A box for a hedgehog whilst in care

People keep rescued animals in all sorts of temporary housing, some cause more problems than they are worth. Let’s look at some options.

Cardboard Box

cardboard-boxPros – Cheap, easily obtainable

Cons – Difficult to clean, not waterproof

Hedgehogs pee and poo like you would not believe and the cardboard soon gets soggy and very smelly. In addition a determined hedgehog will rip its way out of the box overnight and then you have to play hide and seek around the house.

Cat Carrier

catcarrierPros – Easy to clean secure

Cons – Small, little room for bedding and food

These are secure, wee-proof and easy to clean but there isn’t a lot of room and you will soon find your visitor has dumped its bedding in the food and water bowls.

Not recommended for more than a very temporary stay.


Rabbit hutch

hutchPros – Plenty of space for the animal

Cons – Take up a lot of space inddors, difficult to clean unless lined

Perfect for outdoors but inside they take up a lot of room.

They are not easy to clean unless you line them with vinyl flooring and seal any seams to stop liquid seeping underneath.

Plastic crate

boxPros – Easy clean, stackable

Cons – Ventilation, safety

These are ideal, easy to clean and you can get different sizes to make sure the animal can’t climb out as well as have room to move about. The issue with these is flies. In the warm weather you can be inundated with them and you really don’t want maggots in the crate. If you put a lid on the hog can’t breathe but if you drill holes the flies still get in. Useful but have issues.

NB. This particular example is dangerous. The holes are so large that a hog could poke its head through and hang itself. The water bottle on the side is ideal if you want to end up trying to remove a stuck tongue from the spout. Do not use.

Indoor animal cages

cagePros – easy clean

Cons – expensive, can be dangerous for the animal

On the face of it these are ideal but unfortunately not for hedgehogs who may climb the bars, fall backwards and break a leg.

If this is the only thing you have to hand, cut sheets of cardboard to fit the sides of the cage and use cable ties to attach them onto the sides inside the cage so the hog can’t get at the bars. This will of course be more of a problem if the only access to the cage is a door on the side rather than the top.


HRNZ Housing

NZHRcratesPros – easy clean, no flies

Cons – can’t be stacked

HRNZ have come up with a method of having the best of all worlds utilising a plastic crate and some DIY skills.

You can download a copy of the instructions from this link

HRNZ Hedgehog Housing


Leave a Reply