Many hedgehog owners are curious to know if hedgehogs can be housed together? Or if they need to live separately?
In this post, we will take a look from many angles and use the evidence and views provided by vets and animal care experts to provide you with all the answers you need before allowing two or more hedgehogs to be housed together.
So can hedgehogs be housed together? Hedgehogs are for the most part solitary animals and shouldn’t be housed together. If two or more hedgehogs are living together in the same cage, this can cause many problems such as territorial issues, stress and a lack of space.
Read on to learn…
Can Hedgehogs Be housed Together (More Info)
Many experts state that hedgehogs should be housed in separate cages, including Vetmed who echo this very fact.
There will always be reports of and videos emerging of owners who have successfully housed hedgehogs together but the chances are slim and the conditions are very rarely as good as when hedgehogs are housed separately.
Housing two or more hedgies in one cage can cause multiple problems and isn’t worth the risk it poses.
Below we will break down the 5 reasons why you should never house more than one hedgie in a single cage…
Hedgehogs Housed Together Are Territorial
Hedgehogs can become territorial when housed with another hedgehog according to Veteriankey.
This often results in aggressive behaviour that starts with aggressive calls and sounds.
This will then spill over into fighting where hedgies can do some serious damage to each other with their spines and teeth.
This kind of confrontation can be stressful for both parties and lead to a decreased appetite, intimidation and increased hiding.
Frightened hedgehogs will also use certain sounds and calls such as hissing, and snorting. Source:
Here’s a post that identifies the hissing sound your hedgehog makes and explains what it mean
No matter if the hedgehog is displaying aggressive behaviour or submissive behaviour it’s not a good situation for either of them and it’s a common reason why animal care experts suggest you never house hedgehogs together.
Hedgehogs Are Naturally Solitary
Hedgehogs are solitary animals by nature and they love being on their own.
We’ve recently researched and shared a post that finally answers the question of “do hedgehogs get lonely? And you can check it out here…
From the time a wild hedgehog is around 5-6 weeks old, it spends it’s life on its own foraging, building nests and generally exploring.
In fact, the only time that hedgehogs don’t seek solitary life is if they’re mating or when females are rearing their young, which as we just spoke about, only takes around 5-6 weeks.
Captive hedgehogs are more than happy to live the same solitary life and don’t require the company of a cage mate or companion to be happy.
To keep your hedgie happy and mentally stimulated it’s more important that you provide them with a selection of toys and activities.
Our recommended toys page is packed with fun and unique toys and activities that your hedgie will love so if you’re struggling for ideas we recommend you check it out
It’s Not Good to House Males & Females Together
Housing a male and female hedgehog together can have a whole host of problems too.
There’s obviously a very good chance that the female will become pregnant and then you have a totally different kind of challenge to take on as an owner.
This comes with a tone of additional expenses, care responsibilities and more.
Males and females can still be territorial towards each other too and this can cause fighting and stress on both parties.
The safest option is to house two females together, however, this still isn’t recommended.
No Space When Hedgehogs Are Housed Together
Another big issue that’s often overlooked is that the space needed to house two hedgehogs is hard to find in one cage.
The minimum cage size requirement for hedgehogs will differ depending on what country you live in but many experts recommend that you supply your hedgie with a cage that’s no smaller than 2ft x3ft and some suggest no smaller than 2ft x 4ft. Source:
This recommended cage size is for one hedgehog living solitary so the recommended size for two hedgies would logically be double that.
The reason why hedgehogs need such a large size cage is that they need to be active and explore.
Also, much of the cage space is taken up by an exercise wheel, hide/igloo water and food bowl etc.
If you housed 2 hedgehogs together in the same size cage as you would house 1 hedgehog, with double the cage accessories there would be little to no space for them to explore and be active.
Here’s a guide we’ve recently created that shares our recommended spacious cages and cage accessories and where you can pick them up for the cheapest prices!
Housing 2 Hedgehogs Together Risks Infection & Mites
When you house two or more hedgehogs or any other animals together for that matter, there’s always a chance that they can pass on illnesses, parasites or mites to each other.
In fact, it’s not recommended that you’re hedgehogs even come into contact with each other until your new hedgehog has gone through a quarantine period of at least 30 days.
This is to ensure that your new hedgie hasn’t got any parasites or mites that can be transferred to your other hedgehog.
After this period, it’s advised that you take your hedgies to the vets for an annual check-up for parasites and mites.
There’s always a risk that your hedgehog can pass both illness, mites and other medical issues on to each other if they are housed together.
Can Hedgehogs Be Housed In The Same Room?
Yes, it’s possible to house hedgehogs in the same room as long as they are in separate cages.
This doesn’t mean that they will have zero problems at all. This will largely depend on the individual personalities of your hedgies.
While some hedgehogs will happily live in separate tanks in the same room, others will still display territorial behaviours.
We recommend that you try and house them in the same room and if they seem to be stressed, aggressive or intimidated for a number of days then you should have another room in your home ready to move one of the hedgehogs too.
Can Hedgehogs Get Along With Each Other?
Sometimes hedgehogs can get along when they are in contact with each other and sometimes they can show all of the territorial or aggressive behaviours we have already talked about.
Remember that hedgies are predominantly solitary animals and like their own company so they don’t tend to be good socialisers.
In our opinion, there’s really no reason to try and go against this natural behaviour, however, if you are adamant that you really want to see if they will get along then we suggest that you take things slow, don’t force them if they are aggressive or stressed.
It’s also highly important to remember to quarantine any new hedgehog in the home for a minimum of 30 days.
You may also be wondering if other animals such as hamsters can be housed with hedgehogs? We’ve actually answered that very question right here…