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Old 04-14-2012, 12:53 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Talking Hibernation attempt! PLEASE HELP

Hi so earlier today I posted a topic about trying to figure out how my thermostat works because I could not get it to stay at a constant temperature.

When I came home this afternoon from work I found the cage was at a whopping 84 degrees! freaking out! I turned it down to get it at 77. I came upstairs to find him more huffy than usual and now found him in a hibernation attempt.

PLEASE help I do not know what to do or how to regulate his temperature.
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:01 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation attempt! PLEASE HELP

I don't have any experience with hibernation attempts. Right now, you can put him under your shirt so he's warmed by your core. Try to get the thermostat to regulate the temp in the cage. Keep him warm under your shirt until his stomach feels warm and he's acting normally. I sent a message to one of our members who has lots of experience with this, but I don't know if she'll get it or not.

Hopefully someone with more experience will be along soon to help. Keep a very close eye on him in the next few days and if he seems off, get him to the vet for a check up.
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:12 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation attempt! PLEASE HELP

I'm guessing the attempt was caused by the sudden drop in the temperature more than anything. Like Rainey said, get him warmed up first thing. I always preferred to stick Lily under my shirt to warm her up, it was the easiest, quickest, and safest way to do it. You can also use a human heating pad set on low if you want, just make sure you stay with him. You'll want to make sure you his tummy is nice and warm and he's walking around normally before you put him away for the night.

For the thermostat, that's always an annoyance. I looked at your other thread, and you said you have a Zoo Med Reptitemp? That's the same kind I had, and while I had a bit of playing around with it initially to get it to the right temperature, I didn't usually have problems with it afterwards, barring big changes in my room temp. What's the room situation like? Does your room temperature vary much? Is his cage anywhere where there might be drafts, or is it a very open cage (like a C&C)? All of those things can affect how well the heating set up works. What wattage CHE bulb do you have?

For tonight, I'd try to get the thermostat to stay around 77 before you go to bed. Hopefully without it dropping he'll be fine for the night. If you have any alternate ways to control the temperature for his cage (space heater, etc.), you might use those for tonight and play around with the heating set up more tomorrow.
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:12 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation attempt! PLEASE HELP

My issue is that I don't understand how to get the thermostat to evenly monitor his cage temp! Sorry I'm just scared and frightened.
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:20 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation attempt! PLEASE HELP

Lilysmommy, I just saw your post.

His cage is pretty open (Its a guinea pig cage) and its under a window but I don't know if I have ever felt a draft from the window though. I think ints my fault. My room is upstairs where it gets very hot and when I came up stairs and saw the temp so high I freaked, shut it off and opened the window (not the one above his cage) a tiny bit to cool down. But even then his cage temp was at 78. I remember d from my years of reading to put him under my shirt which I did and he started to wake up. Now I have him wrapped in a fleece blanket in my lap with the space heater on near by. He is up and not curled up any more but he is not moving around much. He will eat little bits of food if I give it to him. I do not have a heat pad unfortunately.
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:21 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation attempt! PLEASE HELP

Do you have a thermometer that monitors ambient air temperature? You know, like something you put on the wall to see how warm it is in the room? I would use that and slowly turn the dial either up or down until it is the temperature you need. 84 degrees may be uncomfortable, but it's not going to cook your hedgehog. Just slowly turn the dial up or down to get the temp you want. In the mean time, just make sure he's warm and acting normally before you go to bed. If the thermostat is fluctuation a lot, then you might have to return it because it's defective. If it fluctuates just 3 to 4 degrees then that is kind of normal.
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:23 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation attempt! PLEASE HELP

Hey Rainy. The issue with the RediTemp is that it has no numbers on it to set a direct temp, just a high/low dial
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:25 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation attempt! PLEASE HELP

I understand that. Just use a thermometer to determine what the cage temp is at right now, then just turn the dial (the tiniest amount) either up or down to get the temp you need. That's where a room thermometer inside the cage is helpful.
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:30 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation attempt! PLEASE HELP

Just take a deep breath! Trust me, I know how scary hibernation attempts are. Even after going through several with Lily, whenever I picked her up and felt a cool belly, my heart would sink and I'd start freaking out about it, even though I was getting used to dealing with it at the same time.

Not curled up is good, just give him a bit more time. He should continue warming up and moving around a bit more pretty soon, I'm sure. My room is upstairs as well, and I have the same problems with it in the summer. Just remember for the future - high temperatures are less dangerous than low. So even if it gets up pretty high again, try not to panic too much. Check on him and see if he's stressed out before you take any drastic measures. Unless they're a hedgie that likes cooler temperatures, they usually aren't too bothered by it. It's best to bring the temperature back down slowly if they're not stressed by the heat, so you avoid shocking them with the sudden temperature fall.

Hm...Are you going to be around your house tomorrow? I'm thinking a good thing to try for your heating set up might be to use the space heater to keep Schubert warm, and have him out of his cage. You could put him in a blanket in a playpen or in a plastic bin to keep him contained for the time. If it's the daytime, he should be sleeping anyway, so he wouldn't be bothered by this. Turn the heating set up off completely and unplug everything. Then reconnect everything and, with the temperature control set all the way to the lowest temp setting, turn it back on. Wait until the light goes out and check the temperature on the thermometer. Then turn the thermostat up a little bit at a time until the light clicks back on. Wait again for the temp to go up and the light to click off, check the temp. Then just repeat until you have the temperature around where you want it. Then watch it for awhile to see if it clicks and off to keep the cage around that temperature like it should. All of this might take awhile, a few hours or so. But it might help you get it figured out for where the best setting is. Once you have it figured out, you can also use a piece of masking tape or something to mark where you have it set, in case it gets bumped sometime.
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:33 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation attempt! PLEASE HELP

Alright I will try but for instance I tried just barely moving it on the low end and boosted the cage up to 82.6 degrees. But that could be because I have the space heater on... but it is facing away from the cage.

Should he be shaking/ panting this much? I am going to take him into the vet in the morning. I just want him to make it through the night. I am so overwhelmed.
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