When Do Hedgehogs Hibernate?

Hedgehogs may hibernate if the temperature drops too low for too long in their surroundings. Even so, it would help if you didn’t let them get away with it since it’s potentially harmful. In contrast to their wild counterparts, pet hedgehogs’ immune systems can’t handle the drastic weather changes or food deprivation they face in the wild.

Hedgehogs in the wild have a year-round life cycle that is markedly different from the pet ones. Many new hedgehog owners are unfamiliar with hedgehog hibernation. It is a common misconception that because hibernation is a normal occurrence, there’s no need to be afraid of it. But this is not the case.

Hibernation may be deadly to a pet hedgehog. Don’t worry if this appears a bit out of the ordinary to you right now. If you’ve ever wondered about the hibernating habits of hedgehogs, we are here to guide you. Here you will learn when hedgehogs hibernate. In the wild, hedgehogs consume as much as they can to fatten up for hibernation during fall. They eat as many beetles, caterpillars, and earthworms as they can find in order to build up adequate fat stores for the winter.

Hedgehogs hibernate alone. Using whatever things they find and hiding spots they can discover, they then locate a location to relax for the next several months. The fall and summer months are critical when it comes to gaining weight before hibernation.

We will tell you what time of year hedgehogs go into hibernation and at what temperature do hedgehogs hibernate. Late December/early January to the end of March are commonly the months when hedgehogs hibernate. Winter for hedgehogs may last from October to March. However, this may vary depending on the weather and food supply. They will burn up almost all of their fat reserves during this time, which they accrued by consuming as much as possible throughout the summer. We must feed hedgehogs properly in order to restore their population.

In order to save energy, hedgehogs go into hibernation, even though they may seem to be napping. “Torpor,” the condition of reduced physiological activity hedgehogs enter while they hibernate, aids them in surviving periods of very low temperatures. Hedgehogs drastically lower their core body temperature and their metabolic rate, making it impossible for them to move normally.

Hedgehog hibernation will be discussed in depth in the following paragraphs:

What Is Basically Hibernation?

For many of us, hibernation conjures up images of slumbering creatures curled up in cozy corners, waiting patiently for spring to arrive. Despite what seems to be the case, they are not actually gone.

In order to enter a condition of hibernation, an animal must:

  • slowly increasing the amount of time they spend in deep relaxation
  • Reducing their body temperature and metabolic rate.

All of this implies that they can go for extended periods of time without consuming food, but they must get up from time to time to get food and use the restroom. Even if temps dip below zero, their slick bodies can jolt them awake.

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Why Do Hedgehogs Go into Hibernation?

From the beginning of November, you should observe the behavior of your pet hedgehog, and you should also keep a lookout for visiting hedgehogs and note their weight. They wouldn’t mind if you weighed one of them on your kitchen scales. Hedgehogs don’t just fall asleep during hibernation; they enter a condition known as ‘torpor,’ a state of profound slumber.

In order to stay alive, one must reduce their heart rate, breathing rate, body temperature, and metabolic rate to their absolute minimums. It’s a means of coping with life’s challenges.

Why should our hedgehogs suffer in this way? They should not only survive but flourish.

Attempts by hedgehogs to hibernate have one common cause: a chilly environment in which they live. In order to begin the process of hibernation, it just requires a large and prolonged drop in room temperature. A hedgehog may fall into hibernation during the winter if it isn’t well-insulated or warm in its cage.

If you are looking for a good cage to keep your hedgehog warm and safe in, we recommend this amazing cage by living world on amazon. An instinctual sensitivity to decreasing temperatures is what causes this. When living in the wild, they naturally hibernate during the winter months.

How Big Does A Hedgehog Need To Be To Hibernate?

Preparing for hibernation requires a hedgehog to weigh roughly 600 grams before the extended hibernation period begins. Hibernation attempts by hedgehogs younger or who weigh less than this will fail if the body fat content is too low, and the animal will not resurface. Please keep a lookout for visiting hedgehogs from the beginning of November and note their weight. Weighing one of them won’t cause too much of a fuss.

At What Temperature Do Hedgehogs Hibernate?

So let’s examine the temperature at which hedgehog mats seek to hibernate. This is vital information if you keep a hedgehog as a pet. If you don’t keep reading, you might lose the life of your pet! Late December/early January to the end of March are usually the months when hedgehogs hibernate. On the other hand, Hedgehogs may hibernate at any time of the year, depending on the weather and the specific hedgehog.

Hedgehogs hibernate in various ways, depending on the climate in which they live. If the hedgehog is used to temperatures as high as around 68°F, this state may be induced, or as low as 35°F, depending on the surrounding conditions. Hedges are known to hibernate in the winter, as is their custom.

There is, however, considerable variance in the temperature a hedgehog can endure before hibernation which is induced by country of origin. Hibernation may be triggered by a variety of factors, including changes in temperature well as food availability, and a reduction in daylight hours.

NOTE:

Hedgehogs should be maintained in a temperature range of about 73-77 degrees Fahrenheit in order to prevent entering into a harmful hibernation condition.

Why Shouldn’t Pet Hedgehogs Hibernate?

Health problems and even mortality may result from hedgehog hibernation in domestic pets. Despite their body’s efforts to decrease their heart rate, body temperature, and breaths per minute to the “correct” level, they are unable to cope with it.

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Firstly, there are two basic issues:

  1. Pet hedgehogs would starve to death if left in their hibernating stage because they lack the fat reserves necessary to get them through the long winter months ahead of them.
  2. As their metabolic rate drops and their body attempts to conserve resources to the fullest, they become immunocompromised, and they are more susceptible to diseases. In addition to causing problems for the hedgehog while it is hibernating, this may also impact its lifetime (assuming you are able to bring it out).

 

Signs Your Hedgehog Is Hibernating:

This state has a variety of telltale indicators, although many of these symptoms may be attributed to other disorders. Hence, if you have doubts, you should always consult with an exotics veterinarian. Your hedgehog snuggling up into a ball that you can’t pull him out of is one of the most evident signs that he is hibernating.

The following are additional common warning signs:

  • Lack of food intake
  • Lethargy
  • Shivering
  • Breathing in and out slowly and deeply
  • You may also tell whether your hedgehog is entering hibernation by touching its tummy; if it’s chilly, it’s most probable that your pet is hibernating.

How to Keep Pet Hedgehogs From Hibernating:

In order to successfully prevent hedgehogs from hibernating, temperature regulation is essential!

To maintain a hedgehog, you’ll need to invest in temperature control and widely available monitoring systems. You can find some really good monitoring systems for pets such as pet monitoring cameras by VSTarcam. Under no circumstances should the temperature be allowed to go below or increase over the recommended range of 68°F and 78°F, which is when problems might emerge. In addition to the weather, access to water might also be a problem. For this reason, you should only give your hedgehog a small water dish and be sure to dry him off once he has been bathed fully.

You may take additional precautions during the colder months, such as heating pads.

We recommend you use these amazing heating-pads by Snuggle Safe.

 Do Hedgehogs Hibernate Alone?

Do hedgehogs hibernate alone? Yes, they do. They’re solitary animals. Unexpectedly, captive hedgehogs often opt to live in communal burrows. During the first six to eight weeks of life, mothers give their infants their whole attention before allowing them to go out on their own.

Your Hedgehogs Hibernating: What to do about it:

It’s time to call your veterinarian right away if your hedgehog seems to be hibernating: chilly, balled, and unresponsive to touch. But if your Hedgehog is slow, sluggish, chilly, shivering, or semi-bald, it is possible to interrupt its effort at hibernation.

Unless you’re able to warm the hedgehog over your skin gently, it’s best to place it on top of your t-shirt and cover it with a thin blanket to keep it warm.

 When do Hedgehogs Come Out Of Hibernation?

Hedgehogs come out of hibernation, usually in spring. Hedgehogs will begin to emerge from hibernation around March, depending on the weather. A third of their body weight is expected to have been lost during the winter hibernation. Consequently, they’ll be ravenous when you see them!