Hedgehog Dry Skin
Hedgehogs, like many other pets, really do not need regular baths like we humans do. Over-bathing can run the risk of irritating delicate hedgehog skin and causing uncomfortable itching. If your hedgehog has dry irritated skin and you know you have been bathing him or her frequently, it would be a good ideas to discontinue bathing altogether unless your hedgehog gets into a mess. Making a little extra effort to keep your hedgie’s cage clean could vastly help with these efforts as this see where your hedgehog is most likely to encounter dirt and debris.
If you do have to bathe your hedgehog, try to find and use an oatmeal based baby shampoo. Oatmeal based shampoos appear to be the most gentle and least drying. Many people like to use Aveeno brand oatmeal baby shampoo. Other people have had good success with cat shampoos.
You can make your own soothing oatmeal based solution by soaking plain dry oatmeal in water until the water becomes cloudy. This water can then be used as bathing water for your hedgehog.
Sometimes an oil finishing rinse is necessary to prevent dry skin. All you need is one cup of warm water containing a few drops of olive/flaxseed/vitamin e oils. Gently pour this solution over the back of your hedgehog. Then towel off as usual.
Finally, many hedgehog owners have had good luck supplementing their hedgehog’s diet with essential fatty acids. Like humans, a diet rich in EFA’s can help to prevent dry, irritate skin. Just make sure that you buy top quality, supplement grade oil – not some cheap low nutrient cooking oil. Simply add a drop or two (not too much) to your hedgehog’s food at meal time.