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-   -   Quill loss. Quilling? Mites? Sick? (https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=155842)

badwolf 02-06-2017 11:57 PM

Quill loss. Quilling? Mites? Sick?
When I got my hedgehog, Rigby is was 6 weeks old and the breeder told me that he was quilling and to expect to find some quills and also some grouchiness. That was about three weeks ago, and I've been finding a few quills here and there. Somewhere between 1-2 a day to about 5 or so.

I haven't seen or heard him scratch at all and I am usually up pretty late, so I would notice if it was a problem. However, he was having some mildly worrisome poop for several days, during the second week I had him. It was soft and it was smellier than usual, but the color was medium to dark brown, and he was eating, drinking, and running the same amount. I've kept a very close watch on him, but when I decided I would take him to the vet, when I got him out that evening, his poop was much more what I would consider normal and has stayed normal for probably 4 days.

Now, earlier this afternoon, I was asked to house/cat sit for a professor of mine because of a death in her family. I moved Rigby and his cage over to her house because I'm going to be staying here until this weekend.
As I was moving everything, I got Rigby out of his little fleece blanket that he likes to burrow inside to sleep, and I found a few quills. I didn't think much of it.
I put him into a snuggle sack I have that has a strap so I can wear it over my shoulder. Then when I got his cage setup at my prof's house, I got him out and he had pooped in the sack and it was very smelly again and a bit soft too. There were also another several quills.

This evening, I got him out of his cage for bonding time, and found more quills.
At this point, I'm thinking there's somewhere near 25 quills I've found today.
A lot more than I've ever found before.
He then pooped and there was a bit of mucus, but it wasn't green or overly mushy, and there was no blood in the mucus.

Does this sound like something I should be concerned about?
He's been a bit more huffy tonight, not wanting to be picked up.
Is that probably just from moving stress or should I take him to a vet and get him checked out?

The only reason I haven't taken him is that I'm on a bit of a tight budget as a student, and I'm absolutely notorious for worrying way too much and overthinking literally everything. Should I go ahead and take him though?

He doesn't have any noticeable bald spots and he's still not scratching, so I don't THINK it's mites, but I've also never found that many quills before tonight.

Is there anything that would cause the soft poop and quill loss? I've been searching the internet but I didn't come across anything that sounded like what's going on with Rigby.

nikki 02-06-2017 11:59 PM

How old is he now? They do their main quilling at about 9 weeks. The mucus could be because of moving him to a new place.

badwolf 02-07-2017 12:22 AM

He's about 9 and a half weeks now. He'll be 10 weeks this Thursday or Friday, I believe.
I'm just concerned by the amount of quills I've found today alone. I just picked several more out of my shirt and the towel I was holding him in. Since Ive gotten him out after moving him, I've found 21. Plus the 8-10 I found before we got here.
It seems like a lot D:

nikki 02-07-2017 01:09 AM

That's a perfectly normal amount for quilling. As long as there are no bald spots and he's acting normally then I wouldn't worry.

Artemis-Ichiro 02-07-2017 01:51 AM

I saw yo mentioned you hold him on a towel and just wanted to let you know they are not recommended since they can catch toes, try fleece better since it doesn't fray it's safe.

badwolf 02-07-2017 04:53 PM


Originally Posted by Artemis-Ichiro (Post 944842)
I saw yo mentioned you hold him on a towel and just wanted to let you know they are not recommended since they can catch toes, try fleece better since it doesn't fray it's safe.

Oh yeah, it's a beach towel, not a big fluffy regular one. So one side doesn't have the little fabric loops like regular towels that he could get caught on.
Honestly, I only use it when he's gotten all the fleece dirty. It's kinda sad because I'm pretty sure the towel is his favorite hahah.

badwolf 02-08-2017 02:27 AM

So, update. Today when I looked him over, he had VERY dry skin. (Yesterday, it was a little dry, but in the typical hedgie skin kind of way) It was flaking pretty bad so I tried rubbing his quills with a dark shirt, and none of the flakes moved. I know that isn't a definitive test though, so I'm still worried. Especially since he lost a lot of quills since yesterday night. Probably another 40.
He still hasn't been scratching at all though. (And tbh, I barely slept last night watching him and to my knowledge he didn't scratch once.)
There's no bald spots at this point, but there are like, two small areas where he might seem a little thin on quills. I tried to see if new quills were coming in, but it was hard to tell with his skin so dry.
I'm seriously thinking I will take him to the vet, but this is seriously the busiest, absolute worst week, so I really don't know when I will have time. :(
That being said, I don't know what to do about his dry skin. Should I put some oil on him to help, or should I wait, in case he has mites?

nikki 02-08-2017 10:12 AM

If he's not scratching then he doesn't have mites. Hedgehogs with mites scratch frantically and you would see it. The dry skin can happen when they're quilling. Try giving an oatmeal bath and see if that helps.

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