Care, Facts and BreedingEmma
African pygmy hedgehogs are best kept at around 70-75 degrees. If the temperature is lower than this they may attempt to hibernate. This is not allowed in captivity. It is not necessary or recommended to use light bulbs to heat the cage as these could burn your hedgehog. though i dont you could use a che light on a thermostat which gives of heat no light. If you keep your house at a temperature that you are happy to sit in, it will more than likely be enough for your pygmy hedgehog too.
I don’t use heat pads though two that seem to be grate are petnap and snuggle safe. If they spend too long on them they can burn themselves or over heat. A pygmy hedgehog attempting hibernating needs warming up immediately. The best way to do this is to wrap him in something cosy like a pet sleeping bag, towel and put him in a warm room. Hopefully he will start to respond within the hour failing this seek a vet. Never put pygmy hedgehogs in water to warm up.
They require 10-12 hour of light a day this should not be through direct sunlight it can just be through turning on the lights or opening the curtain to let the light in.
Pygmy hedgehogs salivate and spread the saliva over their back this is called self-anointing. certain smells start them off. There’s no answer to why they do this but it is nothing to be concerned about. It can be quite startling when 1st time owners see this.
Qilling is when a pygmy hedgehog losses its baby quills and grows adult quills between 8to12 weeks. You will now this is taking place when you find quills all over the place. Quilling can be joint with teething so your pygmy hedgehog will be a bit grumpy during this time. Quilling can be itchy so a nice warm bath may be helpful to south the saw skin.
Even when this is over don’t be surprised if you find one or two quills around your pygmy hedgehog throughout its life sometimes they loose one of two quills.
Pygmy hedgehogs grow only half the size 5-8″ of the normal european hedgehog 12″+ which live outside.
people are always asking what there hedgehog should weigh at what age. There is no exact weight chart as like us some grow bigger or quicker than others and some just stay that bit smaller.
OUR YEARS EQUAL TO A HEDGEHOGS?
2 month old human = 10 year old hedgehog
6 month old human = 20 year old hedgehog
14 month old human = 30 year old hedgehog
3 year old human = 40 year old hedgehog
3 1/2 year old human = 50 year old hedgehog3
3/4 year old human = 60 year old hedgehog
4 year and 2 month old human = 70 year old hedgehog
5 year and 4 month old human = 80 year old hedgehog
6 year and 2 month old human = 90 year old hedgehog
7 year and 8 month old human = 100 year old hedgehog
When traveling with your pygmy hedgehog home for the 1st time give them something cosy to hide in and a small hard travel carrier with good ventilation. Keep them warm. If your warm your hedgehog will likely be to. Some hogs can get car sick so keep an eye out and make sure they stay dry throughout the journey not to get as chill. Make sure your hedgehog doesn’t ride in the sun and no food should be given to them whilst traveling. you may also fined he / she may be a bit of their food and sneeze for a few days after getting them home. This is them just adapting to their new environment.
If you can give your pygmy hedgehog 20minutes a day of play out of there cage this will be plenty.
Bathing your hog is not needed very often only when they look or smell bad.
Generally hedgehogs are clean animals and do not require baths often, however every now and again they do get a little messy and need your help. It is important to limit the number of baths you give your hedgehog as they have dry skin, and excessive bathing can dry their skin out even more. Never leave your hedgehog alone in the bath, they may drown.
I use non odour avenno oatmeal and degu. chinchilla sand. Never use tea tree oil products it is toxic and will more than likely kill your hog. Keep the water level low and warm not hot. be prepared to change the water a few times. Use a smooth toothbrush to clean the quills and feet. Make sure you rinse it all out before wrapping your hog in a towel and drying.
Characteristics of Hedgehogs, Owners Knowledgeable about hedgehogs:
The more you know about hedgehogs the better you will understand them and be able to meet their needs.Patient – hedgehogs are shy by nature and will depend on your patience as they learn to trust you.Thick skinned – hedgehogs are prickly and they can poke you! This is something you can learn. You must be gentle with hedgehogs if they are going to trust you and flattern out their quils.Financially responsible – hedgehogs may require veterinary care at some point in their life as well as food and supplies throughout their life.
Accepting – You must be willing to accept what your hedgehog has to offer. It will most likely never follow commands or do tricks but its quirky habits and the affection it may share can make it quite charming.
Young children as Hedgehog Owners -I know for a fact that almost every parent who has contacted me about a hedgehogs as pet for their young child has a child that is extremely good with animals. We have found that hedgehogs do best in families where the hedgehog is a family pet and adults are closely involved in daily hedgehog care.It is extremely important to monitor the hedgehogs eating, activity levels, temperature, and health every. Also it is unrealistic to expect a young child to be solely responsible for its continues financial needs.
Female pygmy hedgehogs should be 6-12month old before breeding them for the 1st time as any younger and she is not physically mature enough. Any later and they could die due to the cervix closing up. They can have 2 litters a year and breed till they are around 2.5years old.
Male can usually breed throughout their lifespan. Inbreeding pygmy hedgehogs can cause physical anomalies and poor temperament.
Both sexes become fertile at 8weeks but breeding this young should not be done.
The female should be put with the male rather than the other way round so she isn’t territorial.
The cage should be solid and hedgebags (sleeping bags) should be supplied for her to line her nest.
Between 1st meeting and birth can be anywhere from 33-60days. At around 30days a good full clean out of the cage is recommended cause when the babies are born no interaction with mum or that area of the cage can be touched until the babies are 2 to 3 weeks old. The use of a bird nest cam is a good way to keep an eye on mum and babies within this time.
It’s hard to tell if she is pregnant the only signs are her getting bigger, tighter belly and lumps. Just give it 40days from the last interaction with the male before you decide she isn’t. Then it’s just a case to try and try again. She will give birth to average 3-5hoglets but size can range from 1-9
You will probably hear little squeaks when the babies are born and see them scattered around the cage until all are born. Wait before holding them but if mum tries to attack leave them until they are fully active before attempting again. Mum may kill them if stressed. After 3weeks they should have teeth so at 4weeks they will be onto solid food. They will be removed from mum when ready. Then once fully weaned can be rehomed