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Old 01-31-2010, 01:02 AM   #1 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 166
Default Choking = Vomiting?!

Rocko just did something that seriously freaked me out. He was eating away happily like he always does, and I was on my computer. I heard him start to make these weird squeaking/gagging noises, so I ran to his cage and looked. He was kind of heaving with his mouth open, like he was choking, and then he threw up in his food bowl!!! It was just a little bit but it scared me so much! The weirdest thing is that right after he did that, he just wanted to keep eating. I replaced all the food in his bowl and gave it back to him, and he ate quite a bit more and then pooped and started running on his wheel. Poo was totally normal.

Do you think he just choked? I read Nancy's post on choking and saw that hedgehogs sometimes vomit if they're choking on something. I'm watching him like a hawk right now and he seems perfectly happy and normal.
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Old 01-31-2010, 01:16 AM   #2 (permalink)
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Southwest Missouri
Posts: 128
Default Re: Choking = Vomiting?!

Aries was so enthusiastic about eating a cricket (from the pet store, we killed it for him) that he gulped it down and choked and gagged it back up onto my husbands shirt. He seemed fine, and I've never seen him do it again... but we haven't been feeding them crickets since we can find him mealworms instead.

Maybe Rocko was just chowing down with great enthusiasm?

Is he missing any teeth? Maybe he can't chew his food very well.

Hedgehog mom to Zeus, Aries, Artemis, Pepper, Bonnie, Bridget, Athena, and Clover.

"So many things are possible just as long as you don't know they're impossible." The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
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Old 01-31-2010, 01:27 AM   #3 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 166
Default Re: Choking = Vomiting?!

He isn't missing any teeth, but he does tend to eat as though he's been starving his entire life. And he's free fed too, so it's not like he has any reason to be that hungry, lol.
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Old 01-31-2010, 08:14 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Location: Kingston, Ontario
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Default Re: Choking = Vomiting?!

I've had that happen many times. Some of them just seem to have the right size and shape of mouth that kibble can get caught easier. The act of vomiting will help dislodge the kibble and yes, usually they go right back to eating, often what they just vomited up. YUCK!

Since you saw this happen, chances are good that it's happened before. What shape is his food? Sometimes it is the shape. Round and oval often gets caught the easiest but all my foods are Y or X and it gets caught too. Often breaking the food up smaller solves the problem.

My Smokey, Emma, and Lexie all got food caught on a regular basis and all three figured out quickly that I was there to help and would relax to let me dislodge the piece. Others freak right out when you try to help.

Try breaking his food and see if it helps. This may be a one time thing but it may happen again.
* * * Nancy * * *

Retired from breeding

Rescue contact for both the Hedgehog Welfare Society and the IHA
Rescued over 70 (and counting) hedgehogs needing a new home
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