Saturday, 16 June 2018

How much to rescue a hedgehog?

I was recently asked how much time and money I spend looking after hedgehogs. I could give a rough estimate for the average cost over a year, as I always keep a track of income and expenditure. It tends to average between £1200 to £1500 per year. However, I've never worked out the monetary cost or time spent caring for a single hedgehog. So, I decided I'd work out how much it's cost to raise Doug over the last three weeks.

Doug enjoying his food.

Here's the results:

Time cost
For the first three weeks of his life Doug needed feeding on a continuous basis. For the first two weeks it was at least every three hours with the first feed at 6am and the last at midnight. On average it took 15 minutes. So over a three week period that totals approximately 36 hours!

Monetary costs
There's a lot of 'things' you need to care for a hoglet as young as Doug (approximately 2-3 days old when he was found). These include non-consumables such as:

  • Towels - thankfully donated
  • Pet carrier - again a much appreciated donation
  • Heat Pad  = £30
  • Small cage = £50

Plus small items such as storage pots, bowls and syringes etc.

Then there's food and cleaning products  (for the first three weeks):

  • Goats milk x 3  = £4.95
  • Puppy formula = £34.38
  • Cotton wool balls = £1.50
  • Sudacream = £3.00
  • Napisan = £3.75
  • Hand disinfectant = £18.15
  • F10 cage cleaner = £11.99
  • iD Hills food x 3 = £4.41

So to feed and keep him clean has cost around £80 for the first three weeks and we have at least 4-5 weeks to go!

Thankfully the next stage in his life is already covered because over the last 25 years I've managed to raise funds to purchase a range of items. This means I'm now in a position to care for up to eight hedgehogs at a time. This hasn't been cheap and the major purchases have been:

  • A shed = £1200
  • Six large hutches = £300
  • Two small hutches = £60
  • Nebuliser = £60
  • Heater = £30
  • Spare plug in heat pad = £30
  • Snuggle safe heat pad = £10
  • 2 spare pet carriers - donated
  • Flooring - donated

So, in answer to the originally question I was asked. I think it's fair to say the cost may just surprise you.