Do Hedgehogs Burrow?

Do Hedgehogs Burrow

Hedgehogs are an enchanting and curious creature, and many people wonder if they burrow. The answer is not as simple as yes or no; while most hedgehogs don’t naturally burrow, some species of hedgehog have the ability to do so. In this article, we’ll explore why some hedgehogs burrow and how you can help your pet hedgehog create a safe and comfortable habitat in which it can thrive. Additionally, we’ll discuss the potential dangers of allowing your pet to burrow in order to ensure its safety.

Do Hedgehogs Burrow?

The answer is not as simple as yes or no; while most hedgehogs don’t naturally burrow, some species of hedgehog have the ability to do so. In particular, the African Pygmy Hedgehog has been known to dig small tunnels in which they can sleep and hide from predators.

What Causes Some Hedgehogs to Burrow?

Hedgehogs are instinctively drawn to dark and protected areas where they can remain hidden away from potential danger. As a result, it’s natural for a hedgehog to want to create its own safe space by digging small tunnels and hiding spots in order to feel secure.

In addition, hedgehogs may also be motivated to burrow if their environment does not provide them with enough warmth or protection from the elements. If your pet feels too exposed or cold in its habitat, it may try to dig itself into a more comfortable spot.

How Can You Help Your Pet Hedgehog Create Its Own Habitat?

  • Provide plenty of bedding material:

    Bedding material such as shredded paper towels and wood shavings should be provided in order for your pet to create an area that is warm and comfortable. This will make it easier for your hedgehog to build its own nest-like structure in which it can rest.

  • Offer additional hiding places:

    To give your pet extra security and comfort, consider providing other types of hiding spots such as cardboard boxes that have had holes cut out for easy entry/exit points. You could also use fleece fabric tubes that you sew together at one end so that your pet can crawl inside when feeling scared or tired.

  • Create a safe play area:

    Give your pet access to an enclosed outdoor space where it can explore without fear of being attacked by predators or getting lost. Make sure this area is surrounded by walls or fences on all sides so that nothing else can get inside without you knowing about it first.

The Burrowing Habits of Wild Hedgehogs

Hedgehogs are small mammals that belong to the Erinaceidae family and have a spiny coat. They are found in Europe, Africa, Asia, and New Zealand. Wild hedgehogs often live in burrows or nests they’ve made themselves.

Types of Burrows

Wild hedgehog burrows come in two types: permanent and temporary. Permanent burrows are those used year-round for shelter from predators and bad weather. These can be quite large with multiple chambers ranging up to 4 feet deep. Temporary burrows may be dug for a single night’s rest before moving on to another location.

Burrow Construction

  • Material Used: Wild hedgehog use twigs, leaves, grasses and other plant material to build their nests.
  • Location: They usually construct their homes near hedgerows or trees so they can hide when necessary.
  • Entrances/Exits: Burrow entrances/exits can range from 3-7 inches wide depending on the size of the animal.
  • Chambers: Most wild hedgehog burrows contain at least one chamber which is lined with softer materials like grasses and leaves for sleeping comfort.
  • Maintenance: Hedgehogs will frequently maintain their nests by adding new material and repairing any damage caused by heavy rain or strong winds.

Uncovering the Reasons Behind Excessive Digging in Hedgehogs

Hedgehogs are adorable animals that are popular pets, but they can also be quite mischievous and have a tendency to dig. While some digging is normal for hedgehogs, excessive digging can become a problem if it interferes with your pet’s daily routine or puts them at risk of injury. Understanding why hedgehogs dig so much can help you find ways to manage this behavior.

Climate Control

One of the main reasons why hedgehogs tend to dig is because they need warm spots to rest in. When temperatures drop too low outside, they will look for areas beneath the ground where it is warmer and more comfortable. This instinctive behavior often leads them to dig tunnels into soft soil or carpets.

Exploring their Surroundings

Excessive digging may also indicate that your hedgehog simply wants to explore its environment. They are natural curious creatures and enjoy discovering new places and things. If you provide them with plenty of toys, tunnels and other interesting items, this urge to explore may be satisfied without any destructive digging.

Instinctual Behavior

  • Nesting: Hedgehog’s instincts tell them to build nests out of nearby materials such as leaves, grasses and other debris. They use these nests as protection from predators and extreme weather conditions like rain or extreme heat.
  • Foraging: Hedgehog’s also use their strong claws to uncover food sources such as small insects or worms which they then eat.
  • Storage: In some cases, hedgehog will burrow holes in order store extra food for later consumption.

Reducing Excessive Digging Behaviour

  • Provide an Appropriate Environment: Make sure your pet has enough space, warmth, light, stimulation, hiding places and companionship. You should also provide safe areas indoors where your pet can hide from cold weather or predators. This will reduce their urge to go hunting for those resources outside.
  • Playtime: Engage with your pet by playing interactive games involving toys, treats, tunnels etc. Allowing him time every day outside his cage encourages healthy physical activity while providing opportunities for exploration. Make sure he has plenty of objects like cardboard boxes, blankets or shredded paper balls within his cage so he can express his curiosity safely. Finally ensure that all playtime is supervised so that no dangerous situations arise when exploring outdoors.

The Perfect Home for a Hedgehog: How and Where to Make a Nest

Making the perfect home for your hedgehog is an important part of ensuring their health and wellbeing. A comfortable, secure and safe environment is essential for any pet. Here are some tips on how to create the ideal nest for your little friend.


The location you choose for your hedgehog’s nest should be quiet, dark and warm. Keeping them in an area with constant noise or bright lights may cause stress. You can also create multiple locations within a room so that they have different areas to explore.


Provide a habitat that includes bedding such as hay, shredded paper or straw; nesting material such as leaves or moss; hideouts like logs, cardboard boxes or small huts; tunnels made from newspaper tubes; and plenty of chew toys.


Keep the temperature in their home between 70-75 degrees Fahrenheit (21-24 Celsius). Consider using heating lamps if necessary.


Clean their habitat regularly by removing uneaten food, waste, old bedding and anything else that needs replaced. Sanitize items with hot water and mild soap before returning them to the cage.


In conclusion, it is clear that hedgehogs do not naturally burrow but they may create small nests or hideaways in places such as between rocks, under fallen logs, and in thick grass. If a hedgehog chooses to make its home near your house, providing shelter and protection from the elements is important. With some simple steps you can help ensure a safe place for them to live without encouraging any unwanted digging behavior!


  • Frederick

    Frederick Faunce is an experienced and passionate hedgehog writer, blogger, and researcher. He has dedicated his life to understanding the conservation and care of hedgehogs, and is committed to educating and inspiring others to do the same.

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