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Are my hogs too small?

Home Forums Hedgehog signs and sightings Are my hogs too small?

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    Hello all, I’m new here as after some advice.

    I’ve had one hog visiting my garden for a few months now and the last couple of weeks 2 more have joined him/her! They’re all similar in size but not that big, they all eat like little pigs (good quality cat biscuits and hedgehog biscuits) and have definitely grown in size quite quickly. I’m concerned they will go into hibernation soon but will be too small to survive the winter! I’m thinking I should weigh them? If they weigh under 500g do I get them straight to a rescue centre or leave them a few more weeks to continue to fatten up? I’ve got a hog house that their interested in but I’m not sure where these hogs go in the day.

    Thanks everyone

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    Hi GlowyEyes11

    I would weigh them fairly soon – they might already be over the minimum 450g needed to survive hibernation and then you can let them go and continue to offer food and enjoy their visits until and if they decide to hibernate. It really depends a bit where you are, but it seems quite mild in general at the moment, so if they are turning up regularly for food and are only a bit under the weight I would be inclined to let them stay – they do tend to put on weight incredibly quickly.

    But you might want to check with a local hog carer/rehabilitator – they will know your local conditions better. You can get contact details by ringing 01584 890801.


    Thank you for your reply.

    I’m in South Shropshire, so I guess within the area of the number you’ve given me. Yes it’s still mild here.

    I didn’t want to interfere too much with my hogs if I didn’t have too, but I will try and weigh them tonight (wish me luck as they move fast!). I’m amazed how quickly they’ve gained weight, so hopefully they will continue to do so.


    I’ve just added a photo of them to the gallery here.

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    Hi GlowyEyes11

    I know what you mean about not wanting to interfere too much. Yes, hoglets can be pretty speedy. But hopefully they will weigh enough and you won’t have to worry about them so much. Sometimes you can sit very quietly near where they feed and just scoop one up. I found that if you put your feet on a footstool they don’t always notice you’re there!

    I would take the scales outside if you have an outside light – then there’s minimal disturbance for them. You might need a box with torn up newspaper to put them in (preferably with some food in it) so you know which ones you’ve weighed. If you are well prepared it tends to go more easily.

    Good luck. Hope all goes well.


    Well I was somewhat successful! Thankfully two of them were in their house but I could only get hold of the smaller one who weighed just under 400g. The larger one is a bit bigger so I’m sure will be around 450g. I will try and weigh them again in a week or so to check how they’re doing.

    Thanks so much for your advice.

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    Hi GlowyEyes11

    Well done weighing one! That’s great news it is already 400g and not a real tiny one – and lucky you got the small one so more re-assuring that the bigger one might weigh more already. At that weight and bearing in mind the mildness of the weather and that they’re turning up regularly for food (and water), I would let them stay ‘in the wild’ for now and hopefully they’ll soon put on a bit more weight. You providing food for them makes all the difference. Good luck little hogs!


    Hi there, i live in Scotland and i found a small hog weighing 498g and was told by my local wildlife rescue centre that they need to weigh roughly 600 grams in October to be able to survive this winter hibernation.. so please call your local wildlife rescue and get him the help he may need my friend because i was told under 600 grams there was a high chance he wint survive, and im sure you dont want that to happen to this wee hog… let us know how you get on with thos hog and the wildlife rescue will return the hedgehog to your garden if you have a feeding place and a wee hime for him to sleep… Good luck!!


    Hello Paulinegreen

    BHPS guidelines are quite clear, the minimum weight needed for hibernation is 450g.
    I am assuming that your wildlife carer is suggesting 600g as you are in Scotland and your winters are longer / more severe than down south.
    Obviously the more weight a hog has the better but it is no guarantee of surviving hibernation.

    The stress of captivity can cause a whole issue of problems for hogs, and even kill them so we should be very careful about what needs rescuing and what doesn’t

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