Can Hedgehogs Have Catnip? (Explained for Beginners)

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The other day, I was at my local pet store, and I saw they had catnip. So, of course, I started to wonder, can hedgehogs have catnip?

I decided to find out everything about whether hedgehogs can have catnip, and I’m going to share what I learned with you.

Hedgehogs can have catnip, but it is not advisable to give them too much of it. A small amount of catnip will usually have no effect on a hedgehog, but too much can cause them to become agitated and restless.

That being said, it is not required by any means to give your hedgehogs a catnip. In fact, catnip is mainly for our amusement. Hedgehogs are perfectly content without it!

But there are a few things you should know before giving it to them. In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know about catnip and hedgehogs. We will cover the benefits of catnip for hedgehogs, as well as the potential risks. Keep reading to learn more!

Do hedgehogs like catnip?

Hedgehogs are not particularly interested in catnip since the plant does not contain the right chemicals to trigger their natural foraging instincts. However, some hedgehogs may enjoy nibbling on catnip if it is offered to them.

In fact, catnip does not affect all animals in the same way. For example, cats are attracted to catnip because it contains a chemical called nepetalactone. This chemical binds to receptors in a cat’s brain, causing them to experience a sense of euphoria.

Hedgehogs, on the other hand, do not have these receptors, so catnip has no effect on them. However, this does not mean that hedgehogs do not like the smell of catnip. In fact, many hedgehogs are attracted to the scent of catnip, and they may enjoy sniffing and rubbing their face in it.

So, even though catnip does not have the same effect on hedgehogs as it does on cats, they may still enjoy the smell of it. If you want to offer your hedgehog some catnip, you can purchase it at most pet stores.

Is catnip safe for hedgehogs?

Now that we know that hedgehogs are not affected by catnip in the same way as cats, you may be wondering if it is safe for them to consume.

Catnip is safe for hedgehogs to eat in small quantities. However, it is important to note that too much catnip can cause hedgehogs to become agitated and restless.

As we mentioned earlier, catnip is a member of the mint family and contains nepetalactone. This is a chemical that is known to cause reactions in some animals, including cats and dogs. When a cat smells nepetalactone, it can cause them to become excited and playful.

That said, some hedgehogs may love it, while others may not be too keen on the smell or taste. In general, however, most animals do find catnip to be a stimulant and enjoy its effects.

Can hedgehogs have cat treats?

Hedgehogs can have cat treats. Some of the most popular cat treats you can offer are:

  • Canned tuna
  • Cooked chicken
  • Hard-boiled eggs

These are all safe for hedgehogs to consume. However, it is important to note that hedgehogs are not obligate carnivores like cats. This means that they do not require a diet that is composed of solely meat.

Hedgehogs are omnivores, which means that they can digest both plant and animal-based foods. In the wild, hedgehogs typically eat a diet that consists of insects, earthworms, snails, slugs, berries, and fruits.

So, while catnip may not be the best treat for hedgehogs, the options mentioned above are all safe and nutritious for them to consume.


CLICK HERE to see the dried insect three pack choice on Amazon. It’s an easy way to add variety to your hedgehog’s diet and make sure they’re getting all the nutrients they need.

By offering a variety of different foods, you can ensure that your hedgehog is getting the nutrients they need to stay healthy and happy.

Do all animals react to catnip?

No, not all animals react to catnip. In fact, only about 50% of cats will react to catnip at all. For those that do, the reaction is usually temporary and lasts for about 15 minutes.

Other animals that may be affected by catnip include:

  • Dogs
  • Horses
  • Rabbits
  • Squirrels

As you can see, the list of animals that react to catnip is pretty small. So, if you’re ever wondering if your pet will react to catnip, the chances are slim.


Can hedgehogs have catnip toys?

Hedgehogs should not be allowed to play with catnip toys. The nepetalactone in catnip can cause hedgehogs to become agitated and restless.

This chemical affects the felines’ nervous system and acts as a stimulant. It is safe for cats to consume small amounts of catnip; however, it isn’t meant to be used for hedgehogs.

However, if you want your hedgehog to have a catnip toy, it would be ideal for getting a second opinion from a veterinarian to make sure that it is, in fact, safe for your hedgehog to play with.

Overall we have seen that hedgehogs aren’t really much interested in catnip, and as long as they are not eating it, they should be just fine.

Can hedgehogs use cat toys?

Hedgehogs can absolutely use cat toys! In fact, many people who have both cats and hedgehogs find that their pets enjoy playing with the same kinds of toys. Cats and hedgehogs are both small carnivorous animals with lots of energy, so they tend to like similar kinds of things.

Some of the best toys for both cats and hedgehogs include:

  • Tunnels
  • Chase toys
  • Interactive toys

Of course, you’ll want to make sure that any toy you get for your hedgehog is small enough that they can’t get stuck in it. You’ll also want to avoid any toys with small parts that could be swallowed.

That being said, if you’re planning to get a hedgehog, or perhaps you already have one, don’t feel like you need to know what things your pet is afraid of? so that you can prevent them from unnecessary stress?

In a recent article, we talked about 11 things that hedgehogs fear the most. There I talked about how to get your hedgehog used to being handled and how to socialize them so that they’re less afraid of new things.

Click the link to learn more.

Final thoughts

In this article, we have discussed whether hedgehogs can have catnip and the answer is no. Catnip can be dangerous for hedgehogs. If the toy breaks and your hedgehog ingests some of it, you’ll have to rush it to the vet.

We also looked at different options for safe and healthy treats for hedgehogs, as well as alternative options to give your hedgehog some treats.

I hope this article has helped to clear up any confusion you may have had about giving catnip to your hedgehog.

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