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Rescued 308g hog

Home Forums Carers / rescuing a hedgehog Rescued 308g hog

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    Hello, I rescued a small hog, (308g) 2 days ago, he/she was out in the middle of the day in a small field near a road. It had also turned very cold here. I reckoned he’d come out of hibernation after losing alot of body mass and found the ground too dry to find food. I have had advice from the BHPS and spoken to a wildlife rescue chap but obviously at this time it would be difficult to take the hedgehog anywhere and we live very rurally, our nearest rescue centre is well over an hour away. So I was advised that he may have hypothermia and I have been providing hot water bottles every few hours. He was quite alert last night and I am hopeful that he will be ok. My queries are
    1. When they are rescued do they lose sense of night and day because hes up and about now at 11am but was asleep at 7am?
    2. I have a lid on the box, does that prevent him knowing night and day?
    3. I have hedgehog food for the ones I feed in our garden, ho much do i feed the little on to build him back up and do I feed during the day too?.
    4. I was also advised he could be released early because its spring if he appears well, is that a general opinion?
    5. When do i stop the hot water bottles and acclimatise him?
    I’m anxious to be doing the right thing for him/her. Any information would be gratefully received. Thanks, Melanie


    Hi Melanie
    Well done for helping the little one.
    I am not an expert but just a couple of things I have read and some thoughts. Hopefully the more experienced people on here will reply soon.

    You say he is in a box with a lid….is there enough air getting in? Also with the hot water bottle did the carer advise what to do? This is from the BHPS site so pretty sure you already have it……
    “”If you have found a hedgehog you are concerned about please use gardening gloves to collect it up, bring it indoors and put it in a high sided cardboard box with an old towel or fleece in the bottom for the hedgehog to hide under. Fill a hot water bottle so that when it is wrapped in a towel there is a nice gentle heat coming through and put that in the bottom of the box with the hedgehog, ensuring it has room to get off the bottle should it get too warm. Make sure the bottle is always kept warm (if allowed to go cold it will chill the hedgehog and do more harm than good). If the hedgehog is bleeding please do not add a hot water bottle as this will make it bleed more quickly. Put the box somewhere quiet. Offer meaty cat or dog food and fresh water then call us as soon as possible on 01584 890 801

    As far as light- we did a bit of rehab on an adult male who had a back leg amputated. We put him in the garage and I turned the lights on during the day and off at night. It seemed to work for him but he was a big boy and I think just wanted to hibernate.

    I think if you just leave food and water out all the time, he will eat when he is hungry and just keep it topped up. Lots of fresh water too.

    I hope someone like Stef or Nic gets back to you who are very knowledgeable.
    Please let us know how it is going
    Good luck


    Thanks for this, good idea about the light. The box is large and well ventilated and he has space to move away from the hwb. He had some greenish mucous poos yesterday which made the guy from the rescue centre think he’d hypothermia. One today is a bit more formed. I just want to do the right thing for him. He ate a little and drank a little last night which was good

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    Well done for rescuing the little one. We really need Stef’s advice – it’s more her area than mine, but I imagine she is very busy looking after hogs! But the person you spoke to before may be able to answer your questions.

    I agree with simbo65 to leave food all day and especially water – they are very good at spilling it, so make sure it’s topped up regularly. I usually line any container with newspapers to help soak up any spilt water, but you may need to change it if it gets wet.

    I wouldn’t worry too much about it being awake in the day, it’s quite likely to be if someone is around. Any hogs from here that have needed rescuing at any time have reverted back to being nocturnal immediately on release. (They have been released as darkness sets – or at least left in their box with a hole in it so that they could exit at their own pace).

    Hopefully Stef will see this and answer your questions, but if not, I would ring back the person you spoke to before to clarify those few points.

    Good luck.



    The hog sounds poorly. Well done for rescuing it, but you need to get it proper help
    Green mucus poo could be a sign of internal parasites that have got out of hand and/or an infection
    Being alert is not necessarily a good thing – it can also be a sign the hog is in pain
    Their internal clocks are pretty good and it shouldn’t really be up and about in the daytime
    You’ve not mentioned if it’s eating and drinking properly?
    Is it sleeping on the hot water bottle? If so again not something a healthy hog would want to do
    I stongly suggest that you contact a proper hedgehog carer and take the hog to them. ( They will happily let you have it back once it’s fixed )
    Hedgehogs in captivity can suffer a lot of stress which can make it’s problems a lot worse very quickly
    I will also say that an ill hog only let’s you have a short window in which to treat them so getting help quickly is really paramount


    Thankyou everybody. To Stef, he is eating and drinking ok, he moves on and off the hwb and is eating as I type. The guy from knoxwood said I’d be capable of looking after him but obviously I’m very concerned and want to do the right thing. Hes not had so much of the mucous poo today, and its darker and more poo like. I really want to do the right thing here


    Hi – You said it was a distance to your local rescue…..Would they be able to come to you?
    Also some vets treat wildlife for free. My 2 localish ones will still take in an emergency though a strict protocol has to be adhered to.
    Sorry I can’t help more but I have been in your position worrying myself silly and trying to do whatever I can. You are doing a great job!
    Hope Stef picks up your latest post but maybe ring the rescue again and give them an update……… hard in Covid times.
    Keep posing news please.

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    Hi mrsmh

    I would definitely try to ring the person you spoke to before again. If they can’t help, try ringing the BHPS again 01584 890801 and try to find another/some other carer/rehabilitators. Then hopefully you will find someone willing to check the hog over. Stef is really good at these things and if she thinks the hog needs looking at urgently, that’s what needs to happen. It may need some sort of treatment.

    Not easy at the moment, I know, but good luck.


    I have picked up this latest Simbo65, but it appears my advice isn’t taken so there isn’t anything else to add
    People should always where possible take hogs to their local carer ( not the other way around ) as they have the expertise and equipment to treat them
    If this hog still has mucous in it’s poo then there is almost certainly something wrong that needs treating


    Thanks once again. Unfortunately during these covid times finding a carer is not that easy, our ‘local’ one is on skeleton staff and reduced hours. Another just placated me by saying they’d call me back. They didn’t. So it’s not been for the want of trying to get help and advice contrary to what may have come across in my post. So I have just called our vet who I thought would just euthanize but actually one of the vets there rehabilitated hogs. I’m delighted to say I’m taking the hedgehog to her in the morning for treatment and we’ll take it from there.


    I’m sorry that your local carers aren’t much help, but you’re right it’s trying times
    Your vet will let you have the hog back for release in your garden for sure


    Further to this if you got the carers numbers from the BHPS it would be helpful if you called the BHPs and let them know so they don’t give those numbers out


    I had 2 hogs brought to me in the last few weeks…both had been seen by a well known CHAIN of vets. In both cases the finder was told the hog needed to be put to sleep. One had a bad case of mange and was treated by a local rescue and the other was treated by an Independent Vet, both hogs are out there right now, healthy and making babies. And Vets, or at least my vets, treat for free.

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    Hi mrsmh

    Well done for persevering and finding someone who will treat the little hog. Fingers crossed all goes well and that it makes a good recovery.


    So pleased little one is going to be looked at.
    Phew- Our 2 localish vets that look at wildlife have been fantastic in the past.
    And out of about 8 I have taken for various reasons only a tiny hoglet couldn’t be saved.
    They do try there best but Stef was able to give me advice on here when one hog at the vet wasn’t improving. The vet followed Stef’s advice and the hog made a great recovery. They don’t always have the detailed knowledge of a hedgehog carer.
    Give all your details when you leave him/her so that you get back when better.
    Please please let us know what happens.
    AND thank you so much for joining all of us on here that love the little pricklies and want to help.

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