I have had several texts and phone calls from new hedgehog owners frantically explaining a "problem" with their hedgehog foaming out of its mouth. Please don't panic, this is normal and is called "self annointing". What is self annointing and why do hedgehogs do this? No one knows for certain (and we can't exactly ask and get a response from our hedgehogs;)
So what is self annointing? If you see your hedgehog licking a new or unfamiliar object and then they start twisting their little body like a contortionist and licking themselves, this is self annointing. It is thought that hedgehogs are trying to camouflage themselves with the new scent or just really enjoy the smell. Whatever the reasoning behind it, it is normal hedgehog behavior even though it looks quite strange and comical.
(We once gave our hedgehogs cut up strawberries as a snack and had to bathe them shortly afterwards. They annointed with the red strawberry juice and I had several red tinted hedgehogs!)
*Check out this adorable video of Stumpy self annointing :) Stumpy's mother overgroomed her when she was a tiny hoglet, so she is missing the tips of a few of her toes.
It's the most wonderful time of the year! Christmas time is a wonderful time full of joy, excitement and wonder. We have a lot of requests around Christmas time for hedgehogs for Christmas presents. As parents, we always want our children to have the best Christmas and want to watch their eyes glow in excitement as they open up that perfect gift they've been dreaming of. (As a mom of 3 I have been there and that joyful look on their little faces means more to me than receiving gifts myself!)
We do sell hedgehogs as gifts, but please be mindful of the person receiving the hedgehog. Ask yourself:
If you're on the fence about adopting a hedgehog yourself or adopting a hedgehog to give as a gift, please take a few moments to browse our site for care information. I am ALWAYS willing to answer any questions you may have before and after you adopt a baby from us!
My love for hedgehogs began in 2014 shortly after I had my daughter, Abby. My son begged for a hedgehog as a pet, and as much as I did not want another pet to take care of, he agreed to do most of the work. When we brought his hedgehog home, I realized how truly awesome and fascinating these pokey animals really were! We slowly expanded and became USDA licensed.
I naively thought that breeding hedgehogs would be as easy and rewarding as our first litter. Kate the Great was an excellent mother and gave birth to 5 perfectly healthy little spike balls but this was just beginners luck. No matter how hard I try to be the best owner and breeder I can be, I can not control every situation. We have had babies born dead, eaten, abandoned...and after breeding for several years we have learned A LOT! We have attempted to hand feed several babies that have been rejected by their mother and unfortunately have not been successful with it. Hoglets usually die from bloat when being bottle fed, and no matter how hard I try they never seem to make it. Sure, realistically I knew that we would have babies that die, but to have a helpless, weak little hoglet die in your hands is heartbreaking. It is hard to put into words how devastating it really is to pour hours of time into feeding and nurturing a rejected baby and then have it pass away. There have been several sleepless nights, tears, and times I have wanted to quit because of the emotional toll it has taken on me. But it always seems that at the moments I want to quit that I receive a picture of a baby in its new home, or a sweet text, or a card. These small little gestures of kindness never go unnoticed and it's why I continue breeding these amazing animals!
Here are a few pictures of Bubblegum's babies. She killed 2 of her babies and was trying to kill the remaining 4. I quickly took them out and tried bottle feeding them but unfortunately they did not make it.
(Please note that we do NOT handle babies until they are 2 weeks old unless it is for the health of the babies or the mother).