I have found a hedgehog is it suffering hypothermia?
The first rule is to warm-up a hedgehog up before
giving it any food or water.
In over 90% of our rescues, all year round hypothermia is a serious issue.
The body temperature of a healthy hedgehog is 35°C.
If a hedgehog doesn't feel warm to the touch?
Then it is suffering from hypothermia.
Hypothermia can kill hedgehogs of all ages at any time of year.
When suffering from hypothermia, all the blood vessels in a hedgehog will contract.
This is nature's way of protecting the internal organs.
This means it will be dangerous and
difficult for the animal's body to be able to absorb food and water.
In cases of hypothermia, please
never try to force the hedgehog to eat or drink straight away.
Throughout the year, and especially in autumn and winter, when a hedgehog in difficulty is found, we must check if it is suffering from hypothermia. It is likely it could be.
Hypothermia can be caused by severe stress, trauma, injury, illness or debilitation.
In newborn and infants, hypothermia may occur when mom is missing or killed. She usually keeps them warm.
Once they have returned to normal body temperature most adults will go to drink water from a bowl left available to them.
For infants and babies, please click on Newborn. Once warmed-up you can proceed to give them specially prepared powdered milk with warm water. We use ESBILAC or ROYAL CANIN powdered milk (never cow's milk) please.
A good way to warm-up a hedgehog is to provide a hot water bottle under or beside it.
Carefully wrap a fleece or fabric that does not lose its threads between the bottle and the hedgehog.
Another even better way of warming a cold hedgehog or a newborn baby is to use a Snugglesafe pad.
This is a specially made pad that can be heated in a microwave.
It can maintain heat for at least 8 hours.
We avoid using any heaters that have wires since these can be dangerous.
Snugglesafe pads can be bought from Zooplus here.