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Old 04-23-2011, 05:49 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Smile New Hedgehog.. Lots of Questions


I finally got my first hedgehog. I got her from a couple off craigslist... I know I know.. but they didn't have time for her and I did. I have a couple questions about her though... hopefully someone can give me some advice or answers!

Her feces is a greenish brown?
We did just move her into a new area (same cage/furniture) but we did change her food... so how long should her feces be green?

Her ears a little tattered on the ends?
I'm not sure if they were feeding her properly or not but they don't seem to bother her even though she is so skiddish even when I come into the room she balls up and does her panic noise. So I can't get a clear look at them except from a far.

Her previous owners picked her up with gloves?
I thought that once a hedgie was comfortable with you... you should be able to hand hold them. They had her for awhile (she's 18 months old) and they couldn't handhold her... so does that mean she wont be able to be trained to be handheld? And how can I teach her to trust me?

She only poops in her wheel...
I cleaned her cage when I brought her home... and their was literally no excrements anywhere except for the wheel... is this normal? and do you think it would still be possible to "potty trainer" her?

Should I bathe her?
Since she is so skiddish and not used to be but she keeps running in her feces... should I bathe her or just wait until she's used to me?

Hopefully someone can answer some of my questions... I've had many animals like a boa constrictor, cats, dogs, guinea pigs... and I know how/what a healthy animal should act like and look like... and I'm worried that I'll have to take her to the vet because they didn't take care of her but I don't want to over react just yet because it is a new environment.
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:08 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Hedgehog.. Lots of Questions

Congratulations on your new hedgehog! I can't answer all your questions but will help with what I can.

The greenish poop means she is stressed. Normal hedgehog poop is brown, formed but soft (like a tiny dog poop almost). You mentioned you changed her diet recently. Changes in diet should be done gradually to make it easier on their little systems. If you still have some of her old food, I'd mix that in so the change is gradual. Start with 3/4 old food and 1/4 new food. The next week, go to 1/2 and 1/2, and then 1/4 old food 3/4 new food the next week. Then all new food. What food had she been on and what are you using now?? Most people here use a blend of high quality cat foods. Check the nutrition section--there is lots of info there on diets.

Pooping in the wheel is very normal in hedgie world!!!!!! What kind of wheel does she have? You want a big one--12 inch diameter--with a solid surface to run on. No mesh/wire type wheels. They can be dangerous. Many people put a little litter pan or paper towels down under the wheel to catch the waste. But yes, they run and run with the poop and all. It sounds like if you put a litter pan area under the wheel she may train herself to it since she's not going anywhere else.

Sounds like she is a very scared, shy girl right now. I don't know personally how you'd bathe her if she's all balled up, but maybe someone else can help w/ that question. I'd give her time now to get used to her surroundings and not add too much extra stress. But eventually she may warm up to you with regular handling. Some hedgies are never really "friendly" though. I'd ditch the gloves...Use a couple pieces of fleece in your hands when you pick her up so she can snuggle w/ you and maybe since it is a differnt scent she will not be so scared--they are very sensitive to scents.

Do you have a cage set up where she gets 12-14 hours of light a day and a consistent temperature 73-78 degrees. Both are very important or the hedgie can attempt to hibernate and die. Have fun!! Sounds like she will take some patience but it will be worth it.
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:19 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Hedgehog.. Lots of Questions

If you changed her food, give her a few days for her stools to look normal. Most people will feed a mix of the old food and the new food so they can get used to it gradually.

I usually use crisco on tattered ears, just a dab on a qtip and rub it over the edge of the ears.

They may have been scared of her. If they never held her without a glove, they never had a chance to get used to her. Give her a while to settle in...don't expect her to suddenly unroll and be friendly. Even a friendly hedgie can get a little huffy when they move to a new home. Get a piece of fleece and use it to pick her up, then just set her in your lap and hold still. You may try it a few times before she unrolls and starts exploring, but she will eventually.

If she only poops on the wheel, she's pretty much trained. They can't, as far as I know, be trained not to poop on the wheel. If you just wash the wheel every day, and probably once a week scoop the litter from under the wheel, the cage should stay pretty clean.

I would hold off on bathing her for a few days, unless she's really filthy. Most hedgehogs do not love a bath
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Old 04-23-2011, 09:53 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Hedgehog.. Lots of Questions

Thank you so much everyone! We were using gloves and i'm nervous about the handheld thing but i'm going to try it tomorrow. As of now she has borrows into our pile of mixed-matched socks (we're folding laundry)... When we do pick her up, she doesn't go into complete ball but just spikes up and then after about 2 seconds she looks around to see whats going on.

I have also had my first encounter with annointing... my white hedgeheg now has a green tint because of the green peppers I was feeding her. Am I supposed to take the chunks out? She looks kind of funny with peppers in her spikes. I put a piece of a shirt in her little home and started putting coca butter on her ears.. I will pick up flax seed oil tomorrow.

Her food that we switched her too is Vita Exotics hedgehog food. It has pieces of insect, meal worms, fish, and protein. http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/p ... atid=16627

And for treats I bought her fruit and veggie hedge snacks and fresh veggies I cut up for her.

We bought her two wheels so we can change one out while cleaning the other both are fully plastic, no mesh or wires. And I'm going to attempt the potty training...

Thank you so much everyone for the advice... it helped me out so much!.. If you have any more ideas or tricks you've learned please let me know!
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