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Old 03-16-2011, 09:52 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Couple (a lot) of questions!

So...I've had Sonic for a week and I love him bunches. BUT I have a few (understatement) questions so I'm just gonna throw them out.

His ears are really tattered, I heard about mites but he doesn't itch, is it okay?

How often do I give him mealworms? I know not too often just wondering how often is too often.

How often do I give baths?

How do I make him stink less? I was expecting stink, but this is BAD... I have cleaned his cage twice already and I've only had him for a week. When I opened the cage today (I've fed and watered him but I haven't really held him much in the last couple of days since the chins have been needing handfeeding) When I c

How do I get him to be cleaner? He's a bachelor...believe me. He doesn't poop in the corner of the cage like I though so in return he rolls in his poop. Yes, rolls. So he smells along with his cage.

I have a lot more questions but they have just slipped my mind. I'll post them here later when I get them back.
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Old 03-16-2011, 11:05 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Couple (a lot) of questions!

If your definition of tattered is scab like, flakey skin, when i got my hedgie he had that problem too, i tried to do some things about it, but none worked. Overtime, it went away on Henry, so i cant realy say what i did, but time may help you too.

I personally do not give my hedgehog mealworms, i prefer to feed him Meow Mix cat food, it has plenty of nutrients and protien. If you were to switch to Meow Mix, i put a thin sheet of smashed (not powderized) in the food bowl. i did this with many brands until i finally found the type he prefered, if you need to try different brands i would try too switch not too often so that your hedgie wont get an upset stomach.

I do not give mt hedgie baths too often, i have a water bowl that he strangly likes to play in (i change it daily), so it "cleans"his underbelly and his quills a little, so that would solve your problem with him rolling in his poop. Just remember to change it daily if you deside to do it.

Also, my hedgie doesnt poop in one place either. it's just something to get used to. i clean my hedgies cage once every two weeks, and dump it all out every other week, also, i use recycled newspaper type of thingy for the bedding. i was able to find it at target, it might help if you are at all worried about mites.
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Old 03-16-2011, 11:13 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Couple (a lot) of questions!

Tattered ears can be helped by rubbing flaxseed oil on them every night or so. They can be from just dry skin and getting dirty, not necessarily from mites. If he was kept on wooden bedding at all though, you may want to get Revolution as a precaution.

Mealworms depend on the hedgehog, because they're one of the fattier insects. Some that like to run a lot can have 5-10 mealworms a night. Some that have a harder time staying at a healthy weight may only need a couple a night, or even less than that (a couple every other night, or every few nights). Another easy option for insect treats is crickets.

Baths should be no more than once or twice a month. Water dries their skin out more, so it's best to avoid frequent baths. You can, however, give foot baths (just an inch or so of water) to help clean poopy feet.

What are you using for bedding? What kind of food is he getting? Fish-based foods can make poop smell worse, and babies often have stronger smelling poop and pee. If you're using fleece liners (which is the preferred bedding for most people on this forum), you may need to change the liner every other night or so if he's that messy. Wheels often need to be cleaned every night as well, depending on the hedgehog. You could always try litter training him, but it sounds like that might not work so well with him. I've never heard of a hedgehog rolling in his poop...Hopefully someone else comes along with advice on that!

Edited -

Quote:
Originally Posted by tut
i prefer to feed him Meow Mix cat food, it has plenty of nutrients and protien. If you were to switch to Meow Mix, i put a thin sheet of smashed (not powderized) in the food bowl. i did this with many brands until i finally found the type he prefered, if you need to try different brands i would try too switch not too often so that your hedgie wont get an upset stomach
This is slightly off-topic from the OP's post, but I just wanted to let you know that Meow Mix is really not a great food...For cats or hedgehogs. You might want to take a look at the cat food list in the nutrition section and look for another food to switch to.
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Old 03-16-2011, 11:22 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Couple (a lot) of questions!

my hedgehog likes it, its meeting his needs, it has nutrients and protien, i think ill stick meowmix!
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Old 03-16-2011, 11:34 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Couple (a lot) of questions!

Quote:
Originally Posted by tut
my hedgehog likes it, its meeting his needs, it has nutrients and protien, i think ill stick meowmix!
If I offended you, I apologize. I just thought you might like to know that the food you're giving your hedgehog isn't good and show where you could easily find better. After all, this forum is supposed to be a place to share information and learn more about taking care of our pets correctly to keep them healthy and happy. If you look at the ingredients for Meow Mix, the first two things are corn (which hedgehogs can't digest), and the third is chicken by-product, which isn't even actual meat. It's beak, feathers, feet, etc. Meow Mix doesn't have nutrients and protein, it has junk and fillers and dyes. But if you're determined to follow your way, then fine.

And I apologize to Mikayla for continuing to go off-topic of her post. I'm done now.
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Old 03-16-2011, 11:38 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Couple (a lot) of questions!

Niblet gets mealworms every night to every other night. It just depends. We give him 4-5 each time he gets them. Niblet is very active and maintains his weight by running. Just remember that mealworms are high in fat, so if your hedgie is gaining or is already overweight, you might want to limit them but other than that, you should be fine feeding them every night or even 4-5 times a week.

BATHS
I am pretty sure it is best to only give a full bath once a month or so. The water dries out their skin. Niblet gets a foot bath every week. He is a very messy boy and those poopy boots are a must to clean. You can run about an inch of water in the sink and just let him walk around in it until the poop comes off. I even use a soft bristle toothbrush with a little aveeno and wash his feet sometimes. The foot bath is ok to give more often because it is just their feet that are getting wet and not their skin.

The stinkiness...
Ok first off...what kind of stink is it? Niblet can be a bit smelly at times but for the most part, we never smell him even when his cage and wheel are covered in poop.
What kind of food are you giving him?? He might have an upset stomach or gas due to the type of food he is eating.
What type of bedding are you using? The wood bedding is harder to clean and can retain the urine and poop smell. I, along with many others on the site, use fleece liners. It is easy to clean. You just scoop the little poop right up every morning and wipe the wheel off. I layer with 4 layers of fleece so when the top layer gets really soiled, I can just pull the top layer off without having to take the cage apart to do a full cleaning.

Niblet likes to play in his poop also...he is a messy boy. I would however, NOT place a water bowl in the cage just for your hedgie to clean himself in like the above post suggested. If your hedgie gets wet, this can lead to being too cold which can lead to hibernation and maybe illness. I do not think that this is a good idea. If worse comes to worse, during a foot bath, you can just rinse him off with water and then wrap him and warm him for a bit before putting him back in his cage.

Also, I know the above post mentioned feeding Meow Mix. I encourage you to check out the cat food list here on the site. Meow Mix is not very nutritious for hedgies. There are some great foods out there that are and trust me, they are pretty tasty to the average hedgehog. Niblet is very picky. He eats a mix of blue buffalo and wellness and loves it!

I hope this helps and I also hope that I haven't double posted information here. I started this reply and then had to go put clothes in the dryer...so I am not sure if someone else answered all your questions in the mean time.
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Old 03-17-2011, 12:49 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Couple (a lot) of questions!

Welcome to HHC & congratulations on Sonic!!
Just for emphasis...
Flaxseed oil (found in capsules in the vitamin section of the grocery store), poked into & dripped on the back of the ear (also drop on the back & sometimes in the food) is great for dry skin & tattered ears.
Many hedgies love mealies. It's a good idea to know how much your hedgie weighs & their body shape. My Zoey is a little plump, she only gets 1 small mealie every night or so. My Cholla is a runner & thinner. He gets a good 10-20 every night. They both have a mix of high quality kibble to eat as well (although Zoey's is moistened & blended because she's missing teeth).
Do you have a wheel for Sonic? I ask that because many hedgies will poop while they are on the wheel. So, in the morning, if you clean the wheel off, most of the stink goes away.
I hope that helps for now. There are many threads with lots of wonderful info. And we are here to help in any way.



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Old 03-17-2011, 12:52 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Couple (a lot) of questions!

Quote:
Originally Posted by tut
I do not give mt hedgie baths too often, i have a water bowl that he strangly likes to play in (i change it daily), so it "cleans"his underbelly and his quills a little, so that would solve your problem with him rolling in his poop. Just remember to change it daily if you deside to do it.
I wouldn't recommend leaving a water bowl inside the cage for hedgie to get in. They can easily get a chill when wet if not warmed up properly and right away, which could make them sick. It's ok to give foot baths as needed, you just put a little warm water in the sink, enough to cover his feet, and let him walk around to clean the poop off his feet. And make sure you have him dry and warm before put him back in his cage.
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Old 03-17-2011, 01:06 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Couple (a lot) of questions!

Quote:
Originally Posted by tut
I personally do not give my hedgehog mealworms, i prefer to feed him Meow Mix cat food, it has plenty of nutrients and protien.
uuummm...you know hedgies are insectivores, right? they NEED insects. Snarf's vet is an exotic pet expert or something or other and according to the research, hedgies need insects (crickets, mealies, beetles) preferably low in fat and relatively high in protein.

This is what's in Meow Mix Indoor:
Chicken by-product meal, corn gluten meal, ground yellow corn, brewers rice, powdered cellulose, beef tallow preserved with mixed tocopherols (source of vitamin E), turkey by-product, salmon meal, fish meal source of oceanfish flavor), brewers dried yeast, gelatin, soybean oil, calcium carbonate, animal digest, potassium chloride, alfalfa, gelatin, phosphoric acid, tetra sodium pyrophosphate, salt, choline chloride, taurine, l-lysine zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, l-alanine, dl-methionine, yellow 6, manganese sulfate, niacin, vitamin E supplement, yellow 5, copper sulfate, red 40, calcium pantothenate, blue 2, vitamin A supplement, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin supplement, rosemary extract, pyridoxine hydrochloride, sodium selenite, vitamin B12 supplement, sodium selenite, folic acid, calcium iodate, vitamin D3 supplement, biotin, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of vitamin K activity).

Pure crap. I don't feed Snarf anything unpronounceable (is that a word?). Some of his food is disgusting - mealies and crickets? eeeewwww...but real food.
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Old 03-17-2011, 10:49 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Couple (a lot) of questions!

Thanks for all your advice

Sadly I don't have a wheel for him. I just got him about a week ago, and I've been having some health issues with my chinchillas lately so I don't have much money for him right now, but his owner just really wanted him out of the house. He is in a sterilite tub with a lid on it, and the only ones that are taller that I have are really small, so I'm trying to find ways to get some extra cash so I can get him a biggun. (And a wheel! I really want the CSW, but i don't see that in our future :[ )

He is in pine bedding (before he was in cedar bedding, now THAT stank. :P) I hope he could be switched to liners but he doesn't seem to have an interest in being clean, he would rather roll and stomp and eat his poop His stink his poop stink, I am changing his food right now becuase his old food was bad for him. But his poops are brown and not runny, he just picks the new food out of the old food anyway. Silly boy.

Since he doesn't have a wheel would one mealie a night be okay? He weighs 308 grams if I remember right... I let him out every night for a playtime.

His food is buffalo blue weight control, and someother hedgehog diet that I'm trying to switch him off of.

I'll be sure to try the flax seed for his ears, they look kind of dry and raggedy :P

Thanks!
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