Drain pipe drama for hedgehog


Hedgehog stuck in drain © RSPCA

She may have been looking for a good hiding place from predators - but this hedgehog picked the wrong one.

The hog had become trapped inside a drain pipe outside a house in Gelli Deg, Fforestfach, Swansea, and we were called to the rescue.

RSPCA Animal Collection Officer, Ellie West, said:

We often get called to hedgehogs stuck down drains and I thought this rescue would be just the same as normal, except the hedgehog wasn't straight down the hole but in a side hole to the drain.

I used my phone as a light to take a photo so I could see where the hedgehog was down the drain, but when I pulled out my phone to see the photos, I released she was a lighter more unusual coloured hedgehog (leucistic).

The caller’s drains had covers on all of them but they noticed that a nearby drain had a large hole in it and we think the hedgehog had fallen down there and come through the pipe to the homeowner’s drain.

It was difficult to get her out of the drain

Ellie continued:

It took a long time to get her out because of the angle of the drain and how far back she'd gone. Not to mention when a hedgehog is scared and they curl up it often makes them fill a drain pipe.

With their spines sticking in all directions it makes it even more difficult to pull them through.

I used a wire I keep in my van for such rescues, one that you can curl round in different ways, and some fairy liquid on my fingertips to slide her back through to the opening. Eventually, some 40 minutes later, we got her out.

Make sure animals haven't become trapped

Hedgehog being held by Animal Collection Officer © RSPCA

The hedgehog has now been taken to Gower Bird Hospital for assessment and rehabilitation.

Animals like hedgehogs can easily fall into uncovered drains or holes in your garden; we recommend covering the holes or checking them every day to ensure no animals have become trapped.

Call us on 0300 1234 999 if you find a sick or injured hedgehog, or take it into a wildlife centre or vet if you are able. Wearing suitable gloves, you can put them into a large box with plenty of clean, fresh hay or newspapers.

The animal will need peace and quiet and you'll need to keep human contact to a minimum.

Find out more about what to do if you find an injured wild animals.

Help support our work

We can only rescue and rehabilitate animals with your help. If you would like to support our vital work please donate what you can online or text LOVE to 87023 to give £3

(Text costs £3 + one standard network rate message. Text to donate terms and conditions).

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