As a pet owner, one of the most important things you can do is provide your hedgehog with an environment that meets their particular needs. Hedgehogs are unique animals and require specific housing in order to remain healthy and thrive.
In this article, we’ll discuss what kind of cage and supplies hedgehogs need to stay happy and healthy. We’ll go over different types of cages, substrate options, accessories for enrichment, and other necessary items that should be included in any hedgehog’s home. By providing your spiny friend with the right set up from day one, you can ensure they have a safe and comfortable place to explore.
What Do Hedgehogs Need In Their Cage?
Hedgehogs need a safe, comfortable environment to call home. This includes the right kind of cage with plenty of space, the proper substrate, and accessories for enrichment. Here we’ll discuss what hedgehogs need in their cage:
Cage Size & Type
When it comes to cages, bigger is better! A large cage that measures at least 18” x 24” (46cm x 61cm) is ideal for a single hedgehog. Even larger enclosures are preferable so your spiny friend has room to explore and play. As far as type goes, aquariums or wire cages are both viable options depending on your preference.
Substrate is used to line the bottom of your hedgehog’s enclosure and will help keep them clean and dry. Clay-based cat litter is one popular option – however be sure to avoid products containing deodorizers or scents which can irritate their sensitive noses. You may also opt for other substrates such as recycled paper-based bedding or fleece liners.
Accessories & Toys
In addition to the basics mentioned above, there are several items you should consider adding to your hedgehog’s cage for enrichment purposes. These include hiding places like tunnels or boxes; chew toys made from wood or cardboard; exercise wheels; treats like mealworms; and even an igloo house where they can rest and relax.
Cage Size & Type:
- A large cage measuring at least 18” x 24” (46cm x 61 cm)
- Options include aquariums or wire cages
- Clay-based cat litter without odorizers/scents
- Recycled paper-based bedding, fleece liners etc..
Accessories & Toys:
- Hiding places like tunnels, boxes etc..
- Chew toys made from wood or cardboard.
- Exercise wheels.
- Treats like meal worms.
- Igloo houses.
Setting Up the Perfect Hedgehog Cage
Hedgehogs are very active and playful animals that need plenty of space to roam and explore. To ensure your pet hedgehog has a safe and healthy home, it is important to set up an appropriate cage. The following steps will help you create the perfect home for your new pet.
Step 1: Selecting a Cage
The most important factor in choosing the right cage for your hedgehog is size. A good rule of thumb is to get one that is at least 2 feet wide, 2 feet deep, and 18 inches tall. This will give your hedgehog enough room to move around comfortably without feeling too cramped. Also make sure to choose a material that is easy to clean such as plastic or glass.
Step 2: Choose Appropriate Bedding
Bedding should be comfortable yet absorbent enough so that it can be easily cleaned out when necessary. Avoid using cedar chips or pine shavings as these could cause respiratory problems for your pet. Instead opt for something like paper-based bedding such as CareFresh.
Step 3: Add Toys & Accessories
- Water Bottle & Bowls: Provide water bottles with sipper tubes so your hedgie has access to fresh water at all times.
- Hideouts/ Tunnels: Include tunnels or hideaways so they have places where they can feel safe and secure while sleeping or hiding away from stressors.
- Wheels/ Exercise Balls: Wheels are great way for them stay active and burn off extra energy.
Step 4: Place the Cage in an Appropriate Area
Make sure you place the cage in an area that isn’t too noisy, drafty or hot. It should also be accessible so that you can interact with your pet regularly. An ideal spot would be somewhere near natural light but not directly in front of windows. Additionally, try not to place their cages near loud sounds such as TVs or stereos.
Benefits of Playing with Toys for Hedgehogs
Toys are an important part of providing enrichment to hedgehogs. They help promote physical and mental stimulation, which can lead to a healthier and happier pet. Here are some of the benefits of having toys available for your hedgehog.
Playing with toys encourages physical exercise, which is beneficial for all pets, including hedgehogs. This can help them maintain a healthy weight and muscle tone as well as improve their coordination. Having toys also gives them something to do when they’re bored or need to burn off energy.
Providing interactive toys can give your hedgehog mental stimulation that helps keep them sharp and engaged in their environment. Puzzle feeders are an excellent way to provide this type of enrichment by challenging your pet to figure out how to access their food.
Stimulating activities like playing with toys can help reduce anxiety in hedgehogs. It provides an outlet for stress and keeps them from becoming bored or overwhelmed. Providing new objects such as different types of balls or tunnels that they haven’t explored before will also add interest in their life.
In addition, playing with toys helps encourage socialization between you and your pet. This is especially important if you have multiple hedgehogs since it allows them a chance to interact through playtime activities. You may even find that other members of your family enjoy engaging with the little critters too!
Essential Requirements for a Healthy, Content Hedgehog
Hedgehogs are an increasingly popular pet and make wonderful companions. To ensure your hedgehog is happy and healthy, you need to provide certain requirements.
Food & Water
- High quality dry food: Provide high-quality dry cat or ferret food as the main part of their diet.
- Fruits & Vegetables: Supplement with occasional fruits and vegetables like apples, blueberries, carrots etc.
- Protein sources: Offer insects such as mealworms and waxworms.
- Water: Provide fresh drinking water at all times in a shallow bowl or dish that can’t be tipped over easily. Change it daily to prevent bacteria growth.
Housing & Temperature
- Cage: Provide a large cage made from plastic, metal bars or wire mesh. The minimum size should be 2 feet by 3 feet. Make sure the floor is covered with several inches of soft bedding material like paper towels or shredded newspaper. Include hiding places like tunnels, boxes and cardboard tubes.
- Temperature: Hedgehogs prefer temperatures between 70-75 degrees Fahrenheit (21-24 degrees Celsius). Place one side warmer than the other so they can regulate their own body temperature by moving back and forth between sides if needed.
In conclusion, a healthy hedgehog cage should include plenty of space, bedding and substrate, hideouts and nesting material, clean water and food dishes, toys for enrichment and exercise, regular spot cleaning to keep the environment fresh and odor-free. With these basic needs met, your hedgehog will be happy in their home.