Hedgehogs

If you find a hedgehog in the daytime there is usually something wrong with it. It needs to be taken in to care immediately. It will probably be dehydrated and often a victim of fly strike. This is where flies realize the hog is dying and will lay their eggs on it, usually behind the ears and along the skirt as well as between the spines.  You can identify this problem easily by observing the hedgehog looking for small clusters of white sausage shaped eggs. These need to be removed immediately as they hatch into maggots within 24hrs. Keep the animal warm and offer meaty cat food and water then take to your local wildlife center or hedgehog carer.


There is a golden rule with hedgehogs. If it can happen to any animal it will happen to hedgehog. They find themselves in all kinds of situations.  They get court up in garden netting, trapped between sheds, fall into garden ponds, and get stuck down drains and even severed by garden strimmers. They get attacked by other animals, hit by cars, fall into cattle grids and poisoned. The main thing is if you find a hedgehog that’s in distress get it to someone who knows ASAP. Other problems for hedgehogs are lung worm or other internal and external parasites, such as a heavy flea or tick burden.

Orphans


If you take in orphaned hedgehogs be aware that where there is one there will be more. There may be as many as 8 hogs in a litter. We feed them with a replacement milk at the hospital but if you find yourself in a position that you can’t get them to a carer you need to keep them warm, goats milk can be purchased at the super market and given. Do not use cow’s milk. Quite often hedgehogs have a second litter in the autumn this can lead to the young hog not growing big enough to get them through a winter hibernation. They need to weigh at least 500g to get the through to spring. If you find one that has not reached that weight we suggest you bring them inside and pass them on to a rescue centre so that they can be cared for and released in the spring.