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Home > Hedgehogs > Do Hedgehogs Purr? Pet Sounds Explained

Do Hedgehogs Purr? Pet Sounds Explained

Egyptian long-haired hedgehog held in hand

We all know that cats purr when they are happy, but do hedgehogs purr too? Yes! Hedgehogs purr as a way to show their emotions. It sounds similar to a cat purring but is often mistaken for growling because many people don’t know that hedgehogs can purr.

divider-hedgehogWhat Does It Mean When a Hedgehog Purrs?

Hedgehogs purr for many of the same reasons that cats do, including to show affection toward their humans. If you have a hedgehog, you may notice that their purring increases over time as you gain their trust and they begin to feel secure. If your pet hedgehog purrs frequently, it means they have a great deal of affection for you!

Can You Tell the Difference Between a Purr and a Growl?

Hedgehog purring is often mistaken for growling. It can sound similar, and since many people aren’t aware that a hedgehog can purr, they automatically assume that the sound is a growl. However, there are ways of differentiating the two sounds.

Hedgehogs that are content will exhibit relaxed body language in addition to purring. Their quills will point toward their tail, and they may make squeaks intermingled with the purring.

When a hedgehog is unhappy, their body language will be aggressive. They may roll into a ball or stand their quills upright. In this case, they will growl, and it is unlikely that you will mistake them for being happy.

Algerian hedgehog
Image Credit: Best dog photo, Shutterstock

What Other Sounds Do Hedgehogs Make?

Hedgehogs make many other sounds besides purrs and growls. Knowing what these sounds mean will help you understand your hedgehog more and learn to better read their communication.

  • Soft clicking sounds indicate contentedness.
  • Loud clicking is part of defensive behavior or aggressiveness.
  • Hissing is defensive and means, “Go away!”
  • Screaming or squealing is an indication that the hedgehog is in pain.

What’s most important is to read your hedgehog’s body language along with the sound. This will help you determine whether your pet is happy and showing affection or if they’re angry and defensive. Sometimes, defensive behavior is simply an indication that they don’t want to be handled.

divider-hedgehogFinal Thoughts

Hedgehogs purr to show affection just like cats do. While it can be difficult to differentiate a purr from a growl the hedgehog’s body language should complete the story. By reading their body language along with their noises, you can get a better overall picture of when your hedgehog is content and happy and when they want to be left alone.

Featured Image Credit: glennsontag, Pixabay

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