers, breeders, and animal enthusiasts.

For this reason, it’s important to educate yourself and others on the proper names for male and female hedgehogs. So the next time someone asks you what a male hedgehog is called, you can respond, “boar.”

Do Male or Female Hedgehogs Make Better Pets?

There are only minor differences between the genders. You can fully choose to your liking without taking any risks. Whether to get a male or female hedgehog is a matter of preference. In contrast to many other animals, hedgehogs have equal temperaments.

Given that females are typically preferred in other species, the above response may come as a surprise. However, there’s no good excuse to turn down a man.

Hedgehog males are just as amiable as females. Males typically don’t exhibit more aggressive behavior. Nevertheless, it will naturally take some time for your new friend to adjust to you and his new surroundings.

Your hedgie will rarely bite you once you’ve developed a close friendship through consistent playtime and hobbies. In reality, as their ties deepen and they learn to know their owners, both sexes will respond more composedly.


How can I tell if my hedgehog is male or female?

Ans. Male hedgehogs are typically larger and may have a more rounded head shape, while females tend to have a more elongated head. Additionally, female hedgehogs have a small indentation on their lower abdomen, known as a “belly button,” which is absent in males.

What are some health considerations based on hedgehog gender?

Ans. Knowing your hedgehog’s gender can help you recognize and address gender-specific health issues and reproductive conditions.

Can male and female hedgehogs live together?

Ans. While hedgehogs are typically solitary animals, males and females can coexist peacefully for breeding purposes. However, it’s generally recommended to keep them separate to prevent unintended breeding and potential conflicts.

What are male and female hedgehogs called?

Ans. A male hedgehog is called a boar, while a female hedgehog is called a sow. Baby hedgehogs are referred to as hoglets.

Do male or female hedgehogs make better pets?

Ans. There are only minor temperament differences between male and female hedgehogs, so choosing between them is largely a matter of preference. Both males and females can make excellent pets and can develop strong bonds with their owners through consistent interaction and care.


In conclusion, it’s critical to comprehend the differences between male vs female hedgehog and how these variations may affect your hedgehog’s behaviour and care, regardless of your decision to get one as a pet. In the end, hedgehogs of any gender can make excellent pets, and the kind of relationship you develop with your hedgehog will be determined more by the amount of time and energy you devote to getting to know them than by their gender.

So, whether you choose a male boar or a female sow, with proper care and attention, you can enjoy the companionship of these fascinating little creatures for many years to come.