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Old 07-31-2011, 08:41 PM   #1 (permalink)
smsaifyr
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 52
Default Bringing our new hedgie home soon and have a few questions

First of all I would like to introduce myself, my name is Sandy, my fiancée's name is Jesse. We currently have 6 gerbils. It has been Jesse's dream to own a hedgehog his whole life and we have decided that now is a great time to get one. I have been lurking around the forum for a while, getting the information I needed. One or two things have come up as questions that I hope you can help me clear up.
Let me tell you about the set up we have for our little girl who will come home on August 15th.
Wheel
We just purchased a CSW from Larry. And are very excited to get it.
Food
I have ordered a 100 crickets to gut load and freeze, I have made the baby food ice cubes, and meet balls (all receipts found on the forum). We are going to be switching the food that the little girl will be on slowly. We plan on offering her the current food she is on and a mix of two foods 1(Blue Buffalo Basics Turkey & Potato Recipe Cat Food) and 2(Blue Buffalo Spa Select Weight Control Formula Cat Food) and the plan is to slowly fazing out the food she is on. Is this going to be a good diet for her?
Housing, heating, and lighting
This weekend we set up the heating and lighting for our little girl to make sure that the temperature is a steady one for when she comes home. We have it at about 78 degrees is that ok?
She needs 12 hours of light correct?
We were planning on putting her in a large bin but then our girl gerbils declanded (decided not to like each other any more) and they had to be put into separate smaller tanks. So their plexi glass container became available (it is 8sq feet we made it our selfs). The fiancée thinks that this enclosure would be better for her because it would be larger, but the sides are solid making me worried that the ventilation will be an issue. His argument is it is the same ventilation that the gerbils got and they were fine, and the bin's sides were just as high so why was the bin ok but not the pled glass tank. Any thoughts on this would be great.
Water
The lady who we are getting the little girl from uses water bottles, so we were thinking of offering both dish and bottle to make sure she can figure out the dish before we take away the bottle does this seem reasonable?
Entertainment
Besides the wheel and a few cat balls (not the ones with the slats or the spongy ones) what other enrichment things can we give her? What are no-nos?
Bedding
This bedding has been a great debate between us, and we both keep flip-flopping on our choices and never end up on the same one on the same time….The women we are getting her from uses aspen bedding, the same kind we use for our gerbils. We have never had a problem with mites from our bedding, and we know that our little girl LOVES to dig in the bedding already. We planned on giving her a hid-a-house with fleece strips in it to make it soft for her. I suspect that this will be a pain to clean and I wont want to keep doing it…but should we stick with the aspen bedding till she gets comfy and then switch to the fleece when I get sick of picking wood out of the fleece strips, or should we go with the fleece right away? Any one use Aspen bedding?
Health
I know that hedgies need their nails trimmed sometimes, we have found with our gerbils that if we give them a flower pot to dig in they keep their own nails short. I wondered if anyone had tried that? Or using the grippy tape on the wheel to help file them down?
Also their teeth do not continuously grow correct? I don't think they do but, the gerbils do and habit dictates that I ask, or I will worry about it.
Last but not least, does anyone have a first aid kit type deal for their hedgies? Any thing that is really important to have on hand for them?

So now that I have written a small novel let me summarize my questions for you so you don't have to search though it again;
Is the diet we have planned out for her going to be a good enough?
Is 78 degrees an acceptable temp for her?
12 hours of light is the amount of light needed?
Why is a bin type enclosure ok but not an aquarium?
Offer both bowl of water and water bottle to make sure she understand the concept of the bowl?
Enrichment toy ideas? what should be stayed away from?
Anyone used Aspen? pros and cons?
Nail trimming ideas?
Teeth growing continuously?
First Aid kit items?

Thank you for reading and thank you for having this forum, it has been a wonderful help to us and planning for our new addition.
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