Hedgehogs squeak because of various reasons. Hedgehogs, especially young hoglets, squeak when calling for food, when they are cold, or when in danger. Adult hedgehogs squeak to communicate with each other or during mating season. However, sometimes they can express their annoyance.
In this blog post, I will discuss hedgehogs’ noises and why they make them.
What Is a Hedgehog Squeak Sound Like?
Squeaking is sometimes referred to as chirping. It is a high-pitched noise that is similar to a bird’s sound.
You can confuse it with an insect’s sound if you don’t know what to listen for. If you have ever heard a cricket, it is a similar sound.
Why Do Hedgehogs Squeak?
Here are several situations that may cause your hedgehog to squeak:
When They Are Hungry
Hunger is the most common reason why hedgehogs squeak. If you just got your hedgehog or if yours is still young, they may not have learned to eat on a regular schedule.
They may also be used to being fed more than once a day.
Hedgehogs are cold-blooded animals, so they are sensitive to changes in temperature. If your hedgehog is too cold, it may squeak to let you know.
Hedgehogs have many predators, so they have to be careful. If they feel threatened, they may squeak to warn other hedgehogs or as a way of defending themselves.
Mother hedgehogs squeak when protecting their young. If you see a mother hedgehog and her babies, do not approach them.
The mother may become aggressive and attack you, or the baby hedgehogs may be injured.
When They Are Mating
During mating season, hedgehogs squeak to attract mates. Male hedgehogs also squeak to let other males know that they are territory.
Hedgehogs Squeaking When Chewing
If you hear your hedgehog squeaking while they are eating, it is because something is stuck in its mouth or they have a tooth issue. Hedgehog’s teeth may be too long if they are not given enough to chew on.
If your hedgehog is squeaking and you are unsure why, take them to the vet. They may have an infection or other medical issue that needs to be treated.
Hedgehogs are prone to respiratory infections, so this is something to keep an eye out for.
Do All Hedgehogs Squeak?
No, not all hedgehogs squeak. If your hedgehog is healthy and well-fed, it may not feel the need to squeak. Some hedgehogs are also more vocal than others. If you have heard a hedgehog snoring, that is also considered squeaking.
Squeaking is normal for hedgehogs but consult a veterinarian if you are concerned about the noise your hedgehog is making. They can help you determine if an underlying medical condition needs to be treated.
Do Hedgehogs Squeak When They are Annoyed?
Hedgehogs can be very vocal when they are annoyed. If they don’t want to be held or if they are uncomfortable, they may squeak.
If you are handling your hedgehog too much, it may also squeak to let you know they need a break.
How To Prevent Hedgehogs from Squeaking?
There are several things you can do to prevent your hedgehog from squeaking:
Correct Diet and Dehydration
You can prevent your hedgehog from squeaking by ensuring they eat the correct diet and are not dehydrated. Hedgehogs need to eat a diet high in fat and protein and low in carbohydrates.
They also need to have access to fresh water at all times.
Your hedgehog’s cage should be spacious and include a hiding place, bedding, and toys. The cage should also be kept at a consistent temperature to prevent your hedgehog from getting too cold or hot.
If your hedgehog is squeaking because they are cold, you can provide them with a heat source. A ceramic heat lamp or an under-tank heater on one side of the cage will create a warm spot for them to go to when needed.
You should only handle your hedgehog when necessary and for short periods of time. If you handle your hedgehog too much, it can cause them to become stressed, leading to squeaking.
The safest method to play with them is to place the hedgehog on your lap, surround yourself with pillows, and be close to the ground in case they fall. Your hedgehog will roll up and start exploring if they feel safe.
During these interactions, you may give them treats to gain their trust.
On the other side, if you handle your hedgehog and hear them squeak, you might be hurting or stressing them. In this case, it is best to put them back in their cage and give them some time to calm down.
Other Sounds Made by Hedgehogs
Now that you know why hedgehogs squeak, you might be wondering what other sounds they make. Read on as I briefly discuss the other noises hedgehogs make.
Hedgehogs frequently grunt, which is how they receive the last half of their name. These small little creatures frequently grunt, much like pigs do.
Hedgehogs produce this sound while they are out hunting for food late at night or when they are simply taking in their surroundings.
Most people might find this sound unexpectedly loud, but as long as it is loud and snuffling, you shouldn’t worry. The animal is content and simply going about its business.
There is no justification for you to frighten them or cause them anxiety.
Hissing is another noise that hedgehogs make, but this one usually indicates that they are agitated in some way. If you hear hissing, your first instinct should be to back away and give the creature some space.
Hissing usually means that the hedgehog is feeling threatened and doesn’t want to be bothered.
Hissing can also be a sign of illness, so if you hear your hedgehog making this noise frequently, it is best to take them to the vet to get checked out.
Barking or Clicking
Hedgehogs may also bark or click when they want to head-butt their opponent or stab them with their spines. This sound is common, especially between males challenging each either during the mating season.
If you hear your hedgehog making this noise, it is best to leave them be as they are likely just playing around. However, if the noise is accompanied by hissing or aggressive behavior, you should remove yourself from the situation and contact a professional if necessary.
Panting is a way for hedgehogs to regulate their body temperature. If you see your hedgehog panting, it means they are too hot and need to cool down.
You can help them by moving them to a cooler location or providing them with a bowl of cold water to sit in.
Hedgehogs can squeak because of various reasons; the most common are hunger, mating, fear, and pain. If your hedgehog is frequently squeaking, it is best to take them to the vet to rule out any medical conditions.
Remember that handling your hedgehog too much can also lead to squeaking, so it is best only to handle them when necessary. I hope this article helped you understand why hedgehogs squeak and what other sounds they make. Thanks for reading.