Children as young as 11 are using hedgehogs as footballs in Axbridge.
The beastly practice was condemned by town councillor Pauline Ham after one group of children were caught in the act.
A passerby confiscated the hedgehog which ultimately ended up with expert carers but later died.
Mrs Ham claimed there had been two other cases of “hedgehog football” and told Axbridge Town Council at last week’s meeting: “I’m lost as to the mentality of anyone, any age, who thinks that’s a good game.
“I’m concerned that it’s not considered wrong. I appeal to parents to instil respect in to their children towards all living things.
“Hedgehogs are a protected species and this is just not an acceptable way to behave. If we discover who is responsible there will be consequences.”
Hedgehogs should be hibernating at this time of the year. If they are seen out and about during daylight hours then something is wrong as they are nocturnal.
One such case garnered national headlines for Prickles Hedgehog Rescue of Cheddar when it was called in to free one of the prickly mammals from a crisp packet in Weston-super-Mare last month.
The celebrity hedgehog, now called Crispian, has his own blog – crispianhedgehog.wordpress.com – where the hog who blogs ponders on such issues like do hedgehogs have tails and the dangers of milk.