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Old 02-09-2016, 04:07 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Morning/Night Routine

Hi, new poster here... I've been scouring the forum for folks who take out their hedgie and let him/her run in the morning for an hour or so, and then again at night for the same duration w/ cuddling...

All I've really seen is morning cage cleaning and such, but no exercise. Even though the breeder said it's ok, I am wondering if the vibe here is that it's too much physical exertion to do it twice a day (forcing her to wakey, even if she seems ok with it).

Last note, after a couple hrs. of night running and cuddling, she goes right back to sleep at midnight or so... so it's not like she's also staying up all night. She's 1 year old, so I do think she sleeps a lot, but I don't want to disrupt her cycle in the morning (if that's even a thing)...

Curious on thoughts... Thanks! Go easy on me, haha...
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Old 02-09-2016, 04:13 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I take my hedgie out every morning and cuddle with her and put her back. She sleeps the full day then wakes up at 10pm eats and runs on her wheel then goes back to sleep until late in the night. So I guess it's all preference. But I think that if you change anything in her cycle that you just continue to do it everyday and see what happens. I am not too experienced but I figured I'd give ya my thoughts haha.
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Old 02-09-2016, 06:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
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If your hedgehog doesn't seem affected badly by it, it's fine! Things I'd consider bad include consistent huffier behavior, unusual lethargy/sleepiness when she comes out, eating/drinking less, very decreased activity in cage at night, and seeming more stressed/upset by being out in the morning versus at night - trying harder to find someplace to sleep, escape being held, etc. If you're not seeing anything like that, you don't need to stop. The main thing is making sure she's okay with it & making sure she's getting the sleep she needs, etc. But hedgehogs can tend towards being more crepuscular than straight up nocturnal & like you've observed, will sleep a bit at night too rather than being up the entire 10-12 hours of dark straight.

This may not be true for everyone, but I would guess schedule is a major block to most people for doing morning bonding time - a lot of people have work and/or kids to deal with earlier in the day, so evening bonding time works better for all parties. I know that's my situation, I leave for work at 6 am (ugh). I don't even do anything with Bindi in the morning other than check her cage temps to make sure everything's functioning right & peek in at her bowl to make sure she ate normally & that her wheel is properly gross.
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Old 02-09-2016, 10:20 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks for the replies! I think Aika's schedule is similar to Penelope's, with the addition of a little morning jog on top of the cuddling.

Kelsey, she's not doing any of the negative things you mentioned, although sometimes it takes her a couple minutes to fully break into her AM routine. Like, she will just sit up and stare, but usually a mealworm snaps her out of it.

Luckily my wife is a stay at home mom, otherwise we would be the same as most other owners, simply not having that much time in the morning to watch or chill with her.

Knowing how much sleep she's getting after morning time (she's left alone from 11 to 8), makes me feel OK. But when people say 14 to 18 hours of sleep average for most hedgies she's definitely not getting all that at once. Just hoping it's OK in two segments of 9 and 8 hours at a time. Much appreciated!
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Old 02-10-2016, 12:38 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Hedgehogs are actually crepuscular, not fully nocturnal, so early more and late evening are their normal times for being awake. They sleep most of the day, run for several hours during the evening, sleep during the deep night, and run again in early morning. Your routine is very natural.
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Old 02-10-2016, 11:15 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks again!

AND I learned a new big word today... crepuscular, can't wait to use that around the office.

This is such a great site.

(love the angry hedgehog icon)
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Old 02-10-2016, 11:50 AM   #7 (permalink)
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We also go more with the general advice of evening because some are less apt to be OK in the morning. Also morning is a relative term. Some people could read it's OK to take your hedgehog out in the morning and assume that means anything before noon. While 11:59 is technically mooring, it's not really for a hedgehog... That's closer to the middle of the night.
As long as they get the sleep they need, it varies, and aren't bothered by it and your taking your hedgehogs personality into account all is good. If for example you have an explorer, getting them up later in the daytime may not be the best idea. If they will sit and go to sleep, there isn't a major issue.
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Old 02-10-2016, 02:27 PM   #8 (permalink)
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twobytwo-

We're aiming for 8am each morning, she's usually ready to quit by 10am, sometimes 11.

There have been three or four days in the two months we've had her, that she just wasn't feeling it in the morning (groggy), in which case, after 5-10 minutes we just put her back and let her sleep...

Because 8am play-time can creep into 11am, maybe 7 is even more ideal. I know if I stay up til' 1am, I'm feeling it the next day.
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