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Old 09-16-2012, 10:58 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Adjusting new hedgie to light???

I just got my first hedgehog yesterday, he's 6wks old. It's 9pm and I heard him waking up and moving around so I quietly sneaked to turn the light on and sat down to watch him/interact with him (he didn't see me though) and once he saw the light and burrowed back down and went back to sleep. So I turned the light off and it has been 15min and now he is waking up. I'm scared to turn the light on because then he'll just go back to sleep. How can I get him to come out with the light on?? Please help, thanks! Also, any tips on getting him to not be so scared of me and ways to pick him up without a towel would be much appreciated!! (p.s. i'm already trying the tshirt thing)
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Old 09-16-2012, 11:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adjusting new hedgie to light???

Just be very patient! He's a little guy and everything is very, very new for him right now. Getting him out is fine, but don't expect him to be sunshine and daisies just yet. He may take a few weeks to settle in, and he'll also go through a couple more bouts of painful quilling in the next couple of months. That may contribute to him being a grumpy boy. Most hedgehogs will hide when there's light on, to be honest. There are some that don't care if it's on, but it varies. You don't have to have the light completely off to have him out, but keep in mind that he'll most likely want to hide. A great way to start bonding with him for now is to take him out with the room quiet and dimly lit. Try having just one light on and reading with him in your lap. Let him be covered up by a blanket so he has something to hide under. It may encourage him to try exploring your lap while covered up, or he may relax enough to go to sleep. If he does that, great! It still counts as bonding even if he's just sleeping on you. Given time, he will probably open up and become more relaxed around you. If he's an explorer, he may become more confident and willing to explore the room and run around. If he's a cuddler, he'll probably still prefer to snuggle and sleep on you during bonding time, but he may become more receptive to sleeping without cover or being pet. All of that will just take time. Congrats on your little guy!
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Old 09-16-2012, 11:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adjusting new hedgie to light???

Thank you so much! I'm seriously in love with this forum because it answers all my questions lol. So far, I have only picked him up once, earlier today, with a towel and I'm kinda scared to pick him up with my hands because I'm afraid it will hurt my hands or he might bite me. I know it is rare for them to bite, but still. Any tips? And also how long before he'll stop spiking up everytime I touch him??
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Old 09-16-2012, 11:34 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adjusting new hedgie to light???

It's not a bad thing at all to pick him up with a blanket or towel. Your hands aren't used to his quills yet, and baby quills are sharp! It might be a good idea to keep doing that for a couple weeks, until whenever you're comfortable trying with just your hands. It won't hurt either of you, and it's safer for him - if he huffs or jumps and hurts your hands, you could accidentally drop him or he could get away more easily and fall. Just go at whatever pace is most comfortable for you both. It may take him awhile to stop being defensive - try to look at it all from his point of view. He's just been brought to a brand new place, with lots of new smells, and none of his siblings or his mother. That other big old human he used to know is gone, and now there's a new human who's so much bigger than him trying to hold him and pet him. It's probably rather scary for him! So just try and be patient. It's best to just sit with him and let him get used to your scent and being around you. After a couple of days, you can start trying to pet him and handle him more if he seems to be doing well. Also, keep in mind that he may get pretty huffy with you trying to pet his back, especially for the next two months yet. Since he'll be quilling, his back will be pretty sore with new quills poking through and hurting. If he seems to be extra huffy from pain, you can help him out with an oatmeal bath to soften the skin and help the pain a little. Just not more than once every other week - too many baths dry their skin out too. Just hang in there and you guys will be friends eventually.
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Old 09-16-2012, 11:41 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adjusting new hedgie to light???

Thanks again lol!! How long did it take for your hedgehog to warm up to you?? Did you have the same problems as me?
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Old 09-16-2012, 11:42 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adjusting new hedgie to light???

I agree with everything Lilysmommy said, although with the baths, you really don't have to worry about the frequency. Baths aren't going to cause dry skin so much as just exacerbate or drag out dry skin that's already going on. During quilling especially, it can really help to give baths because it soothes the discomfort and also temporarily softens the skin so the quills poking through don't hurt as much. You should give baths as often as necessary, which might not be often for a clean hedgehog, but in my experience, my hedgies need to be bathed about once a week on average or they get gross and have a funky smell, haha. Since he's quilling, "as often as necessary" can be judged by how much the baths seem to help with the discomfort. It you notice that there's definitely a difference, then by all means, do it as much as daily during that time. And keep handling him as you normally would, no matter how grumpy he might be. I've had hedgehogs that will pretty much huff nonstop for weeks because of quilling, but it's important not to walk on eggshells around them so when the quilling stops, they come out of it well socialized.
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Old 09-20-2012, 03:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adjusting new hedgie to light???

From one new hedgie owner to another. I use fleece material doubled or tripled up to pick him up with or his snuggle sack which is fleece as well. he loves his snuggle sack and he will sit on my lap or in my hand in the sack and sleep for hours. Do you know how to make a snuggle sack? Those are great for spending time without getting poked. I've had my hedgie since Saturday, so just a few days. My baby, Milo, is quilling right now so he's extra grumpy. He started quilling day before yesterday. So he started out scared but much more social and then turned into a grumps. I realized he was quilling and just continue to spend my time with him letting him do what he wants to do, within reason of course. Most of the time that consist of sleeping in my hand in his snuggle sack. You'll do fine.[attachment=0:qjiwot8r]Milo 2.jpg[/attachment:qjiwot8r]
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