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Caring for newborn orphaned baby hoglets is a job only for experts.

NEVER give cow's milk to hedgehogs

you will kill them.

Advice on how and when to rescue tiny orphaned baby hedgehogs

and guidelines on best practice to care for them.

Hedgehog weaning and rescue care advice.

Keeping them warm (35c) is of primary importance, absolutely vital.

We use Snugglesafe heat pads.

Babies should never be taken away from a nest unless we are 100% sure they have been abandoned by their mom or she has died or been killed.


From birth (10/12 grams) to the beginning of weaning (90/100 grams) they are very delicate.


They are always best fed and cared for by their mother.

Un piccolo riccio

If we do have to rescue, it is important to know how to tell the age of a newborn.

From 1 to 7 days.

The skin is pink, the spines are white, the eyes and ears are closed, and they are hairless.

Weight is from 10 to 35 grams approximately).

At 14 days.

The skin is grey, the spines begin to darken and the eyes open.


Weight is from 40 to 60 grams approximately.


At 21 days. 

The hedgehogs are covered with hair and begin to grow teeth.


Weight is from 70 to 100/120 grams approximately.

At one-month-old.

The hair is thicker and the teeth are almost completely formed.


If they are not in the wild, it is important to keep their weight under control.


They should increase by about 4 grams in weight per day, as a guide if everything is going well.


Weighing should be done at the same time every day.

They must be kept warm and must be breastfed manually all day and night, initially every two hours and then later every   three to four hours.



Never use cow's milk!

We use ESBILAC milk, in this phase, the most delicate, with dilution of one part of milk powder and two parts of warm water (pour over your hand to check not to hot).


It should be only warm to avoid some nutrients deteriorating and to protect the baby.

Clicca sulla foto per video su You Tube 

Un Piccolo Riccio. Progetto Riccio Europeo Treviso Italia
Usiamo latte in polvere Progetto Riccio Europeo. How to prepare special milk for baby hedgehogs
Ricci Neonati Royal Canin Baby Milk Powder. Progetto Riccio Europeo.

The belly and genitals should be gently massaged before and after the meal to stimulate the baby to pee and poop. It is advisable to use olive or almond oil to avoid any redness or inflammation.. 

This would normally be done by the mum licking them.

So since there is no mum we have to do this to mimic how the mum would encourage them to go to the toilet.

Their skin is still very, very delicate so please be very gentle.

As we see in the photo.

Feeding a newborn is delicate and dangerous. 

We do not recommend it for inexperienced people.

The mortality rate is high in inexperienced hands.


When simulating breastfeeding (either with a syringe or micro-teat) the infant must be gently held horizontally on its stomach.


Otherwise, milk can easily go into the lungs if the head is tilted back.


It should not be fed if the stomach is swollen or if suffering from hypothermia. Or also if unresponsive.


Milk (never cows) should not be given in excessive quantities or forced in any way. When hungry they are eager feeders. 


During the first few days with us, the baby's weight may not grow as normal.


Also, any change of milk powder manufacturer or any other change in the situation may disrupt growth.

Un piccolo riccio

This feeding should only ever be done by trained people.

It takes time and patience.

Un Piccolo Riccio. Mai dare latte vaccino!! Progetto Riccio Europeo Treviso Italia

Hold the tiny newborn horizontally on its stomach with the syringe level with the mouth. Not pointing down. 

Make sure that its head is never tilted backwards to avoid milk going straight into the lungs.

Solo per persone esperte.


Hold the tiny newborn horizontal to the syringe.

Make sure that its head is never tilted backwards to avoid milk going straight into the lungs.

In the case of newborn babies found to be highly dehydrated, give a small amount of tepid fennel tea with very little milk for the first three meals and only if the baby has been warmed-up gently.


In fact, it is very important to always wait for the hedgehog to be warm before proceeding with tea or milk

(See Hypothermia button).

Please avoid stressing infants with improper behaviour and, above all, handle them very, very, gently to avoid damage to their extremely delicate skin. Or causing fractures to undeveloped bones.


Our advice?

Deliver them immediately to expert hands.

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The types of syringes Progetto Riccio Europeo uses for feeding baby hedgehogs. 

Siringhe che usiamo per nutrire i piccoli ricci. Progetto Riccio Europeo.
Syringes we use to feed baby hedgehogs. Progetto Riccio Europeo .png
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