It had rained the previous night and the back steps had been thick with snails. I wondered if the hedgehog had gorged on snails to such an extent that it had been unable to haul itself back up the steps. Let's face it, we all know the feeling.
My mum, who knows about such things, pointed out that hedgehogs are nocturnal, so if you see one during the day it often means they're ill. We made a nest for her (she did turn out to be a lady hedgehog) and left out a plate of cat food, which disappeared.
|This is a reconstruction using actors|
I called Northumbrian Hedgehog Rescue, who asked if I could bring the hedgehog to be checked at their centre in Longframlington. That was the one day I couldn't - I had to finish a wedding cake and take it to Manchester. Northumbrian Hedgehog Rescue quickly rallied their troops - I was tickled to hear the call go out "there's a woman in Jesmond with a big fat hedgehog". She was bundled into a cat carrier and within minutes a neighbour was at my door to take the hedgehog into Northumberland.
I called to check on her a few days later - she wasn't ill or pregnant but she was a very dirty girl. She'd been named Kate after me.
To thank Northumbrian Hedgehog Rescue for taking in the little grubster, I sent them some hedgehog cake pops. The cake pops are chocolate cake dipped in milk chocolate and coated in chocolate sprinkles. Hedgehogs are probably my most popular cake pop.
If you would like to offer the centre a donation of time, supplies or money, their contact details are at the bottom of this lovely little article about Andy the hedgehog who refused to eat anything apart from fairy cakes. I hope he enjoys the cake pops.