Search

The Zen of Bonding


Which hedgehog would you like? the one on the left or the right?

Which of these hogs would you want for a pet? It's a trick question it is the same hedgehog after about 20 minutes. I will just put a huffy hog in my lap and pretend like it dosn't exist. Read a book, play toy blast, listen to music. No matter how huffy the hog is, eventually its curiosity will win, it will come out of it's tight ball and start to sniff around. Eventually if you wait long enough it may fall asleep on your lap, no longer balled tightly, just chilled out. Worms grease the wheels when befriending hedgehogs or other treats, find out what the hog likes.


I was recently in the pet store talking to the owner and I gave him my card. He told me that most people who have hedgehogs think they are "boring" I replied that was sad, because the issue is not the hedgehog, its the human. If you think your hedgehog is mean or boring the problem isn't the hedgehog, It's you. Hedgehogs ARE solitary animals they don't run in packs or pairs, they don't need or want friends. In other words they don't need you. It is true that some hedgehogs are more outgoing than others. No matter what your Hedgies personality is, handling and patients are always the key to getting to the point where your hedgehog thinks, "hey, this human is OK!"


But its on YOU! Hedgehogs require a calm patient waiting that is very like meditation. In our culture calm and patient are things we don't encourage so most people don't do them well. Then they wonder why their hedgehog is a ball of hate rather than looking like one of those hedgehogs having a massage on Instagram.


You should start right with a good breeder. You are more likely to get a friendly Hog even if it tends to the shy side.


Then like the fox and the boy in the little prince you will have to "tame" your hedgehog with patience attendance to them, it's not about you, it takes as long as it takes.


Come and play with me," proposed the little prince. "I am so unhappy."

"I cannot play with you," the fox said. "I am not tamed."

"Ah! Please excuse me," said the little prince.

But, after some thought, he added:

"What does that mean--'tame'?"

***

"It is an act too often neglected," said the fox. It means to establish ties."

"'To establish ties'?"

"Just that," said the fox. "To me, you are still nothing more than a little boy who is just like a hundred thousand other little boys. And I have no need of you. And you, on your part, have no need of me. To you, I am nothing more than a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But if you tame me, then we shall need each other. To me, you will be unique in all the world. To you, I shall be unique in all the world . . ."

"I am beginning to understand," said the little prince. "

***

"My life is very monotonous," the fox said. "I hunt chickens; men hunt me. All the chickens are just alike, and all the men are just alike. And, in consequence, I am a little bored. But if you tame me, it will be as if the sun came to shine on my life. I shall know the sound of a step that will be different from all the others. Other steps send me hurrying back underneath the ground. Yours will call me, like music, out of my burrow. And then look: you see the grain-fields down yonder? I do not eat bread. Wheat is of no use to me. The wheat fields have nothing to say to me. And that is sad. But you have hair that is the color of gold. Think how wonderful that will be when you have tamed me! The grain, which is also golden, will bring me back the thought of you. And I shall love to listen to the wind in the wheat . . ."

The fox gazed at the little prince, for a long time.


"Please--tame me!" he said.

"I want to, very much," the little prince replied. "But I have not much time. I have friends to discover, and a great many things to understand."

"One only understands the things that one tames," said the fox. "Men have no more time to understand anything. They buy things all ready made at the shops. But there is no shop anywhere where one can buy friendship, and so men have no friends any more. If you want a friend, tame me . . ."

"What must I do, to tame you?" asked the little prince.

"You must be very patient," replied the fox. "First you will sit down at a little distance from me--like that--in the grass. I shall look at you out of the corner of my eye, and you will say nothing. Words are the source of misunderstandings. But you will sit a little closer to me, every day . . ." (The Little Prince)


If you want a friend you must tame your Hedgehog in the same way the prince tames the fox. a little at a time. Until you are friends and you are a human that your Hedgehog knows is different from all other humans, and you appreciate your hedgehog as unique in all the world.

13 views