Hedgehogs increasingly popular as pets ← Related Article Visit The Boston Globe Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Comment on this Scroll to top of page Not since Sonic the Hedgehog became a home videogame star in the early ‘90s have the prickly little creatures been so popular. Dina Rudick/Globe Staff Derek Kouyoumjian of Somerville and his wife visited Crespo's Crazy Critters in Gardner for the day as potential hedgehog owners and clients. Kouyoumjian held Salvation, an adult hedgehog, in the living room of the Crespos' home. Dina Rudick/Globe Staff Sarita Rogers Kouyoumjian held Marvel, a male hedgehog, in the Crespos' home. Weighing in at 2 pounds or less, hedgehogs are small, don’t take up much space, and never need to be walked during a snowstorm. Plus, they’re unique. Anybody can own a cat. But a hedgehog? That’s different. Dina Rudick/Globe Staff Jennifer Crespo cuddled with one of her favorite hedgehogs at her home. Dina Rudick/Globe Staff Ethan Crespo, 5, snuggled with one of the family's favorite hedgehogs. Dina Rudick/Globe Staff That’s right, charming and adorable as they are, hedgies aren’t cuddlers. But if they trust you, they’ll keep their quills flat and sit in your hand or lap, just wiggling their nose. Pictured: A hedgehog baby at Crespo's Crazy Critters. Dina Rudick/Globe Staff African pygmy hedgehogs live an average of three to five years. Dina Rudick/Globe Staff If hedgehogs are afraid or unfamiliar with a person who has picked them up, they will curl into a ball or raise their sharp quills defensively. Dina Rudick/Globe Staff Jennifer Crespo gave one of the pregnant hedgehogs fresh water.