Help! Sweet hedgie hissing and popping after travel - Hedgehog Central Hedgehog pet care & owner forum
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Old 06-28-2014, 09:35 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Help! Sweet hedgie hissing and popping after travel

My adorable little hedgie, Taz, 9 weeks old, was socialized and happy. Eating, playing, and perfect. We had to come to our relatives house for a birthday party, so I followed all the travel advice on this forum and he seemed ok, BUT the house we are in has children (we do not) and poor Taz is hissing popping and hopping up and down when we take him downstairs. Is there anything I can do to help him acclimate in the next two days we are here, the kids were SO excited to meet him but right now I won't let them near him. I just don't want him to get grouchy and mean, as he was the SWEETEST little guy before coming here. Thank you so much for any advice.
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Old 06-28-2014, 09:56 AM   #2 (permalink)
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He's probably just freaked out because of all of the sudden changes. Think about it from his point of view - he doesn't know that all of these new people are relatives of yours, and that they're friendly. He probably just came to your house 3 weeks or less ago. He got used to the smells and sounds of your house, figured out that this was home now, figured out that you're not going to eat him and you're okay. And now he's suddenly in a different place with lots of new, different smells, and a lot more people. It can be overwhelming for a hedgie to have all of that go on, especially if they're still relatively new to you.

Rather than taking him downstairs around many people at once, especially if he's center of attention, for those who want to meet him, take them up to where you have him, only one at a time. Explain to the visitor his point of view and why he might be huffy and nervous. Make sure everyone has washed their hand with the same soap you use, preferably a non-scented one. With the kids, make sure they understand what he might be thinking and that they need to be quiet and try to keep their movements slow so as not to scare him.

Also another thing to keep in mind - it's very possible he's quilling, which is painful and upsetting for hedgies, understandably. Some of them get very grumpy and upset about it, so it could be that's having an effect on his behavior too. Try to make sure no one pets his back if he seems to be uncomfortable with it and explain why.

Treats can also help him accept that these other creatures are friendly too. Just make sure they don't offer the treats directly from their hand or fingers, so he doesn't get nippy! Good luck with trying to introduce him to others. Early socialization with strangers is good, just be patient with him!
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Old 06-28-2014, 11:02 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Thank you so much! I will follow all of your expert advice and bring them up one at a time for a short period of time! He doesn't seem to be quilling yet, I have my eye out for it, I think he's just upset with all the new people, poor baby. I've kept him in a quiet room all morning and he seems to be sleeping peacefully
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Old 06-29-2014, 12:55 AM   #4 (permalink)
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*update* lilysmommy you are good! I found nine quills today in his towel, poor thing must have just started quilling! He is still very very junpy, hissing and jumping (I'm guessing that's what you guys call "popping") we travel home tomorrow, thank goodness, hopefully the travel will not be too much for him. I have a hard carrier with a towel and his little cave. Anything else I should do to keep him as calm as possible when traveling? Thank you SO much for the help!
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Old 06-29-2014, 08:50 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Awww, poor guy! I hope his quilling is quick, at least. And yup, the jumping is indeed popping. I can't think of much to do for the ride, to be honest other than just get it over with. Just make sure he has plenty of fabric to burrow into to help cushion him against bumps in the road, and hope he doesn't do too badly with the ride. He'll probably stay grumpy for a bit with the quilling, unfortunately, but I'm sure you'll both get through it. Good luck!
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Old 06-29-2014, 10:38 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I"m SO sorry to bother you again, you can tell I"m a new mom, but he is now sleeping on his stomach with his legs out, he has never done this before. He ate when we got home and his cage is the right temperature. I just woke him up because I was worried about him and he yawned three times, could he just be exhausted for the stress and quilling, or should I be concerned and take him to the vet? I've read about "splatting" but due to the unintentioned stress I put him under I just wanted to make sure he is ok. Thank you in advance, and again I'm sorry to bother you, I just really value your opinion and really love my little baby. I"m planning an oatmeal bath tomorrow morning with Aveeno Oatmeal Baby Wash I bought tonight.
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Old 06-29-2014, 10:47 PM   #7 (permalink)
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He may be hot. Is he lethargic?
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Old 06-29-2014, 11:57 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Don't worry about asking questions, we were all nervous new hedgieparents at one point! I would guess he's likely pretty tired from all of the extra excitement in the day, plus his body going through quilling. I'm sure he'll be fine though - you haven't done anything awful to him. He may sleep more than usual tonight if he didn't get as much asleep as usual during the day. As long as he still eats, drinks & poops fine, I wouldn't worry too much if he sleeps a lot for tonight (and possibly for nights after - quilling does put their body through a lot, so he may sleep more). The splatting is typically a sign of comfort or being warm. If his cage temperature is normal, I wouldn't worry about it. Maybe he's just happy to be home again!
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Old 06-30-2014, 12:22 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Thank you so much, I really really appreciate it! He's eating as we speak, so I'm thinking he's just super tired. He keeps yawning, poor little guy, and I have not disturbed him at all to try to let him sleep. My husband also thinks he is ok, but you know us mommies haha, he is our first baby.
Thank you again, this forum is like a god-send and you are the best lilysmommy for responding! I can sleep now
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