A hedgehog as a pet?

Can't imagine a hedgehog in your home? Then believe that there is a large group of breeders whose pet is a hedgehog. Of course, these are not the hedgehogs we know from our nature.

It is therefore neither a West European hedgehog (also known as the common hedgehog) nor an Eastern European hedgehog. These two species live in our territory and both are protected, so they cannot be kept at home.
In domestic breeding, the African Pygmy Hedgehog, which is a cross between the White-Bellied Hedgehog and the Algerian Hedgehog or Desert Hedgehog, is very popular. At maturity it weighs 250-500 grams and grows to a length of 18-23 cm. In captivity it usually lives 4-6 years, rarely up to 9 years.

How best to care for a hedgehog
Hedgehog breeding is not extremely demanding, but it has its specifics. Anyone considering breeding one should first find out about its needs and habits, as with any other animal.
Hedgehogs need daily contact with humans. Therefore, the breeder must be prepared to devote time to it every day. The hedgehog sleeps during the day and becomes active in the early evening, making it an ideal companion for those who are at work during the day and can spend time with the hedgehog when they return. A hedgehog is not a suitable pet for children or for those who travel a lot and are not often at home.

The ideal bed for a hedgehog
Hedgehogs are insectivores. If you have a phobia of insects such as worms and the like, you should not get a hedgehog. You must have insects available at all times as a staple food for your pet. Due to the type of hedgehog diet, it is advisable to use bedding that absorbs odours as much as possible to prevent their spread from excrement.
Hedgehogs cannot be kept freely to roam about an apartment, but they need a box where they can have a bed or a house for daytime sleeping. It is also important to keep the temperature between 22 and 26 °C. The ancestors of the African Pygmy Hedgehog originated in areas where the temperature does not drop below 20°C. Therefore, it is not adapted to hibernation like hedgehogs living in the wild. If the temperature in the room where it lives drops, it may hibernate, which is fatal to this species. The hedgehog is a loner, so it doesn't need a playmate in the enclosure. Multiple hedgehogs must be kept separately.

Individual hedgehog heads
The hedgehog's nature is quite independent and free-spirited. It is typical for hedgehogs that they usually stick to one person and trust him implicitly. However, this link is very fragile.
It is therefore very important that only those who are able to understand, empathise, perceive and think about the hedgehog should get one.

Where and how to get a hedgehog
The only correct way to acquire a hedgehog is to contact one of the registered breeders. These breeders are associated in the Hedgehog Breeders Club. The hedgehogs purchased from them have pedigree cards that prevent the spread of hereditary genetic disorders, possible inbreeding, etc.

On the club's website you can find contacts and all important information about hedgehog breeding. The price of such a hedgehog is most often in the range of CZK 2,000-3,000. Buying a baby hedgehog on the stock exchange or through an advertisement is risky, as the number of breeders is increasing with the growing popularity of hedgehogs. Even though you may be waiting a while for a puppy from a registered breeder, you are guaranteed to bring home a healthy and socialized animal.

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