How Long Do Hedgehogs Live In Captivity?

How Long Do Hedgehogs Live In Captivity

Hedgehogs are an increasingly popular pet choice for many households, but it’s important to know how long they typically live in captivity. Hedgehogs have a short lifespan compared to other animals, and understanding their life expectancy is key to making sure your hedgehog is properly cared for throughout its lifetime. This article will cover the average lifespan of hedgehogs in captivity, as well as some tips on how you can ensure that your hedgehog has a healthy and happy life.

How Long Do Hedgehogs Live In Captivity?

The average lifespan of a hedgehog in captivity is 4-6 years. This can vary depending on the breed and size, but most domesticated hedgehogs live around this range.

Tips for Maximizing Your Hedgehog’s Lifespan:

  • Provide your hedgehog with a high-quality diet that meets their nutritional needs.
  • Keep their enclosure clean and provide them with plenty of stimulating activities.
  • Take your hedgie to the vet regularly for checkups to ensure they are healthy.
  • Provide your hedgehog with plenty of fresh air and access to natural sunlight when possible.

The Ideal Age for a Pet Hedgehog: Is 3 Years Old Too Late?

When it comes to choosing the ideal age for a pet hedgehog, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. It depends on the individual circumstances of each potential owner. Generally speaking, three years old is not too late to get a hedgehog as a pet. However, there are some considerations that you should be aware of before making your decision.

Things to Consider When Choosing an Older Hedgehog

  • Health: Older hedgehogs may have existing health conditions such as arthritis or other issues that could affect their lifespan and quality of life. Make sure to research any existing health issues and ask questions before bringing home an older hedgie.
  • Personality: An older hedgehog may already have established behaviors and habits that can’t be changed with training or socialization. This can make them more challenging to bond with than younger hedgehogs.
  • Time Commitment: Because of their advancing age, older hedgehogs require more attention from their owners in terms of monitoring their health and providing enrichment activities for them.

(It’s important to note that even though three years old isn’t typically considered “too old” for a pet hedgehog, every situation is different and it’s best to consult with an expert if you’re considering adopting an older hedgie.)

The Challenges of Raising a Healthy Hedgehog

Hedgehogs are unique, exotic pets that require special care to ensure they remain healthy and happy. While raising hedgehogs can be rewarding, there are some challenges that need to be taken into consideration.

Diet Requirements

Hedgehogs have specific nutritional requirements that must be met in order for them to maintain their health. They should have a balanced diet consisting of specially formulated hedgehog food or high-quality cat food supplemented with fresh vegetables and occasional insects such as mealworms. Ensuring your hedgehog gets the right amount of nutrients is essential for its well-being.

Temperature Control

Hedgehogs need to stay at an ideal temperature range between 75°F and 80°F (24°C and 27°C). This means providing adequate heating in their enclosure so that they do not become too cold or overheat. The use of thermostats and heat lamps is recommended to regulate the temperature inside the cage.

Exercise Needs

Hedgehogs require regular exercise for both physical and mental stimulation. Providing plenty of toys, wheels, tunnels, ladders, etc., will help keep them active. Allowing your hedgehog out of its cage several times per week will also ensure it gets enough activity.


In order to prevent aggression towards people or other animals, hedgehogs must receive proper socialization from an early age. This includes handling your pet regularly and introducing it gradually to new environments so it becomes accustomed to different sounds and smells.

The Pros of Keeping a Hedgehog as a Pet

Hedgehogs can make great pets for the right person. They are relatively low-maintenance, affectionate animals that require minimal space and have few special needs. Here are some of the pros to consider if you’re thinking about keeping one:

  • Low Maintenance: Hedgehogs don’t need lots of exercise or playtime – they tend to be quite content snoozing away in their cage most of the day.
  • Affectionate: Unlike many other small animals, hedgehogs will bond with their owners over time which makes them more interactive and enjoyable pets.
  • Space Saving: A single hedgehog only needs a small habitat or cage and requires very little maintenance overall.


In conclusion, hedgehogs can live long and happy lives in captivity with the right owner and care. Providing fresh water, a balanced diet, adequate housing and veterinary check-ups all contribute to the health of your pet hedgehog. With an unlimited supply of love, patience and dedication, owners can ensure that their pet hedgehog will enjoy a healthy life span in captivity ranging from 4-7 years or longer.


  • 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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