Yes, hedgehogs like to be held. Holding your hedgehog will give you a chance to bond with your hedgehog. You should however be careful not to hold the hedgehog too soon, develop a bond with it, and know the best way to hold your pet.
Like all other tiny animals, Hedgehogs are sophisticated and one-of-a-kind creatures that need specialized care, food, and supplies for the rest of their lives. The hybrid hedgehogs known as African pygmy hedgehogs are the most frequent variety of hedgehogs acquired as “pets” in the United States.
Do They Like to Be Held?
Every hedgehog has a distinct personality, although the majority of them aren’t interested in receiving human attention at all. Hedgehogs are difficult to handle, and it takes a lot of patience and works to train them to accept being handled.
Hedgehogs, like porcupines, have sharp, prickly quills that they utilize to defend themselves against predators. They become tough to handle when they get frightened or threatened because their spikes rise in all directions.
It is true that hedgehogs prefer being held in the palm of your hand. It provides them with a sense of security and aids in developing a bond with their owner. It is true that hugging your pet hedgehog is a fantastic approach to improve the relationship between you and your hedgehog.
This is just the beginning; as the relationship develops, your pet will get more comfortable in your presence and may even sit on your lap and play with you. You must, however, exercise caution in how you proceed with the process.
Making the procedure more quickly and keeping the pet against its will may cause it to curl up into a ball, releasing all of its spikes in the process.
When to Hold the Hedgehogs
After approximately a week, a hedgehog will begin to know you as the owner. This, however, is highly dependent on the amount of time you spend with the pet.
First, gain the pet’s confidence. If you haven’t spent time creating a relationship with your pet, don’t expect it to be friendly right away.
When Not to Hold the Hedgehogs
One of the most frequent mistakes hedgehog owners make is holding their pets as soon as they get them home from the shop. Hedgehogs are very sensitive creatures.
They are protected by a natural defensive mechanism.
They have a keen sense of smell and touch, which they use to detect potential enemies. As strange as it may seem, you are an adversary in their eyes until they get used to you.
As a result, it is not advisable to come into contact with them at that time.
It has the potential to terrify them and make them aggressive. If you want the pet to get accustomed to the new surroundings and form a relationship with you, it’s in your best interest to keep it in the cage for a few days.
How To Bond with Your Hedgehog Through Scent
Put Your Shirt in The Cage
Hedgehogs have a highly developed sense of smell. Your hedgehog must be able to detect your scent and correlate it with safety. This will encourage him to be more open and at ease with you touching him.
In your hedgehog’s cage, place a t-shirt that you’ve worn all day. Before putting the clothing in the cage, do not wash it.
There should be no loose threads on the clothing. Your shirt will serve as a blanket for your hedgehog.
Sleep With a Fleece
For two or three nights, sleep with fleece the size of your hedgehog’s sleeping space. Place the fleece in your hedgehog’s resting space after it has picked up your scent.
If your hedgehog utilizes a sleeping bag, you may sleep in it for a few nights before allowing it to be used by your hedgehog.
You may also use a baby receiving blanket. Fabrics like fleece and vellux are recommended since they don’t fray or have loose threads.
Be Cautious with New Scents
You’re introducing a new fragrance every time you apply a new lotion, perfume, or soap. It’s possible that your hedgehog is confused and doesn’t recognize you.
Make an effort to keep your scents constant.
If your hedgehog likes a new smell, he may begin to anoint (i.e., spread the foam on his quills and froth from the mouth). Your hedgehog may get angry if he or she smells anything unpleasant.
How To Hold a Hedgehog?
Wash Your Hands
Before you pick up your hedgehog, wash your hands. Each time you wash your hands, use the same soap.
Your hedgehog will start to link that scent with you and will feel more at ease. When handling your hedgehog, avoid wearing gloves.
Your hedgehog will be unable to detect your presence. The scent of gloves may also terrify hedgehogs, causing them to bite.
A blanket will be fine if you don’t want to use your hands. If you do use a blanket, make sure it’s the same one every time and that it’s washed with the same detergent.
Pick It Delicately
Scoop your hedgehog from the ground with both hands on both sides. Allow your hedgehog to settle into a cozy spot in your palms. You want him to feel comfortable and supported.
While picking up your hedgehog, it’s preferable to do it when he’s lying down.
You may either hold your hedgehog or put him on your lap. When you pick up your hedgehog, he may curl up. This is very typical behavior.
Handle your hedgehog only after you’ve eaten, if you’ve touched anything with a strong odor, or if you’ve handled another animal. Your hedgehog may bite you or huff and curl up if it doesn’t realize it’s you. To get rid of the odor, properly wash your hands.
Give It Time to Unroll
It’s possible that your hedgehog is shy and takes a long time to unfold. You may either put him on your lap or put him beneath a blanket till he unrolls.
Your hedgehog will learn that sleeping and relaxing on your lap is a secure and enjoyable experience.
When holding your hedgehog, always be gentle. Being overly harsh or impatient might harm the connection you’re attempting to establish. While your hedgehog relaxes on your lap, you are free to watch TV or use your computer.
Pet It from Head to Tail
Pet your hedgehog in the direction where the quills are located. Petting your hedgehog in the other way will be unpleasant for both of you.
Your hedgehog’s quills will lay uniformly when he is comfortable.
The quills of your hedgehog will grow more spread out and spiky to the touch if it feels threatened. When your hedgehog feels threatened, avoid petting him.
Petting your hedgehog may be difficult until he trusts you. At first, take it easy with the petting.
Hedgehogs like to be held. But follow the guidelines on the article to create a bond between you and the hedgehog in order to make the process swift.
Do not pull away from your pet if it bites you. Instead, blow on his ace. He’ll be surprised, and he’ll let go of you. He will not be alarmed by this. After a time, he’ll learn that biting isn’t a good idea.
Petting or massaging your hedgehog’s lower back is an excellent method to help them connect. Every day, try to engage with your hedgehog at the same time—hedgehogs like following a routine.