Dogs and Hedgehogs: 5 Methods by Glenn Anderson |Published 11-09-2022
Hedgehogs are now becoming incredibly popular as pets in the United States. Many dog owners are questioning whether their dog can be trained to coexist happily with a hedgehog.
To assist dog owners who want to acquire a hedgehog but are unsure how their dog will adapt, we will cover 5 tips to train them to live with a hedgehog.
We recommend that you begin socializing your dog at an early age. This includes introducing them to a wide range of people, animals, and circumstances so they may figure out how to deal with changes and unfamiliar experiences. You must also be patient when teaching your dog.
Can a Dog Be Trained to Live With a Hedgehog?
Even though dogs and hedgehogs are not natural
friends, they may be trained to coexist. Choose a peaceful and non-aggressive
dog breed, such as a cocker spaniel, golden retriever, or pug. The dog also
needs to be socialized early to feel at ease with other animals.
If your dog is gregarious and friendly and
quickly makes friends with anyone, becoming buddies with a hedgehog shouldn’t
be too difficult. Regardless, no matter how wonderful your dog is,
introductions should be calm and deliberate.
If your dog seems to have a high predatory drive and chases after small creatures such as squirrels, this may not be a suitable fit. Remember that many dog breeds were designed for hunting and killing animals.
Therefore, the first and most crucial step in introducing your dogs and hedgehogs is to ensure their safety. You should also remember that hedgehogs are solitary creatures and will not always establish friendships or wish to hang out with a dog. However, your animals should be acquainted with one another.
If you’re worried about raising dogs and hedgehogs under the same roof, know that the two may coexist peacefully if time and patience are given.
Dogs are often lively and excited while discovering strange stuff in their environment, which might frighten your hedgehog! Begin the acclimation process gradually.
You can always talk to the lovely folks at animalvivid.com if you’re still not sure whether your dog can be taught to live with a hedgehog.
Methods for Training Your Dog to Live With a Hedgehog
Here are five ways you can help your dog and your pet hedgehog happily coexist.
Dogs and Hedgehogs: Socialize the Dog
When introducing a new pet into your house,
you should always ensure that they are appropriately trained. This includes
socializing them with other animals and humans so that the new animal does not
confront other pets.
This is especially crucial if you intend to
welcome a hedgehog into your house or if you currently have one. You should
socialize with your dog before exposing them to one another. It is recommended
starting the puppy socializing as soon as they are able.
This way of educating your dog about living
with a hedgehog will assist in preventing your dog from being aggressive.
Suppose your dog is unfamiliar with being around other animals. In that case,
it may react aggressively when they encounter a hedgehog for the very first
Interacting with your dog will aid in the
prevention of injury. Your dog may not understand how to communicate with other
animals if it is not accustomed to being surrounded by them. This might result
in your dog inadvertently harming a hedgehog.
Finally, socializing your dog will aid in the
formation of a link between your dog and the hedgehog. If your dog is familiar
with being around other creatures, it is more likely to consider a hedgehog a
buddy. This will help ensure that the dog and hedgehog can coexist
Create an Enclosure
When you initially purchase a hedgehog, you
should build a habitat before bringing it into your house. This is because
hedgehogs are tiny, sensitive animals that require a safe spot to hide and
Hedgehog enclosures should be constructed of
durable material that will not crumble or collapse. It ought to be large enough
to accommodate the hedgehog and have a lid to prevent it from escaping.
Keeping warm is essential for your hedgehog to
live a better, more extended, and more pleasant life. If your hedgehog becomes
cold, it may be grumpy, refuse to mingle with you, and ultimately go into
Your hedgehog’s habitat should be in a
somewhat peaceful environment, distant from loud noises and boisterous family
members like barking dogs. Because hedgehogs are nocturnal, they are awake at
night and attempt to sleep during daylight hours when your house is the
The cage will also be crucial in protecting
the hedgehog from danger. Your dog may not intend to harm the hedgehog.
However, the dog’s size and power might easily damage or kill the hedgehog.
A cage helps you to adequately supervise your
dog’s interactions with the hedgehog. This is critical because you must ensure
that the hedgehog is not tormented or mistreated. You can intercede and
segregate the two animals if you notice any symptoms of violence.
Get a Feeding Station
A feeding station is necessary since it makes your hedgehog feel secure and at ease when eating. It will also prevent your dog from accessing the food and becoming unwell. Because dogs consume meat, it’s no wonder that the same meal appeals to them.
When a hedgehog is having a delicious meal, they may not be as attentive to dangers as they are during other times. Putting your hedgehog’s meals in a feeding station will provide some protection from a curious or hostile dog.
Dogs are curious creatures who prefer to inspect new things by sticking their noses and tongues where they don’t belong. Nearly every single dog owner has experienced a few food fights with their pets.
A feeding station is essential if you don’t want your dog whining for hedgehog food. Your dog will soon understand that hedgehog food is off-limits, and you will no longer have to deal with fights or begging.
A content hedgehog is a thriving hedgehog, and a feeding station will assist you in keeping your hedgehog content. A cheerful hedgehog is more active and lively and less likely to be anxious or frightened. This will make training your dog to coexist with a hedgehog easier.
Having a defined spot for the hedgehog to eat also teaches your dog to respect this as the hedgehog’s domain. It makes it less likely to annoy or disturb the hedgehog when eating.
A feeding station can also help prevent your dog from mistakenly consuming raw meat left for the hedgehog, which might make your dog unwell.
Introduce the Two at Night
Nighttime is the most incredible opportunity to introduce a dog and a hedgehog since both creatures become less active and more likely to be relaxed. This will assist in minimizing stress levels in both animals and increase the likelihood of them getting along.
Before you begin the introduction, make absolutely sure all animals are well-fed. Having a full stomach will assist in settling them back down and reduce their chances of becoming irritated.
Before bringing the hedgehog inside the room, put the dog on a leash. This will assist in keeping the dog in control and prevent it from becoming overly enthusiastic. Allow the hedgehog to survey the room at their leisure. Try not to coerce it into interacting with the dog.
Allow the hedgehog time to acclimate to the unfamiliar setting if it appears timid or scared. It may take several days, if not weeks, for the hedgehog to feel at ease around the dog. Increase the time the two creatures spend together gradually until they get accustomed to each other.
Dogs and Hedgehogs: Supervise Playtime
When teaching your dog to coexist with a hedgehog, it is critical to monitor them during play. Hedgehogs are tiny, sensitive animals that can be easily hurt by a naughty dog.
Even the most well-mannered dog can inadvertently harm a hedgehog, so it is critical to be there while they play to ensure everything runs properly.
Make sure that the play space is secure and protected. Hedgehogs are tiny and may rapidly flee an unprotected place. Begin with brief play sessions and gradually expand the time as the dog and hedgehog grow better acquainted.
Keep a close eye on the dog’s nonverbal cues. If the dog seems to be playing too harshly, or if the hedgehog seems terrified or upset, stop them immediately.
Keep a few toys available for the dog and hedgehog to enjoy. Ensure the toys are modest enough so the hedgehog does not swallow them. Prepare to step in if required. Intervene promptly if the dog becomes too harsh or the hedgehog is uncomfortable.
Hedgehogs can make excellent pets, but it’s essential to train your dog to live with them safely. That’s why we have covered the 5 tips to train your dog to live with a hedgehog which should make the process easier for you.
While it’s okay to be apprehensive about the two pets, we recommend you start the process with an open mind and be patient with the training. Otherwise, you won’t get the expected results and will have a crisis on your hands.
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Glenn Anderson has been a freelance writer for years. A pet enthusiast and a flag-bearer of organic eating, a fitness freak, and obsessed with all things food, plants, and animals. He also loves writing and discussing things that make him happy.
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