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Hedgehog Fatality

Home Forums Carers / rescuing a hedgehog Hedgehog Fatality

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    Well I suppose it had to happen at some point as hogs have been visitng my garden/neighbourhood since 2015 but on Tuesday I found an injured/sick hog on the footpath outside my house. I assumed the most likely reason was it had been hit/clipped by a car as it was near the road.

    I took it to the local rescue centre but sadly it died at some point on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. The rescue centre (Folly Wildlife Rescue were brilliant, as I knew they would be, and kept the chap (it was a male) warm and adminstered pain relief so he was comfortable to the end (made me think that if I hadn’t found him it would have been a far more unpleasant experience – maybe found by a dog or fox or a less than compassionate human!).

    He was missing a back leg (which made we think it was a car strike) but the rescue centre told me this was an old injury he had been carrying for a while. He was small (they weighed him he was only 563 grams) so maybe the little guy was possibly struggling in getting around and finding food losing wieght and condition anyway (I haven’t seen a 3 legged hog in my garden but that doesn’t mean it didn’t visit after hours maybe to avoid the big bruisers that visit, too rufty tufty for a 3 legged hog with the bashing that goes on sometimes, and probably finding all the food had gone but I don’t know). They said it was breathing heavily and had a runny nose so it may have been poisoned by slug pellets. It also had flystrike so it wasn’t a healthy hog

    It just goes to show the problems our hogs face as, although I can control my little patch and make it hog friendly, I have no control over the rest of the areas they visit – run over by cars, slug pellets, getting trapped in drains, gettting tangled up in netting/wire (the rescue centre said this was quite a common problem with hogs they receive which often leads to amputation of limbs as the more they struggle to escape the tighter they get entwined), strimmers, bonfires, lack of places to sleep/live, habitat loss the list goes on – no wonder our hogs are in such trouble!

    That said I was left full of admiration for this little hog that, despite all its problems, its instinct to survive was still so strong – some might say that they have no choice but it does go to show that they are tough little robust critters when all is said and done – power to the hogs!

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    So sorry to hear about the little hog, Hogmeister. Well done for getting him help to at least make his end more comfortable. Makes me remember the poor strimmed chap here a while back who had to be put to sleep. I think our initial reaction is to try to save them, but sometimes it just isn’t possible. Like you, I admired the little chap here who managed to make his way to my garden despite his horrendous injuries. Sounds like the little chap there did similar as if he knew, somehow, that was where he would get help.

    You are absolutely right. Outside our gardens, the hogs have so many hazards to face, over which we don’t have any control. But they have to be wild and free, it’s part of who they are. We really do leave ourselves open to sadness when we love hedgehogs but they repay us many times over by the pleasure they give us by just being there.

    Keep up the good work and as you say – power to the hogs!


    Thanks Nic.

    I was hoping to bring him back home and release him back in to the garden but it wasn’t to be but hopefully this will be a rare occurence.

    Sad also about the poor hog you found injured by a strimmer and it would be nice to think, somehow, the hogs could sense a place they would always find help like in your garden and indeed in my own.

    Of course one more hazard I didn’t mention, as if hogs don’t have enough to face already, is the awful A24 traps but hopefully the authorties will come to their senses and ban these in time.

    You are right they are wild animals and they need to roam I just wish others could be a bit more mindful of the hazards they are presenting to hogs and other wildlife, albeit unintentionaly, when a few small changes could help so much e.g. stop using slug pellets for one.

    Keep up all the great work you do for hogs too Nic – power to the hogs indeed!


    That is so sad as it makes me think about a recent situation we had.
    On May 20 I caught footage of an injured hedgehog on our night camera. He was dragging his back leg. I managed to stay up till midnight the next evening, but there was no sign of him. Footage showed that he went into our hedgehog house and we got him in the morning and took him to our lovely local vet. He had to have his back leg amputated. After many calls we were advised that the modern way of thinking was to release amputees back in the wild so they could breed.
    We followed the instructions we were given and put him back into the hedgehog house at dusk. At 1am he tentatively came out of the box and hobbled off. We have not seen him since and I am gutted that he may not have survived and shouldn’t have been put back in the wild. Your story has made me think the worst even though the local rescue centre said we did the right thing. Does anyone have evidence that 3 legged hedgehogs can make it in the wild?


    Hi Simbo65,

    don’t feel too badly about it – you did the right thing – 3 legged hogs can survive in the wild – they often have to as they lose legs to foxes and accidents etc in the wild and undiscovered, which can be fatal, but they can also survive if infection doesn’t get them. the only other option is to release in a closed environment – which some think is cruel also as they have such strong instincts to roam. we soft release ‘fixed’ hogs when we can, and believe me, watching them for hours on end pacing, pushing and digging to get out of those runs for a couple of nights leaves you in no doubt that they need to be free roaming creatures and the best thing is to give them a chance. you never know – your little chap may well still be out there – you have to believe that he is and you did your best for him.


    Thank you for the reassurance. We are new to feeding and looking out for the hedgehogs so I’m sure I will be on here a bit after advice.

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