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Old 03-27-2013, 02:35 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default New Hedgehog Questions

Okay, I just bought a hedgehog yesterday and have a few questions!

I had been researching all the information necessary and I do work at a pet store so I was pretty knowledgeable about the needs of a hedgehog. I brought mine home yesterday and the store estimated him to be about 5 to 6 weeks old. They told me he was just in the process of being switched off of some food and on to a new one so he might take a little while to get used to what I would be feeding him. Today is day 2 of having him and he's really great. I understand he will be nervous with the new surroundings and all and the fact that he is so young, but my first question is, is it weird that he's making sort of a hiccuping sound you could say? I mean, when I go to take him out just to check on him, he starts to breath heavily and makes that noise, as well as spiking up a bit. But after he's out I can pet him no problem. Second question is, how much should I leave in his food bowl? I an feeding him actual hedgehog pellets. I know they all say high quality cat food which I know a great deal about, but I asked my store manager and she said ferret food or the hedgehog one would work even better. I filled up his bowl with food only because i wanted to make sure he could get to it, but how much should I leave in there? I was able to feed him a few ferret treats which he really enjoyed , but i just wanted to make sure he's eating healthy. Finally, I just want to know when is the age i can give him is first bath? Thank you!
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Old 03-27-2013, 03:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Hedgehog Questions

Not to be rude right off the bat but your store manager is a moron when it comes to hedgehogs if they said hedgehog food or ferret food was better than a high quality proper cat food. A baby hedghog shouldn't be sold or given away till at least 6 weeks of age. Once you have him on proper food you should be able to free feed him unless he's a porker and doesn't run enough to keep his weight down. I would wait a couple weeks till he feels more comfy in his new home before you bath him but as far as i know there is no certain age to start bathing them at. If they are dirty you bath them.

Please can someone please link Lizard Girls book on here so newhedgehog can read it.

I'm not sure about the hicupping sound unless you are talking about him clicking at you. They will make that sound when they are nervous. Did you get him from the pet store?

Anyway, sorry, like I said, don't mean to be rude but most pet store owners/managers/workers (not all but a mass majority) have no clue what proper care of a hedgehog is. Please tell me he's in a proper cage and has a proper wheel to wheel on as well as a house or fleece to hide under?
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Old 03-27-2013, 04:08 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Hedgehog Questions

As far as the food goes, should I switch him now and just get high quality cat food when I go to work tonight? I have no problem switching him I was just going by what she said because, she did work at the place where I bought him and the food does have the high protein low fat. Also, I guess it is the clicking he's doing then. When I have him out he does it much less and I can hold him
but when I open the cage he does it right away. I understand hes young and the new surroundings will take some getting used to, so im not too worried. But yes he does have a place to hide, a wheel, and i even put some nesting material for small animals so he can stay extra warm. Im just concerned about the food now... is it okay that he is eating ferret treats? He really enjoys them but if theyre not good i can go out and get whats best
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Old 03-27-2013, 05:12 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Hedgehog Questions

LizardGirl's book: http://www.westcoasthedgehogs.com/fi.../download.html

It really is an excellent resource, do read "cover to cover!"


Quote:
is it weird that he's making sort of a hiccuping sound you could say? I mean, when I go to take him out just to check on him, he starts to breath heavily and makes that noise, as well as spiking up a bit. But after he's out I can pet him no problem.
Hedgehogs "huff" or "hiss," not like a cat -but it is clearly a sign of irritation. Some will also make a loud popping noise and jump to startle you. Youtube may have some examples if you need to compare the noise your hedgehog makes to others. Many hedgehogs get huffy when you first wake them up/try to get them out of the cage.

Quote:
Second question is, how much should I leave in his food bowl? I an feeding him actual hedgehog pellets. I know they all say high quality cat food which I know a great deal about, but I asked my store manager and she said ferret food or the hedgehog one would work even better.
Hedgehog-specific food is terrible, transition to cat food as soon as you can. Your store manager is incorrect. I do believe some people use ferret food in food mixes, but I'm not 100%. Food list for hedgehogs: http://www.volcanoviewhedgehogs.com/...--produce.html

Hedgehogs eat about 1 - 3 tablespoons of food per night, from what I've read. Unless your hedgehog has weight problem, food should always be available.

Quote:
Finally, I just want to know when is the age i can give him is first bath?
He can have a bath as soon as he needs it

Congrats on your new pet, welcome to the forum!
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Old 03-27-2013, 06:01 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Hedgehog Questions

I printed the book and read it cover to cover but you can download it and read it on whatever device you have.

You should slowly transition from his current food to his new food. start with 1/4 new and 3/4 old. Lizard girls book i believe describes how to do it safely. If it doesn't and you still have questions then post it on here so someone can walk you through it. Also, high protein and low fat content isn't all you should be looking for. You should looking for quality ingredients and nutrients which hedgehog food doesn't have at all.

My milo used to huff, hiss, click, and pop constantly. He still balls up when he's nervous. He's an ansy little guy but he stopped all that other stuff now that he's used to me.

Be careful on the type of wheel and substrate you use for bedding. Some can be unhealty and down right dangerous for hedgehogs. Like I said, all the info you need is in Lizard girls book. Read it ASAP and you'll get the general information you need right now.

Good luck and welcome to the forum and congrats on your baby. Sorry I didn't say that before.
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