What Do Hedgehogs Need To Survive? (Deep Research)

✅ Fact Checked
Updated on January 16, 2023
Michael Colt, Bachelor Computer Science Degree & Computer Engineering.
Written by
Michael Colt, Bachelor Veterinary Medicine & Animal Science.
Ella Williams
Fact Checked by
Ella Williams
Dr. Michael Colt is a highly qualified veterinarian and animal scientist. He has extensive knowledge and experience in the care and treatment of animals, and a deep understanding of the latest scientific research in the field. Dr. Colt is dedicated to promoting the health and well-being of animals, and is committed to providing the highest level of care to his patients. Holds a Bachelors Degree in Veterinary Medicine from Middle Tennessee State University.
⭐ Fun Fact ⭐

Hedgehogs are known for their ability to roll into a tight ball when they feel threatened. This not only protects their soft underbelly, but also makes them much harder to grab hold of.

Hedgehogs are fascinating creatures that have become popular pets in recent years. However, owning a hedgehog requires more than just providing food and water. To ensure that your hedgehog thrives, it’s crucial to understand their basic needs and provide them with a suitable environment and diet. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about hedgehog care, including the essential components of their housing, diet, and environmental enrichment, as well as common health issues and the importance of regular veterinary check-ups. By following these guidelines, you can give your hedgehog the best possible chance for a long and happy life.
What do hedgehogs need to survive?
Hedgehogs need proper housing, a balanced diet, environmental enrichment, and regular veterinary care to survive and thrive.

1 Basic Requirements for Hedgehog Survival

H3: Housing
Hedgehogs require a comfortable and safe living space that meets their specific needs. A cage that is adequate in size is essential to ensure that your hedgehog has enough room to move around, play, and rest. A cage that is too small can cause stress and can lead to health problems.

The temperature in the cage is also very important for hedgehogs. They need an environment that is within an appropriate temperature range, typically between 72-80°F (22-26°C). It’s important to monitor the temperature in the cage and make sure that it stays within the recommended range, especially during extreme weather conditions.

Hedgehogs are naturally shy creatures and need a place to hide and feel safe. Providing access to hiding places, such as a small box or igloo, is essential for their well-being.

H3: Diet
A balanced and nutritious diet is essential for hedgehogs to thrive. A diet that is high in protein and low in fat is recommended. High-quality dry food specifically formulated for hedgehogs is a good starting point, but it’s important to complement it with other food sources.

Fresh fruits and vegetables, such as blueberries, strawberries, and carrots, can be offered as occasional treats. Live insects, such as mealworms and crickets, can also be offered as a protein source. It’s important to avoid feeding your hedgehog foods that are high in sugar and fat, such as nuts and seeds, as they can lead to obesity and other health problems.

H3: Environmental Enrichment
Hedgehogs are active creatures and need opportunities to explore, play, and exercise. Providing hiding places and offering toys, such as balls, tunnels, and chew toys, can help stimulate their minds and bodies. Allowing your hedgehog to have regular exercise time outside of their cage is also important. This can be done by setting up a safe play area or by taking them for supervised walks.

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By providing a suitable living space, a balanced diet, and opportunities for environmental enrichment, you can give your hedgehog the best possible chance for a long and happy life.

2 Health Considerations for Hedgehogs

H3: Regular veterinary check-ups
Regular veterinary check-ups are an important part of maintaining the health of your hedgehog. During these visits, your veterinarian can check for any potential health issues and provide preventive care, such as parasite control. Parasite control is crucial for hedgehogs as they are susceptible to a number of parasites, including mites and ticks.

Proper nutrition is also important for hedgehogs, and your veterinarian can provide guidance on what foods to feed and how much to feed. Proper nutrition can help prevent health problems and ensure that your hedgehog remains healthy and active.

H3: Common Health Issues
Hedgehogs are prone to a number of health issues, including skin problems, respiratory infections, and gastrointestinal issues. Skin problems, such as mites and infections, can be caused by a number of factors, including poor nutrition and unclean living conditions.

Respiratory infections can also be a problem for hedgehogs and can be caused by exposure to damp or cold conditions, or by stress. Symptoms of respiratory infections include sneezing, coughing, and nasal discharge.

Gastrointestinal issues, such as diarrhea and constipation, can be caused by a variety of factors, including poor diet and stress. If your hedgehog is experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s important to seek veterinary care as soon as possible.

By being proactive about your hedgehog’s health and visiting the veterinarian regularly, you can help prevent health problems and ensure that your hedgehog remains happy and healthy.


Do hedgehogs need bedding in their cage?

Yes, hedgehogs do need bedding in their cage. Bedding provides a soft and comfortable place for hedgehogs to sleep and rest, and also helps to maintain a suitable temperature in the cage. It’s important to choose bedding that is soft, absorbent, and safe for hedgehogs, such as aspen shavings or recycled paper products. Avoid using cedar or pine shavings, as they contain aromatic oils that can be harmful to hedgehogs.
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What do hedgehogs need to survive in the wild?

Wild hedgehogs require a suitable habitat with access to food, water, and shelter in order to survive. A suitable habitat for hedgehogs includes areas with dense vegetation, such as hedgerows and woodlands, and access to food sources, such as insects, fruits, and berries. Access to clean water is also essential, as hedgehogs need to drink regularly to maintain their hydration levels. Providing adequate shelter, such as a nest box or piles of leaves, is also important for hedgehogs to feel safe and secure. By providing these basic needs, hedgehogs can thrive in the wild.

What do you need to have a hedgehog as a pet?

To have a hedgehog as a pet, you will need a few essential items. These include a suitable cage, bedding, food and water dishes, a heat source, and a variety of toys and hiding places. You will also need to provide a balanced diet, including high-quality dry food and fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as live insects as a protein source. Regular veterinary check-ups are also important for maintaining the health of your hedgehog. By providing these basic needs, you can ensure that your hedgehog thrives and lives a long, happy, and healthy life.

What should I put in my hedgehog’s cage?

To provide a suitable living environment for your hedgehog, you should include the following items in their cage:

– A suitable cage that is large enough for your hedgehog to move around, play, and rest
– Bedding, such as aspen shavings or recycled paper products, to provide a soft and comfortable place to sleep and rest
– Food and water dishes, which should be cleaned regularly to prevent contamination
– A heat source, such as a ceramic heat emitter or heat lamp, to maintain an appropriate temperature range
– Toys, such as balls and tunnels, to provide environmental enrichment and stimulation
– Hiding places, such as a small box or igloo, to provide a safe and secure place for your hedgehog to retreat to when they feel threatened.

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By providing these basic items, you can ensure that your hedgehog has everything they need to thrive in their cage.

4 Conclusion

In conclusion, hedgehogs are unique and fascinating creatures that require special care and attention to thrive. By providing a safe and comfortable environment, a balanced diet, and regular veterinary care, hedgehog owners can help ensure their pets live long, happy, and healthy lives. Understanding the basic needs of hedgehogs and the potential health concerns they may face is crucial for providing the best possible care. With proper care and attention, hedgehogs can make wonderful and loving pets. So, if you’re considering adding a hedgehog to your family, be sure to do your research and provide them with the care they need to thrive.

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