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Old 12-31-2020, 10:07 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Nearing end of life

My little buddy Nate is pretty old at around four years and has taken a bad turn for the worse the last few weeks. He went from running around normally one day to being basically unresponsive and unable to walk the next. I rushed him to the vet and found he was very anemic but they couldn't find anything else wrong, so the vet's opinion was that he might have had a tumor in his spleen that had burst. He gave me some medicine containing an iron supplement and an anti-inflammatory and had me start syringe feeding watered down cat food to keep his calories up since he didn't want to eat.

He recovered a bit and was able to crawl around by himself a bit, though clearly not his normal self. However, tonight when I fed him he started throwing up green foam, which I read on here meant bile leakage. Now he's back to barely being able to move.

I'm really not sure what to do to help him. He was never a cuddly guy, more of an independent explorer, so even though he permits me to hold him or stroke him now I'm not sure if it's because it's comforting or because he doesn't have the energy to fight it. The vet seemed surprised when I asked about putting him down, even though he said he expected him to still die within a month or two even if he rallied from the acute anemia. When he was recovering I'd stopped feeling it was an immediate concern since he seemed relatively active, but now it's back to my mind.

What do people here think? I just want to do what's best for him, since I don't know what he'd want.
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Old 01-11-2021, 07:03 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm so sorry to hear that Nate was feeling poorly. It's been a week and a half since you posted, I hope it hasn't been too stressful for you. Has he rallied at all?
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Old 01-13-2021, 07:42 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Sorry to hear about your hedgehog. I feel your pain as I had to put my 4 year old hedgehog to sleep on Monday. He had a tumor on his lower jaw. Our vet told us hedgehogs are very stoic, so we think they are doing better than what they really are. It’s not an easy decision but if Nate is not doing anything but sleeping, it’s probably time to help relieve his pain. I’m sorry you have to go through what I just had to.
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Old 01-13-2021, 08:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
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He actually has recovered a bit, which is surprising to me after he was so ill. He's been back to some of his normal exploring and eating on his own, although still just soft cat food and not his normal insect pellets. He's being quite the trooper, and doesn't seem obviously distressed so I'm just letting things ride for a bit and keeping a close eye on him. Thanks for the concern!
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Old 01-13-2021, 08:40 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jlondagin View Post
Sorry to hear about your hedgehog. I feel your pain as I had to put my 4 year old hedgehog to sleep on Monday. He had a tumor on his lower jaw. Our vet told us hedgehogs are very stoic, so we think they are doing better than what they really are. It’s not an easy decision but if Nate is not doing anything but sleeping, it’s probably time to help relieve his pain. I’m sorry you have to go through what I just had to.
Best wishes. I'm sure you made the best decision for your friend, even though it's going to be hard.
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