I’m sure practically everyone’s seen what a hedgehog looks like. So you’ll see why these two hedgehogs I’m about to present to you are a little bit
spineless special. Meet Spud and Spudlina:
He looks like a cross between a battered children’s toy and a pink potato.
Meet Spud, the spineless hedgehog.
Staff at Tiggywinkles Wildlife Hospital in Buckinghamshire, who have been caring for him since August, are baffled by his condition.
Founder Les Stocker said: ‘Spud was brought to us last year after someone found him in their garden. He’s had biopsies and skin tests, but we’ve had no answers.
‘He seems quite happy and does all the things a hedgehog should. We’re now appealing for someone to come forward with ideas about what has caused his problem, and suggestions for treatment, whether it’s homeopathy or some other natural treatment.’
Staff believe he is still able to grow spines after one was found under the skin – but had to be removed.
Hedgehogs rely on their spines, hollow hairs made stiff with keratin, for insulation and protection as they are the only animals in Britain immune to most predator attacks.
When under extreme stress or during sickness, they can sometimes lose spines and the ability to roll into a tight ball is compromised.
Staff at St Tiggywinkles Wildlife Hospital in Buckinghamshire have made a little jumper to keep a spineless hedgehog warm. The animal was found by a member of the public in a garden in Bedford and has been named Spudlina by staff as her skin resembles that of a potato. The two year old is undergoing various tests to determine the cause of the loss of her spines and she is currently enjoying regular skin massages with a Vitamin E moisturiser.
I do hope these guys grow their spines back soon, but in the mean time I am enjoying looking at their wrinkly skin 🙂