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Old 07-09-2010, 01:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default First hedgie adopt or buy?

Okay,
so I have been reading up on hedgehogs for about two months now. I started on Chins-n-quills, then someone recommended Hedgehog World, so I joined. Then in more research I came across HC (Hedgehog Central).

At first I wanted to rescue/adopt a hedgie..I figured why encourage pet shops and breeding, when there are a few needing good homes...now I am not so sure.

Well, most of the ads I have come across..are re-homing because of lack of time. The more more questions I ask the owners, the more I think they just want their money back for the hedgehog and NOT a good home. All of them don't use the right foods, bad bedding, no vet checks ever, they don't ask me any questions at all, etc. It makes one wonder why they are really trying to find the hedgehog a new home.

Do you (the members with actual hedgehog experience) think a newbie should adopt their first hedgie or buy?

The more ads I inquire about, the more I just think getting from a breeder would be best. I think that is what I am going to do..in a couple more months. It's just hard to say no, to the poor hedgies..that have no voice.

Sorry if this has already been brought up!

Thank You,
Hilly
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Old 07-09-2010, 01:53 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: First hedgie adopt or buy?

I was thinking of rescuing my first hedgie too... but a lot of the time those hedgies are not socialized properly, etc... and I figured that it would be a little too much for me to handle for my first time... it's really up to you though, but personally, I think I made a good choice of getting my hedgie from a breeder.
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Old 07-09-2010, 02:00 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: First hedgie adopt or buy?

We went through a breeder for Cholla - our first hedgie. I did so much research beforehand, and realized that there could be alot of health issues that could come up. I was a bit nervous at first. He was about 6 weeks or so when we got him. I liked that I was able to see where he came from & how he was handled. He came with a letter from a vet as well. We have been learning together.
Cholla is very friendly and we haven't had any issues to deal with so far. I haven't had to deal with sickness, shyness, biting, death. His only issues so far are not letting me cut his nails & not wanting to try new food. Although I know it won't always be this way.
That being said, now that I'm so much more comfortable, I would be open to a rescue in the future. And find myself already wanting to help, as I can see that there is a great need out there.
Bottom line - it's up to you. For me, getting my feet wet with a baby from a breeder was the best thing.



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Old 07-09-2010, 03:01 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: First hedgie adopt or buy?

Sweetie is from a breeder, but i doubt we'll get more hogs from one. i feel strongly for the unwanted ones.

that being said, goodness knows how hard i was educating myself on Sweetie's account. getting a rescue would've meant even more education. so, unless you're up for it...
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Old 07-09-2010, 03:05 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: First hedgie adopt or buy?

I got Watson through a breeder and I was very pleased with the process. She's knowledgeable and definitely trying to find a good home for the babies. I think it's just important to find a good, reputable breeder. Rescued hedgehogs can need more vet attention, and a lot more time and energy getting them more socialized and healthy. Getting a baby can be a lot of work too, especially while they're quilling, but you know that it's your baby, and generally they are pretty well socialized and handled well when they're little.
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Old 07-09-2010, 03:16 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: First hedgie adopt or buy?

I rescued mine from a pet store that couldn't sell him (They'd had him for 2 years and were basically giving him away with the purchase of cage and accessories in a last ditch attempt to get rid of him).

He took more socialization than a baby probably would have and there was a risk for health problems but he's been surprisingly healthy so far.

I'm glad my first hedgehog was an adult because I haven't had to deal with any of the baby worry, switching from kitten food to adult, quilling, is it growing enough? etc. I do want to experience a baby at some point but it just seems like so much more work. More pee and poo, more smell, more mood swings with quilling and everything. I would love to have a properly socialized friendly baby hedgehog but I love my simple grumpy old man.
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Old 07-09-2010, 03:48 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: First hedgie adopt or buy?

I bought my first hedgehog from a breeder because I wanted to have post-buy support. A good breeder will provide you with this no problem. A lot of "rescue" hedgehogs will come to you fearful and otherwise unsocialized, and can be a real challenge. I know that a lot of people are pro-adoption (which I am, 100%) but I also don't see why you wouldn't want to support a responsible breeder. A good breeder works to improve her species of choice, so why not endorse their efforts?
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Old 07-09-2010, 04:12 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: First hedgie adopt or buy?

My first hog was a rescue, and she turned out wonderfully. You have to understand, however, that this is not always the case. Quillamina was nasty and hateful when I first brought her home, and it's taken a lot of work to get her to be the snuggly little lovehog she is today, and even then, she has her mean days every now and again.

Remember that a rescued hog will most likely be 'damaged.' They will not trust you, or humans in general, and they will fear you because they have not been handled, or they were possibly abused. It's necessary to put a great deal of work into rehabilitating a rescued hedgie, and if you don't think you can do it, at least for your first hedgepiggy, you should go for one from a breeder this time around. Personally, I'm glad I rescued my first hoggy and waited until the second one to get a baby, but that was my personal choice.

In the end, it's up to you. Just make sure you know what you're getting into.
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