Q: What do hedgehogs eat and drink?
Hedgehogs are scavengers and will eat almost anything. Their diet comprises mainly beetles, caterpillars and earthworms with the occasional slugs or snails. If you want to feed hedgehogs in your garden the best food to offer them is good quality, meat-based cat or dog food and cat biscuits. We suggest Purina One Kitten Junior Chicken & Whole Grains. Fresh water should always be available. Bread with milk is harmful, often fatal, to hedgehogs because they are unable to digest the lactose in cow's milk.
Q: Why do hedgehogs hibernate?
Hedgehogs hibernate during winter to avoid the extreme cold, Hibernation usually occurs between November and early April and is variable, depending on the temperature. During milder spells hedgehogs may wake up and forage for food. In order to survive hibernation, hedgehogs need to weigh at least 600g by the late autumn (750g preferable because one third of their body weight can be lost during hibernation). Hedgehogs that have not reached this weight will need to be taken in and looked after until they have gained sufficient fat reserves.
Q: How can I help hedgehogs in the garden?
Solid fences and walls restrict a hedgehog’s movement through gardens. Try to leave small gaps at the bases of the fence or wall or provide a tunnel.
Hedgehogs are able to swim but often drown in garden ponds because of their steep and slippery sides. Provide them with an escape route.
Provide a small wildlife area in your garden. Long grass, log and leaf piles and undergrowth provide foraging and nest places for the perfect hedgehog habitat.
Bonfire piles make attractive places for hedgehogs to nest. Before lighting the fire, check the pile to make sure a hedgehog is not nesting in it.
Provide a hedgehog feeding station and dog or cat food but not bread and milk. Click here to find out how to make a simple hedgehog feeding station.
Q: Do hedgehogs make good pets?
Hedgehogs are wild animals as a result contact with people is stressful for them. Hedgehogs offered for sale are usually the African Pygmy Hedgehog which is a hybrid bred for the American pet trade. They are not wild animals, do not hibernate and cannot be released into the wild. We accept into our care the wild hedgehog that is native to Britain.
Q: Are hedgehogs full of fleas and ticks?
Hedgehogs can pick up the odd flea or tick in just the same way that cats and dogs do. However, hedgehog fleas and ticks live only on hedgehogs. Sometimes hedgehogs become infested when they are really poorly.
Q: Can I make a donation?
Yes, donations are always welcome and much needed to pay for vet bills, medicine, food and equipment.
Use the PayPal button or send a cheque (made out to "Warwickshire Hedgehog Rescue") to:
The Treasurer, Warwickshire Hedgehog Rescue, 2 Blundells Close, Welford on Avon, CV37 8EP
Click here to download your Gift Aid form and send it with your cheque.