Baldock boys help to save injured hedgehog trapped in football net

George and Euan Kingham with the hedgehog after they helped release it from the goal net. Picture: L

George and Euan Kingham with the hedgehog after they helped release it from the goal net. Picture: Leanne Frankland - Credit: Archant

Two young Baldock boys helped to save a hedgehog’s life yesterday morning after it got trapped in their football net overnight.

George and Euan Kingham with the hedgehog after they helped release it from the goal net. Picture: L

George and Euan Kingham with the hedgehog after they helped release it from the goal net. Picture: Leanne Frankland - Credit: Archant

Nine-year-old George Kingham and his brother Euan, eight, woke up to find the hedgehog trapped in the net in their back garden, tight enough that it was struggling to breathe.

Unsure how to best help the unfortunate spiny mammal, they consulted their mum Heather before calling their aunt Leanne Frankland, who trained to work with animals when she was younger.

“They were incredibly worried that the net was too tight around its neck and preventing the hedgehog from breathing,” Leanne told the Comet.

George and Euan Kingham with the hedgehog after they helped release it from the goal net. Picture: L

George and Euan Kingham with the hedgehog after they helped release it from the goal net. Picture: Leanne Frankland - Credit: Archant

“I had to use scissors to cut away as much as I could from the net to release the tension that was pulling around its neck. The boys were very helpful in helping me pull the net away slowly and kept very calm and quiet.

“While trying to unravel the maze of netting it was obvious to see that it had rolled itself around a lot and had made it even tighter throughout the night. It had a small laceration above its nose but it didn’t seem infected or to be bleeding any more.”

Leanne, George and Euan put the hedgehog in a box and gave it water with a syringe and then a bowl, which did a lot to help perk it up.

George and Euan Kingham with the hedgehog after they helped release it from the goal net. Picture: L

George and Euan Kingham with the hedgehog after they helped release it from the goal net. Picture: Leanne Frankland - Credit: Archant

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They thought about calling Shepreth Wildlife Park’s Hedgehog Hospital, but after a while decided to release the animal back into the wild as it seemed much better.

They let the hedgehog go in a quiet field, after which the boys went to school while Leanne and Heather – who had both worked night shifts – finally got some rest.

Leanne said: “The boys were very excited to tell all their friends about their morning’s heroic actions, saving a hedgehog’s life.

“They will no longer leave their goals on the floor, and they hope that this story will make others think twice about leaving nets and garden toys on the ground overnight in case this happens again.”

• If you find an injured, trapped or orphaned wild hedgehog, you can call the Shepreth Wildlife Park’s emergency hospital line on 07505 651968. To find out more see swccharity.org/hedgehog-hospital.

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