Can Hedgehogs Cough: Everything You Should Know

When it comes to caring for your hedgehog, it is important to ensure that you know what the signs of illness are.

If it is your first time owning a hedgehog, learning everything you need to know about their health can be quite daunting. However, it is an important part of owning a pet.

You should be aware of whether hedgehogs can cough, and what the signs of coughing can mean. This will help you to spot any potential problems quickly, and will alert you of when you may need to pay the vets a visit.

In this article, we will be chatting you through whether hedgehogs can cough, and everything you need to know about this. 

Can hedgehogs cough?

Hedgehogs make a number of different noises. From hissing like a snake, to snoring in their sleep, there are a number of interesting noises they make. As a result, when owning a hedgehog, it is vital to be aware of what each of these noises mean. 

Like with most animals, a hedgehog can cough. However, coughing for a hedgehog is something that is not overly common. As a result, if you notice that your hedgehog is coughing, you may want to have this investigated further.

While the coughing noises may well be harmless, they can be caused by different illnesses, such as lungworm.

As illness can cause coughing in hedgehogs, they should always be assessed if the coughing is persistent and sharp. 

The sound of coughing in a hedgehog may be something you are unfamiliar with. There are two types of hedgehog coughs that you need to be familiar with. While one is fairly harmless, the other one is something that you will need to keep a closer eye on.

Dry Cough

Typically a dry cough is nothing to worry about and is not a sign of any issues or illnesses. However, if the dry cough is persistent, it is worth having this checked out, just to rule out.

A dry cough will sound almost like a sharp bark. It does not last for too long, and will happen if your hedgehog has something that has irritated their throat. This can be as simple as some dirt or dust. Just as we would cough, it is for a similar reason. 

Rattling Cough

If your hedgehog has a rattling cough, this is something that is more worrying and should be checked out. This may also be accompanied by other types of issues, such as fatigue, and weakness too. A rattling cough will be louder than a dry cough.

A rattling cough will be consistent, and usually they will cough many times in a row. It is something that you will notice as an owner very quickly. 

Why is my Hedgehog coughing?

There are a number of different reasons why your hedgehog may be coughing. As we have already covered above, one of the main reasons for a dry cough is due to irritation, or things such as dust and dirt.

Unless the dry cough is persistent, it is typically nothing to worry about.

A rattling cough should be noted, and you will need to keep a close eye on this. One of the main reasons why a hedgehog will have a rattling cough is because of lungworm. This is a parasite infestation that affects bo99th the lungs and the digestive system.

Lungworm is typically contracted by the hedgehog eating an infested animal, which is often slugs. While it is something that can be treated, if it is left for too long, it can be fatal.

This is why it is so important to ensure that you have your hedgehog checked over by a veterinarian to rule out lungworm, or to provide the correct treatment. In addition to the coughing, a hedgehog may also experience wheezing, a lack of appetite, and a lack of energy too.

The signs of lungworm are fairly easy to spot, and treatment should be given as soon a possible. You may also notice that their nose is quite runny too. While there may be other reasons why a hedgehog is coughing, the most common reason is due to lungworm. 


We hope you have found this article useful and helpful. As you can see, there are a number of reasons why your hedgehog may cough. While a cough may not be something that you will necessarily need to worry about, it can be a sign of lungworm, especially if the cough is chesty. 

As a result of this, you will want to ensure that you have your hedgehog checked over by your vet if you have any concerns. They will then be able to diagnose the problem, and rule out any potential causes to your hedgehog’s dry or chesty cough.