One cold and crispy morning, when Patsy the Bear and DJ Fin were out on a wintry walk, they came across a hedgehog snuffling about in the frosty grass, looking very unhappy.
‘A hedgehog!’ said Patsy the Bear, ‘I have a hedgehog book at home, so I know all about them.’ And she knelt down to take a closer look.
The hedgehog looked back at her with small beady eyes. It was a little one but it had a big cold.
‘COUGH! COUGH! SNIFF!’
‘Howdy Mr Hedgehog’ said Patsy, ‘what are you doing out here in the frost all on your lonesome?’
‘Perhaps he’s going to the shops to get some medicine for his cough?’ suggested DJ Fin.
‘I don’t think so’ said Patsy, ‘hedgehogs hibernate in the winter, which means they go to sleep. This little hedgehog should be asleep too.’
‘I will carry him home and take care of him’ continued Patsy, ‘if we leave him here, his cold will get worse.’
Patsy took off her scarf and very carefully wrapped the little hedgehog up in it to keep him warm, and then they ran back to her house, found a cardboard box and put the hedgehog inside, tucking him in with a cosy blanket.
‘Perhaps he’s awake because he’s hungry’ said Patsy.
‘I’ll get him some food’ said DJ Fin, ‘what would you like to eat Mr Hedgehog?’
‘I think Hedgehogs eat worms and creepy crawlies’ said Patsy.
DJ Fin turned pale green, ‘Oh…’ he said.
‘I think worms are their favourite’ said Patsy, quickly. ‘I will look in my hedgehog book, to see what we can give him.’
Patsy looked in her book and then went into the kitchen, poured some water into a bowl and put some peanuts on a plate for him to eat.
The hedgehog slurped the water and snuffled the peanuts!
‘I’ll call a Hedgehog Rescue Centre’ said Patsy, ‘they’ll know how to look after him properly.’
And so Patsy went to find the right number but when she came back to the box, Mr Hedgehog was nowhere to be seen.
‘I told him NOT to get out of his box, but he did…’ said DJ Fin.
Mr Hedgehog was helping himself to more peanuts from the bag.
‘He’s still not sleepy’ said Patsy.
He was wide awake, which wasn’t right for a little hedgehog in the winter.
He chewed the furniture, and right through the hedgehog book.
He splashed all the water from his bowl and jumped up and down on the peanut bag until it burst, sending peanuts flying around the room, then he curled himself into a ball.
‘Maybe he’s going to sleep now?’ said Patsy, hopefully.
But he wasn’t, the hedgehog suddenly shot off across the floor, and rolled around the house, up and down the stairs!
‘His cold seems better’ said DJ Fin.
‘He’s so fast, we should call him the Texas Tornado!’ said Patsy, grabbing the hedgehog as he sped past, and putting him back in the box, ‘I will read him a bedtime story, that always makes me sleepy.’
So she read him a story from her hedgehog book.
After a while, his eyelids drooped and he yawned an enormous yawn.
‘It’s working, he is going to sleep’ whispered Patsy.
And when help arrived from the Hedgehog Rescue Centre, Patsy The Bear and DJ Fin waved him goodbye.
But the hedgehog didn’t see them.
‘ZZZZZZZ!’ Because finally, he was a Happy Hibernating Hedgehog!