Tuesday, 9 December 2014

"Helping Harrogate Hedgehogs" - General Information


The Bilton Hogspital


The Bilton Hogspital is a private hedgehog rehabilitation facility based in the Bilton area of Harrogate. It is run by Teresa Marshall, who started caring for hedgehogs in this way in 1995. Although Teresa is listed as a hedgehog carer by the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, the Bilton Hogspital is completely independent, voluntary and unfunded.

"Tiggy" a former patient


The hedgehogs come mainly from the Harrogate area but occasionally from much further afield in the county. The Hogspital generally deals with about 300 - 400 patients in an average year. At any one time there is normally an average of 30 sick, injured or overwintering animals in the facility, with a maximum of 60 in-patients all at the same time on one occasion!

Main hedgehog ward

The Wards

The indoor wards consist of stacked, plastic pet carriers which, to ensure the required warmth, share the house and central heating with Teresa and her husband Robert!  These beds all require cleaning and supplying with fresh food and water every single day. Washing the soft cloth bedding ensures the washing line is hardly ever empty!

Washed hedgehog bedding

Hedgehog catering
Hedgehog catering

Food and Drink

Food for the large-scale hedgehog catering can be a varied menu of non-fishy cat food, cat biscuits, dried mealworms (in moderation), special Hedgehog Mix, raisins, plain buns, etc. Cow's milk is not suitable for hedgehogs but occasionally goat's milk can be used, especially for motherless young hoglets, who may need feeding by hand every hour! Plain water is the drink for older juveniles and adults.

Feeding a young hedgehog patient with goat's milk

Outdoor rehabilitation runs


Once nursed back to health and up to the required weight, the hedgehogs are returned to the wild in a controlled and supported soft-release programme. This gradually gets them used to being outside, being wild again and starting to fend for themselves. The final stages of this programme are often assisted by local people with suitable hedgehog-friendly gardens. Where possible, and safe, hedgehogs are released near to where they were originally found.

New delivery of outdoor hedgehog boxes


Various donations including food, bedding, etc. by local people, and also often by those who have found and brought in the hedgehog patients, all help to defray the costs. The Hogspital is also well supported by our local hedgehog-friendly vet.

Teresa Marshall - Bilton Hogspital


The ongoing work of the Hogspital takes up many hours every day and can also involve many long phone calls providing advice on hedgehog care to others. However, it is most rewarding to be able to return a high proportion (60–70%) of the sometimes initially extremely weak and sickly hedgehogs back to the wild in a healthy state, ready for a second chance at life!


The British Hedgehog Preservation Society

The website at http://www.britishhedgehogs.org.uk/ has lots of hedgehog information and downloadable leaflets. BHPS can also supply advice and contact details for local hedgehog carers - call 01584 890 801. (Updated Sept 2018)

Contact Details

UNFORTUNATELY, WE ARE CURRENTLY CLOSED TO NEW ADMISSIONS (July 2020) -  Please contact BHPS for your nearest carer, thank you.
Contact details for Bilton Hogspital are available via The British Hedgehog Preservation Society at the telephone number shown above (01584 890 801)
If you have a hedgehog with a problem PLEASE ring that number for details of your nearest hedgehog carer.
For NON URGENT enquiries ONLY (as reply may be delayed by several days) the Hogspital can be contacted at bilton_hogspital_4-infobs@yahoo.com


  1. Unable to find your address or contact details. Have a Hedgehog who visits nightly but spends most of his time scratching. Also would like to give you a donation

    1. Thank you, good to hear you have a hedgehog visiting! Our contact details are available via The British Hedgehog Preservation Society at the telephone number shown above (01584 890 801)

  2. Hi, could you accept PayPal donations, if so email address please.

  3. Hi I have a adult hedgehog that's come from valley gardens and into garden but hastill fallen into the well outside my basement flat. I can't climb down so any help would be appreciated. I can't find your telephone number to call direct.

  4. Hello Hogspital! Sadly, I saw a dead adult hedgehog today on the road between the Minskip farm shop and the bridge over the motorway. Also, I wonder if you could consider coming to the Knaresborough Festival sept 28/29? There is a nature theme. I can send more detail perhaps by email?