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Old 01-19-2010, 06:12 PM   #1 (permalink)
ana
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Default The Memphis Zoo's hedgehog, "Stella"

I'm not really sure which subforum to post this in to be honest...

My boyfriend just sent me this article about the zoo's "celebrity" hedgehog, Stella. (They bring her out for a big presentation on "Hedgehog Day" instead of celebrating Groundhog Day.)

http://www.memphiszoo.org/default.aspx? ... eid=108173

It's pretty sweet, with the get well card from the kids and all...

Totally unrelated to her neck tumor and all though... I'm a bit concerned that the article says one of her fave foods is grapes. I was positive grapes are supposed to be toxic to hedgehogs... Maybe whoever wrote the article is misinformed? At least I hope that's the case, and they're not actually feeding her grapes...

Would it be terribly presumptuous to email the zoo about it? I'm not really sure it's my place, since I'm not an expert, she's 4 and a half years old and they are, well, the zoo.

...and how bad are grapes for her if they ARE giving them as treats?
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Old 01-19-2010, 06:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Memphis Zoo's hedgehog, "Stella"

As little as a half of grape can cause complete renal failure.
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Old 01-19-2010, 07:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Memphis Zoo's hedgehog, "Stella"

Quote:
Originally Posted by HedgeMom
As little as a half of grape can cause complete renal failure.
Wow. I knew to stay away from them but I didn't know they were THAT bad.

If whoever wrote that article isn't just misinformed then I'm wondering how their hedgie is even still alive.
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Old 01-21-2010, 04:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Memphis Zoo's hedgehog, "Stella"

Makes me a bit worried about her. I wonder if the zoo knows that grapes aren't good for hedgies... You should try to contact them and ask if that was a mistake or if they really do give her grapes.
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Old 01-21-2010, 05:22 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Memphis Zoo's hedgehog, "Stella"

I emailed the blog writer, his address was at the end of the posting. Not to bombard him, but if a few people write him regarding the same thing maybe he will stop feeding that item OR correct his blog if it was incorrect.
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Old 01-21-2010, 08:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Memphis Zoo's hedgehog, "Stella"

Yeah... That's what I wondered, like if the zoo made a mistake (despite the fact that they actually use Stella for educational presentations - you know, telling children all about hedgehogs) or if it was just the blog writer... You'd think that not only do they have animal nutritionists there, that they'd also be aware that grapes are actually toxic to a LOT of animals.

The girls that answered hedgehog questions at last year's (or maybe it was year before last?) "Hedgehog Day" weren't exactly well informed (I think I even overheard one saying that "yes, they are related to porcupines" ...and we all know that's not true. ) but I figured they were just volunteers for the event and/or like interns or something. (They were not people I would expect to have a wealth of knowledge regarding every animal in the zoo, like a seasoned keeper - or a nutritionist.)

If it wasn't just a mistake made by the writer of the post, then it's rather saddening to think that such a highly respected zoo would make a potentially fatal error like that... especially with an animal that they do Q&A presentations with.
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Old 01-22-2010, 09:13 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Memphis Zoo's hedgehog, "Stella"

Hi there, I emailed them and received this response back:
Quote:
Thank you for your concern and for providing feedback. I have sent this to Stella's keepers to check on this part of her diet. Thank you again.
And then from a different person:
Quote:
Thank you for your comment. I have never heard or read that grapes are unhealthy for hedgehogs. Our nutritionist sets up a list of “do and do not feed” for each individual species. Grapes are certainly something we try to limit in her diet but I have never heard they cause rental failure.

I will certainly bring up the fact to our nutritionist since we certainly want to keep her the healthiest possible.

Have a WILD day!
So then I replied giving them this site as a great reference and also the Hedgehog Welfare Society as a great reference. Here's hoping to spread the information you have all gathered over years of experience!
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Old 01-22-2010, 01:09 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Memphis Zoo's hedgehog, "Stella"

kind of off hedgehog topic but does anyone know what other animals grapes are toxic too. i have a friend who's bulldog LOVES grapes. he sits there and you can just throw them at his mouth and he never misses! it's really cute.
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Old 01-22-2010, 01:20 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Memphis Zoo's hedgehog, "Stella"

Not good for them either.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grape_and_ ... ty_in_dogs
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Old 01-22-2010, 04:51 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Memphis Zoo's hedgehog, "Stella"

The twitters:

@MemphisZoo Thought the article on Stella was really sweet... but her "favorite foods" surprised me. Aren't grapes toxic to AP Hedgehogs? 5:08 PM Jan 20th from web

@anaxjor Grapes aren't a staple but rather a treat for our hedgehogs and our nutritionists and vets all say that they're fine in moderation about 2 hours ago from web

@MemphisZoo Really? I always heard that even a little grape could cause full renal failure... So, it kinda scared me. 2 minutes ago from web in reply to MemphisZoo


I really hope they sort it out... They shouldn't be giving her anything that's even potentially toxic, even "in moderation." Maybe the nutritionist made a mistake/overlooked this one thing...
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