JAM JAR ARMY: Enormous number of abandoned hoglets

Royston and Diane snuggle up with the substitute mum.
Royston and Diane snuggle up with the substitute mum.

We’re receiving an enormous amount of requests for help with baby hedgehogs who have been abandoned.

The public is frequently given good advice about leaving baby birds alone when found, as the parent will often be close by, but it’s quite different with hoglets.

Throw your spare pennies into a jar.

Throw your spare pennies into a jar.

They need help if seen wandering around during daylight hours, the chances being something has happened to mum and they are at serious risk of being attacked by birds or another animal.

If left for too long, there is also a high risk of fly strike, which would result in maggots developing very quickly during warm weather.

If found, they should be put into a high-sided box with a towel or something similar to hide in and kept warm using a hot water bottle or a plastic bottle filled with warm water.

This should be followed by a phone call to us (01665 570911) to ensure they are cared for until ready for release later in the year.

If possible, they could be given mashed kitten food or Farley’s Rusks crushed in warm water and also a small dish of water until brought to us, but please NEVER give them milk, whether baby’s milk or not.

Goat’s milk would be the only safe alternative.

On June 16, we had a call from a couple in Alnwick who had taken exceptionally good care of a tiny hoglet overnight until he could be brought to us.

To ensure his body temperature is regulated correctly, we have kept him in one of our incubators and he’s been syringe fed formula milk plus lamb’s colostrum every two hours.

Royston has made good progress, but, as he probably came from a litter of four or five other hoglets, we felt he may be a little lonely and, when the opportunity of giving him a companion arose, we took it.

Diane came from Ashington on June 22 and, as you can see, the two of them now snuggle up together under a lovely, soft, fluffy toy we use as a substitute mum – a match made in heaven.

Once their eyes are open at two weeks of age, we’ll transfer them to one of our cages on a heat pad and teach them to lap the milk.