Home › Forums › Carers / rescuing a hedgehog › Looking after a baby hedgehog › Reply To: Looking after a baby hedgehog
I don’t normally bother getting involved in arguements on this forum as everyone has their own thoughts, however in this case I think it important to point out a few issues.
It is not essential to medicate hogs unless they have a heavy worm burden. Hogs have a certain tolerance to parasites as they are in the food they eat. If we routinely clear all the parasites out of a hog and then put it back into the wild it will immediately pick up a heavy burden that it may have lost its tolerance for.
We do know that the stress of captivity can make parasitic burdens worse hence some organisations/people routinely worming, but that is not necessarily in the best interests of the hog. Far better to routinely monitor but not treat unless required.
It is not essential to keep hogs at this temperature unless they are ill. They do not necessarily hibernate – the stress of captivity and access to constant food often means they don’t bother. Again it is a case of monitoring and moving if they show signs of hibernation.
I am a very experienced rehabillitator and keep all my overwintering hogs in a garage or outdoor hutches and very rarely do they try to hibernate. They also expend more energy having to keep warm and do not get fat as quickly.
I neglected to mention in my comment earlier about daylight and this is important so doors need keeping open if you don’t have windows. Artificial light will suffice though
In my opinion to release a hoglet at this time of year when it has not had time to work out it’s natural food sources, make any dry hiberniculum or even day nests would be irresponsible. Even if you get it up to weight it would lose a great deal on release
I would also note however that young hoglets are often better overwintered in pairs or more as they find it less stressful. However again this is a situation that needs monitoring in case one of the hogs is a bully
The BHPS have issued guidelines which I have posted on here before on releasing hedgehogs and also ‘safe’ weight for hogs – please take a look on their site as they give collaborative views from ‘expert’ parties
Finally I stress you need to contact your nearest carer so you can get advise directly and not conflicting views