Care and Acclimation | Handling Tips and Instructions | Litter Training | Bathing & Nail Trimming
Indoor & Outdoor Play | Hedgehogs on the Loose | Keeping Your Hedgehog Warm
Bonding With Your Hedgehog | Biting
Litter Pan Training
Litter Pan Potential
  • Litter pans are included in our combination packages because we believe it is well worth your effort to try and litter train your hedgie. 
  • A litter trained hedgehog will save you cage cleaning time, decrease the amount of bedding needed, and increase the freedom you have with your pet.
  • Litter trained hedgehogs are obviously much more suited to “free-roaming” in their own room or in an area of your home or apartment.

Probability of Use

  • I once heard that it was a “Crap Shoot” whether or not your hedgehog would use the litter pan.  I tend to agree!!
  • Some hedgehogs take to the litter pan and use it right away with little or no coaxing. 
  • Other hedgehogs refuse to use their litter pan despite any attempts on your part to try to teach your hedgehog the purpose of the litter pan.
  • One former customer emailed us and told us that their hedgehog suddenly started using the litter pan when it was two years old.  Better late than never!
  • Some hedgehogs prefer to use their litter pan as a sand or dust bath rather than to elimination.  Dust bathing does no harm and is simply a natural thing for a hedgie to do.
  • Another customer emailed us an told us that their hedgie was careful to potty on one side of the litter pan and dust bath in the other.
  • Your litter training success will depend partly on your patience and persistence and partly on their personality.
Placement and Style
  • The litter pan should have a front low enough for the hedgehog to easily climb in and should be large enough for the hedgehog to climb in and turn around.
  • We prefer ferret corner litter pans because they are high on the sides and back and low in the front.  They also take up less cage space than other styles.
  • Position the litter pan as far as possible away from the food dish or place the litter pan wherever the hedgehog chooses to use the bathroom. 
  • Placing the litter pan in a favored potty area is the simplest and quickest method for success.
  • One customer told us that their hedgehog decided to use the igloo as a litter box.  So, she put litter in the igloo and has had success ever since.  I guess some hedgehogs just like to potty in private!
  • We suggest using a different substrate in the litter pan than what is used in the rest of the cage.
  • Non-clumping, clay kitty litter a relatively popular substrate for litter pans however, some hedgehog enthusiasts recommend against using all clay litters. 
  • Clumping kitty litter should be avoided because it can stick to the delicate areas of your hedgehog. 
  • Some people prefer dust-free litter but it is not absolutely necessary.
  • Refer to the Bedding Guide for more substrate ideas.
  • Another suggested way to start is to use the pelleted pine in the litter pan and use a puppy pad or cage liner on the rest of the cage.
  • Some breeders do recommend using the same bedding in the cage and litter pan. 
  • Ultimately you will have to figure out what works best for you.
When to Start
  • Ideally you will start training your hedgehog as soon as you get it home.  The younger you start training the more likely you are to succeed.
  • We suggest leaving the wheel out of the cage the hedgehog’s first few days in its new home.  This will help the hedgehog establish a routine before it becomes a wheel-a-holic and starts to use the wheel as a litter pan.
  • Not all hedgehogs instantly use the litter pan but don’t give up because with a little coaching on your part it may be persuaded. 
  • Place droppings inside the pan to help clue in the hedgehog where it should go.  Litter box training hedgehogs is very similar to cats.
  • You may be able to observe certain clues that your hedgehog is getting ready to potty.  As soon as you see these signs you will want to hurry and put your hedgehog in the litter pan.
  • Most hedgehogs will need to relieve themselves shortly after waking up.  This is a good time to watch for signs that they are going to begin to eliminate and then place them in their litter pan.  Just after eating is another good time to watch for signs that your hedgehog should be placed in the litter pan. 
  • Some hedgehogs start using the litter pan on their own even after months of no interest.
  • Very few hedgehogs are going to be accurate 100% of the time.
  • Wheels can have a tendency to cause hedgehogs to forget all about using the litter pan. 
  • Some hedgehogs make a total mess of their wheels while other hedgehogs are considerate enough to stop and hang their rear off the wheel before doing their business.   
  • Unfortunately there is no fool-proof way to guarantee litter pan accuracy.  Patience, persistence, time, and a little luck may lead you and your hedgehog to success.