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Old 05-15-2012, 06:11 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Biting after handling another hedgehog

Every week my friend, Siege drops by my place before he goes home to his hometown. It takes about 3-4 hours from his apartment to his hometown so my place has become a stopover for him and his little pal Queue (male) to rest, drink water and eat. I have two hedgies of my own, a girl named Cookie and a guy named Kreme. Well Kreme and Queue has a bit of a history of animosity. Kreme has actually bitten Queue twice already and Queue had at one time tried to retaliate. ANd I don't think it really helps that both of them are to court Cookie.

Since the last biting incident, we never placed Queue and Kreme together anymore, especially since Kreme has completely outgrown Queue, even though Queue's two weeks older than him. We're afraid what Kreme would do to him.

This morning Queue was hiding inside his carrying bag when I decided to wake Kreme up and show Siege how much his temperament has improved. Queue became really agitated and climbed out of the container and run around the living room. I placed Kreme back in his cage and Siege exclaimed that Queue tried to bite him. When I tried to pick him up he chomped on my hand really really hard and he won't let go! He only let go when I blew on his face. He didnt draw blood but he broke skin and the part he bit was swollen afterwards.

Kreme is a biter so I know what an exploratory bite feels like. It was no exploratory or warning bite. It was a bite meant to really really hurt.

Queue is normally not a biter. The only time he ever bitten his owner was when Siege was trying to cut his nails and he got really annoyed. It was only a warning bite even then. So we were quite surprised by his actions.

Could it possibly be that he smelled Kreme on us that's why he attacked? Can hedgehogs really remember who wronged them?

I'm not sure if just really hates Kreme or if male hedgies are normally that aggressive towards other males.

Any thoughts? Thanks.
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Old 05-15-2012, 04:33 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Biting after handling another hedgehog

2 males should not be aloud to interact with each other , they can be teritorial, so its is likly that he could smells the other , it probably has nothing to do with remembering but just smelling another male .

on another note, its not a good idea for kreme and cookie to be aloud to have playtime together either, that also might contribute to the behavior toward the other males smell, he feels like he competing for the female.
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Old 05-16-2012, 02:16 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Biting after handling another hedgehog

Hedgehogs of any gender are generally solitary creatures, so interacting with any other hog is a potential disaster. The two hedgies, Kreme and Queue, are both males and should not interact ever. Males often fight to the death. So, it isn't suprising that the two males are acting so negatively towards each other.

Also, you mentioned that you are housing a male and female together? I would remove them IMMEDIATELY. You are going to have babies. If they are brother and sister- you are going to have inbred babies, which have a high risk of genetic disease. I would immediately remove the two and place them in different cages. The female may be pregnant- so I would be on the lookout for nesting behavior.
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Old 05-16-2012, 02:49 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Biting after handling another hedgehog

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Originally Posted by raerysdyk
Hedgehogs of any gender are generally solitary creatures, so interacting with any other hog is a potential disaster. The two hedgies, Kreme and Queue, are both males and should not interact ever. Males often fight to the death. So, it isn't suprising that the two males are acting so negatively towards each other.

Also, you mentioned that you are housing a male and female together? I would remove them IMMEDIATELY. You are going to have babies. If they are brother and sister- you are going to have inbred babies, which have a high risk of genetic disease. I would immediately remove the two and place them in different cages. The female may be pregnant- so I would be on the lookout for nesting behavior.
they arnt housed together from what ive understood from previous posts, however cookie is aloud play time with Q and Kreme on a regular basis, which is still risky
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Old 05-16-2012, 11:47 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Biting after handling another hedgehog

Quote:
Originally Posted by raerysdyk
Hedgehogs of any gender are generally solitary creatures, so interacting with any other hog is a potential disaster. The two hedgies, Kreme and Queue, are both males and should not interact ever. Males often fight to the death. So, it isn't suprising that the two males are acting so negatively towards each other.

Also, you mentioned that you are housing a male and female together? I would remove them IMMEDIATELY. You are going to have babies. If they are brother and sister- you are going to have inbred babies, which have a high risk of genetic disease. I would immediately remove the two and place them in different cages. The female may be pregnant- so I would be on the lookout for nesting behavior.
Cookie and Kreme aren't housed together. I used to let them have supervised play together with my other pets but since Kreme has shown signs of sexual maturity, only one of them at a time are allowed out during playtime. Cookie also used to play with Queue back when they were really young, but same with Kreme, he is no longer allowed to be with Cookie anymore.

How would I know if a female is nesting? She's more receptive today. I wonder if her irritability was just a phase.
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Old 05-16-2012, 12:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Biting after handling another hedgehog

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lilyhogs
2 males should not be aloud to interact with each other , they can be teritorial, so its is likly that he could smells the other , it probably has nothing to do with remembering but just smelling another male .

on another note, its not a good idea for kreme and cookie to be aloud to have playtime together either, that also might contribute to the behavior toward the other males smell, he feels like he competing for the female.

I agree, and we learned it the hard way when Kreme bit Queue. They haven't been allowed to interact with each other for over a month. We were just surprised that Queue bit us. He couldn't have mistaken us for Kreme. :/

I've stopped letting Kreme and Cookie play together for the same reason you've mentioned. They still get to play with the other animals though. But Kreme still sings every time he can smell Cookie, even when she's in another cage. And he goes crazy when he smells places where Cookie's been.
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Old 05-16-2012, 12:15 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Biting after handling another hedgehog

I'm not surprised he bit you. As you know, hedgehogs have very strong scent receptors. If he was acting aggressive towards the other hedgehog and then consequently smelled the scent of the other hedgehog on your hands, then he probably went into attack mode. Best thing to do to avoid getting bit yourself is to wash your hands in between handling hedgehogs.
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Old 05-16-2012, 12:20 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Biting after handling another hedgehog

Yep,
like the other member said, washing hands inbetween handling ANY animal is best. I even change my shirt sometimes, just because I know the hedgehog dislikes smelling the other.
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Old 05-17-2012, 10:12 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Biting after handling another hedgehog

Point taken. Thanks for all the advice and replies!
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