Babies, Babies Everywhere!
We've had more babies born at Hamor Hollow over the past few days. So far all is looking good and we have high hopes of being able to provide some of our new friends with nice happy and healthy hedgehogs. The hedgehogs that were born today won't be ready to go to new homes until late December. We never let our babies leave until they are at least 7 weeks old. If possible, we prefer to leave the babies with their mothers for a full 6 weeks. Some mothers will choose to wean earlier, and some may stay with their litters slightly longer (in the case of a larger litter). Boys are watched carefully and if it is discovered that they are reaching sexual maturity early, they are pulled from the litter and moved into a cage with some of the older young boys where they will continue to learn to eat and drink on their own.
We observe all hedgehogs for at least a full week after weaning. This ensures that they are thriving on their own and ready to go to new homes. Honestly, I feel that 7 and 8 week old babies (or older) do much better in their new homes then younger babies. They are more sure of themselves, so they are calmer and easier for their new owners to handle.
If you are a first time owner or you have young children, you should consider getting a baby that is slightly older. All hedgehogs go through a quilling period (think of it as teething, but with quills) and they can be moody and unpleasant to handle. Most of the time, the worst of the quilling is over by 10 weeks and the hedgehog is much more easy going.