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Old 05-03-2018, 10:16 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Suddenly sick hedgehog

My hedgehog Penelope suddenly stoped eating like she usually does 3 or 4 days ago and seams very weak and her back legs don’t seam to be working right. She started pushing all of her food out of her bowl, at first I thought she was eating some but I later realized that she was not. She had been eating pretty pets hedgehog food and had done fine since I got her 8 months ago, and my last hedgehog ate it and lived to 5 years old, so I figured it was good. Yesterday I got her some blue buffalo cat food to see if she would eat some new food, but she only ate a couple of kibbles and went back to sleep. I also tried giving her some of my cats usual food (purina one indoor) and she did the same thing. Up until yesterday she was acting totally normal aside from scattering her food, she ran on her wheel and ran up to me when I opened her cage. She probably won’t be able to get to the vet until Monday, what should I do in the meantime?
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Old 05-04-2018, 06:53 AM   #2 (permalink)
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If she stops eating altogether or is eating considerably less and she seems weaker, I'd start syringe feeding her. They can quickly become very sick if they don't eat enough. I believe 25ml is the minimum recommended daily food intake. Please check the emergency food syringe tutorial on here for more information.

As I'm sure you've read, hedgehog food is considered poor quality and I'm sure I've read negative things about the pretty pets food. They'll do ok on it but a premium cat food would offer better quality and more nutrients.

But if you want to change her over to cat food then do it very slowly (adding it to her existing hedgehog food), as this can cause them to food strike and if she's already got a low appetite this could make things worse. Does she like insects or other foods like egg or chicken? Feeding her some of her favourite food could help boost her appetite again and syringe feed her the kibble alongside it.

What is the temp inside her cage? Is she still pooping and peeing ok? She could also potentially have a mouth issue. You could try offer her some kibble soaked slightly and see if she'll eat it, still offer regular dry food too in case she won't eat it.

You can also buy nutrient packed canned cat food from the vets (Hills AD or carnivore care) which can help boost their appetite but taking her to the vet as soon as you can would be best. Keep us posted ♡
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Old 05-04-2018, 09:51 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Hi, thanks for replying 🙂
Out house is at 78 degrees, so I’m sure her cage is around there, but I’ll get a thermometer today to put in her cage to check. It’s aroung 80 outside so there couldn’t be any cold drafts coming in.
I got some chicken baby food and tried to syringe feed her last night and this morning. Last night she probably got around 2ml considering how much dropped out the other side of her mouth and this morning she probably got around 3.5 ml. I’ll try again after I get home from work.
She has access to her old food and both kinds of cat food I mentioned earlier, but she does not seam interested. I tried to give her a super worm this morning but she walked right past it. Usually she goes nuts for them.
We got her an appointment with the vet on Monday, the vet that works on hedgehogs won’t be in till then.
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Old 05-04-2018, 07:39 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Update:
I managed to find another vet that works on hedgehogs and took Penelope this afternoon. He says that her heart and lungs sound good and that she does not seam to have an infection and that her teeth look really good. She also does not have any broken leg bones. He says that it is probably a nerve or spinal disc injury. He gave me some hills prescription food that they usually give to hedgehogs and cats if they won’t eat. She ate two kibbles on the exam table so I think that is a good sign. He also gave me some oral steroid medicine that would help the nerve/spine injury and told me to take the wheel out and to block off part of her cage to make it smaller for a week to give any potential injurys a chance to get better. Now she is napping under her blanket, hopefully the meds and new food will help her
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Old 05-06-2018, 12:19 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Ah that's great you managed to find another vet, got her seen already and all was fine! I hope the Hills food and meds help too keep us posted on her recovery ♡
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