How to Fix Hedgehog Constipation Easy & Quick!

diagram showing feces in the intestines as hedgehog owners inquires How to Fix Hedgehog Constipation

Hedgehogs are notorious for incessant pooping due to their fast metabolism. From the running wheel surface to other cage areas, they won’t hesitate to ease themselves anywhere nature calls. This explains why panic naturally sets in when you cannot find their excreta anywhere in the cage.

This article reveals how to fix hedgehog constipation with simple homemade laxatives that can clear their colons and help stimulate free bowel movements. We also discuss common underlying reasons behind constipation in hedgehogs and how to prevent them in the near future. Let’s get started.

How to Fix Hedgehog Constipation

Feeding 1/2 teaspoon or 1/4 teaspoon of cooked pumpkin mixed with water is the best way to fix constipation in the African Pygmy or European hedgehogs. Unflavored boiled egg and water solution is another natural laxative that can help free their bowels. Gentle massages and warm baths are additional ways to provide relaxation for constipated hedgehogs to be able to poop freely.

The inability of hedgehogs to poop can make their cages and whole environment look and feel cleaner but the effects on their health could be devastating. Unless you’re looking forward to their death and burial, a quick fix should be a top priority.

Sure Your Hedgehogs Are Not Eating Their Own Poop?

Before concluding that your hedgehog is constipated, it is important to rule out the probability of eating their feces. Like animals such as rabbits and squirrels, hedgehogs may eat their poop after failing to absorb the right nutrients from their diet due to their ultra-fast digestive systems.

Eating the feces gives them a second crack at gaining maximum nutrients from their diet for healthy growth and vitality. Poop eating poses no health problems as long it is their own and there are no obvious signs of illness.

Eating their own poop is an instinctive behavior hedgehogs exhibit to gain more nutrients when necessary. If there are no traces of poop in your hedgehog’s enclosure, it is possible all of it is being eaten. Concluding that they’re constipated and putting them on laxatives could be unnecessary.

Always monitor hedgehogs closely for several hours especially after feeding to be sure they’re not consuming their poop before looking for free bowel movement solutions.

Are You Sure There’s No Hidden Poop In Their Cages?

Hedgehogs are known for their indiscriminate pooping but there’s always a chance of hidden feces somewhere in the cage. They don’t always defecate in the open and once in a while, you could find a hedgehog that prefers doing its own thing in burrows created in the middle section or further down the cage bedding.

We recommend combing everywhere in the enclosure, especially deep inside thick layers of bedding to be sure there’s no hidden poop before offering laxatives. (Source)

Check For Hedgehog Poop Boots

Hedgehogs poop a lot when running on exercise wheels and it is one of the first areas to look for evidence of feces. You may also check for poop boots in their legs which are traces of their excreta stepped into during running on poop-filled exercise wheel surfaces.

Effective Ways To Free Your Hedgehog’s Bowels

Here are the details of the effective ways to eliminate constipation in your hedgehog regardless of the underlying reasons.

Boiled Pumpkin Stimulates Hedgehog Bowel Movements

boiled pumpkin is a natural laxative for inducing pooping in hedgehogs

Boiled pumpkin mixed with water is an effective natural laxative that can fix constipation in animals like hedgehogs. The pumpkin should be ripe and raw and be boiled with a good amount of water to maximize its bowel-freeing effects.

Adult hedgehogs require 1/2 teaspoon of the solution to trigger the laxative effect while younger hedgehogs need just 1/4 of a teaspoon. The best form of administering is via a syringe because hedgehogs may find the taste repulsive.

Boiled Eggs Laxative For Hedgehog Constipation

Boiled eggs mixed with water can also provide laxative effects to eliminate signs of constipation in pet hedgehogs. Follow the same dosage as the pumpkin water solution for both adults and baby hedgehogs for maximum results.

Do not hesitate to consult your veterinarian within 48 hours if the hedgehog is still showing signs of constipation after ingesting any of the 2 recommended natural laxatives above. The lack of pooping could be a result of bowel impaction or intestinal blockages that may require a vet-conducted enema to provide relief.


Gentle massages can be a great way to provide relief from the signs of constipation in hedgehogs. It is more effective when your quill baby is unable to poop due to the effects of indigestion from overeating. Massaging the stomach and other areas should stimulate digestion and the eventual ability to poop like normal.

Massages can also reverse the signs of stress-induced constipation and related effects.

Warm Baths

Warm baths are another great option for providing relief from the symptoms of constipation induced by stress. It is effective at relaxing the stuck-up bowels to enable free movement after eating. Warm baths can also enhance the mood of your pet hedgehog and improve its overall well-being.

Why is My Hedgehog Not Pooping?

There could be several underlying reasons behind constipation in hedgehogs and a few are discussed below:

Dehydration Causes Constipation In Hedgehogs

hedgehog drinking a lot of water can minimize constipation

Constant access to drinking water helps stimulate digestion and free bowel movements in hedgehogs. If your quill baby is dehydrated, blockages in the digestive tract may be inevitable leading to constipation. While providing clean drinking water and healthy food is a great start, keeping an eye on their eating and hydration habits is necessary to ensure the proper functioning of the digestive system.

If your hedgehog is drinking little to no water, for instance, switching from a water bottle to a water bowl typically leads to positive results due to their water source becoming more accessible. Mushing their food with water may also promote hydration when they refuse to drink despite your attempts.

New Diets May Cause Hedgehog Intestinal Blockages

Have you switched your hedgehog’s diet recently? The changes could be the reason for their pooping struggles. It takes time for them to adjust to new diets especially when they’ve been eating the previous food for considerable periods.

Constipation is normal as their digestive systems get used to the new diet so patience is the key. If you’re sure the new diet is right for them, you may have to find ways to induce pooping and stick it out until their intestines and whole digestive tract warm up to it.

Food such as dairy may also have negative side effects including intestinal blockages resulting in constipation. If your hedgehog is struggling to poop after recent dietary alterations, getting rid of the new diet and watching out for changes in pooping patterns could provide the right answers.

Illness-Induced Constipation In Hedgehogs

Many forms of hedgehog illnesses may cause constipation including cancer. A vet appointment can reveal the underlying sickness after the necessary tests have been conducted but generally, sick hedgehogs often display additional symptoms such as lethargy, loss of appetite, and weight loss.

The presence of tumors may kill their appetite and trigger constipation but these symptoms could be treated by the vet without problems. Your vet will decide the right cause of treatment for the hedgehog to relieve the symptoms of constipation.

Stress-Triggered Constipation In Hedgehogs

Hedgehogs do not fare too well with stress, especially when exposed for the long term. Moving to a new home and exposure to noisy environments can trigger extreme stress resulting in side effects like loss of appetite and constipation.

The inability to create a cozy cage environment may also result in significant stress because it could lead to boredom and loneliness among hedgehogs. This is typically common when the setup is missing key components such as hideouts and toys.

Hunger and thirst are also common stress triggers in hedgehogs resulting in the inability to poop and related side effects.

Hedgehog Constipation From Extreme Cold

hedgehog feeling cold in the snow can feel constipated

If your hedgehog is exposed to extreme cold, pooping struggles could be inevitable. It is a common occurrence during winter when hedgehogs are unable to digest consumed food due to the extremely low cage temperatures.

Hedgehogs thrive in temperatures of around 75 F and it is important that their cage temperatures do not plummet beyond that. We recommend finding ways to keep them warm including providing heat lamps and central heating to ensure comfort regardless of how low room temperatures decline.

Exposure to cold temperatures can also trigger hibernation in hedgehogs resulting in lots of problems including death.

Overeating-Induced Constipation

Overeating is a common cause of constipation in hedgehogs. They have smaller bellies that can only take limited amounts of food at a time but hedgehogs sometimes succumb to the temptation to overeat when excess food quantities are available.

This may cause blockages in their digestive system resulting in constipation.

Hedgehog Starvation Causes Constipation

If your hedgehog is starving either due to a lack of food access or loss of appetite, constipation could be inevitable. Finding ways to improve their appetite or giving them regular access to food and water should promote healthy pooping.

Hedgehog Constipation From Mealworm Impaction

mealworms could cause constipation in hedgehogs

Dried mealworms and other insects are a popular source of animal protein for hedgehogs but they may cause blockages in their intestines. Live insects often have a good moisture content which eases the digestion process instead of causing blockages.

Taking A Constipated Hedgehog to Your Vet

If your hedgehog is still struggling to poop after 48 hours of trying any or all of the solutions outlined above for freeing up their bowels, it is time for a trip to your vet. Constipation can be a sign of serious illness in your quill baby and immediate veterinary action may be lifesaving.

Conditions like cancer may require serious interventions such as surgery or even chemotherapy to reverse the effects of a hedgehog’s pooping struggles. Other health problems may require antibiotics and other non-invasive procedures including the prescription of laxative drugs such as Lactulose. (Source)

Conclusion: How to Fix Hedgehog Constipation

Constipated hedgehogs can gain relief after ingesting natural laxatives such as diluted boiled pumpkin or diluted boiled egg. This should only come to mind after double-checking their cages to confirm no traces of hidden poop and monitoring their movements to be sure they’re not eating their own feces.

Warm baths and gentle massages are also effective for stimulating free bowel movements because stress is a common cause of constipation. Making sure they eat properly and have unlimited access to drinking water are additional ways to help them enjoy free bowels.

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