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Old 09-20-2014, 07:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Smile A few questions before I get my first Hedgie!!!

Hello everyone!

I'm getting my first hedgie at the end of this month! His name is Chibi!

Here are a few questions I have!

1. Do I need to use a heat bulb or heat mat? And I have heard so many different temperatures are good.... What temp would you guys suggest???

2. He is a male... Do they um...do boy time a lot? How will I know when to pick him up and put him down if he's doing that?

3. When he gets older will I have to clean his uh willy? Because I have several rats ( 9 of them ) and when the males get old, they can't clean themselves there so the owner has to... I know this is a super weird question, but I need to be....prepared....

4. Any good taming tips? When can I start holding him when I get him? And for how long at first?

5. Can I take him to places with me in a snuggle sack? For example, Target, Walmart, the Mall, etc.

Sorry if these are stupid questions, but i'm new to all of this! (YES, I have done my research!!! I just want to make sure I have all of these things right!)

I want to get another hedgie eventually and name him Frodo! (Lord of the Rings name in case no one knew!)

Thanks!
Angel and the Kritter family :3
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Old 09-20-2014, 07:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hello, and welcome!

1. Heat bulbs are recommended over heat mats, because a hedgie's whole cage needs to be heated, not only the floor. CHE's (ceramic heat emitters) are recommended, since they only give off heat, and not light. Also, the temperature scale is usually between 70-80 degrees; however a more specific scale is more between 73-78 degrees. I try to aim for 75, but it can differ by each hedgie. Some hedgies like it cooler, like 73 degrees, and some like it warmer, around 78-80 degrees. Just try out different temperatures and see when your hedgie is most active.

I can't answer 2 & 3 because I have a female, sk hopefully someone else can help with those.

4. Most people recommend at least a half hr of bonding time each night. However, as long as you can is fine (for instance, bonding time usually goes for 2-3 hrs for me and my girl). And, it's usually a good idea to give your hedgie one or two nights by himself before you start handling him, just so he gets used to his new home at least a little bit. As for taming, just be persistent and patient. The t-shirt trick is a great idea - wear an old shirt for a couple nights before you get your baby, then put the shirt in his igloo/sleeping area so he gets used to your scent. Or you can sleep with the cuddle sack, if you're planning on putting that in your igloo.

5. Taking your hedgie places isn't usually recommended unless you're absolutely sure your hedgie is comfortable. Since they're light and temperature sensitive, and don't like loud noises and commotion, taking a hedgie out in public can be a stressful experience for him. And it's not humane to force your hedgie to be awake during the day, since they're nocturnal and it may throw off their sleep schedule. However, I've heard of people taking their hedgies on small errands.

Hopefully that helped!
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Old 09-20-2014, 11:52 PM   #3 (permalink)
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As for boy time, it depends on the hedgehog. Some never show any evidence of boy time, others will do it right in front of you. If it bothers you, you can put him away until he is done. That, of course, doesn't mean he won't do it again.

I have never heard of having to clean older males privates so I think you are safe on that end.

Also with bonding time, I would have to "areas" prepared. Always have a snuggle sack or blanket, this is in case your hedgehog would rather sleep on you than explore. However, have the option for your hedgehog to explore too. This way if he is an explorer he has that option. I also find having two different things to do is fun for me too. I can make a maze for them and hide mealworms and watch them find them or I can sit them on my lap and while they sleep I can talk to all the fine people on here.
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Old 09-21-2014, 10:04 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chibi220 View Post

2. He is a male... Do they um...do boy time a lot? How will I know when to pick him up and put him down if he's doing that?

3. When he gets older will I have to clean his uh willy? Because I have several rats ( 9 of them ) and when the males get old, they can't clean themselves there so the owner has to... I know this is a super weird question, but I need to be....prepared....
re: #2: I have 4 males. Only one of them has ever made boy time something I knew about. I'm sure they all have it, but Gabriel seems to enjoy it so much that he does it all the time. Sometimes even without doing much of anything but laying there. I don't read much about other peoples boys doing what Gabe does though so you are probably fine on that front.

re: #3: Actually, it's a good question and something a lot of people wouldn't think of until it became an issue. My boys are all young so they take care of themselves just fine. I do though flip them on their backs and make sure everything on their belly area is doing just fine and nothing is stuck or extra dirty, or anything like that. Usually it isn't an issue but sometimes there will be a random bit of fuzz or sometimes they have poop on their backsides and it's into the wash for them.
If you use a loose substrate bedding material this will be more of a thing because the loose material could get caught up in the penile sheath and cause an infection. I use fleece, and I still get the occasional fuzz, but it has never been more than an outside issue.
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Old 09-21-2014, 07:42 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thank you everyone! All of your answers were REALLY helpful! I can't wait to get my Chibi!!!
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