NPH is No Longer Breeding

USDA Licensed Hedgehog Breeder
Located in South Dakota

  Northern Plains Hedgehogs

What supplies will you need?

 There are many types of cages and enclosures you can use for your hedgehog.  Always make sure the cage has plenty of ventilation, is easy to clean, and the hedgehog can not escape.  Make sure the cage is a minimum of 3 x 3 feet.  If you can and have room to get a larger cage or enclosure, please do so as hedgehogs need the room.

 **Please Note** 

Hamster, Gerbil, and other rodent cages are NOT suitable or acceptable for a hedgehog.  Please do not consider using these types of cages.  They are much to small.  Anything under 3x3 is to small for a hedgehog.

Aquariums are also one of the worst enclosure's to keep a hedgehog in and most times we won't approve your application if you have this for a cage.   

 Here is our take on a few different cage setups:

FERRET NATION 141 and 142 - Highly recommend these cages as they are very roomy and easy to clean.  Keep in mind that you use these cages, you will need to get creative and make sure to completely enclose the ramp/shelf that comes with it to prevent falls.  You can also leave them out which will add more room to the cage.

GUINEA PIG/RABBIT CAGES:  Some of these are very well constructed, and very good size with vertical bars.  We have had many happy hedgehog owners use these types of cages and they have worked well from what we are told. 

STERILITE BINS -  Recommend as they also work well as cages. They are very easy to clean and holes can be drilled for extra ventilation.  The hedgehogs can not climb out either.

SUPER PET or GUINEA PIG Cages- Don't recommend -  We do not like these as you can not fit very much in them, and the hedgehogs can crawl up the sides, but they can't climb down so they fall.  You want to stay away from any cages that have horizontal bars and get something with vertical bars.

AQUARIUMS - Don't Recommend - They are very hard to clean and they don't allow adequate ventilation.  If the aquarium is glass, the temperature can also change very quickly from hot to cold.

BEDDING:  Never use Cedar bedding! The aromatic oils in cedar can cause respiratory problems for many small pets, even hedgehogs.  Wood type bedding that are safe for small pets are "kiln dried pine or aspen", in shavings or pellets. You can also use many types of commercial bedding like Yesterday's News.  We recommend staying away from the product known as Care-Fresh as hedgehogs have been known to eat it and they can harbor mites.  Some people like to make liners out of fleece, flannel, or cotton type materials.  These can be washed and replaced as needed, which will lower your costs on bedding materials.  It works very well and to clean them, just throw them in the washer and put a new one in.  

WHEEL: Wheels are a great way to get exercise for your hedgehog.  Make sure they have a solid plastic running surface. One wheel that was designed specifically for a hedgehog and we highly recommend checking out is the Carolina Storm Wheel

If you get a wheel that does not have a solid running surface, a hedgie could get their toenails or even their legs stuck depending on what type of openings the wheels have.  Be sure to purchase a wheel large enough (12" diameter), so that your baby hedgie will not outgrow it. 

FOOD BOWL:  When picking out a food bowl make sure it is nice and heavy. Hedgehogs that get bored love to spill over and waste food to play with the food bowl. Small ceramic ones sold at the pet store work very well.   

WATER:  It is personal preference whether you want to use a water bottle or a water dish.  There are pros and cons to both.   Water bottles are good since they stay clean and off the floor, however the hedgehog has to tilt its head to drink which can cause other problems.  Water bowls are good to use as you can monitor how much they drink and they can be changed every day.  Downfalls would be if you use shavings, they will soak up the water, and some hedgehogs will play in the water.  We prefer to use bowls since we like to keep an eye on how much they drink and how often.

HIDING PLACE:  There are many things that you can purchase for your hedgehog to hind in such as igloos, wooden boxes, pvc tubes, and even ice cream pails work for a quick fix.  We use igloos and make hedgie bags out of fleece for them to burrow and sleep in.  Some even prefer just to have a small fleece blanket to cuddle with.    
LITTER BOX:  Some hedgehogs will use a litter box if you provide it with one.  Although this can take lots of time and patience on your part.  If you plan to litterbox train, then you should make sure the material in the litter box is different from the rest of their bedding. This will help them associate the litter box with where to go the bathroom.  To start the training, you will need to clean up and collect as much poop as possible from their bedding.  Place the poop inside their litter box.  This will help give them the idea that they are supposed to go potty in the litter box.  You must do this several times per day and be sure to keep their poop picked out of their bedding material.  Some hedgies will catch on rather quickly (within a week) and other will take longer.  If your hedgie is not litter box trained within one month, then it is time to give up and let them poop wherever they wish.  There are many different types of litter to use.  Be sure to choose one that is "hedgie friendly".
TOYS: Some great toys that hedgehogs like to play with are baby toys, toilet paper rolls cut down the side, tunnels, and anything that will provoke their curiosity.  Our hedgehogs particularly enjoy playing with "crinkle" balls.  They can be found in the cat toy section of a store like Petco.  Hedgehogs will be intrigued by any CAT toy you provide them to play with.   A playpen for small pets is also a must if you are going to have them out of their cages.  Another option for this would be a small, plastic kiddie pool.  They are inexpensive and easy to clean.  This allows them to run around but not find those small hiding places around your house.

** When choosing toys for your cage, make sure you do not clutter you cage with to much stuff.  You will want to allow the hedgehog enough room to run and move around.   Some believe a lot of toys, clutter, and stuff will make your hedgehog feel more secure.  This is untrue.  As long as your hedgehog has a place to hide/sleep, has a wheel, food bowl, water bowl or bottle, he or she will be just fine.  Adding in a few toys for entertainment is also recommended, but not to many.   A hedgehog will feel secure in their cage/surroundings as soon as they learn to trust their owner and new family."