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Old 09-10-2013, 05:49 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I was bold with my baby hedgie and was picking her up and spending time with her, but now that I've read on here that they can bite I'm afraid! I can't bring myself to pick her up even though she didn't do a thing! I was under the impression a hedgie bite was extra rare. Reading on this forum has me scared because it seems like every other new member posts about a biter! How many people on here actually have biters? How common is biting actually? Please help me out! I'm a big chicken now!


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Old 09-10-2013, 06:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Steps for preventing biting:

Don't use scented soaps.
Don't hand-feed.
Don't let your hedgehog try to burrow under your shirt, or get near your armpits.
Don't touch food and then put your hands in front of hedgie's face.
If your hedgehog is licking you, move away from her face, because she might be getting ready to take a nibble if she thinks you're tasty.

Just use common sense. If your hedgehog hasn't bitten you, chances are she's not aggressive and won't bite you without provocation. And honestly, even if she does bite you, it's not that serious. We're not talking about a gigantic dog here. She's a hedgehog. Yes, they can bring blood, but it's not like you'll be maimed for life.
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Old 09-10-2013, 06:49 PM   #3 (permalink)
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It's rare for a hedgie to bite out of aggression. It's mostly just to taste you and get to know you and their surroundings. Because of that, try to stay away from scented soaps or lotions. They usually sniff-lick-nibble, so you typically have a bit of warning before they chomp.

Also make sure to handle her daily for at least 30 minutes. It's important to socialize her, and by doing that she'll also get used to you and be way less likely to bite.

I agree with ajweekley to keep her away from your armpit because she'll smell the deodorant, and ow, I can tell you from personal experience that is an unpleasant place to be bitten.

But if it's any consolation, I've never bled from a bite. It's sharp, it hurts a bit, but it's nothing you can't handle.
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Old 09-10-2013, 06:58 PM   #4 (permalink)
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It seems to me bites are more common (but still rare) in hedgies that are quilling. They're uncomfortable and rightfully so! If your hedgie is past quilling though and hasn't bit then i agree that they probably won't unless maybe it a high stress situation or maybe sick/in pain. I wouldn't worry too much but just know where your hedgies muzzle is and use the above advice to avoid any taste testing =).
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Old 09-11-2013, 12:52 AM   #5 (permalink)
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My hedgie bites occasionally. I have an automatic reaction to pull away that usually gets me out of it without actually feeling pain (and I immediately handle him more so he knows that biting won't make me go away). My hedgehog primarily bites me when I am picking him up - I think being on hands in general makes him feel precarious so he tries everything to avoid it - so sometimes if he is behaving like he might bite, I scoop him up with a scrap of fleece. Once he's on my hands, he's fine. He's also nipped my ear (metal earrings), nose (metal earrings), lip (smell?) and nipple (???) so...keep small protrusions away from their faces. Also most hedgie bites I've experienced and hear of tend to be on the fingers - when you handle them, try to keep the face over your palm.

Unless you get an aggressive biter though, most nips won't be bad. I was terrified that one day he'd bite me while perched on my hand and I'd jerk away and drop him. Then he did it, and I didn't. Haven't really been afraid since then, though I am more cautious.
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Old 09-11-2013, 01:10 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I just brought my girl home on Saturday. She's "bit" me once. But pretty sure it's because I had meal worm scent on me. But it didn't hurt and was definitely more of a little nibble than a bite. Don't be afraid! Unless you have a very evil hedgie you have nothing to worry about. Just don't smell like food
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Old 09-11-2013, 01:28 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zamxonk View Post
He's also nipped my ear (metal earrings), nose (metal earrings), lip (smell?) and nipple (???) so...keep small protrusions away from their faces. Also most hedgie bites I've experienced and hear of tend to be on the fingers - when you handle them, try to keep the face over your palm.
I'm a little scared this will happen someday. He sometimes like to settle under there and I always get a bit nervous while he fidgets around getting comfy. So far no bites there, but he did have a nightmare and blew up into a full ball-o-death just out of the blue. Everything was calm, then BAM! Like a pin cushion exploded into one of the worst spots possible. Then he stayed spiked because he woke up and got scared when I started shouting profanities.

But the good news is that the more you bond, the less likely you are to get poked or bitten, with the exception of hedgie nightmares.
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Old 09-11-2013, 10:45 AM   #8 (permalink)
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ImageUploadedByPG Free1378910698.816732.jpg this is the great beast by the way I call her Ramona!


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Old 09-11-2013, 11:16 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Adorable! Love the picture.

I just want to say - your fear of the bite is probably a lot worse than a bite itself actually would be. Maybe try reciting the Bene Gesserit litany against fear? (from Dune, if you're not a geek like me)
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Old 09-11-2013, 11:37 AM   #10 (permalink)
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She looks so ferocious!
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