Do Pet Stores Sell Hedgehogs as Pets? Everything You Need to Know!

At the time of writing this article, it is illegal to own a hedgehog as a pet in California, Georgia, Hawaii, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C. Some states, such as Arizona and Maine, require a permit or license to own a hedgehog. Other states, such as New Jersey and Wisconsin, allow hedgehogs to be kept as pets without any special permits or licenses.

It is important to note that state laws can change, so it’s always a good idea to check with your state’s Department of Fish and Wildlife or Department of Agriculture to ensure that hedgehogs are legal in your area before purchasing one.

Why Do People Want Hedgehogs as Pets?

Hedgehogs have become popular pets for several reasons. For one, they are just plain cute and fun to watch. They are also relatively low-maintenance pets, making them a good choice for people who don’t have a lot of time or space for a more high-maintenance pet like a dog.

The Appeal of Hedgehogs

In addition to their cute appearance, hedgehogs have some unique characteristics that make them appealing as pets. For example, they are nocturnal animals, which means they are most active at night. This can make them a good pet for people who work during the day and want a pet that is active and engaging in the evening hours.

Hedgehogs are also relatively small and don’t require a lot of space. They are also generally clean animals, which means they don’t require a lot of grooming or cleaning up after.

Common Misconceptions About Hedgehogs as Pets

Despite their many positive qualities, there are also some misconceptions about hedgehogs as pets. One of the most common is that they are easy to care for. While they are certainly low-maintenance pets, they still require a certain level of care and attention to keep them healthy and happy.

Another misconception is that hedgehogs are solitary animals that don’t need social interaction. In reality, hedgehogs can be social creatures and benefit from interaction with their owners.

Where Can You Buy Hedgehogs?

If you live in an area where hedgehogs are legal to own as pets, there are several places where you can purchase them.

Pet Stores and Hedgehog Sales

Some pet stores sell hedgehogs, although this is becoming less common due to concerns about the welfare of animals sold in pet stores. If you do decide to buy a hedgehog from a pet store, make sure to do your research and choose a reputable store that has a good track record of caring for their animals.

Online Hedgehog Breeders

Another option is to purchase a hedgehog from an online breeder. While this can be a convenient way to find a hedgehog, it’s important to be cautious and do your research before making a purchase. Look for breeders who are transparent about their breeding practices and who have a good reputation in the hedgehog community.

Hedgehog Rescue Organizations

If you’re looking to adopt a hedgehog, consider reaching out to a hedgehog rescue organization. These organizations take in abandoned or unwanted hedgehogs and work to find them new homes. Adopting a hedgehog from a rescue organization can be a great way to give a loving home to a hedgehog in need.

Pros and Cons of Buying from Pet Stores

While pet stores can be a convenient place to purchase a hedgehog, there are some downsides to this approach.

Health and Welfare Concerns

One of the biggest concerns with buying a hedgehog from a pet store is the potential for health and welfare issues. Animals sold in pet stores are often bred in large-scale breeding facilities, where they may not receive proper care and attention. This can lead to health problems and behavioral issues.

Supporting Unethical Hedgehog Breeding Practices

Another concern with buying a hedgehog from a pet store is that you may be supporting unethical breeding practices. Some large-scale breeding facilities prioritize profits over the well-being of the animals they breed. By purchasing a hedgehog from a pet store, you may be indirectly supporting these practices.

What to Look for When Buying a Hedgehog

Whether you’re buying a hedgehog from a pet store, breeder, or rescue organization, there are some key things to look for to ensure that you’re getting a healthy animal.

Physical Characteristics of Healthy Hedgehogs

Healthy hedgehogs should have bright, clear eyes, healthy skin and fur, and clean ears and nose. They should also be active and alert, with no signs of lethargy or weakness.

Behavioral Indicators of Healthy Hedgehogs

In addition to physical characteristics, you should also observe the hedgehog’s behavior. Healthy hedgehogs should be curious and active, with no signs of aggression or fear.

Caring for Hedgehogs as Pets

If you decide to bring a hedgehog into your home, it’s important to understand their care needs.

Diet and Nutrition

Hedgehogs are omnivores and require a diet that is high in protein. A good hedgehog diet will include a mix of high-quality cat food, insects, and fruits and vegetables.

Housing and Environment

Hedgehogs should be housed in a cage that is large enough for them to move around and explore. The cage should also be equipped with a hiding place, a wheel for exercise, and a litter box. The temperature in the cage should be kept between 72 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

Health and Veterinary Care

Hedgehogs require regular veterinary care to stay healthy. You should take your hedgehog to the vet for regular check-ups and vaccinations. You should also be on the lookout for signs of illness or injury, such as changes in behavior, loss of appetite, or limping.

Do Hedgehogs Interact Well with Dogs?

Many people wonder if hedgehogs are safe to keep around dogs. While hedgehogs are generally not aggressive animals, they do have quills that can cause injury to a dog if they are not handled properly.

Are Hedgehogs Bad for Dogs?

Hedgehogs are not inherently bad for dogs, but they can cause injury if they are not handled properly.

Are Hedgehogs Dangerous for Dogs?

Hedgehogs are not inherently dangerous for dogs, but they can cause injury if they are not handled properly.

Are Hedgehogs Poisonous to Dogs?

Hedgehogs are not poisonous to dogs.

Can Hedgehogs Hurt Dogs?

Hedgehogs can hurt dogs if they are not handled properly. Their quills can cause injury if they are not handled gently.

Can Hedgehogs Kill Dogs?

Hedgehogs are not likely to kill dogs, but they can cause injury if they are not handled properly.

Can Hedgehogs Poison Dogs?

Hedgehogs cannot poison dogs.

Conclusion

Hedgehogs can make great pets for the right person, but they do require a certain level of care and attention. Before bringing a hedgehog into your home, it’s important to understand their care needs and ensure that they are legal in your area. If you do decide to purchase a hedgehog, consider adopting from a rescue organization or choosing a reputable breeder to ensure that you’re getting a healthy animal. And, when introducing a hedgehog to a dog, be sure to handle them properly to avoid injury.

ThePetFaq Team