Quick … can you think of a small mammal pet that you have to pet just the right way or you might have to reach for a bandage? And no, it has nothing to do with a big, bad bite! If you said hedgehog, you are correct.
Lately my hedgehog has formed a habit of bating me. He's been much better at being handled and not as spiky but has been starting to randomly nibble at my hand. He's not huffing or making as sort of sounds as if he's angry and I have been making sure my hands are washed.
Updated: July 23, pm. Q: My son is allergic to cats and dogs and wants a pet. We were thinking of a hedgehog since they do not have fur.
Hedgehogs belong to the phylogenetic class known as Mammaliasublcass Eutheria which is reserved for higher mammals rather than the monotremes that are egg-laying mammals or marsupials. Within Eutheria they are further classified as belonging to the order Insectivora which implies their diet consists primarily of insects. Proceeding further down the hedgehog family tree are four genera that hedgehogs have been placed under: AtelerixErinaceusHemiechinusand Paraechinus.
Hedgehog anointing is perhaps one of the most perplexing and unresolved mysteries in the animal kingdom. If you've never seen hedgehogs anoint themselves, you'll probably freak out the first time you ever witness it. Because we certainly did!
Perhaps one of the most bizarre facets of hedgehog behaviour is the curious act of self-anointing. Self-anointing involves the hedgehog covering its spines with a frothy saliva-stimulant mixture; the behaviour itself may take a few minutes or several hours, during which the hedgehog is totally absorbed and almost oblivious to the activity in its surroundings. This behaviour is reported frequently, and most people who have experience with hedgehogs have witnessed it at some point.
Self-anointing in animalssometimes called anointing or antingis a behaviour whereby a non-human animal smears odoriferous substances over themselves. These substances are often the secretions, parts, or entire bodies of other animals or plants. The animal may chew these substances and then spread the resulting saliva mixture over their body, or they may apply the source of the odour directly with an appendage, tool or by rubbing their body on the source.
Many in Britain are banding together — note the British Hedgehog Preservation Society — to help their prickly neighbors by providing feeding stations, making small holes in fences to allow them free access through gardens thus keeping them off of streets and being more cautious in their use of pesticides. It's all in the spirit of hedgehog love. The hedgehog was named for its unique foraging methods.
Here is our article on Self Anointing. Have great Easter weekend and don't each to much Chocolate. Hedgehog Valley.