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Old 02-13-2012, 12:50 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Problems with Water

First off, I am sort-pf a new owner. I have now had my hedgehog, Calliope, for a little over a year, but I still don't entirely understand how to best take care of her. Having said that, I think I've managed fairly well, as she has been pretty friendly towards me, and is living what appears to me to be a healthy life. However recently I came into a problem that I turn to the forum for help with, as I cannot find an acceptable solution anywhere else.
I am the owner of a flat-bac cage mounted water bottle, as shown in this link:
http://www.amazon.com/Super-Pet-Bottle- ... 580&sr=1-1
I had a problem with one a while ago in which it leaked all over the bottom of the cage, and when I took it out to inspect it I found a giant crack in the side. I went down to PetsMart and got the upgraded 16 ounce bottle of the same brand, and I thought my problems were over. Then yesterday when I finished cleaning the cage, I remounted the full bottle with no leaks visible. I returned about two hours later to check on my little girl to find an even more giant puddle soaking the brand new litter in her cage. I have currently fixed the problem by placing a small glass dish underneath the water bottle, which upon waking this morning was full. My question is this: Is there any water bottle that will not leak, or should I make the switch over to a bowl? With a possible follow-up question: What type of bowl should I be placing in Calliope's cage?
I would really appreciate any help on this issue, and I am looking forward to being an active, and hopefully contributing member of this forum, as this hedgehog has been one of the best pets I have ever had.
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Old 02-13-2012, 01:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with Water

Hi,
I'm not a fan of the hanging water bottles for the reason you gave-they leak.
Instead I bought some short heavy ceramic dishes from the pet store
and find they work great and I can see right away if they are drinking enough.
Works for my crew at least.
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Old 02-13-2012, 01:58 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with Water

I would highly suggest switching to a bowl. You haven't had any issues with her and a bottle yet, obviously, but there's been a lot of reports of hedgies injuring themselves on bottles - chipping teeth trying to get water, or getting their tongue caught between the ball and spout. Besides the injury risks, the position a bottle forces them into in order to drink isn't very natural. So bowls are what's generally recommended around here. A heavy ceramic or glass dish would work best, so they don't tip it over, and low (1" sides) so they don't have to put their front feet up in order to get a drink (which could flip it even if they're not trying). You can find something suitable just about anywhere, pet stores, dollar stores, etc.

Also, welcome to HHC, we're glad to have you!
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Old 02-13-2012, 10:18 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with Water

I think I'm definitely going to go with the ceramic dish idea. It sounds like that will work the best, since I can't seem to find any good water bottles, and because of the problems. I had heard of them, but the breeder I got Calli from gave me the bottle, so I figured I was just being paranoid. I'll go to PetsMart on Wednesday and get a dish, and then I'll let you all know how it turns out. Thanks for the suggestions and the welcome
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Old 02-14-2012, 09:50 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with Water

I suggest a bowl as well. My rescue guy, Po' Boy, actually lost one of his incisors (the big fangy one on one side) because he was on a bottle before I adopted him. Having experienced that first hand, I'd never go for a bottle.
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Old 02-15-2012, 05:21 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with Water

When I went to PetsMart today to pick up the dish, I started talking to a lady working there to see if they had the kind of dish you guys had described on here. She pointed one out to me, but then asked why I needed it. I explained the situation, and she told me that the flat-bac bottles are 1) designed to vacuum seal when you fill them up all the way (which I had not been doing, as I thought maybe the excess of water was causing the drip) and 2) she had never had any problems with a bottle, and thought the dish would be more problematic. I decided to do the only humane thing I could think of in this situation, which was to get both and let Calli decide. I have filled both with water (The bottle isn't dripping ), and have placed them next to each other in her cage. I'll continue to do this, probably for the rest of the week, and see which one she gravitates toward by how much she empties from them in the night. I just figure this way she will be happy, and not dehydrated, which was my goal in the end. I'll let you all know how she decides, and thanks again for the help
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Old 02-16-2012, 12:22 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with Water

Bowls are also SO much easier to clean, too, and also guarantee that your hedgie is getting fresh water every day. When I first got Dexter, he was on a bottle, but after hearing of the problems, I switched to a bowl. I love it and Dexter loves it. Anyways, if you are worried about whether your hedgie will learn the bowl is where his water is, you can just stick the water bottle nozzle into the bowl full of water, and he will hopefully put two and two together. This is what I did with Dexter and he caught on right away.
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Old 02-16-2012, 12:51 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with Water

Bottles are not a natural drinking positions for hogs, and also that if it has a ball at the end (if it's just one of those drip things without a metal ball this shouldn't be a problem) they can chip their teeth biting at the ball to get more water, or get their tongue stuck. Like I said earlier, one of my hogs was on a bottle for 1.5 years before I adopted him. He lost one of his front teeth (the big fangy one), and the vet said I was lucky there was no left over tooth pieces stuck to his jaws, because that can cause infections and many other problems. That was from him biting at the bottle because he was not getting enough water. From first hand experience, I highly recommend that you get her to take to the bowl, not the bottle.

With that said, it is definitely a good thing to have both in their at the same time to make sure that she is transitioning well. I think she will probably choose the bowl in the end... I've never heard of a hog preferring the bottle
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Old 02-17-2012, 08:53 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with Water

Its the second day of this little experiment, and she definitely seems to like the bowl, but I don't think she is completely switched over yet. I'll continue to refill the bowl, and then when the water bottle empties, I'll just take it out and leave it out. I think then she'll stick with the bowl. Also, it's a pretty blue color
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Old 02-17-2012, 09:06 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with Water

Awesome!

OT, but you'll be posting pictures of your hog soon right..?
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