Posted Sep 17, 2018
I got Violet from a woman who bought her for her 4-year-old son. She said that she was "mean". DO NOT BUY A HEDGEHOG FOR YOUR CHILD!
Hedgehogs are not like how you see on Instagram and Youtube! We've all seen the cute bubble baths, the snuggles, the gentle poking around (pun intended). What they DO NOT tell you is that hedgehogs are more like a grouchy roommate who is devastatingly cute.
They hiss and puff if they're stressed out, which can be often if they were not socialized properly. Their quills can hurt but their belly is as soft as cotton balls. They have little vampire fangs and will bite your feet if they're barefoot.
Maybe that's just Violet!
I think some hedgehogs need their owners and love socialization-sometimes when I rub her belly she chirps, but her favourite part of the day is when she has free range of the house. She just runs and runs with her spaghetti legs and she makes a chirping noise if she's happy.
-You can bathe a hedgehog pretty easily
-They do not need your cuddles. They are perfectly content to just run around you and not be handled. They are mostly solitary creatures so if you don't want a needy pet, they can be a great choice
-They're a good choice for students/young professionals who stay up late at night. Violet wakes up at around 8 p.m. and I let her out until around midnight
-They are the cutest brand of animal you could ever possibly be friends with
-Their cages are easy to clean
-They do not typically chew through wires like other animals might, but they can bite if provoked or if they encounter a new smell
-They are not rodents, so if they smell kind of musty you can give them a bath.
-They do silly things like anoint
-Cost is very high. Because they are not rodents, they can live a long time-5-8 years depending on the hedgehog.
-They need regular nail trims
-They are very temperature-sensitive. An ideal temperature is around 25 degrees Celsius. If they get too cold they can try to hibernate, which can kill them.
-They aren't great around kids because they get so easily stressed out
-They're prone to a bunch of health problems. Violet has had cancer in both her mouth and her uterus, requiring expensive operations. These vet bills have run around $500, plus her annual check-up costs around $125. You also run a 50% chance of them developing Wobbly Hedgehog Syndrome, for which there is no treatment or cure, and is basically like ALS.
-Most people don't know that they need a bucket wheel, crickets (which smell), and are poop monsters-if she runs on her wheel she gets "poop boots" that need to be washed every few days
-The love is very one-sided and based on food. They can get obese very easily.
Overall, I'd give Violet a 6/10. She wasn't socialized properly, but I get immense joy from seeing her every night. I think people who get tired at night will not be adequate hedgehog owners, and she can be very costly. For the joy she has brought to my life I give her an 8/10. She's not snuggly but she is by far the cutest pet I have ever had. I love you Violet!