Παρασκευή, 24 Δεκεμβρίου 2010
Scrubbed up for Christmas: Spike, the orphaned hedgehog gets a festive make-over.
This is a baby hedgehog receiving a good old fashioned rub-a-dub after he was found wandering in a garden, unable to roll into a ball.
Named Spike, the tiny creature has to be scrubbed clean with a toothbrush because of his delicate skin.
Bath time: Spike, an eight-week-old hedgehog has a wash at the Secret World Wildlife Rescue Centre
Rescue staff have been treating the youngster to a frothy bath for three weeks after the distressed hedgehog was discovered during daylight.
He was unable to curl up in a defensive ball and concerned locals took him to a vet in Somerset.
He was then transferred to the Secret World Wildlife Rescue Centre, in Highbridge.
Care manager Sarah Cowen, 44, said: 'He was having problems rolling into a ball because the skin on his belly was so sore.
Rub-a-dub: Staff have been treating Spike to a bath for three weeks after he was found wandering in a garden
'It's not uncommon for hedgehogs to get skin problems. Just like humans they can get rashes and eczema.
'We decided to treat him to a bath.'
Brushing his tummy with a toothbrush and behind the ears, staff have nursed him back to health.
They will carefully monitor his skin and his ability to curl into a ball to see how he improves.
Safe at last: Hedgehogs wandering in daylight are often distressed and Spike was unable to curl up
Secret World Wildlife Rescue is the only 24/7 wildlife rescue centre in the South West, annually caring for over 4000 sick, injured and orphaned animals.
The operation relies solely on donations to help its very small staff team and 623 volunteers rescue and rehabilitate sick or injured animals and return them to the wild in Britain.
Poser: Spike with care manager Sarah Cowen, 44. She said: 'He was having problems rolling into a ball because the skin on his belly was so sore.'
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