How Do Hedgehogs Protect Themselves?

A hedgehog is a unique animal and there is no doubt that the way they live is itself very unique. However, it is a practical question to ask about their way of safeguarding themselves. Because they are so small and not so strong, how come a hedgehog saves itself?

How do hedgehogs protect themselves? Though the ways used by a hedgehog to protect themselves are not very interesting and unique, they are subtle and smart according to their IQ. A hedgehog will run, use its quills, make noise, hide, swim and use its smelling ability to protect itself.

How do hedgehogs protect themselves
How do hedgehogs protect themselves?


How Do Hedgehogs Protect Themselves?

How do Hedgehogs protect themselves? A hedgehog has many ways of protecting itself. Some of the ways a hedgehog uses to protect themselves are as follows.



A hedgehog is a fast runner; they can run quite fast. Sometimes, hedgehogs will use their legs to get away from the potential risk factors that are dangerous. In the wild, hedgehogs are known for their ability to move, which also helps them to stay safe.


Using their infamous quills

One of the most effective ways of saving themselves, a hedgehog will roll up their bodies and push their quills out to not let predators eat them. These quills work very efficiently in saving hedgehogs from getting eaten by predators.

Furthermore, a hedgehog will also protect itself from other external aggressors including harsh weather, storm, dust, or other environmental factors by rolling up and using its quills.


Making noise

Hedgehogs are also known to hiss or scream when they see the danger. According to the situation, a hedgehog will make such noises to get away from the danger they may be facing. So Hissing is also one of the hedgehog’s ways of protecting themselves.


Hiding themselves

A hedgehog has a natural ability to self anoint itself. This helps them to hide their smell, meaning predators won’t be able to track them. Hedgehogs use this technique to stay protected from the animals that may get attracted to hedgehog smell.


Sense of smell

A hedgehog will efficiently use their sense of smell to find food and a good place to sleep. Their wonderful nose is responsible for them to track down the safe way when they roam at night and find good food.



Hedgehogs can also swim, thanks to their quills that let them float in water to cross barriers they may find in their quest. A hedgehog’s ability to swim can also save them from getting eaten by predators who can’t swim.


Can Hedgehogs Defend Themselves?

Yes, hedgehogs can defend themselves but how do hedgehogs protect themselves? A hedgehog can protect itself by opening its quills, making hissing sounds, swimming, running, using its smell, bite, and self anointing itself. All these are very clever ways for hedgehogs to defend themselves.

Though these may not be the strongest defendants, hedgehogs do get out of danger with these actions quite often. Their quills can be called the major defenders of hedgehogs.


What Defenses Does A Hedgehog Have?

What adaptation protects hedgehogs from predators? One of the most effective ways is using their quills and rolling themselves down, which helps them to stay protected from predators. Biting, hissing, self anointing, running, and swimming are some other ways hedgehogs defend themselves.


Do Hedgehogs Shoot Their Quills?

Do hedgehogs shoot their quills? No, hedgehogs can’t shoot their quills. It is a very famous myth. Many people believe that hedgehogs can shoot their quills but it is not true. Though quills are one of their major defenders, they can’t shoot them.

The quills of a hedgehog will fall off or break just like human hair but hedgehogs won’t be able to shoot them. Though quills of a hedgehog are one of the most effective ways of protecting themselves from predators.

Though shown and told thoroughly in cartoons and animations about a shooting hedgehog, that is not true. The quills are just like human hair but it can be said that they are more sophisticated than a human hair.


Do Hedgehogs Have A Defense Mechanism?

Do Hedgehogs have a defense mechanism? Their quills and their ability to use their quills to protect themselves are considered the main mechanism that helps the hedgehogs to protect themselves.

Otherwise, to provide an additional answer to how do hedgehogs protect themselves? They can also swim, run, bite, and self anoints themselves. All such actions are also considered a part of the defense mechanism of hedgehogs.


How Do Hedgehogs Protect Themselves From Predators?

How do hedgehogs protect themselves from predators? Using their quills is the most effective way for hedgehogs to protect themselves. However, hedgehogs also use their sense of smell, biting, swimming, and running, by the situation to protect themselves.


How Do Hedgehogs Reproduce?

Hedgehogs mate, when a female takes a specific position by flattening her quills and the hedgehog getting over her. After the mating season, hedgehogs will give birth to baby hedgehogs.


How Do Hedgehogs Protect Their Young?

How do Hedgehogs protect themselves and their kids? The mother hedgehog will stay with her baby hedgehogs until they are grown up enough to protect themselves. Mother hedgehogs will keep their babies in the same place and sleep with them. She will roam at night to find food for the babies.


How Do Frogs Protect Themselves?

A frog will defend itself by using its clever techniques. Some of their techniques to keep themselves safe are puffing up their bodies, playing dead, screaming, biting, camouflaging, and jumping. Swimming, urinating or using color to protect themselves.


How Do Porcupines Protect Themselves?

A porcupine has quills that they use as a natural barrier against external aggressors. Other than that porcupines are also smart enough to do various other activities that lead them to save themselves from predators or other external aggressors.


How Do Pangolins Protect Themselves?

A pangolin’s body is covered with scales that are also worked to protect the mammal. If they are under attack, they will cut themselves into a ball and use their sharp scaled tail to protect and defend themselves.


How Do Hedgehogs Attack?

Though a hedgehog may try to avoid attacking or fighting by running away or escaping the predators or dangers if a hedgehog is attacked, and if they don’t have any other option, they may bite or hiss at the danger.

How do hedgehogs protect themselves
How do hedgehogs protect themselves?


Where Are Hedgehogs From?

Hedgehogs are small and spiky mammals. These creatures first evolved around 15 million years ago. In total there are 17 species of hedgehog in a total of five genera: Hemiechinus, Mesechinus, Atelerix, Paraechinus, and  Erinaceus.

A hedgehog can be found in the Asian, African, and European parts and also in New Zealand. Hedgehogs are even capable of living inside ranges of habitats including suburban gardens, savannas, deserts, scrublands, and forests.


How Do Hedgehogs Defend Themselves?

How do Hedgehogs protect themselves? Though not sophisticated as any other animal, a hedgehog is smart and a good defender in its unique way. There are many activities that a hedgehog can perform to protect themselves.

One of the most common and best a hedgehog can do to defend themselves is using their quills. If they feel threatened a hedgehog will raise its quills and become a ball, making it difficult for predators to attack them.

Furthermore, their ability to swim, their senses, and run are other features that help them to defend themselves from external aggressors and predators.


How To Protect A Hedgehog?

There are many ways an owner can save a wild hedgehog naturally and promote them to thrive in nature.

Some of the ways an owner can follow to save hedgehogs are

Being careful when mowing and trimming

Hedgehogs often have a habit of hiding in bushes or other garden areas, so when the owner is doing some garden work, they should be aware that a hedgehog may be present.


Taking care of bonfires

A hedgehog is often seen hiding underwood logs or leaf racks, the owner should be careful before burning them.


Giving them way

The owner can provide a small opening in their garden adjoining the neighbourhood garden to let the hedgehog pass easily.


Putting food and water

The owner can also put some food or water for the passing hedgehog.


Can Hedgehogs Defend Themselves?

What defenses does a hedgehog have? Yes, hedgehogs can defend themselves. One of the most effective and major protective mechanisms that a hedgehog has is their quills, which are raised by hedgehogs if they feel threatened.


What Do Hedgehogs Do To Survive?

How do Hedgehogs protect themselves? A hedgehog will bite, run, swim, raise its quills, change home every day, smell, find food, self anoint itself, protect itself and survive.

All these activities done by hedgehogs are the only ways a hedgehog has to stay safe and grow properly.


Can Hedgehog Spikes Hurt You?

Yes, the spikes of a hedgehog can hurt the owner. The owner is highly recommended to be very careful when handling the hedgehog. If the owner isn’t experienced, they should wear gloves before handling hedgehogs.

Even if the owner is experienced it is still recommended to use gloves but it can be avoided in certain stances, where the owner is fully sure that spikes won’t be raised by hedgehogs. Otherwise, it is always in the best interest of the owner and hedgehog to always wear safety gloves before handling hedgehogs.


Is It Safe To Pick Up A Hedgehog?

Yes, it is completely safe to pick up a hedgehog, though there are myths that a hedgehog is poisonous that is not the truth. It is completely safe to pick up the hedgehog. However, the owner should be careful with their spikes.

A hedgehog can raise their spikes when they are being handled by the owner. As a protective measure, the owner should make sure that they are wearing gloves before handling hedgehogs and the owner should be very gentle with them.

Hedgehogs are sensitive animals and they should be comfortable with the owner handling them. It is not recommended to handle a wild hedgehog, who is not so familiar.


Final Verdict – How Do Hedgehogs Protect Themselves

To conclude How do Hedgehogs protect themselves?  A hedgehog will protect itself by running, using its quills, making noise, hiding, swimming and using its smelling ability to protect itself. All these are the subtle ways with which a hedgehog will protect itself.

Out of all these ways, using their spikes is naturally the most effective way they protect themselves. When they find themselves in a dangerous situation, they will turn into a ball, saving the delicate inside part of their body and raising their quills so that predators or other external aggressors are unable to cause them harm.

How do hedgehogs protect themselves
How do hedgehogs protect themselves?

Otherwise, running here and there, finding food, and finding a place to live is an essential part of their lives to survival. They can be caught easily by predators because of the smell they leave everywhere they go, but they can hide that smell from predators, which is another way of saving themselves.

Additionally, hedgehogs will also swim if they have to run out of the hands of predators who can swim. It is another great way of escaping death. Further their sense of smell, in addition to letting them find food, helps in guiding them and giving them an idea, of where the predator is.

As a pet lover, make sure to learn about pet more and give your pet hedgehog a good and comfortable life!

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