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Old 03-23-2013, 01:27 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default All the things that can go wrong have me stressed out.

Before I joined the forum, I felt really really confident about bringing home my first hedgie. I had read books and breeder websites and things on HHC, and watched all the youtube vids (and had learned how to recognize which people's advice to take and which not to take) and mirrored my hedgie cage from all the C&C cages online. And I remember my sister taking care of a hedgehog when she was just a kid. But I joined the forum to get some advice on my heating set up (which is all set now) and then started reading all these pet memorials and seeing all these scary posts about hibernating and cancer and choking and ivermectin... now as the day gets closer to bringing my little girl home, I'm starting to get pretty nervous. Any thoughts and ideas on how to alleviate some of this would be great. Even if I just quit visiting the forum, I think there's just some things that you can't unsee, ya know?
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Old 03-23-2013, 02:07 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: All the things that can go wrong have me stressed out.

Hi there! Bringing home your hedgie should be an exciting experience...I would try not to let all that stuff get to you. I agree it is scary to read some of those things on the forum and my boyfriend actually prefers not to spend too much time on the forums for just that reason as well. While you cannot unsee the things you have read I will say this; in my opinion it is better to be knowledgable about the possibilities of these things. Of course you hopefully will never be dealing with the toughest of situations but wouldn't you rather be educated about them JUST IN CASE? That's how I think about it and it helps. I would rather know as much as I can learn so that I am best prepared to handle any problem (big or small), emergency situation, or even the signs for cancer, etc. It is absolutely a difficult path to read the sad stories and if it helps you can take a step back and not use the forum as much...but I'd say it's such an amazing tool to learn from people's first hand experiences. Everyone is different and you can always just use the forum when you need to search a specific topic. Best of luck to you!
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Old 03-23-2013, 02:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: All the things that can go wrong have me stressed out.

Don't be nervous - its exciting to bring a baby home

You know what to look for by researching, and that is good enough. Over researching will just have you anxious over everything they do You'll be fine
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Old 03-23-2013, 03:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: All the things that can go wrong have me stressed out.

Ahhh, the health forum trap...Been there!! It can be nerve-wracking to read about all of the things that can go wrong with our little ones. But honestly, for the majority of hedgehogs, health problems are little things or unusual occurrences. I agree with sklock - it's good to be prepared and to keep an eye out...but you have to make sure you don't get too overanxious and paranoid about every little thing. I think most potential problems can be pretty easily caught by an owner who's paying attention and checking their hedgehog at least nightly. Make sure even if you have a night where you don't have time for half an hour or more of cuddling, that you still get your hedgie out - say hi to them, make sure they're warm and cozy, check feet and legs for running-related injuries, feel them over for any sores/bumps/etc., and just look at them. You'll quickly get to know your hedgehog and what behaviors and appearances are normal for them. Then you notice things that are out of the ordinary.

It's also good to keep an eye on food/water/running - count, measure, or weigh food and just get in the habit of checking it each morning to see how much is gone. One night of eating less isn't much to worry about, just something to notice. Two or more nights of eating less or nothing is something to start thinking about and planning a vet visit if you can't narrow down a cause. Babies do slow down on eating as they get older too though, so that can be something that alarms new owners. You can also use weight of the hedgehog to keep an eye on this stuff - weight will generally fluctuate a little, and they can lose as much as 20 grams with a good poop, but look for general trends - a couple weeks of downward-moving weights might be something to think about and adjust foods or look for causes.

It can definitely feel overwhelming for a new owner! But trust me, you do get in the routine of checking them over, knowing what's normal, and what to look out for. You'll still always worry a bit, I think, but as you adjust, you do calm down a bit on all of the health worries. And we never mind new owners asking on here to make sure something sounds normal or whether it might be an issue! So if you're in doubt, always feel free to ask.
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Old 03-23-2013, 03:38 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: All the things that can go wrong have me stressed out.

Aaaw that's exactly how felt about a week ago I can just agree with what has been said before. Don't let the info, the sad stories, the emergencies, diseases etc.. make you nervous. Just think of it as information that may help you should some kind of a problem ever arise. Also keep in mind most posts will be "SOS" posts because there are so many owners that don't just join the forum for fun, they join when they have a problem and need help asap. And then there are those of us who just enjoy talking about hedgies

Bringing your baby home should be a happy experience. Most likely nothing will happen, but at least you're prepared if you have some sort of trouble
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Old 03-23-2013, 04:14 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: All the things that can go wrong have me stressed out.

Thank you so much everyone. I really appreciate all your input and encouragement.
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Old 03-23-2013, 04:41 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: All the things that can go wrong have me stressed out.

Welcome to motherhood reedwoman814

As a teen, young adult, being a parent sounds so grand. You think of the excitement and of someone to love and love you back.
Then when you get older, you think of the responsibility of raising a human being who will turn out right and be healthy.
When you're pregnant, you think of all the things that will or could go wrong and you panic. You read all you can and it gets to you. Sometimes you even say, "I've changed my mind, I don't think I'm ready for all this."
But then the baby comes and it's all right - even when they are sick. You handle it because they are yours and you love them.
It's the same thing you are going through. You will be fine. It tells me that you will be a great, informed, and caring parent!

Think on that,
Lisa (momIImany)
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Old 03-23-2013, 05:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: All the things that can go wrong have me stressed out.

I have 3 kids and I honestly can't remember being like this ... but maybe I blocked it out. Lol
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Old 03-23-2013, 06:28 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: All the things that can go wrong have me stressed out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by reedwoman814
I have 3 kids and I honestly can't remember being like this ... but maybe I blocked it out. Lol
I was gonna say - if you've managed all the stress from kids, I think you'll do fine. I think it's just scarier because kids can speak up when they're sick or something's wrong, but a lot of the time you just can't tell with animals. At least that's how I felt. That's why it's important to spend time with them - so you can observe their normal behavior and will notice when something changes. Deep breath.
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Old 03-23-2013, 07:05 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: All the things that can go wrong have me stressed out.

Oh boy do I hear you there. I can't read a memorial, or anything sick-related, without crying haha I learned the hard way when reading them at work one day...

But it is good to always be prepared. Also, it kind of makes you appreciate your little guy/gal more. I'm only 22 and not a parent yet, but I plan on having lots of kids. After Fiona got sick, it made me appreciate all those parents who have had rough times. I said to my boyfriend, after Fiona's first bout of cancer, how in the world do parents with sick children do this?

If I can just say one more thing...Despite all I went through with Fiona, and all her health issues, while I absolutely think she went too soon (not that I would've ever been ready) I loved every moment we had together, from the moment I first held her, til the end. I would've done anything for that little girl, and it was a real special bond we had. I loved that we had that time together. So no matter what happens, it is sooo worth it. You will have so so many great memories together, and those far outweigh any little scares you have, the first time you see funny-looking poop, the first time she doesn't eat as much as the night before, the first time she takes a little tumble, all those things. The only things I remember is the way she used to bury in my shoulder and neck, or poke her nose through every single finger on my hands when I held her. Cherish her (and I'm sure you will) and you guys will be great

Best of luck. And I can't wait to see pictures!
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