Would you imagine a life without any entertainment? Well, the chances are that neither would your hedgehog. Today, there’s more talk than ever about animal life enrichment. You can take practical steps to engage your prickly buddy in fun activities. One of the ways is to give them nice toys. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at possible toys and play solutions for hedgehogs.
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Quick answer: what kind of toys do hedgehogs like?
Hedgehogs like the following types of toys:
- Hideout toys
- Small plastic balls
You can pick between small animal toys on sale in stores or finding cheap, yet creative solutions at home. Always make sure that the toys won’t pose any potential harm to your hedgehog.
Why are toys important for hedgehogs?
We are all animals, aren’t we? In addition to eating, sleeping, and simply moving around, we enjoy engaging activities. And when we are children, there’s even more fun in novel toys and happy playtime. In this regard, hedgehogs are quite similar to small kids. They love playing!
It’s always a good idea to provide your hedgehog with toys. Basically, you have two options. Either you buy actual toys created for small animals or you use common household items. The latter has a downside. Some of the things not designated for playing might pose a health hazard to your hedgie.
There’s a minority of people who say that toys are somehow ‘invented’ for hedgehogs. And they naturally wouldn’t resort to playing. We beg to differ. Even in the wild, hedgehogs climb, drag, and pull items. Who are we as humans to know for sure that these activities completely lack an aspect of playfulness and joy? Yes, it’s impossible to know that for sure.
What kind of official toys are available for pet hedgies?
We’ll take a closer look at some of the product categories that make great toys for hedgehogs. We tried to find toys for small animals that are suitable for hedgehogs. Always use common sense before buying any particular product. Think through the potential hazards to avoid any injuries.
Wooden Tunnel Tubes
Tunnel tubes are great fun for hedgies. But not all the play tubes are made from healthy materials. Opting for a wooden tunnel is a better choice for your hedgie. Just make sure the tunnel tube doesn’t contain any splinters or sharp edges before you allow your hedgehog to have some fun with it.
Do you want to make the tunnel play more engaging? You could add some delicious treats inside. Then you can watch your hedgie happily hunting down the treats inside the wooden tunnel.
Barrel roller toys are usually made from wood. These can be very fun for your hedgehog to play around with. Furthermore, when there’s a little tingling ball inside, it makes playing with the rolling toy even more pleasant.
This is definitely a toy that encourages being physically active. Also, the barrel roll toy engages your hedgehog in interacting with his environment. There’s constant feedback in the form of sounds and physical movement.
Does your hedgehog chew on things? Some hedgies have this habit more than others. But it’s always a good idea to make sure they don’t chew on anything potentially unhealthy for them.
Buying a healthy knot nibbler toy can be a good idea. You have to opt for the ones made of wood and dyed with organic vegetable colors. This is a toy that’s suitable for small rodents as well. If you have guinea pigs at home, then they’ll love this too! But never share the same toys between different pets. Always have individual toys to prevent bacteria, parasites, and other microorganisms from spreading.
When you buy a play bridge, you need to be careful with its dimensions. Some of these play bridges are unsuitable for hedgehogs because these toy products are too small for them. Also, verify that there’s enough room between the individual stairs. Otherwise, your hedgie could get stuck and hurt its legs.
Sometimes hedgehogs won’t even climb over these play bridges. They will gnaw on the wooden bridges sometimes or just rest next to them. Because of the chewing risk, ensure the product is free from any harmful chemicals.
Most hideout toys are great for hedgehogs. Sometimes they feel agitated and stressed. Then they can just go inside a hideout toy to have some much-needed time off.
There are many different types of hideout toys. Some of them are plastic, others are made from grass fibers or wood. Before buying one for your hedgehog, check that the hideout space would be free of any things that could injure your hedgie.
NB! Hideout toys come in many shapes and sizes. Ensure that your hedgehog can comfortably turn around inside the hiding spot when there’s only one entrance but no exit. Actually, the best option is having both entrance and exit, such as tunnel-type toys.
What are good DIY toys for hedgehogs?
You don’t always have to buy brand new toys for your hedgie. Instead, you could use the materials and things that you already have at home. This is a fun way to keep your hedgie entertained without breaking the bank. Here are some of the best DIY toy ideas for your hedgehog.
Do you have any big PVC pipes at home? If you found any, then make sure that the diameter is wide enough for your hedgie not to get stuck in it. There are many upsides to using PVC pipes as toys.
Your hedgie will most likely love to rummage through the pipe. He might even try to stay inside because it feels very safe. However, that point might also be a downside. Sometimes it’s hard to get your prickly buddy out of the pipe without making them slip out in an uncomfortable way.
The PVC pipes are great because you can easily clean them. Should you want to make a long tunnel, you can link a few pipes together. In this way, you’ll create a fun megastructure for your hedgie.
Toilet Paper Tubes
This is one of the cheapest toys you can find. Actually, it’s even recycling! Use finished toilet paper tubes for keeping your hedgie pet occupied. They love to push and prod the tubes. This is a lot of fun!
Don’t be surprised when you hedgehog takes a liking towards stuffed animals. Also, this is another wallet-friendly solution. You don’t have to buy a new one. Ask your friends and family if they have any old ones lying around. Many people have stuffed animals that they have outgrown a long time ago.
Experts recommend using stuffed animals that are the size of your hedgehog or smaller than them. When these stuffed animals get dirty, wash them for hygiene reasons. Sometimes they get completely ruined. In this case, simply throw it away.
Most hedgehogs absolutely love plastic balls. These cheap toys can be very engaging for them.
- Cat balls
- Ping pong balls
- Dingly balls
Don’t give your hedgehog balls to play that turn out to be too big. Opt for smaller ones that won’t carry the risk of injuries. Also, make sure the balls withstand rough play. Above all, you don’t want to give balls to your hedgehog that easily gives away pieces of plastic or other materials.
Which toys do hedgehogs dislike?
Hedgehogs definitely dislike toys that could harm them. Or let’s just say that they should dislike these toys. In reality, your hedgie could potentially engage with any toy you give him. As a result, you could unknowingly give your pet hedgehog a toy that might do some harm.
Avoid all toys that have the potential to get their tiny feet stuck. Similarly, keep any toys away that have extremely sharp edges. These could seriously injure your hedgie.
Another thing to keep in mind is making sure your hedgie won’t suffer from a bad fall. That’s why you should avoid toys that involve climbing into a high point, which could send them falling down below.
Are all hedgehog toys tested on actual hedgies?
No, definitely not. And that’s why you have to maintain a critical sense when comparing the products. Some of the hedgehog toys are generally marketed towards small animals. The sellers put hedgehogs to the target group, yet they have no idea what the needs of an average pet hedgehog really are.
In turn, you could find products completely unsuitable for hedgehogs. The products may be too big or small. And there might be small items that carry a significant risk of injuring your hedgie. Use common sense before buying any hedgehog toy.
Hedgehogs love toys that keep them occupied. There are plenty of fun options on the market. Just make sure to buy a product that really works for hedgehogs. For example, some online stores market toys only fit for hamsters to hedgehogs as well.
If you want to save money, you can always use makeshift toys. An empty roll of toilet paper or a ping pong ball can come a long way.