Top 10 Hedgehog Facts


Top 10 Hedgehog Facts

Our lovely Hedgehogs & Trees collection with the National Trust celebrates these magnificent animals, and we’ve put together ten facts you might not have known about these spikey animals, whether that’s “are hedgehogs lactose intolerant?” or “how many spines does a hedgehog have?”. We’ve got some insightful and fun hedgehog facts for you to learn.

Top 10 Hedgehog Facts

1. Hedgehogs are lactose intolerant

Hedgehogs are lactose intolerant and should not be given milk. Meaty cat or dog food plus water is much better for them.

2. They are nocturnal

You won't spot these spikey animals during the day as hedgehogs are nocturnal, meaning they’ll sleep during the day and come out at night (you will spot them on Sophie's collection though). 

Top 10 Hedgehog Facts

3. Hedgehogs can hibernate

Hedgehogs are amongst a few animals to hibernate in the UK, meaning they hole themselves up and stay in a dormant state for the winter months to save energy.

4. A baby hedgehog is called a hoglet

A baby hedgehog is called a hoglet. Did you also know that a very long time ago, hedgehogs were called urchins?

Top 10 Hedgehog Facts

5. Hedgehogs have between 5000 and 7000 spines

Hedgehogs are famous for curling up into a tight ball and using their spines to protect themselves against predators. They shed and grow new spines throughout their lives and can have anywhere between five and seven thousand. Something you might not know is hedgehogs also have small tails.

6. A group of hedgehogs is called an array

It’s very rare that you will see a group of hedgehogs together in one place, but if you ever do, then you'll know that a group of hedgehogs is called an array.

Top 10 Hedgehog Facts

7. They can walk over two miles in one night

They may have little legs, but hedgehogs can travel for up to two miles in one night, especially when they are out foraging for food.

8. Their name suits their character

They are called hedgehogs for a reason, the word ‘hedge’ comes from where they tend to build their nests (hedges, shrubs, and bushes), whilst the ‘hog’ part refers to their pig like snout.

Top 10 Hedgehog Facts

9. Their long snout helps them hunt

Hedgehogs have a great sense of smell which they use for hunting, and their really long snout also makes it easier for them to forage for insects, caterpillars, berries and worms.

10. There are 17 different species of hedgehog in the world

The UK only has one native species of hedgehog, but there are 17 different species worldwide. Each has similar but small characteristics and habitual differences.

Top 10 Hedgehog Facts

Have you seen the hedgehogs on Sophie’s latest collection? You’ll find them on a range of kitchen and table linens, accessories and bedding! Do you have any hedgehog facts that you’d like to share? Leave them in the comments below!


  • Hi from the United States. I think it is so adorable how you care for these sweet creatures. God bless you! I’ve never seen a hedgehog and do people sometimes keep them as pets? Just curious.

    Joanna on

  • We live in Portugal, near Braga, in the north. Seeing hedgehogs here is extremely rare – but my husband spotted one yesterday evening – under a kiwi pergola. I presume hedgehogs like kiwis – but, having read this, I think I’ll leave out some dog/cat food for them to supplement their diet.

    Virginia Martins on

  • I’ve just found a hedgehog in my box it is stuffed with leaves so chuffed

    Hazel Evans on

  • First time I’ve ever had hedgies in my garden and I have had at least 4 different ones coming to feed every evening up until this week. The last two nights only the semi moist food has been eaten. I suspect also that due to the fact we have had frosts they are now starting to hibernate. I will leave food and water down just in case any of them turn up!

    Laura on

  • Not many people realise that the proliferation of badgers is quickening the extinction of hedgehogs. Badgers take over hedgehog territories and eat the food the hedgehogs need and they also eat the hedgehogs. Badgers are the only predators hedgehogs have.

    Juliet Reid on

  • Hedgehogs can have 2 litters a year from June to September , the baby hoglets born later in summer can struggle to put on enough weight to help them hibernate, hedgehogs are in decline in the uk but we can help by not using pesticides in our gardens and leaving small gaps in our fences so they are free to roam ,encouraging hedgerows in areas can realy help too, let’s give back to these beautiful little creatures.

    LInda on

  • Love hedgehogs – one of my favourite native species – and think new design and fun facts are great! However, is it a good idea to make a dog pull toy in the shape of a hedgehog, it is teaching the wrong lessons to both our pets and people!

    Pamela Dive on

  • They like kitten biscuits Please leave out water for them Out in the daytime isn’t good & they’ll need to go to a rescue. Make Hedgehog Highways with your neighbours to help them forage for food. Be careful when gardening & strumming and don’t use slug pellets. Have a look at Hedgehog Street for great advice. Perhaps you could contact them and add a link to their website. #hedhehogstreet. They desperately needed our help as they are now on the endangered list in the UK and in as a nation our favorite animal 🦔 Finally…… I’m going to spend a fortune on hedgehog stuff now !!!

    Katie on

  • We have a number of hedgehogs who visit our garden every night. We put out special hedgehog food , bought from a Country Store and we also put out a small amount of wet cat food . They cannot eat fish based food , but chicken base suits them . Right now we have a very little hoglet who visits . We are keeping a close watch with our night camera. He will need to put on a good amount of weight before the cold weather , when hibernation starts . I weighed him a week ago, he was just 240grams. My husband has just finished building a new hibernation box. He made one last autumn and we were lucky enough to have a hedgehog take up residence and hibernate through the winter. We are now hoping for yet another successful resident to arrive .

    Patricia on

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published