Are You Ready for a Hedgehog?
Take into consideration the following to determine if your family is ready to take on the responsibility of caring for a Hedgehog:
How old are your children?
Different pets are appropriate for different ages. For example, your 4-year-old who is pleading for a hedgehog is not capable of taking on the responsibility. You might consider a guinea pig, which is easy to care for, soft, and likes to be held.
Do your kids really want a Hedgehog?
Children like animals, but not all children really want to have them around the house. Contrary to popular belief, every little boy does not want or need a dog. Just because your little one enjoys playing with Grandma’s poodle does not mean he’s ready or even wants to take on full-time care of a poodle himself.
Have you thought about the cost?
That’s one of the things people often fail to anticipate. Many people don’t think past the initial cost of the animal. The initial purchase can cost anywhere from $300 to $500. But, the annual cost can be as much as $200 to $500 in general care food and veterinary costs (if required).
Are you committed?
Hedgehogs are not something that you can take home, try out and return if they don’t suit you. You’re taking on a commitment to care for that animal for the rest of its life. A hedgehog must be handled every day to remain friendly and social, as little as 3-7 days of no contact can make a hedgehog solitary never wanting human companionship again. If your child is a teen, remember that the animal will be with you when your son or daughter heads off to college. Hedgehogs average lifespan is 4-6 years but some have lived into the 7 and 8 year range. The family has to realize that it is a lifetime commitment with vet visits, supplies needed for its care, with time and love to be spent on the pet.
Are you educated about how to care for a Hedgehog?
Don’t forget that this is an exotic/Captive bred/wild animal. They have specific requirements that are needed to keep them happy and healthy. They are nocturnal and will be awake all night usually running on their wheels, their feet will get dirty from them running through their urine and feces and their feet and their wheels must be cleaned every day. Their diet consists of things some may find less desirable to feed (insects, pinky mice)
Don’t get a pet to teach your child responsibility. If your child fails to be responsible, the animal may be harmed. Instead, It’s a great way of rewarding responsibility.
If you are not certain a Hedgehog is the right addition for your family, or if you have children under the age of 10, I welcome you to come to one of my Hedgehog 101 Sessions. My sessions can help you decide if a hedgehog is the right pet for your family! These hour long sessions consist of Hedgehog Basic Care, Handling and a question/answer session. The fee for the session is $20 per family, However, should you decide to add a loveable bundle of quills to your family, the $20 fee will be applied as a deposit :) Please email/ call / text to schedule a Hedgehog 101 Session!
See My Page on Hedgehog 101 Sessions to find out if a Hedgehog if the correct pet for you and your family!