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Old 09-25-2015, 02:35 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Any bonding/touching tips?

We're at almost two weeks home with me for my little dude and he's slowly getting more comfortable around my boyfriend and me. He still jumps at any noise or movement, but he unballs faster and is getting more curious than scared.

Dude and I had what started out as a great moment last night, when he was fully relaxed and looking me in the eyes, and let me pet his forehead with my thumb... and then he peed in my hand. Does that mean he was relaxed, at least?!

I'm trying to get him more comfortable with me looking at his legs/belly/face so I can keep doing regular inspection for any problems, but it's a struggle. Does anyone have any tips for how they got their little spiney friends to ease into the process? Right now, when I do it, he huffs so I persist until he no longer allows me to look at him.
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Old 09-25-2015, 02:51 PM   #2 (permalink)
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What does peeing on your hand mean? It means that he had to go and your hand was under him.
A lot of hedgehogs are fairly nervous about any furry spots being messed with, they don't have any defense there other than balling and tucking them in. I'd suggest finding out where his boundary of comfortable and panic. Pet him on the border, touch him there. Whenever possible while he is getting used to it have him in a normal position, not flipped on his back.
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Old 09-25-2015, 04:00 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Sorry, the urination thing was just a joke.

Thanks for the tip!
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Old 09-26-2015, 12:13 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I don't think there's any magic maneuver. People suggest handling your hedgehog at least 30 minutes a day--this will gradually have an effect over time of making him more comfortable with being touched by you.

How tame/comfortable he gets is somewhat due to forces outside your control. Put another way, hedgehogs have different dispositions and some are just more chilled out than others. From what you described though, it sounds like he's not in the category of 'extremely unapproachable', so that will help!

Anyway, keep holding him, keep petting his forehead (if he lets you), keep picking him up. All of these things will help in the long run.
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Old 09-26-2015, 01:55 PM   #5 (permalink)
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With feet specifically, if he un-balls in your hand and walks around a bit, if you can spread your fingers enough to let a foot slip through and lightly touch his foot with your other hand. If that makes sense at all. Not the easiest thing to describe after one cup of coffee.
For his belly, if you flip him over will he come out of his ball at all? If not, there is still a solution. One of you hold him so he wants to explore and the other one gets a quick peek. Or there is yummy treats on a clear surface, tank or tote. Then look from underneath.
Face, check that while he's eating.
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Old 09-27-2015, 02:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thank you both! He does come out of his ball if I have him on his back, but he's so lightning-fast I never get a good look. I think I need to get a clear tote to put him on (or use a pie dish) to get a look at his belly.
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