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Legalize Hedgehogs as Pets in the State of Pennsylvania

This petition had 2,526 supporters

Hedgehogs are wonderful pets, and because there is really no reason for them to be illegal, I would like the threat of the Game Commission raiding houses and euthanizing "illegal" hedgehogs to be gone completely.

"They are not rodents, but insectivores that, in addition to insects, will eat tiny mammals or small snakes, says Ron Fricke, vice president of education at the Philadelphia Zoo. Though the hedgehog is native to England, continental Europe, Africa and Asia, the hedgehog found in the U.S. tends to be the African pygmy, or white-bellied, hedgehog, from central Africa. American owners have found the hedgehogs to be litter-trainable and quiet, with distinct personalities; these things, along with their small size, make them appealing and easy to have in the home, as far as exotic animals go."

"The fuss is that African pygmy hedgehogs are legal in all but five states; Pennsylvania is in the minority. Most of the other states in which the animals are illegal, such as Arizona and Hawaii, possess warm climates within which African pygmy hedgehogs, if released into the wild, might very well thrive, disrupting native wildlife populations. PGC uses that argument; according to PGC, it’s generally illegal to own hedgehogs here because allowing non-indigenous or non-domestic animals into the state potentially endangers Pennsylvania wildlife by competing with it for habitat and maybe even gobbling it up."

Hedgehogs cannot survive cool climates below 70 degrees and the cold winters of Pennsylvania would pose a problem if a hedgehog did in fact get out. Therefore there is no real threat of hedgehogs becoming an invasive species in the state of Pennsylvania. 

State Representatitve Jeff Pyle says “The species poses no risk to Homo sapiens." and fully supports the legalization of hedgehog ownership in Pennsylvania.

"Pyle is jumping on board with House Bill 575, from state Rep. Gary Haluska, D-CambriaThe bill is a rewrite of the state’s exotic wildlife possession law. It aims to eliminate the permitting process for exotic animals, outlawing future ownership for creatures such as lions and tigers. The move though, would legalize hedgehogs and other so-called pocket pets.

These hedgehogs make lovely pets and can be very educational for children by teaching them the responsibility of caring for another life. Please legalize hedgehogs in the state of Pennsylvania, as they pose no threat to our ecosystem and only benefit the lives of children and adults who adore these beautiful creatures. 

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