Basic Hedgehog Care

For many families, a hedgehog can make a wonderful and unique pet. Before you bring one home, though, you should know what you’ll need to properly take care of one. Learn about the basic care requirements of hedgehogs below from your Upper Arlington vet.

Housing

A hedgehog will need to live in a decent-sized cage with enough room for food and water dishes, hiding spots, sleeping areas, and roaming areas. Since hedgies are good climbers, open-topped cages are a big no-no. The cage should have good circulation and be well-lit, but try to avoid placing it where direct sunlight could hit the cage for long periods. Hedgehogs will be most comfortable when the temperature is between 60 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

Bedding

Along the bottom of your hedgehog’s cage, you should line aspen, pine, or white wood shavings as a bedding material. You’ll want to put approximately two inches of the shavings along the floor of the cage. In addition to bedding, you’ll need to supply your hedgie’s cage with food bowls, a water bottle, a hiding place such as a small piece of PVC pipe, and a few good toys. Ask your vet what toys will best entertain your hedgehog.

Diet

Feed your hedgehog a high-quality commercial dry hedgehog diet, available in pet supply shops and some retail stores. The dry diet will be the staple of your pet’s diet, and most hedgehogs do fine if the food is left out constantly for him to eat as he pleases. In addition to the dry food, a hedgehog’s diet should be periodically supplemented with other foods like fresh veggies, fruits, the occasional cooked meat, and even mealworms or crickets.

Do you have further questions about the care a hedgehog will need? Wondering if this prickly pet would be a good choice for your family? Have a chat with your Upper Arlington veterinarian to learn more about the hedgehog’s personality and care requirements.