They can definitely smell who is holding them. If you wear different perfumes/colognes or use different soaps all the time, the hedgie can get confused and upset. Your smell is your identification to them, so they definitely use it to tell who you are when you're holding them. That's why you shouldn't wear gloves. Some people will have them in a hedgie bag and give them to a hubby/wife and the hedgie can normally tell the difference through the bag when they're more active normally for one than for the other. Smell and hearing are definitely their two best senses.
yes their smell is incredible - all my hoggies definately know the difference between me and hubby - my oldest boy is a right mummys boy and he loves a cuddle and will stay in the crook of my arm for as long as I let him but wont sit on hubby for longer than 5 mins :lol: and even more funnier - if he wanders off me towards hubby and hubby goes to pick him up he runs straight back to me and under my arm :mrgreen: