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-   -   Speed and Running Questions! (https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2671)

knitfreak 07-20-2009 01:49 PM

Speed and Running Questions!
My first hedgie is only 2 1/2 months old, and I just had some questions. Is it normal for him to not want to use his wheel at all? He has completely no interest. He has not once been on it, and when I have placed him on it to let him know it is there he just gets right off! Hahah.

Also, he seems to move very slow compared to the videos I've seen of others. He might just be uber cautious, or is this typical when they are young and he will speed up as older? Maybe he is just not into walking?

Thanks for any input! As I have had him about two weeks I am not sure if I need to do a vet wellness visit, but of course a new "parent" is overly paranoid about everything and I just wanted to check with the experts. Thanks!

dorasdaddy 07-20-2009 02:38 PM

Re: Speed and Running Questions!
what type and size of wheel is it? with the slow movement and not wanting to use it he could have injured a leg or toe on it and they are smart enough to not want to get back on something that has hurt them. also, is the wheel in the cage with him? and is it too bright? i have heard of some hedgies not wanting to run even if a street light is shining in the window.

knitfreak 07-20-2009 03:14 PM

Re: Speed and Running Questions!
Well, it's a "silent spinner" and I know I need to replace it with a better one because of the little small slit is has sporadically in case of injury. BUT, I am not going to spend $50 on a wheel if he doesn't want one. He has not injured his toe (I check him over each day) because he hasn't touched the wheel at all. I can tell because I put a small piece of litter on top of it every night and it is there in the morning. He didn't have a wheel at the breeders so I thought at first he just wasn't interested, but it appears he actually doesn't care for it. If he doesn't want to run because of a street lights we're definitely going to have a problem! I would have to put his cage in a closet if he needs complete darkness and that doesn't seem very good for him either, haha.

He has explored the upper level of his cage, so I know every now and then he roams around (it's enclosed and I have a ferret tunnel and not a ramp so it's safe :) ). He also has used me as a walking surface, haha. In general he is not bothered by much and is very friendly and chilled out. I don't think it's stress.

Do some hedgies just not like wheels or do all hedgies love them? He seems totally healthy and alert when I take him out for bonding time, is eating and drinking normally, waste amounts are normal and healthy looking. Aside from dry skin (not mites!) he seems fine but just not interested in his wheel.

Immortalia 07-20-2009 03:21 PM

Re: Speed and Running Questions!
I don't blame him for not wanting to use a silent spinner...
Do a search(upper right corner) for silent spinner, and you will get all the cons as to why it's not good.

Why not get the large comfort wheel? It costs much less than $50, and it's much safer than a silent spinner.

knitfreak 07-20-2009 03:36 PM

Re: Speed and Running Questions!
Hrm. I thought those weren't good because of the bar coming out of the middle? If I am going to get a new wheel I am going to get the best one I can get (the CWS seems like the best choice?) but I don't want to do that unless he is actually going to use a wheel at all :lol: Unless I can buy one and return it unless it's never used.

To be more specific, what I am asking is not what wheel to get, but more if there are hedgehogs that never use wheels at all? Or if I should be concerned about his health if he is not very exploratory or "quick" at all? I feel like even though his current wheel is not *ideal* that it would do in a pinch. The fact of him not being interested at all is what is concerning? Hope this helps clarify, thanks again for all the answers :)

Immortalia 07-20-2009 05:24 PM

Re: Speed and Running Questions!
There ARE hedgehogs out there who won't use their wheels.

You just have to be extra careful with their diet and exercise. You'd need to take them out more often to let them run around(a nice large playpen is ideal for nightly roaming). So not those short 30 min bonding, but at least an hour or two(or even longer) out of the cage for supervised exercise. Maybe even slowly introduce your hedgehog to learn how to swim in the bathtub(supervised at all times).

Food wise, less fatty treats, try to get food that is as low in fat as possible.

Be sure that the hedgie does not become bored in the cage. Otherwise, you might get frantic bored hedgie running up and down the cage, rubbing nose raw and bleeding against the wall. Add in extra toys that he might like(and switch in and out a few different ones weekly), scatter his food around the cage for an active scavenger hunt every so often, etc etc.

As for the silent spinner, the curvature of the wheel can be enough to deter a hedgie from wanting to climb into it, hence maybe trying a comfort wheel instead. I also think that the height might be a deterrent as well(the comfort wheel is slightly lower, but no curve). The bar is high enough on the comfort wheel to not be too much of a problem(unless you have a really large hedgie) but it's also why you need to get the largest size of the comfort wheel.

And yes, the CWS is the best wheel out there right now.

knitfreak 07-20-2009 05:54 PM

Re: Speed and Running Questions!
Thanks for the additional insight. It looks like I am just going to have to buy a better wheel. If he doesn't use it hopefully I can either return it or sell it on the forums. Picky little guy, good thing he is so adorable! :lol:

nikki 07-20-2009 06:25 PM

Re: Speed and Running Questions!
You think your guy is picky...lol...I have one boy that won't eat unless I put his food dish under his hat with him. He comes out to drink..wheel...play...but won't eat if his dish isn't under his hat...spoiled little guy...lol

Shelbys Mom 07-20-2009 11:23 PM

Re: Speed and Running Questions!
Only 1 of my 4 will use a wheel.

The ones that don't get more play time in the play pen.
Shelby loves to run in the play pen and she also loves to swim. Only in the bath tub, she hates the sink. The other's don't like bath's .
Of course I can't let her do that all the time. She has healthy skin now and I don't want it dry again.

knitfreak 07-21-2009 11:21 AM

Re: Speed and Running Questions!
Hahha, Nikki that is too funny about your little hidden eater! :lol:

And Shelby's Mom, thanks for the reply. It makes me feel better to know it's not just him being an odd little guy. It doesn't really seem like he likes baths but I may try putting him in the tub because it has a "deep" and "shallow" end so he can try actually swimming.

Right now he seems to prefer sleeping and cuddling. I have him out for 1-2 hours each night on the couch, sometimes he roams up and down our outstretched legs, but mostly he finds a nook on my lap or behind my back and dozes off :)

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