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Hedgehog FAQ [2/7] - Finding more information
Section - <2.1> What books are there on pet hedgehogs?

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Top Document: Hedgehog FAQ [2/7] - Finding more information
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See reader questions & answers on this topic! - Help others by sharing your knowledge
For a long time there was only a single tome available on our prickly little
friends, which was often referred to as ``The Hedgehog Book.''  With the
increasing popularity of hedgehogs, a number of books are now available.
There still seems to be little information on hedgehogs in print, especially
compared to most other animals, but this, fortunately, appears to be rapidly
changing.  Also, many, but not all, of the books that are commonly available
contain outdated information.

As of spring 1997 there are two new complementary books now out that have
virtually made all the previous offerings obsolete.  

The first of these additions, is _The Hedgehog: An Owner's Guide to a Happy,
Healthy Pet_ by Dawn Wrobel and Dr. Susan Brown, DVM.  It is published by the
Howell Book House, and is available in pet stores that carry their Happy,
Healthy Pet series.  It is also available through the Spike and Friends
Catalog [2.8].  For those of you who want to order it, the ISBN number is
0-87605-501-3, and it is listed as having a price of $12.95 USD, or $17.95
CDN.

Having had the luxury of seeing some of the preliminary text (thanks Dawn!),
I had high expectations for the book, and when I got to see it, I was quite
amazed at how far it exceeded my imagination.  Simply put, this is a great
book, and one that no hedgehog owner should be without.  It is full of great
tips, ideas and great knowledge, accompanied by some fantastic pictures.  The
medical chapter by Dr. Susan Brown is more than worth the price in itself,
not that the rest of the book wouldn't be a bargain even without it.

Dawn's book is targeted at the pet owner, rather than the breeder, as has
been the case all too often in the past, and in this respect it succeeds
brilliantly.

The other great tome that was published about the same time as the one above,
is _The Pygmy Hedgehog a Perfect Pet_ by Sharon Massena with Bryan Smith.
Having now had the chance to see this book, I can attest that it is more than
worthwhile as well.  The best part about it, is that rather than being
another great hedgehog book, it is complementary to books like Dawn Wrobel's,
by addressing many different areas.  Here is the information I have on it:

       	The ISBN # is 0-9655629-1-3
       	The list price is $16.00 US and $19.00 CDN + post.

       	80 pages, soft cover, gloss pages with b/w and full colour photos. 
        Contains limited standard info and full colour pics many of the 
        standardized colours.  Also has club and show information.
       	-- Bryan Smith

I should probably add a disclaimer here -- I have had numerous conversations
with Dawn and Bryan, and a bias in favour of either book could easily be
assigned to this.  In the case of Dawn's book, I read the advance text she
sent with the intent to essentially critique it -- expecting it to already be
dated in many ways (as most books have been by the time they get to print) or
just a rehash of what has gone before, and I came away honestly impressed.
Having now seen Sharon's and Bryan's book, the same feelings apply.  I'm sure
that I could nit-pick in minor places, but at most that's what it would be,
nit-picking about things that don't matter.  We finally have very good,
up-to-date books that can go a very long ways towards giving people the
information they need about keeping hedgehogs as pets, and providing them
happy healthy lives.


Going back a bit now, the book, often called ``The Hedgehog Book,'' is
actually titled _Everything You Wanted to Know About Hedgehogs But you didn't
know who to ask_ by Pat Storer.  This was one of the first books available on
pet hedgehogs.

Pat Storer has two books available on hedgehogs, and while there is
considerable crossover between the two, her newer book _Hedgehogs As Pets_
(my thanks to John Ofner for my copy) is targeted more at pet owners, while
the original ``Everything...'' is more oriented towards breeders.  These
books are, for all intents and purposes, the original formal tomes on pet
hedgehogs, and having one or the other was virtually a must for any hedgehog
keeper (keepee?).  While they don't cover absolutely everything, and they are
becoming a bit dated, now, they do provide a lot of very good information.
Both books cover areas of the other to some extent, so a pet owner looking
for basics on breeding will find it in _Hedgehogs As Pets_, while a breeder
can also find pet level information in ``Everything...''

Probably the most essential thing both offer is a reference section on
hedgehog health, body chemistry norms, and drugs (including quantities) that
have been safely used to treat hedgehog maladies.  Given that relatively few
veterinarians in North America have even heard of hedgehogs as pets, let
alone ever treated them, taking one of these books with you to a vet in time
of emergency could easily be a life saving act.

That's the good news; the problem is that these books are generally only
available directly from Pat Storer herself, although the Ain't No Creek Ranch
[2.8] also carries them.  In any case, here are the details:

      	Everything You Wanted to Know About Hedgehogs 
       	  But you didn't know who to ask
       	Third Edition

       	Written and Compiled by Pat Storer
       	Country Storer Enterprises, Publisher
       	P.O. Box 160
       	Columbus, Texas   78934
       	USA

       	Fax:    (409) 732-9417
       	email:  rzu2uREMOVE_TO_SEND@intertex.net
       	www:    http://www.rzu2u.com/

       	Single Copies (In U.S.):     $29.00 US dollars + shipping
       	  by 4th Class Mail

        Please note that Pat Storer no longer takes orders by telephone,
        but she does by fax, and now has email access.

And, 

       	Hedgehogs As Pets
       	First Edition

       	By Pat Storer
       	Country Storer Enterprises, Publisher
       	P.O. Box 160
       	Columbus, Texas   78934
       	USA

       	Fax:    (409) 732-9417
       	email:  rzu2uREMOVE_TO_SEND@intertex.net
       	www:    http://www.rzu2u.com/

       	Single Copies (In U.S.):     $22.00 US dollars + shipping
       	  by 4th Class Mail

Pat Storer now takes credit cards, but money orders are fine too.  The prices
and info above is up to date as of July 1997, thanks to Pat Storer herself.

There is one minor correction to ``Everything...'' that should be noted:

    The correct number for Rainbow Mealworms (mentioned in Storer's 
    book) is 310-635-1494.  
    -- Katherine Long


Other books on pet hedgehogs are also available and can be found at some book
stores, or by contacting the publishers directly.  I've listed the
information I have on them below. The first is with thanks to Elizabeth Jane
Monroe and Znofyl.

       	African Pygmy Hedgehogs as your New Pet
       	Dennis Kelsey-Wood, pics. by Ralph Lermayer
       	copyright 1995
       	distributed by T.F.H. Publications, Inc.,
       	One T.F.H. Plaza, Neptune City, NJ  07753

       	or  National Book Network, Inc.
       	4720 Boston Way, Lanham, MD  20706

       	or in Canada, H & L Pet Supplies Inc.,
       	27 Kingston Crescent, Kitchener, Ontario N2B 2T6

       	and other places.  ISBN # is 079380192-3

     Abstract:  ``This book represents the culmination of years of research by 
     dedicated hedgehog breeders.  Dennis Kelsey-Wood has compiled, through 
     intense research, interviews, and study, what I feel is the finest, most 
     accurate, and complete gathering of hedgehog facts on husbandry, 
     breeding, and care that has ever been assembled in one book.  From its 
     accurate text to its superb photos, it is destined to become a classic 
     and will no doubt be the standard for anyone interested in these 
     fascinating animals.  Enjoy it and Happy Hedgehoggin!''

     Ralph M. Lermayer, [former - ed.] President, North American Hedgehog 
     Association [now defunct - ed.]

     For anyone having a hard time finding it, you can call TFH directly 
     at 1-908-988-8400, ext. 117 and order it from their customer service 
     department.

This is a good book, especially for beginners (which is really where it is 
directed).  It does not contain the health standards, and medicine usage 
that are in other books, listed above, and is to my mind a good supplement,
but not a replacement for them -- especially if your veterinarian is not 
well acquainted with hedgehogs.  I found it to be good reading, but it 
always seemed to avoid a direct answer to most questions, lacking in real 
detail.  I must admit, however, that the pictures alone were both great
entertainment, and very useful, giving an excellent glimpse of what a 
healthy hedgehog should look like.  I'm still trying to figure out how the
photographers managed to avoid getting blurred pictures of all those busy 
noses.  

Dennis Kelsey-Wood has also released a second book (1996) called _Hedgehogs
Today_.  It can be ordered from TFH, etc., as with his earlier book.

       	Hedgehogs Today
       	Dennis Kelsey-Wood
       	copyright 1996
       	distributed by T.F.H. Publications, Inc.,
       	One T.F.H. Plaza, Neptune City, NJ  07753

       	ISBN # is 0-7938-0103-6

The information above came to me by way of Brenda Basinger.

Having had a chance to look at this book, I have to say the quality of the
photos is excellent.  That, however, is about the only good thing I can say.
The book is full of contradictions, and just plain bad advice.  It goes on to
suggest that you should ``always use a glove'' to hold a hedgehog (which
captions a picture of a person holding one in bare hands).  It also suggests
that a temperature range of from 60-75 degrees F, or 16-24 degrees C is okay,
when many hedgehogs will become unhealthy or even go into semi hibernation at
anything much below 70F/22C.  It shows multiple hedgehogs being kept in a
Tupperware container barely big enough to squeeze them into (although it says
it's not big enough for a ``long term home'' -- it's clearly not big enough
for anything more than carrying them across the room.  Finally, its listing
of states where hedgehogs are not allowed is totally misleading, and was
clearly the result of only the briefest research.  The book even shows
feeding of raw eggs to hedgehogs -- something that can all too easily result
in salmonella [6.2].

While there certainly are good points to this book, including excellent photos
showing how a healthy hedgehog should appear, the sheer weight of bad
information means I cannot recommend this as much beyond a photo album, and
definitely not as a starting point for beginners.


Information on another book, which is now widely available, was sent to me by
Tirya:

       	Hedgehogs:  A Complete Pet Owner's Manual

       	by Matthew M. Vriends, Ph.D.
       	pub: Barron's Educational Series, Inc.
       	ISBN:  0-8120-1141-4
       	Barron's Price:  $5.95 US

     Barron's has published numerous other pet books in their series, and 
     they all seem to be well-received and easily available in pet shops.

     It's geared primarily towards the African, though it has a chapter on 
     the European as kind of a compare/contrast thing.  It also has a 
     chapter on breeding by Pat Storer.  A lot of good pictures and 
     information, in an easy-to-read style, plus a chapter on ``Understanding 
     Hedgehogs'' covering body language and sounds.  While it's by no means 
     all-inclusive (is there a hedgie book yet that is?) it's a good read.
     -- Tirya

The book contains some medical information that complements other books quite
well, but, does not replace them.  However, some of the information is
seriously outdated, and other parts contradict statements made elsewhere in
the book.  The chapter by Pat Storer is taken almost verbatim out of her
books, but is a worthwhile addition to any hedgehog library, and if taken as
a whole, the book is quite good, and is, at the price, probably where most
new hedgehog keepers will start.


For people seeking more in depth information on hedgehogs in general,
including species, natural habitats, and research, another book, which came
out in 1994, thoroughly addresses many of these issues.
 
       	Hedgehogs
       	by Nigel Reeve
       	ISBN 0-85661-081-X
       	T & A D Poyser Ltd.
       	24-28 Oval Road
       	London NW1 7DX

In published form, this book is probably the best source of true, scientific
information on all types of hedgehogs.  Beyond this point, you probably need
to read scientific papers (30 pages of references to which are at the back of
this book, which gives you some clue to Dr. Reeve's efforts at research).
While it does focus primarily on hedgehogs in the wild, it does provide some
very useful insights into what makes our little friends tick.  I find myself
turning more and more to this book, all the time -- especially when someone
asks me a detailed question.  Unlike many scientific books, this one shows
the author had a real interest and excitement in his chosen topic of
research, rather than limiting himself to dry phrasing, an entertaining sense
of humour and wit shows through.

The book can be hard to come by in North America (the publisher does not
import it here), but it is available through the Exclusively Hedgehogs 
catalog [2.8], and the Spike and Friends Collection [2.8].


While I am at it, Richard Saunders passed along word of another book that he
found.  This one appears to possibly be a local effort by a hedgehog breeder
on the west coast of Canada, but just in case, here is the information that
is available:

       	Hedgehogs
       	Hedgehog Handbook 
       	- Everything You Need To Know To Raise Happy Healthy Hedgehogs

       	Written & Illustrated by Joan Baydala (Copyright, 1994)

    The small paperback book (64 pages) indicated Joan Baydala is located in 
    Kelowna, B.C.  The book doesn't indicate a publisher or any ISBN
    reference.

      	Outline of the book is:
      	A Brief History (page 1-10)
      	Survival In The Wild (11-18)
      	Selecting Your Hedgehog (20-26)
      	Housing (27-34)
      	Care and Management (35-46)
      	Breeding (47-56)
      	Allergies (57)
      	A Few Last Words (58-59)
      	References (60)
      	Index (61-64)


Another resource for hedgehog information is the ``Exotic Market Review.''
This is a journal about exotic animals and pets, and is primarily intended for 
breeders.  It contains articles on innumerable different animals that most of
us will never have heard of, but also contains an abundance of info on 
hedgehogs.  Subscription rates are $10.00/yr. in the U.S., $30.00/US/yr. for
Canada, and $60.00/US/yr. foreign.  They can be contacted at:

       	EXOTIC Market Review
       	P.O. Box 1203
       	Bowie, Texas 76230
       	USA

       	phone: 1-800-460-3107


In addition to the books and journal, above, which are directly aimed at pet
hedgehogs, there are a number of books on European (or all types of)
hedgehogs which can be useful for pet owners and hedgehog lovers of all
types.  I would suggest looking at the listings in section [11.2] for other
books which might be of interest.


One final tidbit I can't resist adding.  I have heard of a number of new
hedgehog books that are in the works and (hopefully) due out over the coming
year or two.  Information on hedgehogs promises to continue to be
forthcoming.


User Contributions:

Rio
Report this comment as inappropriate
Apr 26, 2012 @ 10:22 pm
Hi, my hedgehog started running around her cage squealing so I took her out to see what was wrong. Her genital area was inflamed and she had open sores all around that area. I gave her a bath, but I'm really worried about her. Do you have any idea what this could be?
Thank you!

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