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Old 08-17-2019, 02:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Hey help!

Hey I’ve just adopted a new hedgehog from a friend’s friend. And he’s about a year old. The previous seems to have not taken good care of him and I’m kinda worried about his health concerns. He’s never been fed anything other than pellets. His nails aren’t trimmed properly and he constantly seems very scared. What can I do to help him get better and healthier ??? And where do I start ?? Please help
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Old 08-17-2019, 02:36 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Being scared is normal, being prey animals with a new environment smells and people it can be scary for them and make them very nervous and jumpy, you just need to give him time to adjust to you and the new environment.

When you say pellets what sort of pellet food do you mean?
If that all he was given not even insects?

The nails how bad are they? Do u think they can be fixed?
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Old 08-17-2019, 05:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Yeah he’s never been fed insects and I don’t know if it’s too late to start now or is it alright for me to slowly start feeding him insects. His nails I think can be trimmed but since he’s being very jumpy I’m a little afraid to do it cause I’m scared I might hurt him. He scratches a lot too
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Old 08-17-2019, 05:50 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Its not too late to add insects at all, might be a little unwilling to to try them but you have to be stubborn. To get Holly to first try them I was cutting slits in to get out the gutty smell which got her to try them. Obviously they werent live when doing this.
I'd leave it a couple weeks before adding in anything new because he's gotta get used to everything and settle in first.

Put something like an old top or sock into a ball shape that smells like you and change it weekly, make sure there are no loose threads, that will help him getting use to you faster.

If the nails can be fixed and arent curling then leave them until he settles in and is more comfortable with u. If they are starting to curl then you really need to try battle them sooner.
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Old 08-17-2019, 11:59 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The scratching could be from mites, skin infection, or dry skin. A vet visit may be in order to find out which it is and the best way to treat it.
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Old 08-18-2019, 11:05 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Monitor stress levels and let them determine how quickly you make changes. Being defensive is normal, he has had a major change in his life and you will have to take time to let him figure out you are ok, and that you aren't going to hurt him. If he wasn't handled before, or handled properly he may always be defensive and never fully trust you.

Trim nails if they are really bad and curling into his feet. If he will allow this, take this as a good sign, he still has enough trust to uncurl and let you touch his feet.

If he smell of urine or feces, give a bath to get that off of his skin. Otherwise bath time gets determined by stress level and need.

Depending on what bedding he was on before and how dirty he is, a bath may also help with the scratching. But since he is new to you and it sounds like didn't come from ideal conditions, a veterinary visit is in order. Have a wellness check done and ask the vet to do a skin scraping to check for mites/infection.

Slowly introduce a more healthy food. Quite often hedgehogs will completely ignore the old food, and you'll end up doing an accelerated change in diet if the old food was utter crap. Be prepared for loose green stools (add some probiotics to help with that).

You can offer insects. He may or may not eat them. If he doesn't that is ok, some never will eat anything but kibble. Just make sure you are offering a healthy variety of kibbles.
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