RSPCA Saves Little Hedgehog Suffering from 'Balloon Syndrome'

Posted by Tori Holmes
hedgehog with balloon syndrome
Images by RSPCA via Mashable

A hedgehog in Doncaster, England was rushed to the RSPCA when a good Samaritan found it on the street and thought it was about to give birth, only it wasn't pregnant...

After arriving at the RSPCA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty), inspector Sandra Dransfield quickly discovered that the hedgehog was a male, so the reason it was so round was because it was suffering from a rare condition known as "Balloon Syndrome."

Balloon Syndrome occurs when an underlying infection causes gas to collect under an animal's skin, causing it to "balloon." This hedgehog had quite the severe case, and the infection had caused it to balloon to twice its normal size.

"It's the worst case of Balloon Syndrome I've seen. This poor chap was almost twice its natural size, literally blown up like a beach ball with incredibly taut skin." Dransfield said in an RSPCA statement.

x-ray of hedgehog with balloon syndrome

The male hedgehog was rushed into emergency surgery where veterinarians were able to safely "pop" him and allow the gas and pressure from under his skin to be relieved. He is now on antibiotics to clear up the underlying infection that caused this ballooning in the first place.

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So far the little hedgie's recovery has been going well and the team at the RSPCA is hoping that the stricken animal can soon be returned to the wild after the traumatic event.

Have you ever heard of Balloon Syndrome? Let us know in the comments below!

Images by RSPCA via Mashable

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RSPCA Saves Little Hedgehog Suffering from 'Balloon Syndrome'