Small Animals

Floating Hedgehog

How about a floating hedgehog to make you smile? I can’t decide if this sweet little one is absolutely terrified or completely relaxed. I honestly had no idea that they could even float like little boats!

Bathing A Hedgehog

Hedgehogs are not a self cleaning animal, so from time to time they’ll need a bath. It’s generally suggested that this be done no more than once a month. Hedgehogs are quite prone to having dry skin and more frequent baths will only increase this. If the hedgehog is particularly messy, it’s recommended to use an oatmeal wash to relieve the dryness.

Before giving a hedgehog a bath it’s best to have everything handy that will be needed. Just like a small child, they should not be left unsupervised. Some people put a small piece of carpet or a bath mat in the bottom of the sink or tub they are using. This prevents slipping and sliding. Just as with small children, the water should be warm, but not hot.

It’s not necessary to use soap when bathing hedgehogs unless they have managed to walk through, or possibly roll in, their own excrement. In these cases a tear free baby shampoo should work just fine. Hedgehogs tend to have sensitive skin, so it’s important to watch for a reaction with a new soap.

The face and ears should be avoided when washing these pokey creatures, they don’t need cleaned. Only a very small amount of soap should be used and hands are the best applicator. Gently rubbing the hedgehogs back, body and legs should do the trick. An old toothbrush might be required to really scrub the dirt and grime off of the quills and feet, followed by a thorough rinsing.

After the hedgehog is rinsed and removed from the bath, a warm towel should be wrapped around it to absorb the excess water. This is also a good time to trim it’s toenails and sneak in some extra snuggles. All done!

Oh, and in case you were wondering; the quills of hedgehogs have little air pockets that allow them to float when placed on their backs in the water. That’s how they float like little boats.

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Julie Antonson

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