Why is pedigree so important? In most of the breeding world, people follow lineages of animals to ensure that there is no inbreeding. The same is true for hedgehogs. Back in the 1990s many hedgehogs were imported into the United States from Nigeria. They were a "new" kind of pet and people didn't fully understand care for them. In 1994 import laws were changed and no more hedgehogs were imported to the US. After awhile of breeding hedgehogs, people began to notice changes, such as diseases that had begun to develop that weren't inherent in wild hedgehogs. People had begun to notice the outcome of too much inbreeding. Thus, pedigrees were set up to start tracking lines and weeding out those that carried diseases that are considered genetic.
We now have a setup for pedigrees to keep track of where hedgehogs have been and to ensure no more inbreeding. Not everyone chooses to follow this though, and there are still many hedgehogs out there that haven't had the care with their lines that pedigree hedgehogs have. Pedigrees ensure healthier hedgehogs to help the domesticated hedgehogs thrive. This is why I only breed and sell pedigree hedgehogs.
About African Pygmy Hedgehogs
African Pygmy hedgehogs, also known as the four-toed hedgehog, originate from central Africa. There are several different species of hedgehog including European, Egyptian, Indian, and Algerian. The African Pygmies are nocturnal creatures and have great hearing and sense of smell, but poor eyesight. They are solitary creatures and don't require the company of others around them. Being from warmer climates, domesticated hedgehogs also require their environment to stay within a range of 72-80 degrees.
Hedgehogs in the wild often run long distances at night as they hunt for insects and food. Like their wild brethren, domesticated hedgehogs also need space to be able to run around, as well as a wheel to help them from getting too fat. The average lifespan of a domesticated hedgehog is about 3-5 years, although some have lived longer.
Each hedgehog has its own personality and there is no difference between male and female in this aspect. Unlike cats and dogs, gender does not matter. Hedgehogs do not spray for territory or have similar issues that would cause someone to choose a pet dependent on gender. When choosing a pet hedgehog, personality is what you will want to look for.