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Mite infestation

Mite infestation is caused by microscopic parasites that invade the skin of healthy animals and cause irritation, itching hair loss, inflammation and other severe complications. Of course, hedgehogs are susceptible to mite infestation as well, not just dogs and cats. In general, all domestic animals can be affected by mites. 

So, hedgehogs can suffer from mites, but they don’t show symptoms as in the case of other animals. Unfortunately, they can pass these parasites to other pets or on different surfaces. 

According to Stacey Leonatti Wilkinson, DVM, at Avian & Exotic Animal Hospital of Georgia, Pooler, Georgia, “most all hedgehogs have mites, but in very low numbers and may never show symptoms, though they can also be transmitted between animals and on surfaces, depending on the species of mite.”

If you want a hedgehog as a pet, it’s very important to keep them away from other animals for at least two or three weeks and notice if they have mites or other skin irritations. Your veterinarian will help you with a possible diagnosis and appropriate treatment.

“Mites can be treated with three doses of medication two weeks apart,” Dr. Wilkinson explained. “Most commonly used is Revolution (Selamectin) topically, but Ivermectin can also be given by injection as long as the dose is properly calculated by a veterinarian. Prognosis is excellent if properly treated.”


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Gastrointestinal diseases

Hedgehogs are particularly prone to gastrointestinal infections and “the bacteria Salmonella is carried by many hedgehogs, and it can spread to humans,” Dr. Wilkinson says.

So, if you notice that your beloved pet has diarrhea you should schedule a veterinary consultation as soon as possible. Your vet will analyze the fecal matter of your hedgehog and will determine the diagnosis and treatment. This disease is often cured with appropriate antibiotics. 

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