What Is Toxic to Hedgehogs?

Hedgehogs are known for their ability to eat just about anything. Unfortunately, this is also one of the reasons they’re so prone to getting sick and dying.

They’re very good at finding food independently, but they sometimes need a full understanding of what is safe to eat. Some foods are poisonous to them!

If you have a pet hedgehog, you must keep an eye on what they’re eating and ensure they don’t get into anything dangerous. Here we’ll cover foods and plants that are toxic for your hedgehog.

What Foods and Chemicals Are Toxic to Hedgehogs?


Potatoes contain solanine, a poisonous substance that can cause digestive problems in hedgehogs. The most common symptoms of solanine poisoning include the following:

  • diarrhea
  • vomiting
  • weakness and lethargy (tiredness)

Potatoes can also cause liver damage in hedgehogs if they eat too many potatoes or other solanine foods.

Coffee and Tea

Coffee and tea are not recommended for hedgehogs, as they contain caffeine. Caffeine can cause stomach upset in hedgehogs and is a diuretic that will dehydrate them.

It’s also been known to cause heartburn in humans, so avoiding these beverages is best if you have a hedgehog at home.

Dairy Products

Dairy products are high in fat, which can cause weight gain. This can be bad for hedgehogs because they’re already prone to obesity, and it’s more difficult to lose weight than it is to gain it.

Also, dairy products contain lactose (the sugar found in milk) that some hedgehogs cannot digest properly.

If your hedgehog has digestive issues or diarrhea after consuming dairy products such as cheese or yogurt, you should avoid feeding them these foods altogether.

Dairy products may also cause dehydration if consumed too much–especially if your hedgehog gets dehydrated due to diarrhea from consuming too much dairy!


Mushrooms are toxic to hedgehogs and should be avoided. The toxin in mushrooms, amatoxin, can cause liver damage, kidney damage, and stomach ulcers. In severe cases, it can even lead to death!


Theobromine, a chemical in chocolate and cocoa, can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and seizures.

The darker the chocolate is (e.g., dark or semi-sweet), the more dangerous it is because it contains more caffeine and theobromine than milk chocolate.

The toxicity of chocolate depends on how much of it you give your pet; one ounce of unsweetened baking chocolate contains enough toxic substances to kill an average-sized adult human!

The lethal dose for most animals (including hedgehogs) is between 50-100mg/kg body weight per day over several days–this means that if your hedgehog weighs 1lb (0.45kg), he could eat up to 4oz (113g) of baking cocoa before becoming ill!

Egg Yolk

Eggs are a good source of protein and contain many essential vitamins and minerals, but they’re also high in cholesterol. If your hedgehog eats too many eggs, it can cause food poisoning or death.

If you want to feed your hedgehog an egg occasionally (and we don’t recommend doing so), ensure it’s cooked well before feeding it to your pet!

Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil is a natural remedy for many ailments but is toxic to hedgehogs.

If you use tea tree oil as a remedy for your pet, it’s important to remember that the concentration of the substance may be too high for them.

Although small amounts are safe on human skin and can be used topically (on the outside), larger amounts can cause irritation and burning sensations when applied directly onto the skin’s surface.

Alcoholic beverages

Alcoholic beverages, including beer and wine, are toxic to hedgehogs. Alcohol can cause hypothermia (when the body’s temperature drops too low) and liver damage in hedgehogs.

It can also irritate the kidneys, which can lead to kidney failure.


Raisins are toxic to hedgehogs because of containing a toxin called acanthoangelin, which can cause kidney failure.

Raisins also have a high sugar and fat content, which can lead to dehydration in hedgehogs that eat them regularly.

Nicotine, Drugs, and Medication

Nicotine is a stimulant that can cause vomiting, seizures, and even death. Smoking around your pet should be avoided at all times.

Alcoholic beverages and recreational drugs such as marijuana can also poison hedgehogs.

If you have any medications not prescribed by your veterinarian for yourself or your family members, do not give them to your pet without consulting them first!

Toothpaste and Mouthwash

Hedgehogs can’t use toothpaste and mouthwash because they contain fluoride. Fluoride is harmful to hedgehogs because it’s a mineral that accumulates in their bodies and can cause health problems.

Mouthwash contains alcohol, which is also toxic to hedgehogs. If you use mouthwash regularly, consider switching brands or another product so your pet doesn’t accidentally get any on themselves!

Citrus Fruits

Citrus fruits can cause digestive problems and kidney failure, so it’s best to avoid feeding them citrus fruits.

Lemon, lime, orange, grapefruit, and mandarin are all examples of citrus fruit that should not be given to your hedgehog.

Tangerines (a type of orange) are also on the list of toxic foods for hedgehogs because they contain high amounts of vitamin A, which can be harmful if consumed in excess amounts.

Apple Seeds

Apple seeds contain cyanide, which is poisonous to hedgehogs. Apple seeds are not toxic to humans but can be fatal for our little spiny friends.

Apple seeds are one of the most dangerous foods for your pet hedgehog because they contain cyanide and will cause severe damage to their internal organs if ingested in large quantities or over a long period.

The good news is that apple seeds aren’t poisonous to dogs or cats–they’re just deadly for hedgehogs!


Grapes are not toxic to hedgehogs, but they can cause constipation. Grapes can also be a choking hazard and should not be fed to hedgehogs with kidney problems or diabetes.


This fruit contains persin, which can harm your pet’s organs. Persin affects the liver and kidneys, causing damage and even death if ingested by a hedgehog.

Although it’s present in all parts of the avocado plant (leaves, bark, and fruit), you should keep this fruit out of reach of your hedgehog because it’s more likely that he’ll eat it than any other part of the plant.

What Plants Are Toxic to Hedgehogs?

Hedgehogs are carnivores, so they don’t eat plants. However, some plants are toxic to hedgehogs and could cause illness or even death if ingested by your pet.

To help keep your hedgehog safe, know which plants are safe for them and which aren’t.

The following list contains several common houseplants that may be toxic to your pet:

California Ivy

California ivy is a poisonous plant. It is a member of the poison oak family, which contains urushiol oil. Urushiol oil causes rashes in humans and other animals when they come into contact with it.

The plant can grow up to 20 feet tall but is most commonly found as an indoor houseplant or invasive ground cover in gardens and parks.

The leaves are shiny green with five leaflets arranged in a star shape around a stem (which forms its “chain”).

The best way to avoid exposure to California ivy is by keeping your hedgehog away from areas where they might encounter this toxic plant!

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is a succulent plant commonly found in garden centers and used for burns, skin conditions, and other ailments. It’s toxic to hedgehogs because it can cause severe stomach problems if ingested.

African Daisy

African daisy is a common name for the plant Asteriscus africanus. It’s also called black-eyed Susan and, like many toxic plants, can be found in gardens and landscaped areas.

Avocado Plant 

The toxic substance in avocados is called persin, found in the avocado plant’s leaves, fruit, and bark.

This toxin can cause severe diarrhea, vomiting, stomach pain, respiratory problems, and even death if your pet ingests too much.

The good news is that the fruit’s pit (or stone) contains no persin, so if you’re worried about your hedgehog eating an avocado pit, don’t be! It will be fine!


Bluebottles are small, jellyfish-like creatures that float in the ocean. They can sting you if you come into contact with them and cause a painful rash on your skin.

Bluebottles have tentacles that hang down underneath their bodies like a skirt. These tentacles are covered in stinging cells called nematocysts, used to capture prey and defend themselves against predators (like you).

If one of these stinging cells touches your skin, it will inject you with venom that causes pain and swelling around where it touched; this is called envenomation.


The list of toxic plants and foods is long, but we hope this article has helped you understand their dangers to your hedgehog. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is Hedgehog Poop Toxic?

Hedgehog poop is not toxic, but it may carry bacteria or parasites that can be harmful to humans if not handled properly. It is important to wear gloves and wash hands thoroughly after cleaning up hedgehog poop to avoid any potential health risks.

Is Pumpkin Toxic to Hedgehogs?

No, pumpkin is not toxic to hedgehogs. In fact, it can be a healthy and nutritious addition to their diet in moderation.

However, it should be given in small amounts as too much can cause digestive issues. It is also important to remove the seeds and skin before offering a pumpkin to a hedgehog.

Are Carrots Toxic to Hedgehogs?

No, carrots are not toxic to hedgehogs, but they should not be a staple in their diet as they are high in sugar and can lead to obesity and other health issues.

Hedgehogs require a balanced diet of protein, fat, and fiber, which can be provided by specialized hedgehog food, insects, and occasional fruits and vegetables.

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