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Old 09-26-2008, 09:26 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Hibernation Attempt

I spent the night at a friends house last night. I thought I'd left enough heat on for Sophie, but it must have gotten too cold during the night, because when I came home she seemed weak and definately not her usual grouchy self. Normally, when I lift up her igloo to check on her, she pops like crazy, but today I was only getting some feeble huffs. I freaked out, turned up the heat of bother her heat lamp and the room heater, and held her on my lap, in a blanket, near the room heater. I also set a little microwave heatpad under her (with blankets between them, of course), and basically didn't leave her side for the next half an hour to 40 mins. By that time, she was willing to uncurl, and was back to her usual huffing and popping self. And she even ate the few peices of food I offered her. She seems completely back to normal.

My question is: does this mean she's ok? I've read what I can about hibernation, and the topic here said to get the hedgie to a vet if there isn't improvement after about 50 mins. Since there was improvement, and she seems fine, can I relax? I'm monitoring the temp. in the room now, and am naturally really paranoid. I think all vets are closed this late, but should I try and take her in tomorrow? If she shows any signs of trying to hibernate again, I'll definately take her in.
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Old 09-26-2008, 09:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation Attempt

Make sure she doesn't get cool again. Count her kibble tonight and make sure she eats. Now that she is warm she should be ok as long as the temperature doesn't drop again.

Often if they have a hibernation attempt they will do it again within a week so you need to carefully monitor her and make sure the temperature stays warm enough.
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Old 09-26-2008, 11:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation Attempt

This happened to me recently as well, in the middle of the night and second attempt a couple days afterwards. Aurora tried to hibernate both times because my lovely landlord decided not to turn the heat on one cold night. I was up really late with her. The strange thing was Nala was fine. She was her good old self.
My problem I think was that Aurora will sleep in her tube. It is now out of the cage because of this.
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Old 09-26-2008, 11:40 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Hibernation Attempt

Thanks guys! I'm keeping and obsessive eye on her, checking her every hour or so, and making sure the temperature in her cage is upward of 75. She's never had trouble with temp as low as 71, which is what her cage was when I got back, so I think the problem must have been the overnight temp...I'm just glad I got home in time!
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Old 09-27-2008, 09:10 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation Attempt

Overnight is the most important time for their cage to be kept warm enough as that is when they are up and active. They are opposite to us.

Hedgehogs need their own heat supply, independent of the household heating. It shouldn't matter if someone turns down the household heat, the hedgehogs cage heating should keep it consistent.
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Old 09-27-2008, 09:18 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation Attempt

Just something else to be aware of... hibernation attempts can make hedgehogs more susceptible to illness. I believe the most common issue we have seen reportd is an URI setting in. Anytime one has a hibernation attempt keep an eye on them for the next month for any changes (and watch their weight).
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Old 09-27-2008, 12:57 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Hibernation Attempt

Well, usually her heat lamp is enough to keep the cage the right temperature. I think the problem was that I (and Sophie) had been out of town visiting my parents for a few weeks, so I guess my apartment had been able to get colder than it usually does. I'm still kicking myself for not turning the heat up higher.

Anyway, we both survived last night (I woke up at like 4 and checked the temp in the cage, and ended up turning up the heat. She also managed to spill her waterdish completely over right as I was going to bed, so I can to give her cage an impromptu cleaning. For some reason, she hasn't been wanting to sleep in her igloo recently. This started before the hibernation, though. I think maybe she doesn't like the smell of whatever soap I used at my Mom's to clean it out....but anyway, she keeps sleeping under her liner, in the middle of the cage, and manages to disrupt her ood and water, and drag her wheel over...what odd creatures, hegies!
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Old 09-28-2008, 01:01 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation Attempt

The thing with that is, the vent is fairly close to their cage (not close enough to be too hot). Since I am between homes, I don't have the proper space or ability to have their own heating, well electric anyways. Since the hibernation attempt I have a small hot hands in there, the kind that can stay the same temp for a long time. It stays approx. 74 in here now, and they have a little extra warmth with the hot hands. I wish I could do more right now, but I just can't.

Aurora's weight and general behavior has been alright; she is regularly stuffing her face with kibble, crickets and other things, including my fingernails (they are a bit long and she likes to chew them.) But I will make sure to keep an eye on her.
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Old 09-28-2008, 07:47 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hibernation Attempt

Any place there is an electrical outlet you can have heat. If you have a light, unplug the light and plug in the heater. Hot hands will not provide enough warmth to keep your hedgehog healthy.

Landlords are required by law to provide heat to a certain temperature. Check out your lease and your municipalities landlord tenant act.
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