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-   -   Previous Trauma (https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5660)

Jd In Van 07-16-2010 01:52 PM

Previous Trauma
Slowly I'm getting more information about Quill here, the foster hog. I've been using the socialization tricks I've used on guinea pigs in the past, putting him on my lap and largely ignoring him until he gets used to my smell and letting him initiate contact with me (come to my hand, come sniff at me) rather then reaching for him. It seems to take a very very long time for him to unball but he eventually does and will come sniff my fingers and at my clothes (he even tried to eat my shirt last night). BUT as SOON as I move at all or there's any noise around he balls up again.

We've found his origional information and discovered that in Quill's origional home he was traumatized and tormented by the children there and was a nervious wreck. He's come a long way it seems but he's still extremely jumpy and quick to ball up and hiss.

I'd really like to help him learn to be more trusting to make him more adoptable and give him a better chance of finding a forever home.

Is there anything tips or tricks anyone knows for helping previously traumatized little guys beyond what I'm already doing? I worried about stressing him our now that I know his history and that he has good reason to be as sensitive as he is.

shaelikestaquitos 07-16-2010 02:03 PM

Re: Previous Trauma
You could try giving him a treat once he unballs :) This will encourage unballing which means he will do it faster once he catches on that he gets a nommy treat once he shows his cute lil face ^-^

Seems like you're doing a good job though :D

You just gotta give him time :)

PJM 07-16-2010 02:39 PM

Re: Previous Trauma
Poor little guy! I don't know if you use a towel or blanket when he's on your lap. I do with Cholla - but mostly because he's a poop monster. But I have found that he really likes to have it so he can hide. Maybe that will make Quill feel more comfortable?

Jd In Van 07-16-2010 04:03 PM

Re: Previous Trauma
Yes, I put a couple big towels down over my legs and the bed/couch where ever we happen to be because his feet are a bit poopy and he won't let me clean them up.

And then I pick him up in one of the blankets he sleeps in (he quills up as soon as I open his cage so I can't lift him with my hands), and keep him covered in that until he comes out on his own.

With the guinea pigs (who also hate being carried) I use something called an "Elevator" which is a box with a hole cut into the side that they climb into and then they feel more secure being carried cause they're not being grabbed at. Then when they're where ever they're going I uncover the hole and they can come out at thier liesure. But thus far I haven't been able to coax Quill into it to use it to lift him that way. I wish he'd learn, it would be much less stressful for him.

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