One of the most important things, when it comes to hedgehog care, is to keep it warm. It can also be one of the most challenging aspects of hedgehog care. In this article, you will find comprehensive information on the various methods for keeping your hedgehog warm.
This is how to keep a hedgehog warm: using a heating pad, a heating lamp, heavy blankets/towels or simply by snuggling. Space heaters can be useful too, as can heat packs, homemade socks and rice warmers as well as commercial hand warmers.
Why Do Hedgehogs Have To Stay Warm?
Before proceeding to explore how to keep a hedgehog warm, it would be a good idea for us to understand why these animals need to remain warm in the first place.
As it turns out, hedgehogs need to stay warm because if they get too cold, they may go into hibernation. And if they go into hibernation, they may easily die.
So for hedgehogs temperature (in the sense of warm enough temperature) is a basic need.
If hedgehog temperature falls below a certain level, the hedgehog starts hibernating. And that is very risky for a pet hedgehog.
Therefore maintaining the right temperature for hedgehog is not just a matter of ensuring its comfort. It is really a matter of keeping it alive.
Do Hedgehogs Like Warm Or Cold?
This is another area we need insight into, before proceeding to learn how to keep a hedgehog warm.
The truth of the matter is that hedgehogs like warmth, rather than cold.
When hedgehogs experience too much cold, they even start manifesting physical symptoms. Those are symptoms like lethargy, sleeping too much, loss of appetite and so on.
But it is not just a matter of what the hedgehogs like. It is also a matter of what the hedgehogs need. If the hedgehog gets too cold, it goes into hibernation. And that can easily lead to its death.
Unlike wild hedgehogs that are able to cope with hibernation, domestic hedgehogs are unable to do so. Hibernation in domestic hedgehogs more often than not leads to death, unless urgent steps are taken.
All in all, hedgehogs like warm, rather than cold conditions.
How Warm Do You Have To Keep A Hedgehog?
The most ideal temperatures for hedgehogs are between 75 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. In terms of hedgehog temperature Celsius, that works out to between 24 and 27 degrees Celsius.
So if you have been having the question on how warm should a hedgehog cage be, you have the answer. It needs to be in the 75 to 80 degrees range.
How To Keep A Hedgehog Warm?
The most straightforward way to keep a hedgehog warm is to ensure that it is in a room whose temperature is in the 75 to 80 degrees (Fahrenheit) range.
But that is not always viable. Keeping an entire room in the 75 to 80 degrees range can be extremely expensive (in terms of heating costs).
In any event, even you (as the hedgehog owner) may not like living in a room whose temperature is always in the 75 to 80 degrees range.
The next best option is to keep the specific area where the hedgehog stays in the 75 to 80 degrees range. This is more viable.
Most people are able to keep the areas where they keep their hedgehogs in the 75 to 80 degrees range using heating lamps and heating pads.
Using a heat lamp for hedgehog has the advantage of the fact that it is quite reliable. But the disadvantage of using heat lamps for hedgehogs is in the fact that they produce light, which can interfere with the hedgehogs’ sleeping.
So the hedgehog heat lamp has both pros and cons. And if you are thinking of acquiring a hedgehog heating lamp, those are things you need to be aware of.
Using a hedgehog heat pad, on the other hand, comes with the advantage that it only produces heat – and no light to interfere with the hedgehog’s sleep.
The downside to heating pads for hedgehogs is in the fact that they can be quite unreliable. Therefore if you are considering acquiring a hedgehog heating pad, these are things you need to be aware of.
Space heaters, heat packs and hand warmers can be useful too. So can good old blankets and towels, as well as snuggling.
How To Keep A Hedgehog Warm During A Power Outage?
Figuring out how to keep a hedgehog warm during a power outage can be challenging. This leads to the frequently asked question: how can I keep my hedgehog warm without electricity?
Suppose, for instance, you normally use a heat lamp to keep your hedgehog warm. And the lamp uses electricity. Then a power outage occurs.
You would then find yourself having to figure out how to keep a hedgehog warm without a heat lamp.
And that – working out how to keep a hedgehog warm without a heat lamp – can be very challenging. You first have to figure out, does a hedgehog need a heat lamp to remain warm? Or are there other ways you can keep it warm…
All in all, there are many ways in which you can keep a hedgehog warm during a power outage.
One is by simply covering its cage with warm blankets and towels. This way, the heat that was inside doesn’t escape. This may keep the hedgehog warm until the power is restored.
Another approach you can use is that of snuggling with the hedgehog. This way, heat from your body will transfer to it: keeping it warm. So your body in this case serves as a natural hedgehog heating pad.
You may also create a fire – if your house has a fireplace – then take the hedgehog cage to the area close to the fireplace. The hedgehog will then get to enjoy the heat coming from there.
How To Keep A Hedgehog Warm In The Winter?
Using a heat lamp or heat pad for hedgehog in the winter can be very effective. You may consider investing in an infrared heat lamp for hedgehog.
The infrared lamp produces heat without giving out visible light which would interfere with the hedgehog’s sleep.
Space heaters can also be very useful at keeping your hedgehog warm in the winter.
If your main hedgehog heating devices (heat pads/heat lamps/space heaters) are not working, you can consider improvising.
One way in which you can improvise is by buying heat packs. Another way is by using heat bottles. Or you can create warmers using socks and rice.
So you put rice into socks, then heat it in a microwave, and thereafter introduce it to the hedgehog cage, to keep it warm.
Or you can light a fire in the fireplace. Then move the hedgehog’s cage to the area around the fireplace, so that the hedgehog can benefit from the heat thereat.
It can also be helpful to find out the area(s) in your home where cold drafts come in through. Then ensure that you don’t keep your hedgehog around those areas.
But what if it is a wild hedgehog that has strayed into your property during the winter? So in this case, you would be trying to figure out how to keep a wild hedgehog warm during the winter.
Thankfully, wild hedgehogs are naturally well equipped to cope with the winter. All you may need to do is find a box for the hedgehog. Then ensure that there is always a warm water bottle, wrapped in a towel in the box.
This may keep the wild hedgehog warm, until it finds its way out.
How To Keep A Baby Hedgehog Warm?
One way to keep a baby hedgehog warm is through the use of a heat lamp. Another good way to keep a baby hedgehog warm is through the use of a heating pad.
A space heater can also help you in keeping the baby hedgehog warm.
If there is no electricity, heat packs and water bottles can be helpful in keeping the baby hedgehog warm.
There is also the option of snuggling with the baby hedgehog, so that it benefits from your body heat.
Your body heat, as a human, is usually in the 97 to 99 Fahrenheit degrees range. That is well above the 75 to 80 degrees (F) range that a hedgehog needs. So snuggling is quite effective.
These are the ways you can use, regardless of your hedgehog breed.
So, for instance, this is how to keep a pygmy hedgehog warm. And it is also how to keep a European, Afghan or four-toed hedgehog warm.
The basic principles hold, regardless of the hedgehog type.
How To Keep A Hedgehog Cage Warm?
The hedgehog spends most of its time in its cage. Therefore the question on how to keep a hedgehog warm easily translates into how to keep a hedgehog cage warm.
If the hedgehog cage is warm, the hedgie inside should also be enjoying that warmth.
Therefore when it comes to finding out how to keep a pet hedgehog warm, it boils down to figuring out how to keep its cage warm.
You can keep a hedgehog cage warm by placing a heating pad under it. Or you can keep a hedgehog cage warm by placing a heat lamp over it.
The most important thing is to ensure that the heat source is on one side of the cage. That way, if it gets too hot, the hedgehog can always move to the other side to cool off.
You may wonder: does a hedgehog need a heating pad or heating lamp in its cage even during the warmer months? And the answer is ‘yes’ – as long as the temperature inside is below the 75-80 degrees (F) range, such heat sources are necessary.
If there is a power outage, you may keep the cage warm by covering it with heavy blankets and/or towels. This way, the heat that was inside doesn’t escape.
You can also use heat packs, hand warmers and even warm water bottles to keep the hedgehog cage warm. These can be useful if, for instance, your heat pad or heat lamp is not working for some reason.
Having plenty of bedding material can also help keep the hedgehog cage warm. And if you provide sleeping bags for the hedgehog, those can help it remain warm in the cage if other heating systems stop working.
How Do I Know If My Hedgehog Is Too Cold?
A hedgehog that is too cold will tend to sleep more than usual. It may also become lethargic and lose appetite. When you touch it, you will feel that its body is too cool.
But you shouldn’t wait for things to get to this level. You should have a thermometer.
And if the temperature in the area where your hedgehog is falls below the 75-80 degrees (F) range, you should know that the hedgehog is at risk of getting too cold and hibernating.
How To Get A Hedgehog Out Of Hibernation?
If you are not successful in keeping your hedgehog warm, it may go into hibernation. You will then need to figure out how to get it out of that state, before it deteriorates and dies.
The most important thing is to gradually raise the hedgehog’s temperature. The watchword here is ‘gradually’.
This you can do through the snuggling method. So the hedgehog in this case gets to benefit from your body temperature.
You can then use the heat lamp or head pad, to get optimal temperature conditions in the cage, before returning the hedgehog there.
If the hedgehog was in hibernation for too long, it may be ideal to have a vet check it out.
Final Verdict – How To Keep A Hedgehog Warm
How to keep a hedgehog warm? Devices like heat lamps and heat pads can be very useful at keeping hedgehogs warm. Space heaters also work quite well. If such electric devices are unavailable for some reason, improvisation is important. That can be through warm water bottles, commercial hand warmers or home-made warmers.
Snuggling can also be an effective way to keep a hedgehog warm.
Worth remembering is the fact that if you fail to keep your hedgehog adequately warm, it may go into hibernation and possibly end up dying.