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Old 04-27-2012, 01:32 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Please stop pooping on me, hedgehog

Whenever I take my hedgie out for playtime/cuddle time, I usually wake him up (lights off still) and take out his igloo to encourage him to eat and poop and what not. After 10-30 minutes I'll take him out and lay down on my bed and let him use me as a human mountain. The thing is he poops on me so much. He's a baby still (9 weeks) so it's understandable that he has a hard time controlling himself when he gets the urge. Except I'm not gonna look forward to handling him when all he does is poop out half his body mass on me or my bed.

How can I discourage him from using me as a litter box? He uses his litter box in his cage which is great but I don't think I get much of a kick when he poops on me
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Old 04-27-2012, 01:56 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Please stop pooping on me, hedgehog

Poop happens. It's part of being a hedgehog owner. The best thing you can do is give him time to get most of it out of his system before you take him out. Don't just give him the time, but make sure he poops - not once but several times. What we do with Archimedes is take him out and put him on the floor of our bathroom. He always goes over into this little space between the counter and the toilet and basically uses that as a secondary litter box. By now he knows when he's put there, it's time to go, and he'll go right away. He's 6 months and it's always 2-3 poops and a pee.

Just keep paper towels on hand. If you don't want it to happen on your bed, get a cheap sheet or something that you can lay over everything when you have him on there, to protect your bed. Poop isn't something that can be avoided completely, but it will get better as he gets older. Watch for the butt-stuck-out that indicates the beginning of a poop. In my experience the poops kind of poke out slowly, so if you're paying attention you can see them coming and usually get a paper towel under in time to catch them.
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Old 04-27-2012, 02:33 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Please stop pooping on me, hedgehog

Hand towels from Target are absolutely wonderful.
Poops on it, throw it in their laundry bin and get another one.
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Old 04-27-2012, 04:00 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Please stop pooping on me, hedgehog

I pretty much do the same thing as moxie only I have a litter pan on the floor in a cheap little cat hut. It helps because it is dark and they have a little privacy. Although sometimes my girls will go in there and try to go back to sleep but usually they do their business. Isis use to poop on me every time I went to lay down with her. It was bad and I remember thinking "Will this ever end...will I ever be able to hold her without the poop?" and the truth is...yes, even though there is still the rare accidents...she now lays with me poop free.
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Old 04-27-2012, 04:36 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Please stop pooping on me, hedgehog

I've noticed with mine that as they get older, I learn to read their behavior. Most of mine tend to need to poop about 5 minutes after I first get them out, so I play with them for a minute and then put them back in their litter pan for a second. They usually poop right then, and then as I handle them I watch their behavior-- if they're getting really antsy and fidgety it usually means potty time! Not all of them do this, and they absolutely didn't do it at all until they got a little older (around 12-18 weeks and older). This isn't 100% of the time either-- I still get pooped on by at least one of my herd each day haha, I'm just used to it by now! Poop just happens!
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Old 04-27-2012, 04:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Please stop pooping on me, hedgehog

After giving Val time to eat and drink and do any business in his cage, I give him a foot bath. Anything that he didn't get out of his system in his cage happens during the foot bath. After the bath, we are usually free from accidents for about an hour. Also,are there any other hedgehogs out there that show "signs" of having to poop? If so, I would look for those, too. Val is a cuddler, and he most always gets really active before he has to go to the bathroom, like maybe he is trying to get away to have privacy or doesn't want to poop where he is napping, then I just take him to his cage to use the litter box and take him back out when he is done.
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Old 04-27-2012, 08:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Please stop pooping on me, hedgehog

I wake up Squiggy and let him run around his C&C for about 10 minutes to let him eat, poop, drink, and all that jazz. Then once its time for play time he will usually settle down and snuggle. I'm not sure when or how he learned this, but if he has to potty during our bonding he will give my fingers a little nip and start moving around a lot, like hes saying "I cant hold it anymore! Put me down!"
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Old 04-27-2012, 08:33 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Please stop pooping on me, hedgehog

Poop is a part of pet ownership whether we like it or not. There is no way to avoid the poop, so as the pet owners, we are responsible for coming up with ways to make it less of a pain.

Someone mentioned using a sheet to cover your bed - I actually suggest using a thick blanket, as urine soaks right through a sheet. Poop and pee happen together a lot.

Also, I'm not sure if my hedgie is just odd, but when she has to go, she gets very still. She stops moving completely and will stand there staring off into space and the second I see that eyes-glazed-over look, I slide some paper towel under her butt.

As he gets older, he will poop less, and hopefully as time passes you will learn to tolerate the poops when they do happen.
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Old 04-27-2012, 11:33 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Please stop pooping on me, hedgehog

Thanks for all of your advice so far guys
I think Axel actually like prefers to poop on me. I'll put him in his litter pan and he'll sit there for a minute, then look back up at me and I take him out to play figuring he didn't have to go. The minute I hold him he climbs all over me and poops everywhere. I literally think he enjoys pooping on me. It's kind of cute but it's still pretty gross
Also, another problem I have with him is that he seems like he doesn't want to do anything when he's awake. I'm up like 24/7, which includes the middle of the night, and he never comes out of his house. His cage is in my room which is the warmest part of my house, plus I also have a heating pad right under his bed (which I think he really likes) and I make sure that the temperature of his cage is at least 73 degrees. He's beginning to quill, which might make him a bit lazy or grumpy but I would think he'd be out a bit more!
OH his wheel, I don't find poop on it but I do find litter on it (his litter box is right under it) so I'm pretty sure he does use the wheel, I've just never seen him wheelin'.
Okay thank you everyone, I'm a new hedgie owner so I have like 10 million questions haha.
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Old 04-28-2012, 03:26 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Please stop pooping on me, hedgehog

First question are good. It means that you want to learn and care enough to make sure your hedgehog is happy and healthy. So ask away. There are so many knowledgeable people on this forum that you will always get some great insight.

As for the inactivity, your little one is still a baby. They are known to sleep a lot. When I first got Isis, I kept asking the breeder if she was sick or something because she just wanted to sleep all the time. She still cuddles a lot and sleeps with me a lot when she is with me but she loves to wheel and will spend an hour or two maybe even three on her wheel straight. If it is dark enough in my room while she is out she will do laps around the room.
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