Over the past few years, hedgehogs have gained popularity as pets. These cute, spiky animals can be wonderful friends because each of them has an own charm and personality. Hedgehogs have certain demands and care requirements, much like any other pet.

You should ensure that you are knowledgeable in how to take care of your hedgehog as a pet owner. Many hedgehog owners are curious about whether or not these animals can swim. After all, it’s not uncommon for pets to enjoy a dip in the pool or a splash in the bath.  So can hedgehogs swim? Let’s take a deeper look (pun intended!).

So Can Hedgehogs Swim?

The short answer is that hedgehogs cannto swim. Although it might be tempting to presume that all animals can swim, this is actually not the case. Unfortunately, hedgehogs lack the physical traits and natural swimming adaptations that would enable them to swim well. They struggle to travel in the water due to their short legs, rotund bodies, and lack of webbed feet or other swimming-enhancing characteristics. Hedgehogs are therefore unable to swim in the traditional sense.

Hedgehogs can still bathe or get wet if necessary, despite not being able to swim well. Though it’s uncommon and might be upsetting for the hedgehog, some hedgehog owners have claimed success with bathing their pet. It is crucial to be extremely delicate and use lukewarm water if you do decide to give your hedgehog a bath. To avoid the hedgehog slipping and falling, it’s a good idea to keep the bath as shallow as you can and use a non-slip mat.

Why Can Hedgehogs Not Swim?

Physical Characteristics

As mentioned earlier, hedgehogs are not inherently adapted to swimming . They lack the physical features, such as long legs or a streamlined body, that would make them good swimmers. In fact, they may find it quite difficult to move through the water at all due to their tiny legs and rounded body. It requires more energy and effort for an animal to travel through water than it does through air because water is denser than air.

Lack of Adaptations for Swimming

In addition to their morphological traits, hedgehogs lack the swimming adaptations that many other animals do. For instance, a lot of aquatic species have flippers or webbed feet to help them navigate through the water. The animal’s body surface area is increased by these modifications, which improves their swimming performance. Hedgehogs, on the other hand, do not have any of those swimming-enhancing characteristics.

So, while it’s not impossible for a hedgehog to get wet or even “swim” in a limited way by walking along the bottom of shallow bodies of water, they are not naturally adapted to swimming and are not capable of swimming in the traditional sense. If you do need to give your hedgehog a bath, it’s important to be very gentle and use lukewarm water to minimize stress and prevent accidents.

Why people think hedgehogs can swim

So, why do some people think that hedgehogs can swim?

Hedgehogs are occasionally observed splashing around in water, which may be one of the reasons why people believe they can swim. But this does not imply that they are swimming in the usual sense. Hedgehogs, as was previously established, are adept at holding their breath and can spend a lot of time submerged. They could be trying to cool off or conceal from predators by doing this. Hedgehogs have even been observed moving down the bottom of tiny bodies of water to simulate swimming.

Hedgehogs are also frequently compared to other small animals that are good swimmers, such as rats and mice, which is another reason why people might believe that they can swim. It’s crucial to keep in mind that these animals, unlike hedgehogs, have anatomical adaptations that allow them to swim, such as long tails and webbed feet. The mere similarity in size or look between two creatures does not imply that they share the same skills.


In conclusion, it’s important to remember that hedgehogs cannot swim in the traditional sense. They don’t have the physical characteristics or adaptations that would allow them to swim efficiently, and they are not naturally adapted to swimming. While they can get wet and may even “swim” in a limited way by walking along the bottom of shallow bodies of water, it’s best to keep your hedgehog away from deep water to prevent any accidents.

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