Lesser Hedgehog Tenrecs...

 We had 2 baby tenrecs born 9/23/2018!

We are not keeping a wait list for our tenrecs.
​Please watch our Facebook page & our website for tenrec litter announcements!!!

Tonic (male)

Facade (female)

Hypie (male)

Lumen (female)

All about Lesser Hedgehog Tenrecs

While lesser hedgehog tenrecs look quite similar to hedgehogs, they are surprisingly  in no way related to hedgehogs. They are actually more related to elephants than they are to hedgehogs! They do have quills, like hedgehogs, and can roll into a ball as well but most are much more relaxed when compared to an african pygmy hedgehog. You rarely see them ball up or exhibit defensive behaviors like huffing, puffing, popping, or clicking. Their quills are also "softer" than hedgehog quills. Tenrecs can also climb, and they love doing it! They have long hooked claws and grasping toes to grip onto things with, and likely will love climbing all over you! They are actually pretty good climbers! So their cages should have things for them to climb, like wooden branches and/or climbing vines. Wire wheels can be used with tenrecs, as they will use it as a climbing toy by climbing in place on the outside of the wheel. Climbing on their wire wheels is actually probably one of their favorite activities.  They should also be offered a solid running wheel, like a bucket or comfort wheel. It's good to give them both options, so they can run in the solid wheels more easily, and use the wire wheel as a climbing toy.

They have somewhat similar care requirements to hedgehogs, but most do not need an additonal heat set up like hedgehogs do unless your house is constantly kept below 70 degrees Fahrenheit in the spring and summer months Though I have found that my tenrecs seems to like a temperature of around 75. During autumn and winter, their cages can be kept in the 60s. Lesser hedgehog tenrecs do go into torpor (a type of hibernation) in the cooler autumn and winter months. Usually from Sept/Oct through Feb/March. It is totally normal for them to do this, and they will be much less active during this time and eat and drink much less. Their body temperatures will drop, and their metabolisms slow down. You can still handle your tenrec during this time, they will probably just be much less active and will want to cuddle/sleep. They should still be offered food and insects during this time, as some tenrecs will still eat a bit while they are in torpor. Since torpor is natural for tenrecs, it is not something you should try to prevent them from doing.

Tenrecs absolutely   require  live insects as part of their main diet at least 3-4 times a week if not every day, and like hedgehogs, a high quality cat kibble should be offered daily as well.  The kibble requirements for tenrecs is about the same as it is for hedgehogs. But the  fat content in their kibble can be on the higher side  (about 15-20%)  since tenrecs have a higher metabolism and tend to lose weight/fat during the time when they go into torpor. We feed our tenrecs a mix of Fromm GOLD kitten kibble, Young Again little bites cat food, Spike's Delite ULTRA PLUS (which has ground bugs in the kibble). They do not eat much kibble... This is why   if you can not handle feeding your tenrec live insects, a lesser hedgehog tenrec is definitely not going to be the pet for you!   Tenrecs should be offered a variety of different insects, though some will pick and choose what types they will and won't eat. We feed our tenrecs superworms, dubia roaches, wax worms, phoenix worms, earthworms, and pretty much any insects they will willingly eat. Those are just some of their favorites. We also often offer our tenrecs live pinky mice fairly often, they LOVE them! But most people do not feel comfortable feeding pinky mice... You can also buy frozen pinky mice and thaw them for your tenrec.  Our tenrecs also love eating different raw meat diets on occasion. Raw diets are referred to as BARF diets. BARF stands for Biologically Appropriate Raw Food. Our favorite BARF diets  are RadCat chicken (you can try their other flavors too), and Instinct Raw bites. 

​I would also like to note that tenrecs NEED calcium added to their diet at least a couple times per week! Tenrecs are very prone to metabolic bone disease if you do not consistantly add calcium to their diets. Calcium can be added by dusting their insects with a calcium powder made for lizards (we use Rep-Cal with Vit D3). We dust our tenrecs insects 2-4 times per week. You can also add a calcium liquid to their water. I HIGHLY recommend researching and reading up on metabolic bone disease before you commit to getting a tenrec.

​Here's some VERY good infortmation written by a very knowledgeable  tenrec owner!

Here is an example of a two story cage that I made for the tenrecs by combining a 110qt bin and a 90 qt bin.

Fairhaven Hedgehogs - Hedgehog breeder near Chicago Illinois