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Going outside?

2687 Views 12 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  Dea215
Hello, everyone!

I am a new hedgie owner and while it is still too cold in NY (50 degrees today), I am hoping for warm weather soon and think my Tina would love to go outside! She is very explorative.

Do you all take your hedgies outside? What are your best tips and tricks for doing so? What things do I need to be cautious of/excited about? What do your hedgies like?

Thanks in advance for any thoughts!!! :grin:
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Please do not wash your hedgehog based on the simple fact that they were outdoors. Plain old water, even accompanied with a basic shampoo, will not kill parasites - so this is effectively pointless, and is not a preventative at all. All it does it stress your hog for absolutely no reason.

Regardless; many parasites are transmitted orally - your hedgehog will have to eat the host. Yes, this is a risk with bringing them outdoors... but it's not awfully common, and bringing your dog outdoors for even just a walk carries a much greater risk because they are often walked in high traffic areas. Hedgehogs, being insectivores, are pretty much always at risk of parasites, if they are brought outdoors or not. Even insects bred for feeders have the potential to transmit parasites to your pet. Side note; parasites (and other infections) can be in your home too. Other pets can track them in, and you can to. So there really is no wrapping your hog in bubblewrap and protecting them from zero parasites, ever, haha.

Personally speaking; I bring my hog into the garden during the summer, and so far she's loved it. There are some common-sense things like not to leave them unattended, and stay close to them at all times - if you want to be extra safe, you can set up a playpen in case they dart. Stay in your garden (public spaces will carry a much greater risk of infection, due to the sheer volume of dogs and other animals that can be present and pesticide risk), and parasites are the least of your concerns. Predators and potentially losing your hedgehog is what you need to be worried about.

I've also never heard of dandelions being toxic; daffodils are toxic to many species, but dandelion should be perfectly safe... as far as I'm aware, at least. I havent heard of any species to which it poses a toxicity risk; certainly not any commonly kept one anyway.
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Its what I was told to do by I cant remember who now.
I was also told to use a small animal insecticide spray after to make sure.

And I was told dandelions are toxic. If they got it wrong then okay, but to be honest its not like I can just google it, because thats how they got it in the first place.

I cant have Holly out in my garden anyway, as most of it is patio and gets really hot so she cant go on it. And the grass gets sprayed with something I cant remember but she cant go near it (we have no other pets)

But your waking up a nocturnal animal to go outside during the day, but it has no benefit. And theres more hogs who dont like it than do. (They tend to try hide because they dont like really like being woken up to be brought out into the harsh sunlight)
Plus Holly is really light sensitive, around my house we dont have majorly bright lights (because I'm very light sensitive myself) so the sun would really hurt her eyes like it does mine, but unlike me where I can protect my eyes from the sun light. Holly Cant. So I'd rather not put her through that either.
Not power levelling, simply making a statement haha; I study parasitology, in addition to epidemiology - warm water alone, even accompanied with a basic shampoo or not, is not sufficient at killing parasites. Even OTC insecticides have very poor success rates. They are also super easy to access, thus are incredibly over-used and often incorrectly used; which can cause resistance issues, further rendering them effectively useless.

I've also never heard of dandelions being toxic (they're actually awesome for their diuretic properties, and are used as a supplementation for many animals). Unless the person who made these original claims got mixed up with daffodils, I personally have never heard of a species to which dandelion poses a toxicity risk.
Not saying one doesn't exist! I just havent heard of one.

Now bringing a nocturnal animals outdoors is a valid argument, but even nocturnal animals can and do venture out occasionally (< keyword here folks!) during daylight. I wouldn't say it has no benefit at all, I know Coco does appear to be genuinely enjoying herself when we let her explore the garden for a while (never by herself, ofc) and it provides a lot of stimulation for them. but she always has the option to go back in her snuggle sack if she wants to - and that's my nod to know that she'd had enough, and wants to go back in which case she is promptly brought back indoors.

Not all hedgehogs are the same of course, and some will absolutely hate being outdoors. But i think this needs to be assessed individually, and only the owner can make that decision as they know their animal best. If your hedgehog seems distressed/overall not having a good time, don't bring them outdoors. Otherwise, i (personally) see no issue with it at all.
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