Hedgehogs are unique pets with qualities that you may not find in other usual pets, such as cats or dogs. These tiny animals prefer to stay alone and have limited interactions.
The lack of interaction between an owner and its hedgehog may make you wonder about their intelligence. So are hedgehogs smart?
It has been observed that although solitary, hedgehogs are smart animals. However, it would be unfair to compare their intelligence with the likes of monkeys, dogs, or cats.
Many pet parents have learned that hedgehogs do become responsive towards them. Hedgehogs, however, may not be as responsive when it comes to teaching tricks.
Do Hedgehogs Recognise Their Owners?
New owners can sometimes get worried if their hedgehog is unresponsive. It is natural for your hedgehog to be nervous around you because they generally do not like company.
Moreover, a new place and environment are likely to stress them out.
You will soon find that as time passes, your hedgehog will become more comfortable around you. It will recognize your scent and appearance over time.
There have been multiple instances where hedgehogs recognize their owners. For example, at the vet, hedgehogs have been known to run to their owners if they feel stressed.
Do Hedgehogs Feel Love?
All hedgehogs have different personalities and traits. Hedgehogs will never show love directly as a dog would. Some hedgehogs are not affectionate, while some feel love for their owners and may cuddle against them.
Your hedgehog’s interaction with you depends on its nature and personality.
How Do Hedgehogs Show Affection?
While hedgehogs do like to be by themselves, they still show affection to their owners. There are several ways that you can recognize your hedgehog showing affection to you.
One way you can see your hedgehog’s love for you is if they respond to your presence. Your hedgehog will do this by making an appearance out from their hole by looking for you after they hear your voice.
Some hedgehogs are big on snuggles and will spread out and lay relaxed, snuggling against you. This is a sign that your hedgehog fully trusts you.
Although it is rare, some hedgehogs may wait eagerly at the gate of their cage for you. If you follow a routine for your hedgehog, they may wait for you and adhere according to the schedule.
Hedgehogs may even snuggle up to you with their noses and nibble at you as a sign of affection. If you find your hedgehog huffing and puffing, it means they trust you. Notice your hedgehog’s quills. If the quills are flat, it means they are relaxed and comfortable around you.
Do All Hedgehogs Have Different Personalities?
Every hedgehog has its personality. You may notice a change in their personalities over time from when you first purchase your hedgehog. Their personality is also depended on how you handle them.
Some hedgehogs are very vocal about their needs and in general.
They will huff and puff around you. Hedgehogs can also be very active, especially during the nighttime. These tiny mammals love to explore and satisfy their curiosity. The explorer hedgehog will not sit still and scurry all around, searching and sniffing.
In contrast, hedgehogs can also be lazy. They love to eat, walk a bit and curl and sleep.
Your hedgehog can be friendly or a bit aloof. Just like humans have different personalities, so do hedgehogs. You can never really tell as you purchase them in a short amount of time. Moreover, their surroundings also affect their personality.
How Can You Bond with Your Hedgehog?
The more time you spend with your hedgehog, the more it will get used to your presence, and your attachment will grow. Remember that hedgehogs are naturally solitary animals that become easily stressed; therefore, a lot of patience is required on your part.
You can begin bonding with your hedgehog as soon as you bring it to your home. You can place your shirt or any piece of clothing you have worn in its cage. By doing so, your hedgehog will get accustomed to your scent. Hedgehogs rely a lot on their scents, which is one of the best ways to bond with them.
Hedgehogs also get used to your voice. As you snuggle or play with your hedgehog, talk to them. Talking with your hedgehog will make them get used to your voice. Hence, every time they hear your voice, it is likely that they will respond.
Let your hedgehog explore around and get used to its surroundings. Hedgehogs are curious by nature, and the more they explore, they will figure out that it is a safe space for them.
Bonding with hedgehogs requires a lot of patience. Do not force your hedgehog to spend time with you if they feel scared or stressed.
Hedgehog owners often question their pet’s intelligence. But are hedgehogs smart or not?
A hedgehog’s intelligence is like a hamster. Hedgehogs are smart and unique animals, but you cannot expect them to perform tricks like dogs or monkeys.
Hedgehogs can recognize their owners. Although they may not show it, they are also affectionate towards them. Hedgehogs recognize their owners by their voice.
Hedgehogs do feel love and other emotions. A hedgehog would never directly express its love for its owner, but there are ways that these tiny animals show their affection. They a hedgehog expresses his love depends on its personality.
Your hedgehog may snuggle against you and even nibble at you to show affection. Notice the quills of your hedgehog. If the quills are flat, it means your hedgehog is comfortable and trusts you. Hedgehogs may also huff and puff around you and express their love this way.
You can bond with your hedgehog by spending time with them. The more time you spend, the greater the attachment will be. Your hedgehog will learn to recognize your voice and remember your scent.
You can leave your shirt with the hedgehog, talk to them, and let them explore. Remember to be patient during the entire process, as hedgehogs are introverted and sensitive animals.