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Old 08-20-2011, 01:55 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default "Petting" My Hedgehog

So i have a 3 month old female albino african pygmy hedgehog, i got her at about 2 months, her name is Moon Unit. Don't ask. On to my question, i have noticed alot of videos of people who can casually pet their hedgehogs. I haven't tried to yet because i have noticed she is hardcore-quilling at the moment and don't want to put her in any more discomfort. However i would like to ask if this is a thing that comes with being more familliar with my pet, or what. I'd assume she isn't totally comfortable with me yet, but i want to know if after the signs of quilling go away should i try to make "petting" her a normal thing, to get her used to it? People seem to like to try to pet her and get a big wake up call when she hisses and jumps at them. She is doing great, however and is in a great mood even through her quilling stage. She even tried to take a bite of my finger today, and i thought it was the cutest thing .
Thanks for the input in advance!
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Old 08-20-2011, 07:27 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: "Petting" My Hedgehog

My advice is to try petting her when she is done quillig and is feeling more comfortable, and see how she takes it. Some hedgies will react well since the beginning, my Mustard was like that and after a few days of being here we were able to pet her for hours.

Others however won't take it well and you will need a lot of patience. That was my Pete. She was very shy and unsocialized when we got her at 2 1/2 years of age, after having been through 3 other owners... Just so you get the picture. We started just letting her sit on our laps with a blankie on top of her, then when she finally got used to that I started resting my hand on her back, on top of the blankie. After weeks when she had stopped jumping every time she felt my hand on her back, I took a next step and started petting her through the blanket, then tried moving the blanket a little, etc, until we were finally able to pet her quills. You just need patience, it might not take that long with your hedgie because she is still very young. all I'm saying is if she doesn't enjoy you petting her the first time you try, don't get discouraged, keep gently trying and you will get there.
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Old 08-20-2011, 11:11 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: "Petting" My Hedgehog

Many hedgies just won't tolerate being petted, just to warn you. Others will sometimes let you pet them only under certain circumstances - like my boy, you don't DARE pet him unless he's eating (thus too happy to care)! Otherwise you are getting a nice big huff and quills in the hand. He's happy if you don't pet him, but as soon as you do he's grumpy. :P



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Old 08-20-2011, 11:32 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: "Petting" My Hedgehog

Just to add my experience , Norma doesnt always like being pet just like lizardgirl's but i still try often anyway because i have only had her since May. I think the more you try the more likely they are to get accustomed to it and realize.. oh... hey, petting isnt so bad sometimes she is totally cool with it, other times she huffs and pops but when she does those things i try my best not to react because i have read here that reacting teaches them that you will back off when they do those things and they may continue to do them.
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Old 08-20-2011, 11:33 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: "Petting" My Hedgehog

Indeed I have two girls and ironically its my biter who usually doesn't mind she just hates any banded quill being touched XD

Feral will huff and jump but won't quill most of the time saying hey I don't like it, but I don't want to hurt you duffus.
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Old 08-20-2011, 07:25 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: "Petting" My Hedgehog

You could also try petting her different ways to see what she likes. Clémentine loves to be petted on her back, even by strangers if I`m there (it took a few months to get her used to it) and sometime she will let me stroke back her visor quills but she won`t let me touch any fur. Zoé hates to be petted on her back or her visor quills but will often let me pet the side of her face and she even let`s me kiss her there. It took me over a year to get to that point with her.
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Old 08-20-2011, 07:33 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: "Petting" My Hedgehog

It took a long time for Harvey to let me pet him. But now I think he just tolerates me and says, "fine, hurry up though". Izzy is just too new right now. If I even move an inch or sniff, she'll ball up. But today she was licking my hands and annointed. I'm falling in love!!! <3

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Originally Posted by TWCOGAR
Indeed I have two girls and ironically its my biter who usually doesn't mind she just hates any banded quill being touched XD

Feral will huff and jump but won't quill most of the time saying hey I don't like it, but I don't want to hurt you duffus.
Feral sounds like she's very patient with you and sensitive.
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Old 08-20-2011, 09:28 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: "Petting" My Hedgehog

Delia lets people pet her tummy, and sometimes she lets me pet her quills. Sometimes she's just a big ball of huff-puff though. It all depends on the hedgie
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Old 08-21-2011, 01:53 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: "Petting" My Hedgehog

I pet my Sonic all the time.
She doesn't mind it at all, but since she's quilling at the moment she'll huff at sensitive spots.
But other than that, petting her is one of my biggest ways to bond with her because I always pet her when I check on her.
She's pretty used to me petting her and doesn't seem to mind it most of the time.
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Old 08-21-2011, 09:08 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: "Petting" My Hedgehog

I just got my hedgehog yesterday (7 weeks) and she's surprisingly very calm with me so far. She's let me pick her up, pet her, and she seems to like it when I pet her when she's sleeping =D
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