Hedgehogs are known for their long spines and prickly quills.
They also have a reputation for being very shy, retiring animals. But they don’t always behave that way. In fact, some hedgehogs are quite outgoing and friendly.
Hedgehogs are nocturnal mammals native to Europe and Asia. They spend much of their time sleeping or resting during the day. They eat insects, spiders, worms, snails, slugs, frogs, grasshoppers, and other invertebrates.
Some hedgehogs are solitary creatures who live alone. Others form social groups called colonies. These colonies usually consist of a single male and several females. The males guard the colony and defend it from predators.
So now we know about hedgehogs appearance, temperament, and diet, how about we learn more about their sexual behaviors?
In this article, we will be asking a question that some may have thought about in the past: do hedgehogs masturbate?
At the end of the day, many animals are known to engage in masturbation. We know that dogs and cats can masturbate. And, there is evidence that elephants and giraffes do so as well.
But what about hedgehogs? Do they masturbate?
Well, let’s find out.
What Is Masturbation?
Masturbation is defined by Merriam-Webster as “the stimulation of one’s own genitals for sexual pleasure.”
It is often associated with sexual arousal and orgasm. It is sometimes referred to as self-love because it involves pleasuring oneself.
It is not necessarily an act of sex. Some people masturbate when they are stressed, lonely, bored, tired, angry, or sad. Some people also masturbate while watching pornography.
There are different types of masturbation. You might use your fingers, toys, objects, or clothing to stimulate yourself. A person may rub their penis or vagina, as well as other body parts, to reach orgasm.
Beside humans, there are several animals that also perform masturbation. Dogs, cats, horses, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, and even insects all masturbate.
Many species of animals masturbate differently than humans. For example, some animals like to lick themselves or bite their genitalia instead of rubbing them. Other animals prefer to stroke themselves using their paws.
This is a perfectly natural behavior for these animals. Many animals masturbate simply for fun. Some animals masturbate to relieve stress, boredom, loneliness, or anxiety.
Other animals masturbate to help them get ready for mating season. This includes animals such as rabbits, foxes, deer, and others.
Animals also masturbate to mark territory and attract mates. Male animals will often ejaculate on trees or bushes to show off their dominance. Female animals will often rub against trees or bushes to release pheromones.
Do Hedgehogs Masturbate?
The short answer is yes.
Hedgehog masturbation has been observed in both captive and wild populations. There are two main reasons why hedgehogs masturbate.
One reason is that they need to relieve stress and tension. If you watch any animal videos online, you will see that most animals are seen scratching themselves.
This is a common behavior among animals. It helps them relax and feel better.
Another reason why hedgehogs masturbate is to prepare for breeding season. During this time, they are more active and energetic. They are also more likely to mate.
How Do Hedgehogs Masturbate?
Unlike humans, hedgehogs don’t usually touch their genitals directly. Instead, they scratch their skin around their genitals. They may also rub their snout against their genitals.
In the wild, male hedgehogs have been known to rub their penises against tree trunks and branches. Females have been known to rub against vegetation.
The Hedgehog’s Age Of Sexual Maturity
Most mammals reach puberty at around 2 years old. However, hedgehogs reach puberty much earlier.
They usually start having sex between 4 months and 1-year-old. Most males begin to breed at 5 months old. Females typically start ovulating at 6 months old.
During this time, male hedgehogs will become very aggressive and territorial. They will fight with each other over females.
They will also try to protect their territories from intruders. In order to defend their territory, they will chase away other males.
When a female approaches the area where her male partner lives, he will emit a scent called a pheromone. The smell attracts other males who follow the scent trail.
These males then attempt to sneak into the area where the female resides. When one of these males gets close enough to the female, she will let him mount her.
Once mounted, the male can insert his penis inside the female’s cloaca. He can do this up to 10 times per day.
If the female does not want to mate, she will push him away. She will also give out a loud squeal. At this point, the male will stop trying to have sex with her. He will leave the area and go back to his home.
Female hedgehogs also have their own way of marking their territory. After mating, they will urinate on the ground.
Male hedgehogs also call when they are ready to mate. They will use their spines to scratch the ground. This is how they signal to other males that they are available.
Hedgehog Mating Season
Males and females will generally mate during the spring and summer. During this time, temperatures are warm.
In the winter, it is too cold for mating. Temperatures may drop below freezing.
However, some species of hedgehogs can mate through the winter. These include the European pygmy hedgehog and the American pygmy hedgehog. Both of these species hibernate during the winter. They stay in an underground burrow.
However, they wake up every few days to eat food. They also drink water.
During the winter, males will be very inactive. They will spend most of their time sleeping or hiding under logs or rocks. Females will also be less active. They will sleep all day long.
However, when the weather warms up, both sexes will become more active. Males will start chasing away other males.
Females will also start looking for mates. They will walk along the forest floor sniffing for males.
Like many animals, hedgehogs enjoy sexual activity. While they don’t need to mate as often as humans, they still like to get it on every once in a while.
We hope you enjoyed learning about hedgehogs!