A Complete Guide to Adoption, Breeds, and Caring for Hedgehogs as Pets

Are you in search of a glamorous pet? The adoption of hedgehogs as pets is the ultimate decision and will be at the top of your choice list when you want to buy a beautiful pet. This pretty, small bundle of great happiness will enhance the brightness of your life.

With every day passing hedgehog adoption is becoming more and more popular. Because they are very pretty with little faces spiking out. They look more adorable because of the soft fur on their face. They are little creatures and live happily in their cage. Persons who are allergic to cats or dogs can adopt hedgehogs.

When they are treated with due care, hedgehogs can be very rewarding. When they begin to believe you, they sleep on the palm of your hand. People searching for glamorous animals have a relationship with hedgehogs because they are interesting and curious.

If you handle it properly, the hedgehog can be a fairly special animal. They can be sluggish students, but they will finally learn to replace your love. Adoption of Hedgehog is a lifetime boon. On the one hand, you get to own an exotic pet and on the other hand, you save an endangered life.

If you plan to own a pet, give hedgehog adoption a serious thought. You could bring back your life’s missing happiness. If you want to have a cat, then think seriously about hedgehog adoption. You could bring back your life’s missing happiness.

Table of Contents

Hedgehogs Common Breeds:

African Hedgehogs:

African Hedgehogs

Typically, one of two African varieties of hedgehogs is popular in the United States. The first type, which seemed in South Africa, was called four-toed hedgehogs mostly in the wilderness. They can measure up to 24 ounces and are between seven and nine inches long.

Asian and Desert Hedgehogs:

It is mainly found in Afghanistan, Turkestan, Mongolia, and regions of the Middle East such as Iraq, Israel, and Iran. The long-eared hedgehog, which weighs just around seven ounces – while the largest will weigh up to 24 ounces, is the smallest kind of hedgehog. Its length is around 8 centimeters and its ears are somewhat different from other varieties of hedgehogs and are longer. It is also creamy or brown in texture. It has a fur belly.

European Hedgehogs:

The Erinaceous Europeans genus is a country hedgehog native to the British Isles and other parts of Europe, but can also be seen often in suburban gardens. While the average life of the hedgehog in many countries is 14 years, it lasts for just two years, mostly because it gets hit and killed by cars and loses its home.

wild hedgehog

Wild Hedgehogs:

Both hedgehogs originate from Europe, Africa, or Asia, and they are composed of four primary populations covering fifteen distinct species. You probably know African and European animals better if you live in the western part of the world.  In comparison, in the United States, the two African varieties are commonly crossbred to be pets.

Types of Hedgehogs:

types of hedgehog

Amur Hedgehogs:

The Amur hedgehog, from the southeast region of Russia as well as China and Korea, has a length of about one foot and a light tan. It is a common ergo and has features similar to many other forms of a hedgehog. This hedgehog has been nicknamed Amur since it is located near the Amur Basin in lowland China. The Ice Amur normally lives for around eight years, and this particular species is not seriously endangered.

Bare-Bellied Hedgehogs:

Under the very recent discovery of a few bare-bellied hedgehogs or Para echinus nudiventris, it was thought that they were extinguished. As a result, most people will probably never see a true unknown hedgehog in their lives. These eruptions favor dry environments, including acacia and rocky areas.

Brandt’s Hedgehogs:

Brandt’s hedgehog has a longitude of around 10 inches with wide ears and a dark tail, also known as par echinus hypomelas. Normally it weighs just over two pounds. It is present in different parts of Afghanistan, Yemen, and Pakistan. It’s a desert hedgehog that likes arid environments like the mountains and the wilderness.

Four-Toed Hedgehogs:

The hedgehog was often referred to as the African pygmy hedgehog or the Atelier albiventris and is bred in the sub-Saharan regions in Central Africa. You’ve got really little legs and four toes. You’re white apart from your blackhead. These hedgehogs are less than most varieties at eight inches in length and can swim, climb, and be very active and noisy.

Hugh’s Hedgehogs:

In central China, this hedgehog type is also recognized as me echinus Hughie. The central Chinese hedgehog is often named as it comes from central China and Manchuria, and unlike most other hedgehogs, it searches for food even during the day or during rainy days. It’s a dietary carnivore made up of different animals and plants, like invertebrates.

What Should You Know About Hedgehogs?

know about hedgehog

Factors Affecting  The Hedgehog’s Lifespan:

Usually, the life duration of the hedgehog is about 3 to 7 years. There may be unusual cases that the lifespan of hedgehogs may exceed 8 to 10 years. The way of life cycle wild hedgehogs is different from domestic hedges because they face various environmental challenges. So, they have only 2 to 3 years of life duration.

For more information on hedgehog lifespan and pet care, explore our insights on “hedgehog lifespan pet. Here are some genetic and environmental factors that impact the life cycle of hedgehogs.

Hereditary Factor:

Breeder plays a good role in attaining a fine inherited makeup that is a basis for the long life of hedgehogs. Choose a breeder that has a virtuous breeding experience and is suggested by the community. Your little bit of carelessness will create serious problems.

Dietary Effects:

The dietary nutrients are vitally important for the long life of hedgehogs. The vitamins that are intake by hedge by eating influence their health, weight, and dental health. If a hedgehog is not taking the vitamin-rich food then the problems like weak immunity response, and development illness can occur.

Medical Care:

Proper medical care is also a helping factor for increasing the lifespan of your hedgehog. If you notice any strange action in hedgehogs then you should get them, a veterinarian, and appropriate medical care. This action will aid you and your hedgehog from serious problems. This will also definitely affect the life duration of your hedgehog.

Exercise Pattern:

Although all hedgehogs are naturally active they also require a fine exercise to bloom their lifespan. Their daily routine activities are much considered for their life cycle. Running wheels provide them an active physical as well as mental health. Treating puzzling and toys also boosts their movement ability.

What Caring Factors Are Essential For Hedgehogs As Pets?

hedgehog care

When you keep a pet for yourself, you first need to know about the things that can keep it healthy and alive. Specifically, the most important thing is the external environment like weather, miniaturization, food types, and cleanliness. Moreover, like Human beings, there is always an optimal environment to raise animals properly. So are you ready to have a Hedgehog at your place?

For your convenience, I’ll outline the fundamental points that can assist you in raising a healthy Hedgehog, making the experience of having Hedgehogs as Pets a rewarding one.

Environmental Conditions:

As I have informed you those environmental conditions play the most important role in caring for a Hedgehog. These species can be found in deserts, forests, scrublands, and savannas. It means that Hedgehog has a wider range of environmental circumstances.

Importantly, you need to maintain the optimal temperature between 23-24C and 74-76F. If the temperature goes down from that point, it can go into hibernation. On the other hand, if the temperature goes more than 80F or 27C, it can face heatstroke. So, you need to maintain the temperature properly if you want to keep a Hedgehog.

Food Requirements:

hedgehog food

After the environment, the basic thing that can help care for a Hedgehog is its food. So, I am providing you with precise information. Mainly at night, mostly Hedgehogs remain active so they go to search for food. You can put a small amount of food like a table in 3-4 days will be sufficient for a healthy Hedgehog. After these points, you will come to know either which food is beneficial or harmful for raising a Hedgehog.

●      Beneficial food: Usually, Hedgehogs eat insects like grasshoppers and other small insects. In the meat section, you can give it boiled chicken and fish. Moreover in fruits, apples, melons, pears, cherries, bananas, strawberries, peaches, and other soft fruits. In vegetables, you can feed it with cooked sweet potato, Collard greens, Broccoli, green beans, peas, cooked carrots, tomato, etc. Other food types include boiled eggs, cottage cheese, and baby foods. For drink, you can give it plain water to drink.

●      Harmful food: In such a category, milk can cause severe diarrhea severely. Also, bread can be very heavy for the stomach. Citrus fruits, Avocado, and Grapes are not beneficial for Hedgehogs. Moreover, onions, raw meats, and raisins are harmful to such pets.

Weight Maintenance:

Usually, fully matured and adult Hedgehogs maintain a balance weight of up to 450 grams. This can be estimated at 12 to 16 ounces. The maximum weight range can go up to 1000 grams. Weight below 400 grams can be fatal for a Hedgehog. Because it can reduce its weight by up to 25%. Besides this, you also need to check your weight because obesity can cause other health issues.


Hedgehogs need low maintenance for their survival. It is because these animals stink very little. Mainly, you need to wash them once every two to three weeks. As Hedgehogs love to live alone you need to engage them with different tools and toys as it is the only thing that can keep them active. Furthermore, it takes 10-15 minutes to wash them so you need not worry much about their cleanliness.

How Can You Care For Your Hedgehog?

Hedgehog house

Hedgehog Housing:

Hedgehogs are naturally energetic. They have abilities like climbing, digging, or even running for a long distance. So, the smooth-walled-containing enclosure of your hedgehog should be large enough to facilitate their natural attitude. The average size of the guinea enclosure should be six square feet but it can be increased.

Hedgehog box

It will be good to keep your hedgehogs in different cages to protect them from fighting. The sold surface containing the hedgehog enclosure should be placed at a distance from your living place under direct sunlight. Cleaning should be done once a week.

Hedgehog’s Enclosure Accessories:

Hiding spots and running wheels are very important for hedgehog cage accessories. A hiding spot can easily be found in any pet store. The running wheel is important for your hedgehog’s health. The solid running wheel should be wireless to prevent injury. Other accessories like toys and tubes can also help to make them active.

Hedgehog’s Enclosure Temperature:

The temperature should be maintained between 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. The hot and cold temperatures will make your hedgehog exhausted. In cold temperatures, they attempt hibernation which is fetal for them. So to overcome such a situation you should try to stay in your hedgehog with your skin. The other way is to use an external heating source.

What Do Hedgehogs Eat?

hedgehog eat

Hedgehogs Food And Nutrition:

Dry food and vitamin supplements are the best food mixture for your hedgehog. The alternative food route is dry cat meat with 10% fats. Cockroaches and crickets are the favorite live food of your hedgehog. Boiled egg, mashed chicken or potato, apple is also included in it.


Water is necessary for all creation. Your hedgehog may drink water from a bottle or some others from a water bottle. If you want to be assured that your hedgehog will drink from a water bottle, you should place a water bowl during that period.

 Hedgehog Behavior

You must know about handling your first hedgehog pet. If you grip hedgehogs often they will become familiar with your touch. Firstly, they will be curling like a ball and after that, they start crawling over you. Your hedgehog must become familiar with the surroundings. It is possible only when you will do minimum or no touch to your hedgehog.

Naturally, self-anointing, a process, happens when a hedgehog spreads saliva at its backside in an odd situation. This process is prompted by a strange smell.

Nocturnal Hedgehogs

The nocturnal hedgehog is energetic and starts its life activity in the evening, and sleeps in the daytime. If you are sensitive about noise then you should try to place their enclosure away from your living place. But if not then you can also stay with them even at night.

Hedgehog Cleaning And Grooming

The grooming and cleaning and grooming of your hedgehog are very important.  They do not keep themselves clean. You must try to bathe them even one time after every two weeks. You should also bring them to the veterinarian for a proper check-up or manicure. If you want to do a manicure in your way then be careful about cutting. If you cut at the pink flash area it may injure the hedgehog and cause bleeding.

Ultimate Hedgehog Care Guide For Beginners:

This short guide will surely help beginners to take the best care of their hedgehogs as pets.

Diet Of Hedgehog

Analyzing the actual diet of hedgehogs is very simple and easy. Depending upon the source referred to, hedgehogs can be omnivores and insectivores. Once you analyze the actual diet of the hedgehogs, you will come to know that besides eating insects, hedgehogs also eat a variety of food for their survival. Different species of hedgehog eat different kinds of food.

It simply depends upon the area in which they live. Hedgehog mostly eats invertebrates. Chitin is found inside insects. Chitin is digested by hedgehogs from the insect. Worms that are usually seen creeping on the grounds are also digested by the hedgehogs. Hedgehog eats any kind of worm.

Keeping Your Pet Hedgehog Happy

Some hedgehogs symbolize that they need affection from their owners. To keep the hedgehogs happy, you must understand their basic needs so that you can keep them happy.  Bedding for your hedgehog must be smooth and soft. It is a very important tip to keep your hedgehog happy. Exercise, cuddling, and letting them play with the toys also keep hedgehogs happy.

Medical Care for Pet Hedgehog

The average life span of the hedgehog is 4 to 6 years. After every six months, there must be a proper checkup of the hedgehog. There is a possibility that hedgehogs might get diseases like dental disease, skin disease, liver disease, obesity, etc. That’s the reason that you need to have a medical checkup of your pet after every six months. To keep your hedgehog safe from the disease, proper diet and exercise are necessary.

Use Of Hedgehog House And Feeding Station:

There must be a hedgehog house for the security and safety of your hedgehog. Hedgehog House prevents the stealing of food. Other animals can’t grab the food of hedgehogs during eating. During the hibernation process, hedgehogs also provide safety and security to hedgehogs. For constructing the hedgehog house, use the woods which have longer durability.

The house also should be weather resistant. It can bear extreme weather conditions. So in the rainy seasons, you would not have to worry about your hedgehog. If you have a proper hedgehog feeding station then hedgehogs can be encouraged to have a short visit to the garden without the threat of other animals. Place the hedgehog house in a peaceful place. Also, make a fence around it if possible.

Who Can Own a Hedgehog as a Pet-Top Ways to Figure Out!

The charming and cute hedgehog can make a great pet for the right people. Are you considering owning a hedgehog pet? It is a great idea to find out if it is a good match for you and your family before making a purchase. The following series of questions help you to understand if this playful addition fits right for you or not.

Are Domesticated Hedgehogs Legal In Your Region?

Many European countries and WE states allow owning a hedgehog as a pet. But they are illegal in some states including California, Hawaii, Georgia, Washington, Arizona, and New York City. It is recommended to check your local law before owning one. Because if they are illegal in your area, you may be fined on your own as well as they can be confiscated.

Do You Have Enough Living Space To Keep A Pet Hedgehog?

These tiny critters like to move around and need a large cage having two to three square feet of floor space at a minimum. If you are planning to keep more than one hedgehog, you need to keep each hedgehog in a separate cage. Keeping more than one hedgehog in a single cage can spell a mess because they are pretty territorial.

Can You Maintain The Hedgehog’s House Temperature Around 70-80 F?

Hedgehogs are comfortable in a warm environment. They can hibernate in the cold which can lead to serious health problems. So, make sure you keep the temperature range between 70oF to 80oF in their living area. You can use heating lamps, heat pads, or small heaters to provide them with a warm environment.

Is A Hedgehog Fit Your Lifestyle And Routine?

As mentioned earlier, hedgehogs are nocturnal and need care during night hours. So, it is not the best choice for you if you work overnight. Also, their nighttime activities can make noise and create disturbance for others.

Are You Eager To Be Patient?

These little animals are shy and not much social. They take a lot of time and effort to feel comfortable in their new environment. So, you need to be patient and give them enough space they require to become socialized.

Are Hedgehogs A Good Pet For Your Kids?

Kids and hedgehogs are not a good match. They can raise their quills if handled roughly. If your kids are loud, they can injure themselves or the pet.

Are You Eager To Practice Smart Hygiene Every Day?

Hedgehogs have certain health risks. They can transmit salmonella, ringworm, mycobacterium, and some viral infections to people. You can protect yourself and reduce the risks by following proper handwashing practices. Also, avoid kissing or direct contact with their faces every time you play with a hedgehog.

Safety Tricks To Make Your Hedgehog Healthier And Happy:

hedgehog safety

If you’re sure about buying a hedgehog see if it allows your nation or state to make it legal before buying. Safety tricks wouldn’t only effectively guide you but also permit you to make your pet happy and healthier. Taking care of this tinny, cute pet may not be an easy task without this best and ultimate guide. The proper guidance makes it easy to take care of your hedgehog.

Healthy Hedgehog:

Before selecting a hedgehog be aware of its buying specifications to choose a healthy pet. There are several techniques like choosing a breed hedgehog which we discussed earlier.

A healthy pet is easier to take care of and makes them pleasant and happy.

Hedgehog’s Tubing:

Hedgehog does some dangerous tricks which look cute but risky as you’re aware of their famous trick of sticking their head on the tube’s containers this is called hedgehog’s tubing. Although it looks like a cute trick to you to provide them safety you need to give them clean tubes that are safe and stay here till your pet stops.

You can take the example of McDonald’s changing their container’s designs if the hedgehog fails to get the food and sticks its head dangerously it might die.

Interaction B/w The Pet And Human:

Sometimes, humans become dangerous to animals, especially to tinny species like a hedgehog. During crossing roads, they may die under cars like in overpopulated areas. Most innocent and cute species die accidentally due to a lack of greenery and plants around them.

So, avoid bringing hedgehogs into overpopulated areas and try to grow more plants for the tinny species.

Changing in Habits:

As animals are also living being so, they also want change in their habits like exercising, eating, drinking, and taking rest. But also suddenly if you’re changing habits it may affect their health. Safety precautions include to observe the hedgehog and bringing changes slightly that suit the pet.

Make it possible with the safety precautions that the change in habits brings a positive change in the hedgehog.

Complete Awareness About Hedgehog Behavior:

Self-anointing, nocturnal, and quelling are the prominent habits that you should be aware of.

Self-anointing is a behavior in which it smells something new that smells good and the hedgehog can lick or bite. In this sense, it causes the scent, therefore, saliva to spread on its back in the foam. This problem may be faced by new buyers of a hedgehog because of unawareness.

Afterward, these pets shed their quills twice during their lifetime that’s why adult quills can grow.  During this process, the safety tip is to dry their skin and spread olive oil on their back that helps them to relieve pain.

Importance of Social Needs for Hedgehogs

hedgehog social needs

Hedgehogs always stay happy with the people who socialize their pets daily. Undoubtedly, they do great at staying housed alone but they do need to go outside of their cages at least once a day. All they need is for refreshments exercise and to maintain social interaction.

Notoriously, Hedgehogs are shy as they manifest their shyness by uniquely rolling up into a round ball by tightening up their muscles. Thus, by doing so they completely hide up all limbs and face and point their sharp spiny quills so the predators can’t access their face and limbs. Undoubtedly, the hedgehogs are superconscious, and whenever they feel fear, threat, or any irrelevant activity around them they immediately turn into a quill ball.

To maintain social activity, hedgehog owners should take them out of their cages when their pets are getting young. Everyday social activity will maintain their confidence to stay normal while interacting with people so that they don’t stay rolling the ball all the time.

The hedgehogs are gloomy. Therefore, the people who don’t sleep at night, hedgehogs become more friendly with them as they get more time from their owner and get success in making an excellent bond.

From Where Should I Get My Pet Hedgehog?

I want to mention an important fact while buying a hedgehog or a baby hedgehog (hoglet) that is its:

“It’s facile to buy a hedgehog instead of caring for a pet with a deep responsibility”

There are many options to buy a hedgehog that is listed below:

  • Any trusted online store like com
  • Nearby privately registered pet store
  • Any online breeder
  • local breeder near your address


Before deciding to take a hedgehog as a pet, first, check out whether it’s illegal or legal in your territory. Like if you are staying in Network, Omaha, Washington, Hawaii, Georgia, or California, then there are some specific restrictions that you need to follow. Also, you need to require a permit for keeping a hedgehog as a pet.

The Reason Why Not All Private Local Pet Stores Keep Hedgehogs:

After, a long research on hedgehogs, I come to the point that not all stores keep this unique, beautiful pet because of its sensitive exotic nature and behavior. Similarly, they prefer to keep small pets like mice, hamsters, fish, and more instead of hedgehogs.

Even, if they sell hedgehogs, they will not provide you breed source as well as the history or background of young hedgehogs. So, that feels like heartache.

Online Stores Provide Sources:

Now, the internet is becoming a big source for buying breeders. They provide a piece of complete detailed information. More importantly, the breeders provide their license information. So, the online stores are looking more trusted.

Final Thoughts

In summary, this guide covers everything you need to know about Hedgehog Adoption, Breeds, and Caring for Hedgehogs as Pets. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced owner, It offers helpful advice for responsible hedgehog ownership, regardless of your level of experience