Hedgehogs are more complex than you realise. They have a strong sense of smell, poor sense of sight and are somewhat colour
blind. So let’s take a closer look at their senses and their eyes in particular and consider do hedgehogs blink?
Yes, hedgehogs do blink! Hedgehogs have eyelids and sleep with their eyes closed.
Hedgehogs have to blink to prevent any dust or dirt from entering their eyes. In addition, by blinking, hedgehogs also keep their eyes moist.
However, many prey animals follow an unusual blinking behaviour which is why people question a hedgehog’s ability to blink. For example, rabbits sleep with their eyes open to look out for predators.
Do Hedgehogs Wink?
Many hedgehog owners have noticed that their little companions sometimes blink using one eye. This one eye blinking or the hedgehog wink worries pet parents because they think that something is wrong, and rightly so.
However, as a pet parent, you should not worry. Some hedgehogs will do perpetual blinking, which can look as if your hedgehog is winking. However, this winking is common for hedgehogs and is of no reason for you to worry.
It will help if you look for signs like redness in the eyes, irritation or watery, or too much dryness. However, your hedgehog is perfectly healthy if you do not see any of these symptoms and the winking.
Do Hedgehogs Have a Third Eyelid?
Animals such as cats have a third eyelid. The third eyelid serves as an extra protection layer for animals. A common question which people have regarding hedgehogs is if they have a third eyelid. The answer is yes; hedgehogs do have a third eyelid.
Sometimes hedgehogs can hurt themselves by poking themselves in the third eyelid. This can cause the eyelid to become red and swollen. Therefore, it is important to monitor and keep a check on your hedgehog to see that it is well.
Do Hedgehogs Have Bad Eyesight?
Many people believe that hedgehogs are blind. However, hedgehogs are not blind, but they do have poor eyesight. But hedgehogs are prone to going blind because of an illness or disease. Some hedgehogs can also be born blind.
As aforementioned, hedgehogs are not born with stellar eyesight. These small mammals can only see the outline of people and objects along with some shadows. Hedgehogs can tell some outlines of objects and do not see them exactly as they are.
A reason why hedgehogs are so timid and scared is that they cannot see. Therefore, it is important to avoid any loud noise or sudden movements when dealing with hedgehogs.
Hedgehogs cannot see well because they are nocturnal animals. These mammals have evolved in such a manner that good eyesight is not in their favour. Hedgehogs sleep during the day and are active at nighttime.
Therefore, the natural habitat of hedgehogs does not require them to have excellent eyesight to survive.
Many people do believe that hedgehogs have good night vision. Given that hedgehogs are nocturnal animals, it should only make sense that they can see better nighttime. However, this fact still has not been proven true, so there is not much to say.
Are Hedgehogs Colour Blind?
Hedgehogs may have poor vision, but they are not completely colour blind. However, the colour vision of hedgehogs is quite limited. These small mammals can only see colours that are a shade of brown or cream. Hence, there are many colours that hedgehogs cannot see.
There have been instances where hedgehogs could separate the colours like blue and yellow from each other. Hence hedgehogs are not fully colour
blind, but their retinas are limited to only 4%, which means they see little colour.
How Do Hedgehogs Survive With Little Eyesight?
As aforementioned, hedgehogs have been evolved to work with poor eyesight. These spined animals do not come out during the day; therefore, they do not need their eyesight to hunt or look for food.
Therefore, it is essential to give your pet hedgehog a few dark spots in his cage so it can go and stay there during the daytime.
While hedgehogs have bad eyesight, they have an excellent sense of hearing to make up for it. Moreover, hedgehogs also have a good sense of smell. So, with a great nose and a good sense of hearing, hedgehogs look for food and dodge their predators and any threats they feel they are getting.
Hence, when a hedgehogs sense that a predator is nearby, it either smells it or hears something with its ears. This allows the hedgehog to prefer beforehand and curl into a ball. So, hedgehogs do not require good eyesight to survive.
Most hedgehogs that are born blind do well and can lead good lives with no problem.
Hedgehogs make great pets if you are looking for a companion that does not require much attention. Unfortunately, while many people are into the idea of keeping hedgehogs, they still do not know much about them.
Like other prey animals, people believe that hedgehogs do not blink and sleep with their eyes open. However, hedgehogs have eyelids, and like humans, they do blink. Hedgehogs need to blink to keep their eyes moist and prevent them from drying.
Sometimes it can appear as if hedgehogs are winking.
However, this is only perpetual blinking and no reason to worry. If there is no redness, itchiness, or water in the eyes, your hedgehog is fine. It is quite common for hedgehogs to blink with one eye.
In addition, hedgehogs also have a third eyelid and can hurt themselves by poking it. These small mammals are not colour blind but have limited colour vision. Hedgehogs can survive with bad eyesight because they evolved this way and do not need it to survive.
Instead, hedgehogs have a good smell and hearing sense to make up for bad eyesight.