Every day I muck out Herbie’s hutch, and clean his back legs. As most of you know, Herbie is a special needs hedgehog who has paralyzed back legs which means he can’t be released in the wild, so he lives in a rabbit hutch in the front garden.
Well, yesterday I went out as usual and nearly had a heart attack. Herbie had GONE!!!! I was utterly bewildered until I spotted the hole he’d dug out and escaped from.
I felt sick! I knew he would never survive as he can’t curl up properly, which means he can’t hibernate, and his injured legs make him vulnerable to predation. So off I went, hysterically crawling around the garden, under bushes and undergrowth, searching for him. I never realised how many nettles and blackberry bushes I had. Anyway….ages later, stung and scratched to bits, I still hadn’t found him, and I began to fear the worst.
The very last place I looked was in the hedgehog house which I know a hedgehog hibernates in during winter….and there, to my AMAZEMENT was Herbie!!!!! What a clever boy!!!!
But even though he’s now back in the hutch, I’m worried he may dig himself out again. He needs to have some quality of life so has to be outdoors, with grass under his feet. Because he drags his back end around he would scuff his stomach on concrete or wood. I could put mesh down the sides of the hutch, but we move him every week to give him a new environment to explore…….sooooooo what to do??????
My other problem is my back lawn. I’ve accepted the fact that the dogs have completely destroyed the lawn, but the constant mud and sand they bring in does result in endless cleaning, and as I’m in the process of re-decorating the house, it’s a shame seeing my freshly painted walls and skirting boards splattered in mud. I have those wonder mats and towels by the door, but nothing really works.
I kid you not, it’s like being in the Serengeti watching the dogs galloping about in the mud creating huge dust storms!
So…..I’ve been racking my brains trying to find a solution to these problems. While googling muddy dogs, I came across this article about fake grass. At first I dismissed it, but then it began to grow on me! [No pun intended!]
Maybe Hi-techturf could be the answer to both my problems. It could cover the back for a year while the dogs grow up a little, then I could donate it to the rescue, and maybe I could put a solid base in Herbie’s hutch and put some of it in there……and scatter mealworm in it….so, I was wondering if any of you have tried it? Or if you have any other ideas?