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Two Hedgehog Looks

The difference between African hedgehogs and European hedgehogs.

By Audrey Pavia

The African Hedgehog and the Algerian Hedgehog are the types most often kept as a pet in North America. In other parts of the western world, the European Hedgehog is most popular. African and Algerian Hedgehogs are very similar, and are sometimes crossed in captivity to create a hybrid. Both species require the same diet and care.

African and Algerian Hedgehogs are seen in many different colors. Some of these colorations include albino, cinnacots (pink skin with peach and tan quill bands); and salt & pepper (black skin with dark brown and black banded quills).

By contrast, European hedgehogs always have darker fur on their face and under parts than the African Hedgehog, which gives them a very different look.

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Two Hedgehog Looks

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Reader Comments
I wonder, are European hedgies legal pets? I love my African pygmy. :)
Hannah, Gallatin, TN
Posted: 9/13/2013 4:50:42 PM
It is new information for me to learn. I only know about certain pets well. Am trying to learn at least some about these pets, such as Hedgehogs, that I do not know much about.
William, San Francisco, CA
Posted: 6/20/2012 7:47:01 PM
I didn't even know there were difference. Interesting read. :)
Bree, Fayetteville, NC
Posted: 12/13/2011 3:24:39 AM
European hedgehogs aren't popular pets *anywhere* as they are solitary and very unfriendly, and in fact it's illegal to keep one as a pet in Britain unless it is not fit to be released (I have one who lives with me because he is very old and has a crippled hind leg). They come in a range of colours and the difference between them and the African ones isn't the colour but the size, overall shape, and the shape of the feet, ears and nose.

The African and Algerian hedgehogs are small, are a compact rounded shape, have sharp noses, usually large and rather pointy ears, and above all they have tiny little padded feet with short toes. European and Scandinavian hedgehogs are much larger, are shaped like a Jack Russell terrier in a floor-lengh hairy coat, and they have rubbery, wiggly noses like an oppossum's, smallish round ears, and their feet are large and spade-like with long toes and long claws.

Their requirements for diet, housing and medication are quite different from those of the African hogs.
Claire, Livingston
Posted: 7/13/2011 4:07:21 PM
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