Hedgehogs are small, cute animals commonly kept as pets around the globe. These solitary creatures are named due to the way they eat. They’re usually found beneath hedges and shrubs, making snorting noises while searching for food.
Hedgehogs often feed on insects, snails, worms, centipedes, amongst others. They are known for their foraging methods.
Many hedgehog owners have asked if hedgehogs can jump and climb. While some owners assume they can, others are not sure if hedgehogs can jump or climb. Guess you’re in doubt too.
While hedgehogs have good ability to climb, they can’t jump from one point to the other. These small mammals are quite adept at climbing up, however, they experience difficulty in climbing down. Most of the cases they fall, rather climbing down.
This is due to their short round bodies, which do not entirely support climbing, unlike the long, narrow bodies of squirrels and monkeys. Being light footed, hedgehogs’ attempt at climbing is awkward and clumsy.
How High Can Hedgehogs Jump?
Typically, hedgehogs don’t jump, but when needed, they do so as a defense mechanism. It’s common for hedgies to hiss and jump at things that make them feel uncomfortable, especially if they’re in a scary new environment.
Hedgehogs can jump 12-15 inches vertically and about 20 inches horizontally, when they feel agitated or frightened. They usually releases a clicking noise before jumping.
From How High Can Hedgehogs Fall Safely?
Wild hedgehogs can climb trees as high as thirty feet, looking for food. While they sometimes fall by accident, they fall on purpose to evade a predator on a few occasions.
Momentarily, the burrowing animals fall because it’s a lot faster than climbing down.
Can Hedgehogs Climb on Trees?
Yes, the ground-dwelling creatures climb trees, but you’ll seldom find them on trees. Tree barks seem easier for them to grip on. Trees with slight slopes make climbing easy for them; however, they won’t go too high as they have poor vision and can stumble.
Hedgehogs are often seen burrowing near tree trunks for hibernation reasons. Although they’re mainly terrestrial, the small beings can swim and climb quite well. Climbing down is an arduous task for the spiny mammals.
They fall, using their spine as a cushion against the hard ground. This reduces damage and injury to their internal organs. Due to hedgehogs’ lack of agility and grace, ladders, branches, and perches in hedgehog cages are quite dangerous for these active animals.
Can Hedgehogs Climb on Fences?
Hedgehogs can climb virtually any fence. They have a unique habit of walking about 1 to 2 miles in the night, searching for food. You might have seen them roaming in your garden.
Gardens are one of the safest places for them to get food and shelter from unfavorable conditions like being chased by a predator or run over by a car.
Hedgehogs are like your garden saviors who help get rid of insects that destroy your plants. They also feed on snails and slugs. Fences may hinder the movement of these mammals in your garden.
Since they’re beneficial to you, you should erect a hedgehog friendly fence that will allow for easy passage. Build your fence with log piles, dry stones, or planks with tailor-made gaps for the small animals to pass through.
Why is My Hedgehog Jumping?
If you tried handling your pet and it jumps out of your grasp, then it might be one of the following:
- It’s not familiar with the new environment.
- Hedgehog might be the anxious type.
- Your pet may be sensitive to noise and disturbances.
- The female hedgehog may be pregnant hence its irritable behavior.
- After birth, the motherly instinct might kick in, causing them to jump and watch over their little ones.
- They may be unwell due to sickness or disease
So, because hedgehogs usually jump when they feel threatened or uncomfortable, you’re probably thinking of ways to make your hedgehog feel safe and relaxed.
Below are a few ways to create a calm and serene environment for hedgehogs:
– Use Food to Draw Their Attention
Pick up your hedgie with a towel. When they’re flipped over, use a small plastic spoon or tweezers to put food in the small opening, similar to the mouth. D
oing this will entice the pet and make them feel comfy. There’s a wide variety of treats used to entice hedgehogs.
– Change the Environment to Stimulate their Interest
Earlier on, we stated that your hedgehog could be jumpy if it’s not comfortable in its environment. In changing their environment, scoop them up in your hand with their bedding (either wood or paper shavings) or towel.
Tilt their head slightly down to incite their interest in the new area they’re taken to. This might stimulate their exploring mood, making them ready to settle in their new place.
When close to the destination, allow them to put their front feet down to feel their environment. Once they feel safe, they’ll let down their hind legs as well.
– Bathing and Grooming
Another way to make your pet hedgehog feel comfortable is to give them a warm bath. It makes them feel relaxed and happy. Make sure you fill up the sink with warm water and allow them to walk and play happily in it.
Ensure the water is shallow. Using a cup or small bowl, gently pour warm water over them. Be sure you don’t pour water over their face, so they don’t inhale it.
A soft scrubbing brush can also be used to scrub their feet and quills. This method is beneficial because it helps in bonding hedgehog and handler.
With the above-listed methods, the probability of your hedgehog jumping is minimal. Never forget, in handling hedgehogs, you’ll need time and practice for them to get used to you.
Can Hedgehogs Climb Up Steps?
Since hedgehogs are adept at climbing rough surfaces and ledges, steps are an easy obstacle course. So a hedgehog can easily walk upstairs in your home.
Hedgehogs are more agile than they look. They’re athletic and can run many miles at night. Not only have they been sighted climbing walls, fences, and high elevations, they’re also good swimmers.
While hedgehogs are good climbers, they can’t climb vertical or slippery surfaces. Now you know the jumping and climbing actions of hedgehogs. Have fun bonding with your hedgie!