Usually, I write about Autism and Boo Bear, but today is a little different. Judging from my blog name, you know that autism advocacy and hedgehogs are two things very close to my heart. Sunshine was my very first hedgehog. Hogs generally do not live very long lives. Three or four years is quite old, Sunny was almost five when she passed last night. I took her in to the emergency vet six days ago because she was having a hard time walking. The vet was very good with her but the news was not good. She had (they think) Wobbly Hedgehog Syndrome, a mass in her uterus, and had lost a lot of weight since April. I took her home and decided to make her as comfortable as possible in her remaining days. She was still very happy and cheerful. When she heard my voice she would come to the side of her habitat to see me and get lifted out. She had the most adorable clucking and purring noises she made when she was happy. As far as I could tell, she really was not eating or drinking at all. Last night both Sunny and Emily Rose and I spent hours on the couch, cuddling and watching the Olympic Games. She stretched out on my lap and happily accepted tummy rubs. When I went to bed I put her back in the warmest part of her habitat and made sure she had food and water within reach. When I woke up this morning she had passed in her sleep. I wrapped her in her favorite piece of fleece and buried her under my ferns and hostas. I hope it is a peaceful sleeping place for her. I probably will not get another hedgie immediately. I got Emily Rose right after Champ died because Sunshine seemed lonely. She bonded immediately with Emily and the two got along famously, even sharing the same snuggle sack. Emily Rose is much more independent than Sunshine was. She will let me handle her but has no real time for snuggles. I do not think she was as bonded to Sunny as Sunny was bonded to her. I will keep a careful eye on her in the coming weeks. If she seems to need a friend I have a competent breeder to call. In the meantime, hug your pets a little closer, your furry ones, your feathered ones, your spiky huffy ones. I miss you Sunshine, fly high little hedgehog.