Hedgehogs And Lungworm: What You Need To Know

If you have owned a pet, it is likely you have heard of Lungworm. It is something that  pet owners dread.

While all types of worms are not great for animals to have, lungworm is one of the worst. It is dangerous, and as a pet owner, you should do all that you can to help prevent your hedgehog from suffering from this.

If you are unaware of lungworm and its dangers, in this article, we will be chatting you through everything you need to know about it. We will be covering what lungworm is, the signs to look out for, and how it can be treated. 

Can hedgehogs survive Lungworm?

Yes, hedgehogs can survive lungworm. However, as this is a serious issue, and can lead to a severe infestation, if it is not treated correctly, it can be fatal to a hedgehog. This is why it is so important to ensure that your hedgehog has the correct diet, and treatment, to help prevent this from occurring.

In the wild, a hedgehog relies on the types of insects and bugs that are available. Slugs are a type of food that hedgehogs will often eat. While this is something that they enjoy, and is nutritious for them, slugs are a dangerous animal for them to eat.

When it comes to lungworm in hedgehogs, it is via slugs that they will typically fall victim to this infestation.

However, this can occur from any type of insect that they eat. When they eat an animal that is infected with lungworm, subsequently, a hedgehog will often suffer from a lungworm infestation too. 

Hedgehogs are able to receive treatment for lungworm, and once they have received the suitable treatment, they will survive. However, if they are not treated for lungworm it can be fatal. 

With hedgehogs that are pets, it is fairly easy for an owner to treat lungworm and spot the signs quickly. However, this is more of an issue with wild hedgehogs as they will not be able to receive the treatment needed for lungworm.

The best way in which you can stop lungworm from becoming fatal is to treat the symptoms as soon as possible.

How do you know if a hedgehog has Lungworm?

On the whole, it is fairly easy to know when a hedgehog has lungworm.

There are a handful of tell tale signs that will warn you of this. However, before we begin to discuss these, it is important to note that not all hedgehogs will express symptoms of lungworm.

Given this, we would recommend that you treat your hedgehog for lungworm regularly to ensure that they are free from this parasite.

Generally, there are a number of things to look out for. If you notice that your hedgehog has a lot of nasal discharge, and snuffles these can be a sign of this parasite.

As it affects the lungs, you may notice that the hedgehog is having difficulty with its breathing too. The sound of the breathing may rattle, and sound strained.

In addition to this, if the infestation is not cleared, you will begin to notice that the hedgehog will lose its appetite and become rather weak. If this continues without treatment, it can be fatal. 

If you notice any of these symptoms you should take the hedgehog to your local veterinarian as soon as possible to receive treatment. They will then be able to diagnose whether it is lungworm that your hedgehog is suffering from.

They will need a stool sample to identify if the cause of the illness is lungworm. This is because the worm can be identified in the stool. After it has been confirmed the treatment can then be given. 


We hope you have found this article useful. As you can see, in the vast majority of cases, you will be able to identify lungworm in a hedgehog fairly easily and quickly.

As a result of this, if you have any suspicions or concerns about this, you should take the hedgehog to receive treatment as soon as possible.

However, when it comes to hedgehogs as pets, they are less likely to suffer from lungworm because the food you are feeding them is unlikely to be infected. However, it is still possible for them to become infected.

As a result you should treat for lungworm as a precaution every so often.

It is typically wild hedgehogs that suffer from lungworm as they are insectivores, and they are known to east slugs. Slugs are known to often carry this disease, which they can pass on if eaten.

When you own a hedgehog as a pet, we would recommend that you do not allow them to eat slugs where possible to help prevent them from contracting lungworm.