CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

Hedgehog among Chalcots estate evacuees

More than 30 pets taken with residents leaving the evacuated tower blocks

27 June, 2017 — By Tom Foot

A PYGMY hedgehog was among a list of more than 30 pets reported to the RSPCA by evacuated Chalcots residents who did not want to leave their animals alone in empty homes.

The tiny hedgehog – which the charity advises against owning – was listed on a 33-strong register of animals living in the tower blocks in Adelaide Road included dogs, cats, budgies and cockatiel, hamsters, guinea pig and three tanks of fish.

The charity sent officials to Swiss Cottage leisure centre on Sunday to help residents worried about leaving their animals in the towers or unable to take them to temporary accommodation.

RSPCA animal collection officer (ACO) Zenon Brown said: “We know that not everyone is out of these tower blocks yet though, and that some of that is down to a reluctance to move because of concerns for their much loved and treasured pets, which are of course part of the family.

“By the end of the day all of the owners who we had been dealing with were sorted.. and lots of people have been in touch to offer temporary foster homes.”

Pygmy hedgehogs – which roll into a ball of spikes when threatened – feast on slugs, worms, insects, plants and fungi.

A spokeswoman added that it did not advise that pygmy hedgehogs should be kept as pets “because their needs are difficult to meet”.

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