Meet Nelson, the completely spikeless and bald hedgehog who can be found at the Foxy Lodge Wildlife Rescue in Norfolk, UK. This tiny fellow is shy and vulnerable and needs human protection to survive. Without spikes, he wouldn’t last long in the wild, being a very easy prey to predators. But Nelson doesn’t mind staying at the sanctuary at all! There, he enjoys good life, plenty of TLC and regular SPAs with oil massages…
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‘‘We will likely never know what caused him to lose his hair and spikes,’’ Tonia Garner, the manager at Foxy Lodge told Metro. ‘‘He’s a mystery but to have survived into adulthood he must have had prickles and his health is very good other than the fact he is bald.’’
Volunteers at the sanctuary guess that Nelson’s condition is due to stress-related alopecia he got after experiencing some sort of trauma in the wild. All of his spines fell out without growing back.
Staff was hoping the spikes will reappear, so everyday they massaged the little fellow with almond oils to stimulate growth. Unfortunately, this didn’t help. They still continue to massage Nelson on a daily basis, because the hedgehog seems to enjoy his SPA sessions – it keeps him warm and his wrinkly skin soft and smooth.
One positive thing is that Nelson’s lack of spikes makes this adorable animal even more cuddle-able than regular hedgehogs!