Getting exotic pets has become popular nowadays. Many people are looking for something unique and different. And among those exotic pets, Hedgehogs have become the most popular for everyone. There are 17 different species of hedgehogs, from which only 4 species can be domesticated. And the most common species people opt for is the African Pygmy Hedgehog. It’s best suited for pets with its non-pokey spikes and has lots of pros for pet owners.
But that doesn’t mean this tiny rodent kind of animal doesn’t have any cons. They do, and depending on the cons, taking a Hedgie as a pet may be a bad idea for you. So, if you are wondering whether to keep a Hedgehog or not, then first check out the pros and cons of Hedgehogs as pets.
Pros Of Hedgehogs
Hedgehogs are of a very calm nature, and they make only a small purring sound sometimes. Compared to cats and dogs or even the rodent pets like hamsters or guinea pigs, hedgies are the quietest option you can go for. Also, for their calm nature, hedgies become a good option for apartment-living families and those who don’t like too many sounds.
Hedgehogs are very low maintenance compared to other exotic pets like snakes or lizards. You don’t need to take them for walks like dogs or groom them every day like cats. Only a well-setup enclosure and proper nutritious foods will be enough for making your hedgie happy. Also, an exercise wheel will be enough for exercise or playing times. Still, any questions left? Then check out our article on “Hedgehog Care Guide for Beginners”. You will get all the detailed information about hedgehog care there.
Though hedgehogs are small nocturnal pets, they have the most adventurous or thrilling experiences for you. They become very active and energetic whenever they are awake and love to run around the house. You will always be thrilled when finding those hedges from unexpected hiding places. Also, when you bond well with your hedgies, they will love to jump on you, play hide and seek, and take the adventure to another level.
Those who have allergy problems from furry pets can take over a Hedgie without any second thought. These small pets only have spikes that shed off and don’t create any allergic problems for humans. Also, they will never seek your attention too much and encourage you for some physical interactions with gentle care.
The awful problem with most of the pets we can face is their unbearable odor and stink. Some have bad body odors, and some pets’ droppings smell gross. So we always need to groom them regularly and clean their enclosures and litter boxes every day. But in the case of Hedgies, you don’t have to bear those stinks. Hedgies are by nature very clean animals and never smell awful. But if you feel they are stinking, it is a sign of illness. It’s best to take them to the vet right away.
No Regular Checkup
Being exotic pets, hedgies do need an exotic vet for their health care. But the good news is, you don’t need to go for checkups every month or trios. Only a few dental cleanings occasionally and an annual visit will be enough to keep your hedgie disease free.
Cons Of Hedgehogs
Don’t Interact With Humans
Those who want a cuddly cute pet should ditch the idea of taking a hedgehog. Hedgies like to be alone and don’t crave that human interaction as other pets do. Rather when you try to pick them up, they will run far away from you. But after getting used to your presence and touch, they will love to come to you and get tamed.
Prone To Diseases
Being exotic pets, hedgehogs are prone to many diseases like wobbly hedgehog syndrome, bacterial infections, kidney failure, cancer, and other ailments. For that, you have to be very careful about their health and maintain them properly. Yes, they don’t need regular checkups, but they also have to go through some medical care when they fall sick.
Costly Than Other Pets
The word exotic always adds a little extra amount to our budget. The same goes for exotic pets too. Hedgies cost almost 200 dollars each, which is expensive compared to other pets. Also, the cost of specialized licensed vet care will cut your pocket by about 500 dollars. So, it can be a big con for those who need a budget-friendly pet.
If you are not a night owl, then never consider a hedgehog as a pet. Hedgehogs are nocturnal as pets and stay active the whole night. The noise of their running and playing will keep you awake the whole night, and you will be smudging your eyes the next day. So, it is better to consider this fact before taking a Hedgie.
No Pet Sharing
As said, Hedgies love to be alone, and they don’t even bear any other pets in their territory. Even If you try to keep two hedgies in one cage, you will surely witness one’s demise soon, as they will keep fighting all the time. So if you want to have multiple pets at home, don’t pick hedgies at least.
Need A Larger Cage and Messy
Though hedgies are small pets, they need a large enclosure to run and play around. Unfortunately, with that, they love to create a mess inside the enclosure during playtime and like to keep it that way. So if you have a small space and don’t need a messy pet, hedgies are not for you.
So, these are the pros and cons of having a Hedgehog at home. Now it is your call whether you want to keep a hedgie at home or not.