Dehydration In Hedgehogs: Signs, Causes & Treatment

If your Hedgehog truly isn’t drinking any water, then you need to take this situation seriously. It may mean that there is something seriously wrong with your Hedgehog’s health and they need to see a veterinarian. I did some research and consulted my veterinarian friends. Let us learn more about the same in detail.

Your Hedgehog may be dehydrated if you see any of these problems: stinky and dark-colored urine, poor appetite, sudden weight loss, struggling to walk, swollen tongue, or sunken eyes. Change in environmental conditions and temperature also affects the consumption of water by your Hedgehog.

In most cases, Hedgehogs regulate their own water intake without the interference of their owners. They will drink when they are thirsty. In addition to this, they will also get some water intake from their regular diet.

On the other hand, some Hedgehogs are a bit picky. They will not drink adequate water and have a higher risk of becoming dehydrated. In these cases, there is a lot you can do to help your pet drink more water.

Now, let us learn more about dehydration in Hedgehogs and at what point you should be concerned about your Hedgehog.

What Is Dehydration In Hedgehogs?

According to News Medical, dehydration is a condition that results when the body loses more water than it takes in. This imbalance disrupts the normal levels of salts and sugars present in the blood, interfering with how the body functions.

There are a few things that can result in dehydration in our Hedgehogs. Excessive water loss through urine, vomiting, sweating, drooling, or diarrhea can quickly dehydrate our Hedgehogs. Sometimes, even loss of water due to the loosening of stools can lead to dehydration in Hedgehog.

Domesticated Hedgehogs should not go for an extended period without water. Although wild hedgehogs will survive without water for a long time, domesticated ones can easily fall sick.

Sometimes, even excessive drooling can result in a drop in water level in Hedgehog’s body. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that our little one drinks enough water each day.

In addition, being a responsible Hedgehog owner, you must provide your little friend with fresh water every 24 hours.

How Can You Tell If A Hedgehog Is Dehydrated?

In some situations, dehydration can prove to be life-threatening for our Hedgehogs. There can be several reasons due to which your Hedgehog might be dehydrated. That spans from the medical to the psychological.

Being a responsible Hedgehog owner, you must learn to pick out the signs of dehydration in your little friend. Some of the symptoms of dehydration in Hedgehogs are:

  • If your Hedgehogs is unusually lethargic and does not show any activity, then he might be dehydrated. A lazy Hedgehog will spend most of the time curled up in a corner of his enclosure.
  • A dehydrated Hedgehog will always pass foul and stinky urine. Also, you will notice a visible change in the color of your Hedgehog’s urine.
  • You will notice a sudden fall in the weight of your Hedgehog if he is dehydrated. They will have a loss of appetite and will barely eat.
  • Your Hedgehog’s eyes will sink and tongue will swell if he is dehydrated. Therefore, it is important to keep a regular check on them.
  • If your Hedgehog is wobbling or strugling to walk, then your Hedgehog might be dehydrated.

Quick Way To Check If Your Hedgehog Is Dehydrated:

There is an easy way to find out if your Hedgehog is dehydrated. Gently pull some of the spines on your Hedgehog’s back. Make sure you do not hurt your little pet in any way.

Now, look if the skin springs back into place quickly or takes some time. If the skin takes more than 10 seconds to get to its normal position, then there is a high chance that your Hedgehog is dehydrated.

How Do You Rehydrate A Hedgehog?

It is crucial to take immediate action if you notice your Hedgehog is dehydrated. If you are not sure about your Hedgehog’s treatment, take them to the vet as soon as possible. They will help you take the situation under control.

It will take some time to rehydrate your Hedgehog. Therefore, you must never stress your Hedgehog by forcing him to drink water. However, listed below are a few things you can do to rehydrate your Hedgehog:

  • Try to increase your Hedgehog’s water intake. Also, regular water will not help much to cope with extreme dehydration. Therefore, provide your Hedgehog with elctrolyte water.
  • To induce your Hedgehog to drink more water, place both, a water bottle as well as a water bowl in their cage.
  • If you fail to trick your Hedgehog to drink water directly, try to feed them with food which are rich in water content. However, do not end up feeding them in excess. Excessive consumption of watery food can make your Hedgehog diabetic.
  • You can also go for special rehydration solutions speciallu made for Hedgehogs. These solutions are easily available in local pet stores. However, if you do not find it there, you can look for it on any online website.
  • If you still have any concerns about your Hedgehogs health, the best option is to take them to a vet.

How To Prevent Dehydration In Hedgehogs?

It is essential to check your Hedgehog’s water intake to avoid getting dehydrated. As a Hedgehog owner, you are responsible for ensuring that your Hedgehog drinks sufficient water.

Like most animals, hedgehogs need a constantly fresh and clean water supply. Without it, your Hedgehog can become dehydrated in no time. So if you live in a chillier locale, make sure your Hedgehog’s bottle or bowl does not freeze.

Provide multiple clean water sources for the Hedgehog to drink. Various options will help your Hedgehog to drink more water.

Besides this, it is essential to provide your Hedgehog will a balanced diet. A balanced diet also helps Hedgehogs maintain water levels in their body.

If your Hedgehog shows any signs of dehydration, provide your pet with plenty of cool water or an electrolyte formula designed especially for Hedgehogs to help rehydrate them and restore them to health.

How Much Water Should My Hedgehog Drink Per Day?

On average, a healthy Hedgehog mostly drinks anywhere between 30-60 ml of water a day. However, the actual amount of consumption depends on several factors. Some of the common factors are:

  • The age of your Hedgehog plays an important role. Young and growing Hedgehogs are more in need of water than elder Hedgehogs.
  • The temperature around your Hedgehog is also of utmost important. Hedgehogs will need more water in summer than in winter.
  • The doet of your Hedgehog also impacts the drinking habit of your Hedgehogs. Consumption of more of dry food will make them drink more water.
  • The energy level of a Hedgehog also decides the amount of water consumed by them. Super active Hedgehogs will require more water to keep themselves hydrated.
  • 40-60 ml of water in one day is more than enough to keep your Hedgehog healthy and hydrated. Make sure to change the water regularly for the safety of your Hedgehogs.

You should always make sure that the bottle or bowl is always filled with water for them. Never let the bottle remain empty for more than a few hours a day.

Related Queries:

Can Hedgehogs Drink Cold Water?

Hedgehogs can drink cold water, but the water’s temperature should not be at extreme levels. Also, do not provide them with too much cold water at a time. Some studies even show that Hedgehogs are discriminatory in their drinking water and, like humans, prefer cool drinking water.


Hello, I am Mohini, the founder of this blog. I am a qualified Animal Nutrition. I am here to help everyone understand their pets better.

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