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African Pygmy Hedgehogs

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Hedgehogs are gaining popularity as pets, and it's not really surprising; once you've seen one of these adorable little creatures you may soon find yourself tempted to get one. Here are a few things you should be aware of before considering getting an African Pygmy hedgehog as a pet.

Hedgehogs can't be kept as pets in some States. The first thing you should do before even considering getting a hedgehog is to find out if keeping them is legal where you live. Keeping an animal illegally as a pet can result in you being fined and your pet being confiscated and even euthanized.

Luna, the African Pygmy Hedgehog by Jeff Henshaw
Hedgehogs are classified as exotic pets because they are not indigenous to the United States. As yet, hedgehog supplies aren't as readily available as other small mammal pet supplies. You may have to devise a cage and diet for your pet. Commercial hedgehog feed mixes can be found but most don't offer the nutrients hedgehogs need to thrive and you will have to supplement it with much needed ingredients, which brings us to the next important side to hedgehog ownership that you should keep in mind.

Hedgehogs are insectivores, they mainly eat insects. If your pet is to thrive and remain healthy you will have to feed it insects. If you're too squeamish for this then a hedgehog is definitely not the pet for you. They need to be fed a few mealworms or crickets on a daily basis. These can be bought frozen or live from most pet shops.

Hedgehogs are nocturnal creatures; they sleep during the day and become active at night. While you can gradually train your pet to be more active during the day, it is still something you should consider when considering a hedgehog as a pet.

Hedgehogs don't make ideal pets for children because of their quills. Hedgehogs aren't averse to biting when they feel threatened and their bite can be quite painful. They can carry salmonella without exhibiting symptoms so you should always wash your hands before and after handling one. This is another reason they are not suitable for households with young children.

Hedgehogs have excellent hearing and because their sense of hearing is so acute, they can be stressed by loud noises as well as normal household noises such as the clicking of light switches and the TV. If you're thinking of getting one then you have to provide it with an environment it will feel safe in.

If despite everything you still think a hedgehog is the pet you want, be sure to research extensively before buying one. You want to make sure you can provide the best possible life for your little pet before bringing one into your life.

Author Resource
Written by Mark Coulter
Mark likes to write on an assortment of topics and has been doing so for a number of years. His latest site provides folks with information on Delta faucet parts.

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