The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
Usually when we think of getting a pet we think of a cat or dog, but there’s a wide variety of pets to choose from — from small pets like hamsters and rats, to larger exotic animals like lions and tigers. Oftentimes, when we choose smaller pets we choose them because of space issues, allergies, or just to experience a different kind of animal companion. As a dog and cat lover, I have experienced pet ownership extensively, but as I’ve grown older and more financially stable, the idea of owning another pet has become more and more enticing. The problem is, my cat loves being alone, and I don’t want a dog. So here are the reasons hedgehog ownership will be in my future.
1. They are as cuddly as a cat or dog, but enjoy their independence
Anyone that has told you that cats are independent and like being on their own has lied to you. Cat’s are often the most affectionate animals you can have, and when they aren’t they are always demanding something; and dogs, dogs don’t leave you alone. Hedgehogs on the other hand love cuddles and attention, but also need time on their own. Since they’re nocturnal, most of the time you spend with them will be at night before bed, and a large part will be supervising them as they explore their home with you. When they aren’t wandering you get the wonderful privilege of hedgehog cuddles, but they’re just as happy silently keeping you company in your home.
2. They get along with other animals
I have a very evil mouse-loving cat and getting a small animal comes with the distinct risk of returning home to a pile of fur and no rat or hamster. A hedgehog, however, comes with a built-in defense system, and most cats quickly learn to leave them be after having a run in with a hedgehog’s quills. My cat, as much as he loves a good hunt, is also smart enough not to try his hand against a pile of quills, ensuring happiness and coexistence between cat and hedgehog.
3. Hedgehogs are low maintenance pets
Hedgehogs are relatively easy pets to care for. As long as you feed and water them everyday, make sure they have a nice warm and clean place to stay and a place to exercise, you’ll have a happy hedgehog. This makes it easier for people like me, who have a busy lifestyle, to care for them. This doesn’t mean that your hedgehog doesn’t need to be let out of the cage to explore or be given attention, but it does allow more leeway around your schedule.
4. Hedgehogs are adorable
Hedgehogs are honestly the cutest things ever. There is nothing better than a hedgehog in a hat or a hedgehog cuddle to make someone’s day better. They all have different personalities and unlike some small animals, they will bond to their owners, creating a deep and affectionate relationship.