I’ve had one of those weeks full of appointments and places to be, all of which have taken far longer than I’d hoped they would. This means that none of my week has gone according to my own personal plan, my “to-do” list remains largely unfinished and my house more of a wreck than usual. (Sigh.) Friday afternoon I thought I might finally get around to finishing up some of those onerous tasks when, as I pulled in from work, I saw my neighbor looking grim in her daughter’s pony’s stall. They’d discovered 3 baby hedgehogs the evening before and, being wise people, did the right thing and left the babies there.
Yesterday afternoon my neighbor discovered that one of the hedgehogs had died and the other two were looking pretty poor, so I, the veterinarian’s daughter (and having a very soft heart as a child and the belief that I could save every abandoned baby animal I found), hopped the fence to have a look. I quickly grabbed my gardening gloves and a box to put the two living hedgehogs in and we took them inside her house to give them a bit of sugar water while she phoned hedgehog rescue groups—as hedgehogs are endangered animals in England we wanted to ensure we did all we could to aid their survival.
Now, I must say, as a good country girl who was taught well by her parents: you should never disturb baby animals in the wild, as it’s very likely their mother is coming back for them. We made a judgment call to collect these two, as it didn’t look like their mother had been back to tend them and the two who were still alive weren’t going to be for long. As we live on a farm with multiple dogs and cats, and as the litter had been born in the pony’s stall, we felt fairly sure that the mother had either abandoned them because she was upset by all the animals around, or something had happened to her.
I fed them the best I could and tried to clean them up a little, but mostly we kept them warm with a hot water bottle and a towel in a box and took photos. Eventually I took them to a veterinarian’s office where they were going to be tended to until a rescue organization could pick them up.
I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a hedgehog in the wild, and certainly not a baby, and oh my goodness were they ever cute. So while I didn’t get to eat lunch until after 3:00 or do any of the things I had planned, I really had fun. Fingers crossed these two will make it.