In the realm of exotic pets, the allure of a pet hedgehog is undeniable. These small spiky creatures have found their way into the hearts of many animal lovers.
However, the charming exterior often masks a reality that’s far less idyllic. Beneath the surface lies a series of truths that reveal why hedgehogs might not be the suitable companions we envision them to be.
While their prickly demeanor might seem charmingly unique, it’s essential to understand the intricacies of their nature and why they should not be kept in captivity.
First and foremost, hedgehogs are solitary animals that do not necessarily want to interact with humans.
Additionally, when they are in a stressful situation they roll into a spiky ball that may injure you, your children, or any dogs and cats you have in your home.
They are also docile and nocturnal, making them active when humans typically aren’t.
Finally, they are known for carrying diseases, like salmonella.
1. Salmonella Outbreak
Source: CBS New York/Youtube
In 2020 a salmonella outbreak hospitalized twelve people. This deadly disease was linked to hedgehogs and bearded dragons being in people’s homes.
2. Alarmed Hedgehog
This video displays what happens to a hedgehog when they are panicked. When an alarm went off inside of the building this hedgehog lives in, he curled into a ball. This shows that hedgehogs should not necessarily be in human environments.
3. Angry Hedgehog
This hedgehog is curled in a ball for an unknown reason, but you can see that they are in distress. Even so, a human continually touches and rolls the poor animal.
This hedgehog has come down with a fly strike. This happens when flies lay eggs behind the hedgehog’s eyelids, mouth, genitals, or ears. Then, these hatch into maggots. This condition is fatal without proper help.
Source: ABC 10 News/Youtube
In 2019, domesticated hedgehogs were linked to a salmonella outbreak across the United States.
The tales of these five pet hedgehogs serve as poignant reminders that behind the fascination lies a responsibility to ensure the well-being of these creatures.
Their solitary inclinations, defensive behaviors, and potential health risks all point to the fact that hedgehogs might thrive best in their natural habitats rather than within our homes.
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This article by Trinity Sparke was first published by One Green Planet on 7 September 2023. Image Credit :DenisNata/Shutterstock.