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Old 07-02-2013, 12:57 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Am I holding my hedgehog too much?

So I got my first hedgehog on friday night. A friend of my moms had a hedgehog and she gave her to me because she didn't have the time for it really (she has three kids, cats, dogs and a monkey). Anyway, when I brought home Bubbles (that is the hedgehogs name) I took her out of the cage. She was all huffy and hissing but once I took her out and held her and let her walk around she was fine. I held her a lot on friday night, just because I was excited that I finally had a hedgehog after years of wanting one.

On Saturday, I hardly held her, only during the night, but she seemed mad, she hissed a lot unlike the previous night. So I left her alone and let her do what she wanted.

On Sunday I held her a lot, like half a day. All she did was sleep on me. I did give her tiny breaks since I had to do chores and such, but she was with me a lot of the day.

Yesterday I barely held her until the night, which again she slept on me for a few hours.

I have yet to hold her today, she doesn't want anything to do with me before noon, at least that is what I think. She is really grumpy, and always huffs and hisses.

Anyways, am I holding her too much. Is it bad if I have her sleep on me instead of in her cage? I'm just worried I'm affecting her health.

Also, I have a few quick questions.

Bubbles is 3 months old, is this a normal age for quilling? I always find a couple quills on the ground when she is running about or I'm petting her..

Another question I have is, is it normal for Bubbles to not eat or drink at all during the day? Her cage is beside me when I'm home, and I never see her wake up to eat or drink. But when I wake up the next morning there is less food and water. So I know she's eating and drinking.

Thanks for your help.
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Old 07-02-2013, 01:47 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am I holding my hedgehog too much?

Well, they're nocturnal. They're going to want to do everything at night.

I don't really think there's such a thing as holding them "too much" as long as you're not keeping her awake during the day, every day. You might find it a good idea to limit holding her during the day once she's really comfortable with you but right now while she's getting to know you it's a really good idea to have her bonding with you. You're lucky she allows it.
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Old 07-02-2013, 04:24 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am I holding my hedgehog too much?

I've heard that if they are quilling they are a bit grumpy... but I've never had a hedgie young enough to go through that so I don't have first hand experience! I'd say keep sweet talking her and cuddling and she'll warm up!! I had a very grouchy old man and he was always rude for the first 45min of our playtimes, but he always came around Keep at it!
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Old 07-02-2013, 09:42 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am I holding my hedgehog too much?

Most hedgehogs will huff and quill up when you first pick them up, especially if you pick them up during the day and are waking them up. It sounds like she calms down enough to get to sleep on you, which is great! What you describe is a great way to socialize your hedgehog. Overtime you might develop more of a regular routine and your hedgehog might respond well to the predictability but there is nothing wrong with her sleeping on you instead of her cage and there is nothing wrong with holding her at different times on some days. The important part is that she is sleeping and not huffing at you or trying to run away the whole time, she needs to be asleep but it doesn't matter where. Everything else sounds normal as well. My understanding is that even though quilling is supposed to happen at predictable ages some hedgehogs go through it longer than others and at different times, I think they are quilling a lot for the first 6 months of life and maybe up to a year. Even adult hedgehogs loose a few quills here and there so just one or two a day doesn't necessarily mean she is quilling.
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Old 07-04-2013, 03:28 PM   #5 (permalink)
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My girls don't eat or drink during the day. All they do is sleep, which is the case for most hedgehogs since they are nocturnal.

As far as holding her.. I don't think you can really hold them "too much". So long as you are not forcing her to stay awake when she wants to go to sleep you should be fine. Personally, I don't get my girls out before noon and try to wait until around 3pm. That way they get several hours of uninterrupted sleep before I wake them up. That doesn't mean you have to do this, it's just what I do. I know someone that has her hedgehog the majority of the time. She puts him in her pocket or something and walks around with him all day.

It really is up to you, and it depends on your hedgehogs. If it seems to stress her out a lot to have her out for long periods of time, don't do that. If she doesn't mind it... go for it! My Prim will sleep so long as she has somewhere to "hide" (so a blanket or the pocket of my hoodie etc). Ivy however needs to be still to sleep, or she gets grumpy. They're all different

I would also suggest that you measure how much food and water you give her and how much is left every morning. It's good to know in case something happens and you need to go to the vet .

As for quilling... it could be quilling or it could simply be the normal loss of quills. They loose quills similarly to the way we loose hair so it's not abnormal to find a few here and there .
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Old 07-04-2013, 05:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks everyone for responding

It's good to know that everything she is doing is normal and healthy. I'll probably hold her not as often as she gets older, but she doesn't really seem to care right now.

I'm new to this whole hedgehog thing, so I definitely don't know a lot. I did look at her quills today and saw some tiny ones poking through her skin.
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Old 07-04-2013, 11:43 PM   #7 (permalink)
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If she doesn't care then enjoy the time with your baby
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Ivy became a part of my family on May 1st, 2013.


Check out mine Prim's, and Ivy's Instagram http://instagram.com/julieanne1991/
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