A guest post by the Broken Girl.
The love hog
I have a pet hedgehog. He was featured in Kevin’s (Legiron’s) Denmark post with pictures. I’m sure his ego has grown by miles.
Several weeks back I told Kevin that I was thinking about doing a post about Igor the hedgehog but I wasn’t sure if it would be too strange. He told me the blog lives on strange. So here you’re finally getting the story of how I got a pet hedgehog.
Now ever since I was a kid I’ve always loved hedgehogs so when one day surfing on the internet I saw that you could get a pet hedgehog I started telling my mum that the day I wanted a child more than a pet hedgehog that would be the day she’d get her grandkids. I didn’t think I’d ever actually get one, they were a bit expensive so I just sighed at pictures.
A year or two of me saying I’d rather want a pet hedgehog than a kid went by and one morning my mum sent me a text – “Call me right away I’ve got good news!” So call her I did. You don’t mess around when the mothership summons you. Anyway she’d gotten her hands on a bit of money so she called excited to say that she wanted to give a bit to me and my brothers. As my mum always says “When it rains on the priest it dribbles on his assistant”.
First thing I did was replace my beat up and cracked iPhone. And then I started the hunt for a pet hedgehog. To my luck I found one near where my parents live that wasn’t too expensive either. So off I went.
Igor is an Albino African pygmy hedgehog who was born on Valentine’s Day. He was half a year when I bought him and it was love at first sight.
The woman I bought him from told me that the breeder who had him first couldn’t find a buyer for him and there was new babies coming. So the family I bought him from had taken him in temporarily so he wouldn’t get put to sleep. But with several dogs, lizards, snakes and a new human baby they didn’t have time for the hedgehog. They’d had several adverts up offering him up for sale but I was the first one who responded.
Therefore when I got him he didn’t even have a name other than ‘love hog’ because of his birthday. One look at his tiny fangs and red eyes and I named him Igor after Doctor Frankenstein’s helper.
Leaving with Igor hissing in a small box I went straight to the pet shop to get a big rabbit cage, a huge hamster wheel and other fun stuff for my newest pet. Having found the perfect spot for him and letting him settle in for a few days it was now time for the big test, taking him up for a look around his new home.
And then came a bit of frustration. Igor didn’t come alone. He had fleas. The poor boy was scratching away and I had no idea what to do. So I called the local wildlife hedgehog organization. She told me they used the thing you drip in the neck of cats but she wasn’t sure if it would be okay to use it on a pygmy hedgehog so she sent me on to a vet who specialized in exotic animals. He told me to use the cat thing, but by then I’d Googled a bit and the hedgehog forums said don’t use that. I was back to square one.
Now I was so very lucky that my good friend Jeremy knew a vet in the USA so he promised me he’d ask her. Flea shampoo for kittens. It worked wonders!
Finally I had a clean, flea free and happy hedgehog. I just had to make him come out of his defense position. It took me half a year. I’d take him up every night. He’d hide in my shirt and I’d watch TV.
We quickly found a routine and it turned out he doesn’t like all TV shows. CSI was okay, How I met your mother annoyed him when I laughed and X-factor with all the screaming made him hiss and puff and curl up in a ball. His favorite is Doctor Who.
These days he’s so comfortable with me that he’ll run around on me and lower his spikes so I can pet him. As a real man, his favorite place is to lie in my cleavage. He’s even a few times fallen asleep there.
Having Igor reminded me that sometimes animals and people just need a bit of patience before they trust.
And as the poem says “Love is patient. Love is kind”.
– Broken Girl