7 Signs Your Pet Hedgehog Likes You [Affection Behaviour]


So, you’ve brought a cute little spiky friend home, and you’re curious to know if your hedgehog likes you.

After all, hedgehogs are not as straightforward to understand with their unique behaviors and individual personalities as other more common pets.

Deciphering hedgehog behavior can feel like cracking a secret code, but don’t worry! You’re not alone in this journey. Today, we’ll dive into hedgehog bonding signs that indicate affection and trust.

Understanding Hedgehog Behavior: A Brief Overview

Before we dive into specific signs that your hedgehog likes you, we must understand hedgehog behavior. These tiny, spiky creatures have unique behaviors that set them apart from other pets.

Firstly, hedgehogs are nocturnal. They’re most active at night, so you’ll likely see more of their behaviors and interactions during your late-night TV binge.

Don’t be disheartened if they seem a bit aloof during the day; they’re simply following their natural sleep cycle.

Secondly, hedgehogs are naturally timid and may take some time to warm up to you. It’s important to remember that building a relationship with your hedgehog requires patience, consistency, and respect for their comfort and trust levels.

The more comfortable your hedgehog feels around you, the more likely they are to show you signs of affection.

Lastly, a hedgehog’s behavior can be influenced by various factors, including their diet. If you’re wondering about suitable fruits for your hedgehog, several articles discuss whether hedgehogs can eat apples, bananas, or strawberries.

How To Tell If Your Pet Hedgehog Likes You

Here are the seven (7) signs you can tell;

Sign 1. Your Hedgehog Unrolls When You’re Around

One of the most noticeable signs that your hedgehog likes you is when they unroll from their defensive ball when you’re around. This behavior indicates that your hedgehog is comfortable with your presence and doesn’t perceive you as a threat.

It’s a big deal in hedgehog world – imagine someone letting their guard down entirely, just because you’ve entered the room.

If your hedgehog consistently unrolls in your presence, it’s a clear sign they are starting to trust you. Remember, patience and regular, gentle interaction can help foster this trust.

Sign 2. They Don’t Huff or Click at You

Hedgehogs communicate their feelings through a range of sounds. If your hedgehog doesn’t “huff” or “click” at you, it’s a positive sign that they’re not scared or irritated.

“Huffing” typically sounds like rapid, heavy breathing, while “clicking” is a sound made when a hedgehog is particularly upset or agitated.

Just like humans, hedgehogs have good days and bad days. They might not always be in the mood for interaction.

However, if you notice that these sounds become less frequent over time, it’s a sign your hedgehog is getting more comfortable with you.

Sign 3. Your Hedgehog Nuzzles or Rubs Against You

Just like cats, hedgehogs show affection by nuzzling or rubbing against you. This is one of the cutest and most heartwarming signs your hedgehog likes you.

If your hedgehog leans into your touch, snuggles into your hand, or rubs against you, it clearly indicates that they’re comfortable and even seeking your touch.

This physical connection between you and your hedgehog is important to their social behavior. It’s their way of showing trust and affinity towards you.

Remember, each hedgehog is unique, and the way they show affection can vary. However, nuzzling or rubbing is a pretty universal sign of hedgehog love.

Sign 4. They’re Content to Hang Out with You

If your hedgehog seems happy to just chill with you, it’s a great sign that they’re comfortable in your presence.

This might mean they happily sit in your lap while you’re reading or watching TV, or they might be content to explore the space around you while you’re present.

This sense of contentment and ease in your presence suggests that they see you as part of their safe space. They don’t feel the need to hide or retreat, showing high trust and comfort.

Hedgehogs are naturally curious creatures. If your hedgehog shows signs of wanting to explore around you, it’s a positive indication that they feel secure with you.

Just make sure the exploration zone is safe and hedgehog-friendly.

Sign 5. Your Hedgehog Responds to Your Voice or Comes When Called

This might sound like a dream for many hedgehog owners, but yes, hedgehogs can recognize and respond to your voice.

If your hedgehog turns towards you when you speak or comes out of hiding when you call, it’s a huge sign of trust and recognition.

Now, this doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time, patience, and consistent interaction. But once your hedgehog associates your voice with safety, comfort, and possibly treats, you might just find them responding when you call.

Sign 6. They Sleep Soundly in Your Presence

In the wild, hedgehogs are prey animals. This means they need to be constantly on the alert for potential threats. A hedgehog will never sleep soundly if they feel unsafe or unsure of their surroundings.

So, if your hedgehog willingly sleeps in your presence, or even better, in your lap or hands, it’s a significant sign they trust you. They’re saying they feel safe enough with you to let down their guard completely and fall asleep.

This level of trust takes time to develop and is a sure sign your hedgehog likes you.

Sign 7. Your Hedgehog’s Quills Are Relaxed Around You

This might seem like a small detail, but it’s actually a significant sign of comfort and trust. In the wild, hedgehogs raise their quills (those sharp spines on their back) when they feel threatened.

So, if your hedgehog’s quills are relaxed when you’re handling them, it’s a good sign they feel safe with you.

You might even notice that their quills lay almost flat against their body, especially during petting. This is essentially their version of a cat purring or a dog wagging its tail – a physical sign of comfort and contentment.

What to Do If You’re Unsure of Your Hedgehog’s Feelings

Understanding your hedgehog’s feelings can be tricky. They’re not as straightforward as dogs or cats, and their unique behaviors can sometimes be challenging to interpret.

If you’re unsure about your hedgehog’s feelings, here are a few tips:

  • Patience is key: Building a relationship with a hedgehog takes time. Be patient and persistent with your interactions. Regular, gentle handling can help your hedgehog feel more comfortable with you.
  • Watch their body language: Keep an eye on the signs we’ve discussed above. These are good indicators of how your hedgehog is feeling.
  • Consult a vet or a hedgehog expert: If you’re really unsure, it can be helpful to speak with someone who knows hedgehogs well. They can often provide insight into your hedgehog’s specific behaviors.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q1: How long does it take for a hedgehog to bond with its owner?

A: It depends on the hedgehog and the owner. Some hedgehogs may start showing signs of trust within a few days or weeks, while others may take a few months. Consistency, patience, and gentle handling are key to forming a bond with your hedgehog.

Q2: What should I do if my hedgehog is always huffing or clicking at me?

A: This could be a sign that your hedgehog is scared or uncomfortable. Try to handle them gently and create a calm environment. If the behavior continues, it might be worth talking to a vet to ensure there are no underlying health issues.

Q3: Can my hedgehog recognize me?

A: Yes, hedgehogs can recognize their owners. They can learn to associate your scent and voice with safety and comfort, which can lead to them responding to your call or displaying comfortable behavior around you.

Q4: How can I make my hedgehog more comfortable with me?

A: Regular, gentle handling is key. You can also try offering treats from your hand or including your scent in their habitat by placing a worn item of clothing inside. This helps your hedgehog get used to your smell.

Q5: Can hedgehogs show affection?

A: Absolutely! While they might not show affection like dogs or cats, hedgehogs can certainly form bonds with their owners and show comfort and trust in their own unique ways.


Understanding the signs your hedgehog likes you can be a fun and rewarding journey. Each hedgehog is unique and may show affection and trust in their own unique ways.

Please pay attention to their body language, give them time and space to become comfortable, and most importantly, be patient.

Remember, a trusting hedgehog is a happy hedgehog. And a happy hedgehog makes for a happy pet owner! You’re on this journey together, so enjoy each step and cherish your bonding moments with your spiky little friend.

Keep in mind that good nutrition plays a critical role in keeping your hedgehog happy and healthy. So make sure you’re feeding them right!

We’ve got several articles on what hedgehogs can eat, from apples and bananas, to strawberries, bread, and eggs. Feel free to check them out!

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