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Old 10-01-2012, 07:19 AM   #4 (permalink)
Lilysmommy
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Default Re: Few questions from new hedgie mom.

Keep an eye on her with the puppy pads - they have chemicals in them to attract the puppy to pee on them instead of elsewhere, and they could be harmful if she gets the urge to try digging or biting the pads. If she ignores them though, you should be fine to use them until you get some other liners. You can use just fleece blankets if you want, one or two layers. Two layers, you can just cut a piece twice as long as you need, then fold it over. That's the easiest way to do them. If you want something a bit more cushier than that or anything, you can either buy some (there's breeders that sell bedding, or if you check the selling section on here, there's a few users that sell liners) or you can sew your own. If you sew your own, you can look into other fabrics, such as flannel, corduroy, denim, etc. The reason they don't work otherwise is they fray when you cut them, which can produce strings that wrap around a hedgie's legs. If you sew them, also make sure that stitches are all hidden or (if you do a stitch border to help keep the layers in place) make sure they've very small and tight so she can't dig at them and get her nails caught.

I would suggest getting a digital thermometer with a probe - stick on thermometers aren't too accurate and it's best to make sure you know exactly what the temperature is. It's also nice to have one that will show you a high and low from the last time you reset the feature, so you can see if it's getting down too low at night.

If you're going to get a heating set up to keep on hand just in case, to be honest, I would recommend just getting a ceramic heat emitter, or CHE. Nocturnal bulbs and the like are cheaper, but they also don't work for a lot of hogs. They can still tell that that light is there and on, and it will deter some from coming out about their business like normal. CHEs don't emit any light, only heat. You could get a 75 watt CHE bulb, or 100, and either will probably work for just a bit of extra heat. You may also want a thermostat to control that though, depending on how much they heat the cage up. You don't want a large range of temperatures either, even if the high and low are still within hedgie-safe temperatures (like 73 up to 78), since a sudden drop can cause hibernation attempts too. But if you have a CHE set up on hand, it'll also be good just in case she becomes more sensitive to temperatures as she gets older, as that happens sometimes.
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