• I Can't Find My Hedgehog!

    Written by Antigone Means-Burleson

    Although they look awkward and have feet that definitely don't look made for climbing, hedgehogs are notorious escape artists. It's certainly a terrifying moment to look in the cage and realize that hedgie is gone! Although it's tempting to panic, it is important to keep your cool and remember two things:
    1.) hedgies will come out at night, and
    2.) that there are some predictable patterns to where they are likely to hide.

    The first place to look is the warmest places in the house. When we lived in an apartment for a year, we had a chest freezer that was in the hedgie room. There was a little warm indentation behind it, and that's where the hedgies would invariably go. In our last house, they seldom got beyond the hedgie room and I would nearly always find the escapee lying on the heat pad that stuck out from our gecko cage that was on the bottom shelf. In our current house, the few escapees we've had so far have bee-lined for the closet that houses the heater unit.

    The next place to look is anywhere dark and cozy. Under the recliner, behind the couch, under the bed, in the laundry pile- if it's got a dark, cozy feel to it, it's a likely hiding place.

    If you've searched the warm spots and the dark, cozy spots and you still can't find hedgie, it's important to make sure that the house is safe. Block access to any potential hazards, such as sump pump holes or plastic bags, and be sure to check all laundry before washing if there's any chance hedgie might have access, as clothes make a real cozy hiding place.

    Next, put out a food and water dish in a place where hedgie can find it. It is a good idea to put it near their cage, since hedgies are creatures of habit and will often return to familiar places. If there are any rooms you have checked thoroughly and are 100% sure hedgie is not hiding there, close them off so that you won't have to check them again. Most of all, make sure there is no way that hedgie can gain access to the outdoors.

    Most likely, you will be able to find your hedgehog within a day or two. Then you have to worry about the next challenge- how do I keep this resourceful critter in it's home???