They are small and prickly and are the very latest must-have pets.
Would-be owners are will happily wait up to a year and will travel any distance to get their hands on an African pygmy hedgehog.
The cute pets are a quarter of the size of a normal hedgehog and are fully domesticated and don't carry diseases or fleas.
They love being handled and rarely curl up in a defensive ball. The animals were first bred in captivity less than 10 years ago in America but have recently been introduced to the British pet market.
And because they are so rare and so unusual, people are queueing to buy them for £190 each.
They grow to just two pounds in weight and eight inches in length and have a lifespan of between three and five years. Unlike hamsters, they are carnivorous and feed on a diet of cat food, chicken, beef mince and turkey.
With more photos.