Why We Rock

 [this page used to be called "About Us" but Nathan requested a name change!]

Well hi there!

It's May of 2023. We've been in business for FIVE YEARS, and have never really tooted our own horn - I've just sat here quietly hoping that people would telepathically know how great Hedgehog Precision is. I've come to terms recently that it's allowed (and encouraged) to brag about our products and what we are doing!

We're crazy hedgehog people, and we're committed to pet hedgehogs.

Kimberly Halzen, owner of Hedgehog Precision, holding one of her hedgehogs.

My name is Kimberly Halzen. I am the founder, owner, and manager of Hedgehog Precision. I've put my 15 years of experience caring for countless hedgehogs, educating owners on hedgehog care, and studying animal nutrition and behavior toward solving what I found to be the biggest challenge facing hedgehog owners - offering a high quality, biologically appropriate, convenient diet.

Since 2007, I've...

  • cherished my very first hedgehog, Inky, who I lost to oral cancer shortly after he turned 5
  • moderated the Hedgehog Central Forums back when forums were the main social resource people used
  • began accepting hedgehog rescues open-door for the HWS since 2010
  • wrote the first two editions of my care book in 2010 and 2012
  • started a small, health-dedicated breeding program in 2012
  • focused my university education on things that would help me bring Hedgehog Precision to life - animal nutrition, business, sustainability.
  • met and married Nathan who is absolutely incredible and committed to learning more about hedgehogs so we can continually improve their care
  • completed extensive testing and validation on using insect ingredients prior to formulating our first diets
  • moved us and our animals across the country to more affordably operate and grow Hedgehog Precision
  • traveled to Kenya and Tanzania to see hedgehogs in the wild and learn about their natural habitat
  • in general, dumped a ton of money and time into learning everything we can about hedgehog nutrition, health, behavior, and more. 

We put a huge amount of research and development into ensuring our formulas meet and exceed hedgehog nutritional needs.

When developing our diets, I wanted to produce a food that I felt great about using as the exclusive diet to feed our hedgehogs - nothing else needed. Granted, I still think hedgies would appreciate even more EPA and DHA Omega 3 fatty acids than we put into our current formulas, but there will always be room for improvement! I struggled through an immense amount of frustration and anxiety to find manufacturers that would produce our insect-based, ultra tiny kibble just how we wanted it. This is still a huge roadblock for us due to the production minimums manufacturers require - usually a minimum of 20 tons per formula.

We're dedicated to producing high quality products without outside investor pressure to "decrease costs" and make things "more profitable."

It honestly astonishes me how much "making just a little more money" is prioritized over quality and value for most companies. Thankfully, I am a stubborn millennial who is ready to die on this hill. If Hedgehog Precision is going to do something, we're going to do it right. We are already extremely frugal as a self-funded startup, and are willing to pay more for ingredients, resources, or services that allow us to meet our priorities and values.

We care about our team and pay everyone a living wage.

Our employees (including ourselves as owners) and their families take priority over this business. The job market here in the US does not value people enough. Every person that works for Hedgehog Precision is encouraged to set their own flexible schedule, take time off for any reason, and to put their physical/mental health and their families first. 

We care about the planet, the environment, and natural biodiversity.

Our business operations - from ingredient sourcing to waste management - all revolve around our efforts to increase sustainability, particularly environmental sustainability. I am extremely proud of how resourceful we have been able to be as we've grown! [learn more about Our Environmental Sustainability Efforts]

We are a very small, entrepreneurial, woman-owned, USA based startup company.

The reason we were able to defy the odds and build a successful business through the perilous last few years of pandemic / economic woes was:
  • 1/2 rabid commitment to the vision we had for a better diet for hedgehogs, and
  • 1/2 incredible support from the hedgehog community who also saw the value in providing a quality food that aligns with what our hedgies need. 

We would not exist without the care and dedication of hedgehog owners around the world!

Thank you for supporting Hedgehog Precision so we can continue our work improving the lives of hedgehogs and their owners.