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Old 11-13-2014, 07:29 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Hi there! I just bought my African Pygmy hedgie Chubbster 3 days ago. Currently I am waiting to buy a nice glass reptile cage and at the moment have my house to where the temperature reaches an average of about 70 as I live in a region of the US where it is very cold during these months. Currently I am using a deep storage container filled with wood chips and other necessities and to make sure he stays warm I have a heating pad underneath the storage container. However whenever he is in my lap or I play with him he seems happy and active and even snuggles on my occasionally, but whenever I put him in his "cage" he is distant and hisses when I go to touch or pet him. I am curious if he is too cold in the cage or if his nervousness to the new sitaution is causing this? Thanks!
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Old 11-13-2014, 07:58 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hedgehogs like their space. They are often more grumpy when in their own space.

That being said, a heat mat is not enough when heating a hedgehogs cage. It only heats the floor and does not heat in the air in the cage. I would get a CHE. If you are using a bin you can cut a hole in the lid and add wire mesh. You place the lamp on it and voila. You will need a 100 watt CHE, an 8.5 or 10 in dome and a thermostat to control the heat.
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Old 11-13-2014, 07:59 PM   #3 (permalink)
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First I want to warn you that glass reptile cages are not the best for hedgehogs. They have extremely limited airflow. Plus, They are hard to clean and move because of the weight. I would advise either staying with the plastic tub (make sure you have air vent holes drilled) or building a nice c&c cage. You could also go with a wire cage but make sure there are high walls to prevent climbing.

Heating pads are not enough to heat a cage. They are nice for a little extra warmth under where they sleep (which is what I do with my snuggle safe heating pad). What most people have is a CHE setup. You need a CHE bulb, A dome (8-10inches in diameter), a thermostat, and a digital thermometer. The cage should be around 75 degrees Fahrenheit plus or minus a few degrees.

Also, if you have a wood chip bedding, watch out for mites. You don't have to switch or anything but Im just going from experience. Wood beddings harbor mites better than most other beddings. Paper based beddings (like carefresh) or fleece liners are much better. I have fleece liners and I'm obsessed. Much better for their health, much easier to clean, and you can get cute patterns

But anyway back to your real question. Hedgehogs are usually a little more grumpy while in their cage. From my experience, when my hedgehog is in her cage, she is in that leave me alone mood. But as soon as I pick her up she relaxes. So some grumpiness while inside the cage is definitely expected. Especially since you have only had him for 3 days! I'm actually pretty surprised that he's so good outside of the cage since he is so new!

The grumpiness also may be because he is too cold. And he definitely might be! If you don't have a thermometer already in the cage, get one. You should always know the temperature of the cage!

Hope this helps!! Good luck with your New hedgie!!
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Old 11-13-2014, 08:18 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks for the help! Do you have any links to these an amazon? I want to make sure I get the right thing!
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Old 11-13-2014, 08:28 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Most people use Zilla products for heating. But I have Zoo Med products. Either one will work. Here are some examples of products (just suggestions)

Dome (this is an 8.5 inch. A 10 inch one would be better):
Zilla 11596 8-1/2-Inch Premium Reflector Dome For Up to 150-Watt Bulbs, Black:Amazon:Pet Supplies Zilla 11596 8-1/2-Inch Premium Reflector Dome For Up to 150-Watt Bulbs, Black:Amazon:Pet Supplies

The thermostat:
R-Zilla Controller Temperature, 500-watt:Amazon:Pet Supplies R-Zilla Controller Temperature, 500-watt:Amazon:Pet Supplies

CHE bulb (needs to be 100 watt):
Zoo Med Ceramic Infrared Heat Emitter 100 Watts:Amazon:Pet Supplies Zoo Med Ceramic Infrared Heat Emitter 100 Watts:Amazon:Pet Supplies

You also need a digital thermometer. Just whichever one works for you and your budget.

And if u wanna look for liners, there are tons of great stores on etsy!
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Old 11-13-2014, 08:44 PM   #6 (permalink)
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You're so much help! How often do you change the fleece liners? This is all stuff that the breeder never told me which is super annoying!
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Old 11-13-2014, 09:00 PM   #7 (permalink)
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My breeders didn't tell me anything either. I learned everything from this forum honestly and some stuff I learned from experience .

I change them once a week. I take the dirty one out, throw it in the laundry, clean the cage with wipes and stuff, and then I put the New one down. I have two liners so I don't have to worry about quickly washing it. I just alternate between the two.

I also spot clean during the week. Since my hedgie refuses to use her litter box, I pick up her poop every morning to prevent her cage from smelling
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Old 11-13-2014, 09:12 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Okay just one more question! How could I get a water bottle thing in the storage container what's the best method?
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Old 11-13-2014, 09:24 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I'll post pictures of how I have time. Mine is placed on the outside. I drilled a hole for the nozzle and two small holes for the hooks. (You will see in the picture). I'm not really sure of another way to hang it other than what I have.

However, I am transitioning to a bowl. Water bottles can break the hedgehogs teeth when they bite the nozzle. Also, their is a possibility of their tongue getting caught... Which May be life threatening because the injuries are usually pretty severe. They also drink much more with a bowl. So right now I have both a water bottle and a water dish in her cage. I want to make sure She knows what the water dish is before I take out the water bottle.
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Old 11-13-2014, 09:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
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You should switch to a bowl. With fleece liners there is less of a chance of bedding getting in it. Bottles can chip hedgehog teeth and there have been reports of there tongues getting stuck. Plus much easier to change and clean.

However, you can always drill holes in the plastic container to hold the bottle in place.

ETA - Sc2001, we keep posting at the same time. I just wanted to add that your little girl will totally use her dish. It's not something they have to learn how to do. It is a natural and instinctive for them to drink from ponds or standing pools of water. You are safe to take out the bottle.
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Last edited by DesireeM81; 11-13-2014 at 09:28 PM.
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