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Old 10-20-2009, 12:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default squealing/ nail questions

1)My hedgehog was just in her hut, and I heard a shrill squealing noise that lasted a couple of seconds. I checked her out, and she appeared ok. Why would a (presumably) sleeping hedge squeal like that? Is that normal?
2) I have had Thistle for over 10 months, and I have never had to cut her toe nails yet. They do not seem to overgrow like I have read about. I line her cage with newspaper, and she runs on a solid plastic wheel. I often hear her 'scratching' at the newspaper. Are her nails filing themselves by her activity? Is that unusal?
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Old 10-20-2009, 02:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: squealing/ nail questions


High pitch sound usually means the little fella is in pain.. perhaps caught a nail on something. Hitch shrilled when he got his paw stuck as a hoglet...

I would find it very odd that you haven't cut his nails. Hitch gets his nails cut at least once or twice every two weeks.

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Old 10-20-2009, 02:31 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: squealing/ nail questions

It seems odd to me too, as in every forum I read they talk about clipping the nails. Could it be possible that her use of the wheel and 'digging' in her cage keeps them filed down? I let her sometimes walk on my slate floor (when the dogs are put away). She also walks in my bathtub when she is getting bathed. The floor of the bath has rough pads to prevent people from slipping. Perhaps those surfaces help 'file' the nails down? I'm not sure which of the above help keep the nails short, however I will continute the routine.
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Old 10-20-2009, 02:42 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: squealing/ nail questions

Back nails tend to grow much MUCH quicker than the front nails. I actually barely have to trim my boy's front nails at all.

However, with his back ones, I trim them once a week, because they do get long, no matter what he does, or what he walks on, they do become quite long. No amount of digging with front paws will file down the nails of the hind paws.

Perhaps some pictures of her feet might be good. I could try to take some of my boy as well, since he actually is in need of a nail trimming soon, a before and after of his hind feet.

Also...As an aside... Is it printed newspaper? Be careful with that as it is possible that the ink is toxic. So running around on the newspaper, she will get ink on her paws, and she could lick her paw, thus ingest the toxic ink. And yes, there ARE those who use "non-toxic" ink...But is it really worth the risk? Also, newspaper is cold when wet, which can cause a chill for your girl.
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Old 10-20-2009, 11:28 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: squealing/ nail questions

to piggy back this thread. what if someone placed flat slate rock in the cage. of course it would be washed and bleached (or vinegar). would that help the nails a bit. i only ask since i hate clipping nails. i have essential tremors which makes it hard to keep my hands steady enough for most tasks.
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Old 10-21-2009, 12:02 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: squealing/ nail questions

This sort of thing has been covered in a few posts before. The problem with things like rocks and brick and such is that hedgehogs walk on the pad of their foot. The nails don't touch the ground unless they're already too long anyway. It's the same reason why putting fine grain sandpaper or anything like that on the wheel wouldn't work. People have been working at the nail clipping thing for years now, but I don't think there's going to be a good way around just clipping them.
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Old 10-21-2009, 01:23 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: squealing/ nail questions

Wow.. never considered the possibiltiy of toxic ink. The paper does not get wet as Thistle uses the small litter box, and the water dish is heavy and she cannot turn it over. I do keep a heating pad on low under a small portion of her cage. She usually has some paper towels or fleece that she likes to drag into her hut. Getting back to her nails.... Her back nails are a little longer than the front, but they don't seem too long. I have had her for 10 months already, and she has never been to a vet. Perhaps I can ask my vet to look at the nails when i am there. thank you for all of the advice.
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Old 10-21-2009, 10:03 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: squealing/ nail questions

If you are using regular newspaper, it is NOT toxic. It is soy based and safe. Be careful of the ads though, I don't believe there are laws saying the ink they use must be safe.

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