So I recently bought a 2 month old hedgehog. Her name is Coconut but everyone just calls her Coco. She is the cutest little ball of fur and quills out there and everyone of my friends fights me over when they get to play with her. The problem with Coco, other than being a huge flirt, is that I had absolutely no idea how to take care of her.
The first day was great, but as soon as I realized that I didn’t know the smallest thing about her I started to panic. Every time I tried to touch her, she would roll in a ball of spiky quills and would start hissing at me. I quickly got online and started looking at videos on how to tame your hedgie. The trick was to grab her from below the quills. So I tried this and I realized that she was only playing hard to get as she quickly opened up and started licking my hands. At that point I was ecstatic. I had finally figured it out and Coco was finally walking and cuddling in my hands without trying to hurt me. The thing is, I tend to sing victory before the bell rings when it comes to girls. I should have seen it coming when Coco quickly brought me back to reality. As she licked the head of my palm and stared intently at my face, I felt a moist feeling at the end of my fingers. She had pooped 2 lumps of poop so big that they were as long as the length of my fingers. Another disappointment.
I knew I had to do something about this, so I opened up my computer and looked for help in my best pal google. I typed “how to get your hedgehog to not poop on you”. The result was a website called Hedgehog central. The nirvana of hedgehog breeding and care. Every hedgehog owner with half a brain has posted on here. And yes, most of them have had their hedgies poop on them. Apparently hedgehogs like to poop as soon as they wake up, so the trick is to let them run around their cage and do their thing before you consider playing with them. I was amazed at the amount of questions and responses that were on this forum. Literally anything I could think of asking, from what type of wheel to buy her, to how to cuddle without being hissed at, had already been asked and answered by hundreds of hedgehog Zen masters.
Other than hedgehog central, youtube turned to be a great tool as well. There is a huge collection of videos showing you exactly how to take care, bathe, and play with Coco. Although I am still getting the nuts and bolts of it, I can now enjoy my pet without being frustrated at her less savory habits. I was glad to also learn that they only poop a lot for the first couple of months because they are babies, and well babies do that stuff.
With the valuable source of information that the hedgehog central forums has, and the collection of videos in youtube, I was able to become knowledgeable in taking care of a pet in a matter of days. This leads me to the conclusion that there is such a large amount of platforms that contain knowledge that can help anyone. We are all unique individuals but the chances of someone struggling through something as random as having an exotic pet confuse you with a litter box are pretty high. Chances are someone out there has experienced your problems and they probably posted it on some forum.
The current goal that Coco and I are working on:
By the way, I live in the Dominican Republic and will be traveling back in winter break. I am not sure if I can take Coco as I still don’t know the laws for hedgehogs there. If I find out that I cannot take her and someone is interested in taking care of her for the break let me know.