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Old 10-25-2010, 02:28 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Strange behaviour, vague "symptoms", LOTS of info

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalandra
First, I'd start by changing her wheel. Get a nice bucket style wheel. While I do have and have used the plastic mesh spool wheel, the metal mesh ones have been known to catch toenails, and if she caught one, she may be reluctant to try to run on the wheel again.

What size is that wheel? I'm wondering if since she has grown up if the wheel may be a bit small in diameter which could cause her to feel uncomfortable when running for very long.

Do you have a snuggle bag that she can sleep in? That cage has a metal pan and you are using substrate bedding. If she is burrowing down into her substrate under her house, the metal of the pan could be causing the oddness in being hot/cold.
I can try a new wheel, but she still does run in her wheel, just not for very long. She's is a small hedgehog (the breeders bred her that way) so she does fit comfortably in the wheel. I've avoided bucket wheels before because they all seem to be slanted and she's not used to that. I know falling out of wheels can be a problem for breaking legs, etc. so I've been cautious to put her on something that seems to be designed to have them fall out. I know that the majority of hedgehog owners on this site use the bucket style but that has been why I've been wary of them.

The wheel 8.5" diameter. I wish I had a photo of her running on the wheel so you could see how much space she takes up.

I don't have a snuggle bag. I line the bottom of the cage with paper so if she does burrow she's not directly on the metal. I always put extra bedding in her house so she can make a nest, otherwise she digs up the paper and shreds it to use for bedding. Again, I've been cautious of things like snuggle bags because I've read about threads coming loose and severing toes and what have you, but again know that quite a lot of users on this forum use snuggle bags.

I will try to get over to the pet store today to try out a new wheel and also get a snuggle bag. However, I would still have to wake her up to try out her new wheel.
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Old 10-25-2010, 02:38 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Strange behaviour, vague "symptoms", LOTS of info

I'm going to go buy her a new wheel and a snuggle bag now. I probably won't be able to come back on the forum until later tonight, but a GIANT THANK YOU to everyone who has posted back to me so far. <3 <3 <3
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Old 10-25-2010, 03:57 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Strange behaviour, vague "symptoms", LOTS of info

My hedgie Buttercup has basically been doing the exact same thing. She just turned a year old and basically has all the exact same super vague "symptoms". It's been going on for a while and I took her to the vet last week and they put her on probiotics and antibiotics and gave me a soft food to syringe feed her to make sure she's eating enough. But she doesn't get up unless I get her up, too. And the problem is that she doesn't run at all. I heard her once last week, right before the vet visit but that's been it.

The meds don't seem to be doing anything in particular for her, I really didn't want to have to put her through blood work so right now I'm just working with the antibiotics. I hope that we can figure out whats going on. Let me know if there's any advancements.
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Old 10-25-2010, 04:51 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Strange behaviour, vague "symptoms", LOTS of info

Light can be a very important factor with hedgehogs. My girl Hester didn't really first really care about my desk lamp or tv/monitor glow, but as she has grown older and is getting close to being a year old, she now won't come out until its almost pitch black.

My 2 year old boy Loki will -not- come out unless he has total utter darkness. About a month back I had replaced the blackout curtain on his cage with a blanket, and it was enough that it let just a little light into his cage, and he stopped wheeling and being active, he'd eat and drink but that was it.

A black out curtain might be something to look into, I was using this on my cage, towels on the side and the curtain on the front. The curtain is a lighter material than a towel or blanket, and I left the back of the cage uncovered and about 2 inches from the wall so there was some sort of air flow. The curtain specifically blocks out 99.9% of the light.

And if you got the Carolina Storm Wheel, the angle of the tilt can be adjusted, you might try if you're worried to tilt it backwards a touch, until she gets the hang of it. I've never had neither of my guys fall out from running on it, and its angled just enough that urine and typically poop will come off.
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Old 10-25-2010, 05:22 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Strange behaviour, vague "symptoms", LOTS of info

I wanted to add a comment about the wheel you pictured; my hedgehog ran on a wheel just like this one before and for a short time after I brought him home, and it was tearing up the pads of his feet. After giving your hedgie a foot bath, see how the foot pads look, paying special attention to anything that looks like a cut or abrasion. This might have something to do with a lack of wheeling. I definitely recommend a cake wheel, they're easy on little feet and a breeze to clean.

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Old 10-25-2010, 06:16 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: Strange behaviour, vague "symptoms", LOTS of info

Heat rises so the heater should be on the floor.

If you need to enclose the sides of the cage to prevent drafts, it is best to use heavy clear plastic as it still allows light through but no drafts. You can buy it by the yard at fabric stores and it comes in various thicknesses. Attach it using either binder clips or clothespins.

At 8.5" the wheel is smaller than is recommended for a hedgehog but if she is very tiny it might be okay. As others have mentioned, mesh wheels are not recommended as they can catch toes and feet. To make the wheel safe, you can attach craft foam to the running surface.
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Old 10-25-2010, 08:44 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: Strange behaviour, vague "symptoms", LOTS of info

Quote:
Originally Posted by princessbuttercup
Let me know if there's any advancements.
I certainly will! Review the post and all the tips everyone gave me and see if any of them apply to you/your hedgie.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Puffers315
Light can be a very important factor with hedgehogs. My girl Hester didn't really first really care about my desk lamp or tv/monitor glow, but as she has grown older and is getting close to being a year old, she now won't come out until its almost pitch black. ...

And if you got the Carolina Storm Wheel, the angle of the tilt can be adjusted, you might try if you're worried to tilt it backwards a touch, until she gets the hang of it. I've never had neither of my guys fall out from running on it, and its angled just enough that urine and typically poop will come off.
Maybe it is a maturity thing -- she's becoming more light sensitive as she gets older. The last time she tried hibernating I upped the amount of light she was getting a day (from 10/12 hours to 12/14 hours) and it made a huge difference. I didn't think about blocking out light at night because it never had been a problem before and the light is so minimal. Tonight I will try blocking out the light and see if it makes a difference.

As far as the wheel goes, I didn't have any luck finding one in one of the four different pet stores I went to (that wasn't either way too small or way too big), so I'm probably going to have to order one. Thank you for the tips on adjustment though!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alastrina
I wanted to add a comment about the wheel you pictured; my hedgehog ran on a wheel just like this one before and for a short time after I brought him home, and it was tearing up the pads of his feet. After giving your hedgie a foot bath, see how the foot pads look, paying special attention to anything that looks like a cut or abrasion. This might have something to do with a lack of wheeling. I definitely recommend a cake wheel, they're easy on little feet and a breeze to clean.

~Katie
I check her feet/toenails when I'm clipping the nails and the pads of her feet never seem hurt or cut. I did think that maybe the wire was too abrasive for her (as many people are vehemently against the type of wheel I've been using) but her feet always seem to be the same colour as her arms with no visible signs of wear and tear. I will be changing her wheel over to a bucket-style though just in case she no longer cares for the feel of her wheel (or something along those lines). Thank you!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nancy
Heat rises so the heater should be on the floor.

If you need to enclose the sides of the cage to prevent drafts, it is best to use heavy clear plastic as it still allows light through but no drafts. You can buy it by the yard at fabric stores and it comes in various thicknesses. Attach it using either binder clips or clothespins.

At 8.5" the wheel is smaller than is recommended for a hedgehog but if she is very tiny it might be okay. As others have mentioned, mesh wheels are not recommended as they can catch toes and feet. To make the wheel safe, you can attach craft foam to the running surface.
Sorry, I know I didn't make it clear but I just store the heater there. When it's on it's usually on a lower level (either the shelf below her cage or on the floor).

I don't think my room is terribly drafty, but since we do have older windows and there are 3 of them I put the towel up just as a precaution. I think that as someone else mentioned in an earlier comment, the main concern when it comes to temperature is the fact that she has a metal bottom cage. It would explain her body temp being either warm or cool and I'm trying to find a snuggle thing for her, but the only ones I can find in pet stores are for ferrets and are way too big/hanging type. I'm going to try to find one online to order but so far all I've found is make-it-yourself or listings on Etsy. Do you have any recommendations for the snuggle bags?

I checked the wheel again and it's actually 9" (not a big difference, I know) but she is small and fits comfortably on it. I'm looking into the bucket-style but wasn't able to find one in-store (I went to 4 different places). Do you have any good online recommendations for the wheels as well?

Again, a great big thank you to everyone who's been posting replies!
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Old 10-25-2010, 08:51 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: Strange behaviour, vague "symptoms", LOTS of info

I'd recommend the Carolina Storm Wheel, LarryT here on the forum sells them. Just type the name of the wheel on the search tool. It's very safe, easy to clean and comfortable on hedgie's little feet.
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Old 10-25-2010, 08:56 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: Strange behaviour, vague "symptoms", LOTS of info

Sometimes it's not so much that windows are drafty but that they radiate cold. Putting the plastic window kits over the windows usually really helps in keeping out the cold.

A quick easy fix for the metal bottomed cage is to get a piece of coroplast and cut to fit tight inside the metal base.

A plastic igloo with some fleece inside or a baby receiving blanket makes a good bed if you can't find bags. Nikki on here sells bags. http://quillsnthings.webs.com/accessoriesforsale.htm

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Old 10-25-2010, 08:58 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Default Re: Strange behaviour, vague "symptoms", LOTS of info

Quote:
Originally Posted by susanaproenca
I'd recommend the Carolina Storm Wheel, LarryT here on the forum sells them. Just type the name of the wheel on the search tool. It's very safe, easy to clean and comfortable on hedgie's little feet.
Thanks! I actually just googled it and was considering it, but I wanted to see what other recommendations would come in

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nancy
Sometimes it's not so much that windows are drafty but that they radiate cold. Putting the plastic window kits over the windows usually really helps in keeping out the cold.

A quick easy fix for the metal bottomed cage is to get a piece of coroplast and cut to fit tight inside the metal base.

A plastic igloo with some fleece inside or a baby receiving blanket makes a good bed if you can't find bags. Nikki on here sells bags. http://quillsnthings.webs.com/accessoriesforsale.htm
Thank you very much!
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