This is Nelson, a baby hedgehog who was born without his spikes.

Normally hedgehogs have around 500 spikes that help protect them from predators and also keep them warm Рso in these winter months, Nelson is really feeling the chill.


Because of his lack of spikes he has to be kept inside – so he spends his days at Foxy Lodge Wildlife Rescue where he is massaged every single day by the volunteers in a bid to keep him warm.

It is thought the bald hedgehog has a genetic condition that caused his spikes to fall out but it is hoped that, with treatment, they will eventually grow back, so he is pampered with antiseptic scrubs and baby oil rubs.

If the little creature’s spikes fail to grow back¬†he will live his life at the shelter as he would not be able to fend for himself in the wild.

The spikes are vital for warmth as they are filled with tiny hairs.

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The centre he lives at is run by Tonia and John Garner who are getting quite used to looking after spike-less hedgehogs.

In 2009 they also cared for another bald hedgehog, cleverly named Baldrick, who had a similar condition to Nelson – but sadly he died.

A year later they also looked after Betty, a tiny hedgehog who weighed just 124 grams but she left the shelter at a healthy 700 grams.

The animal loving couple set the rescue centre up eight years ago with donations from their family and friends – they have since saved and rehabilitated hundreds of animals and birds.

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In 2016, they have helped over 1000 animals get back to full health, leading them to be recognised by the UK House of Commons.

Mrs Garner said: “Without the joint passion we share to help animals, we wouldn’t be able to continue this work.

“It gets tough sometimes but what makes it all worth the effort is when you see a recovered animal leave and regain its freedom.”

Mr Garner added: “What we are doing is just supporting all these animals which would not otherwise have a second chance at a life.”

We hope Nelson’s spikes grow back soon!

All image source.