Q:

How do you take care of a hedgehog?

A:

Quick Answer

To take care of a hedgehog, a person must buy the appropriate living environment, purchase high-quality food, learn how to handle the hedgehog and watch out for common health issues, such as obesity, anorexia and diarrhea. The hedgehog's house must be picked with care and should be either an aquarium or a large wire cage.

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Full Answer

The hedgehog's home should have a den or a place to hide so that the hedgehog can burrow. The den can be made out of plumping piping or plastic piping. The bedding inside of the cage should be aspen shavings, hay or recycled newspaper. Most pet stores also sell commercial bedding that can be used. It is recommended to add an exercise wheel to the home so that the hedgehog can stay healthy and burn off excess energy.

The hedgehog diet should include beta-carotene vegetables and either high-quality cat food or hedgehog maintenance diet food. Ferret food can also be used. Earthworms and mealworms can be added to food to enhance the taste for the hedgehog.

Hedgehogs will also need to be handled early on in their life to ensure that they are familiar with humans. Some hedgehogs will be outgoing and enjoy human contact immediately, but most hedgehogs must get used to handling. If they are not used to being handled, it can make caring for them later in life difficult. Familiarizing the hedgehog with its owner early on also makes the experience more rewarding, as the hedgehog will lay its quills flat in order to let the owner hold and play with it.

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