It is important for you to know how to trim your pet’s nails for safety and hygiene. Hedgehog’s nails are relatively clear but vary with their skin tones and within the nail is a quick which is the blood flow. Your hog may require the nails trimmed more frequently than other hogs (weekly) but some hedgehogs wear their nails down during their play so it is necessary for you to monitor growth. More often trimming is better than try to get long nails under control.
Nails that are too long can curl under or upwards and damage even deform the foot, restrict ability to walk or run, and may increase the risk of infection. The best time to check nails in the foot bath or while your hog interacts with you. Holding them in a ball position on their back can allow you to do a check.
To cut the nails you will need either nail clippers for humans, some prefer baby ones, or small animal nail cutters. It is best to trim after a bath as it removes dirt and faeces as well as softening the nails. A bath can also calm a hedgehog. Some owners fond it best to cut the nails in the bath, this prevents balling and biting as your pet is in the water.
Some have a tag team method where one person holds the hedgehog and the other cuts each nail. Letting a foot fall out of the holding person’s hand the cutter grabs this foot firmly but carefully and cuts just to the quick.
Others put their pet on a wire rack or tennis racket allowing one foot to drop through while your hog is treated to some food and maintains balance the distraction allows quick one person cutting. Just switch feet through the gap and trim away. Some tip the device at an angle exposing the nails for easier trims.
Another possibility is to use your finger like a hook while your hog is exploring a flat surface, eating treats, or burying their head from the experience. Curling your index finger while the hog is on a smooth flat surface you can get back feet easily and firmly hold to cut each nail. Front ones require a bit more trust and patience with this method but with repeated routines and time it does get easier.
Sometimes you will catch the quick and your pet may bleed. It happens and if minor just put some flour/water paste to stop the bleeding or sudocream. To reward your pet after can rebuild trust. Always end on a positive and remember you cut nails because you are a caring owner.