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Old 10-24-2017, 08:10 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default New very scared hedgehog

Hello, thought I'd make a profile in order to ask some questions.

We got our hedgehog almost two months ago, and he is now more scared than ever. I soared the internet for advice both prior and during having the hedgehog, but these advices have often been conflicting. Recently we've attempted following advice on handling him despite obvious 'grouchiness', which I think has led us to the current situation. He seems scared of our hands, trying to get away as soon as we attempt slowly approaching him. When trying to pick him up, he always runs away, and raises his quills with hissing and popping. When finally holding him he squirms constantly to get away. We have tried to just put him down to give him time, but it usually ends with him trying to get as far away from us as possible, avoiding us as much as he can. If we put him down so he can roam around freely he is under the sofa the entire time, or staying in whatever corner he can find. The other day he bit me so hard he drew blood when trying to handle him. I am now at a point I don't know what to do. Any advice?
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Old 10-24-2017, 08:14 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Tried to post and it said it didn't go through, but clearly it did, so now I've posted two threads - Sorry about that.
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Old 10-24-2017, 11:07 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I forgive you at least, lol.

Has he been like this before? How young is he?
If he's now just became very scared and skittish, could he be quilling? They behavior changes during the quilling stage and it could last for a while depending on your hedgehog. They also have a few different points of their lifetime where they quill.
He could try to run away to avoid his quills being touched.

I got my hedgehog while he's quilling, so I don't know how his "relaxed" behavior is, but he is still alright as long as you don't touch him much. I give him a treat when he's out of his cage and cuddling with me so he's not completely threatened and he kind of calms down.. When he is having a fit, I try to avoid grabbing in front the front as I don't want to get bit. If he's in a sleeping bag, I try to avoid getting him out as well as the sleeping bag can brush up against his quills.

I suggest you to go look around his cage and the things he sleeps in to see if you can find any quills looking around..

Here's some quills I grabbed from my hedgehog...
https://www.dropbox.com/s/de7u0a3uap..._0114.jpg?dl=0
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Last edited by Zozo; 10-24-2017 at 11:08 AM. Reason: Image
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Old 10-24-2017, 11:52 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zozo View Post
I forgive you at least, lol.

Has he been like this before? How young is he?
If he's now just became very scared and skittish, could he be quilling? They behavior changes during the quilling stage and it could last for a while depending on your hedgehog. They also have a few different points of their lifetime where they quill.
He could try to run away to avoid his quills being touched.

I got my hedgehog while he's quilling, so I don't know how his "relaxed" behavior is, but he is still alright as long as you don't touch him much. I give him a treat when he's out of his cage and cuddling with me so he's not completely threatened and he kind of calms down.. When he is having a fit, I try to avoid grabbing in front the front as I don't want to get bit. If he's in a sleeping bag, I try to avoid getting him out as well as the sleeping bag can brush up against his quills.

I suggest you to go look around his cage and the things he sleeps in to see if you can find any quills looking around..

Here's some quills I grabbed from my hedgehog...
https://www.dropbox.com/s/de7u0a3uap..._0114.jpg?dl=0
Thanks for your reply! We got him at 12 weeks old, so he has been going through quilling pretty much since we got him. He is just now stopping the quilling process, although a few quills still appear laying around. He seems to be at the end stage now, but I think we may have handled him too much and not fully understood that he needed to be left alone more due to being very uncomfortable. He does not allow any form of touching still, at 19 weeks. He felt more calm when we just about received him, he allowed us to pick him up and hold him more, even though he still was a bit skittish. But it feels like he's taken a turn for the worse over the past weeks.

Last edited by Lisee92; 10-24-2017 at 11:56 AM. Reason: add more info
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Old 10-24-2017, 12:15 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Alright, if quills are still shedding, it could be normal as an ending stage.. just make sure they have the round ball at one o the ends to make sure it's natural..

Since he's 'bout the end of the stage, I suggest still holding him. When you pick him up, lay your hands flat, and he should pop out of the ball. I usually let him lay beside my on a blanket and crawl around. If you do that, also try giving a treat. I suggest having two three different kind of treats in case he doesn't like one or the other. I have two and he does prefer one than the other.
You also mentioned trying to find a corner and everything, but you've had him for a while so I'm sure you know they're nocturnal lol.

Make sure the lights or dimmed, or even off. Mine doesn't like any light whatsoever so it's hard for me to play with him while seeing him at the same time.
I'd try to bond with him some more. For everyday I've had him, I let him sleep in a sleeping bag or similar and bring him over to me to cuddle with. If it's mostly dark, he'll sometime pop his head out and he'll be able to see me from my phone light. I also let him sniff my fingers, too.

So I suggest to try and bond with him that way. Don't directly touch him, but when he's sleeping in a bag or something, pick it up and have him next to you while you play on your phone or computer, etc. If he wakes up and has his head where you can see it, give him a treat. He'll probably eat it and turn the other way and go back to sleep. But so far it has worked for me as a bonding method to getting him completely used to you.
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