Dear Kid,

Dad’s in “no”-mode again. But it’s ok—I have a plan.

The latest reason for him being in “no” mode is that I want a hedgehog. I saw the reason for not having a river otter in the house (what with not having a river in the house). So I’ve decided we need a hedgehog.

Have you SEEN these adorable little things?

See what I mean? How could you not want one of your own?

A group of hedgehogs is called an array. No one cares. Because they are pretty solitary creatures.

I’ve decided we need a hedgehog. DearKidLoveMom.comA hedgehog carries around between 5,000 and 7,000 quills. Quills? Wait, what? Note to self: find out if quills are very painful.

Their spikes are mostly hollow (which makes them light but strong—which is good because hedgehogs are tiny) and they are not barbed. They shed quills each of which lasts about a year. Note to self: Find out if it hurts to step on a quill.

Hedgehogs, being ideal candidates for glasses which they almost never get, rely on hearing and smelling to figure out what’s going on. When a hedgehog is exposed to a strong smell or taste, he will “self-anoint” which means cover his quills in foamy saliva. Ick.

Hedgehogs are mostly immune to snake venom. Why would I need to know that? I don’t want snakes in the house. Especially poisonous ones.

Hedgehogs (which used to be called urchins before urchins took the name) eat small creatures such as insects, worms, centipedes, snails, mice, frogs, and snakes. Um, centipedes? Not in my house, they don’t.

Hedgehogs are mostly nocturnal. Which is a fancy word for saying they don’t want to play when people want them to.

Note to self: More investigation is warranted.

Love, Mom