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The employees of the Arnhem branch of the Dierenambulance (Dutch animal rescue organisation) were in for a big surprise this June, when they were called to a hedgehog lying sprawled out in the middle of large puddle of Dutch Advocaat, which had leaked from a broken bottle. Although not moving, the hedgehog was thankfully still alive.
The crew of the Arnhem dierenambulance were alerted to the situation by a passer by who had stumbled across the ‘lifeless’ hedgehog. The poor little creature didn’t even curl up upon touch, something hedgehogs instinctively do when sensing danger. After closer inspection the animal rescue staff concluded that the hedgehog had, in fact, indulged in some of the Advocaat and was actually extremely drunk. They decided to take it to nearby ‘Stichting Opvang Noach’ (a local animal shelter) in the Gelderland village of Halle, where it was allowed to sleep off its excess in peace.
The next day it was clear that the hedgehog had suffered no lasting injuries from its drunken misadventure – indeed, it was now up and about, moving around freely and rolling into that trademark ball upon approach. Nevertheless, the staff granted the hedgehog a few extra days rest, so that it could fully recover from its ordeal before finally being released back into the wild.
Incidentally, it’s not the first time that Stichting Opvang Noach has a hedgehog to stay – the organisation annually receives between two and three hundred injured hedgehogs, which have typically been run over by cars or entangled in fishing lines or strawberry nets. However, it was without doubt, the very first inebriated hedgehog that they’ve ever encountered!
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