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Old 08-03-2012, 12:34 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I just got a hedgehog in michigan but am currently living in maine. My little noel has come down with the sniffles and is very sleepy. She eats and drinks and will walk around but im still really worried. Is there anything i can give her to help he get over her sickness? vets in maine dont treat hedgehogd.
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Old 08-03-2012, 12:37 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The only thing I can say is to keep trying to find a vet that will see her. If she's really sick, she needs a vet.
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Old 08-03-2012, 01:08 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Sorry, I'm going to fire a bunch of questions at you to get some more information. XD What is the temperature in her cage? Do you have a light schedule for her? What kind of bedding are you using? I would keep calling around for a vet - sometimes you have to drive 1-2 hours to find a vet to treat hedgehogs and it does sound like she needs to see one. Check for exotic vets or vets that treat "pocket pets" or small animals - even if they haven't treated a hedgehog before, see if they're willing to look up information or call any colleagues they may have that might know something about them. It's best to have one that's seen hedgehogs before, but if she's sick, a vet that is at least willing to give it a shot is great.
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Old 08-03-2012, 01:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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thanks for the response. He cage is the same as the room around 85-90 and it has wood shavings for bedding. She doesnt really have a set time for lighting except from when i go to be which is around 11pm to when it gets light again. Why should i give her a certain amount of darkness? I will keep looking around for a vet but i dont know how well the search will go.
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Old 08-03-2012, 01:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The temperature is pretty high - that could be the cause of the lethargy. Try to lower the cage temperature to closer to 80, slowly. You can do this with air conditioning, fans in the room (but not blowing into the cage), opening the windows at night and closing the room up during the day (cool night air comes in, then close the room up in the morning to keep the cool air in, and block the windows to keep the sun from heating the room up), and putting ice packs or frozen water bottles on top of the cage or in the cage. If you put them in the cage though, make sure they're either out of reach of your hedgie, or wrapped in a blanket/towel so she doesn't get too cold from them. Also make sure you don't cool it off too much - I wouldn't go any lower than 78 degrees right now, since a drastic temperature change can shock them into a hibernation attempt. Signs of that would be lethargy as well, along with wobbly walking and a cool belly. If that happens, you want to warm her up slowly, on a heating pad set on low (don't leave her alone on it), or on yourself, under your shirt. Don't use water to warm her up.

I would recommend switching her off the shavings and onto fleece or fabric liners - wood shavings can give your hedgehog mites, can be dusty or sharp, and can cause allergic reactions. Dustiness or allergic reaction could be the cause of the sneezing, but if you switch her off the shavings and she's still sneezing, I would say it's vet time. Fabric liners can be as easy as getting a length of fleece and cutting it to fit the cage. You can also sew them and if you check out the sale forum - viewforum.php?f=20 there's people who sell liners, or the DIY forum - viewforum.php?f=55 there's some posts on how to make your own. Another plus to liners is that you can wash and re-use them, rather than continuously buying bags of bedding.

For lighting, she's probably fine for that for now - days are longer in the summer. But in the fall and winter, the days get shorter and the amount of light she would get from regular daylight decreases. Hedgehogs need 12-14 hours of light every day, roughly on the same schedule each day. If they don't get the proper amount of lighting, it can lead to a hibernation attempt, just like temperatures that are too low (under 73* F). A lot of people like to put a lamp on a timer next to their hedgie's cage, to make sure that they're getting their light at the same time each day.

Please make sure you keep looking - if you switch her off the bedding, cool the cage down a bit, and she continues to either act lethargic or if she continues to be sniffly/sneezing, etc. she is probably sick. Those are both signs of having a URI (upper respiratory infection), and that cannot resolve on its own. She'll need medication, or it can turn into pneumonia and kill her.

Also, I'd like the recommend a hedgehog care book written by one of the mods on here, LizardGirl. You can download it for free here -http://www.westcoasthedgehogs.com/files/hedgehogbook/index.html It has a LOT of great, up-to-date information that is easily organized and it's great as a reference for new and old owners alike.
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Old 08-03-2012, 07:10 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thank you so much. You have been really helpful. I found a vet and he says she has the first stage on pneumonia but we got some medicine for her. Hopefully she pulls through, shes a tough little bugger. Once again thanks for all your help. Keep Noel in your thoughts.
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Old 08-03-2012, 10:36 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Glad to hear you'll be getting her on antibiotics, her URI won't clear up without them. Good luck, hope she heals up fast!



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Old 08-04-2012, 02:20 AM   #8 (permalink)
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So glad you found a vet and got meds for her! Please keep us updated on how she does, and I will definitely be sending good thoughts your way. Get better quickly, Noel!
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