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Old 11-14-2010, 08:25 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Grumpy hedgehog

I have had my hedgehog for quite sometime and he hasn't warmed up to me or anyone else at all. When he is taken out of his home, he rolls into a ball and huffs but rarely comes out. Even if put down in his play area with toys and/or treats, he just heads to a corner and stays there.

I plan on putting his cage in a more populated area of the house to see if that helps get him used to people and strange noises.

Any suggestions on how to get him to be more social?

Thanks,
brian
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Old 11-14-2010, 08:52 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Grumpy hedgehog

Hmm, well I got a bunch of questions for ya just to get a better understanding, sadly though somewhat uncommon there are cases of hedgehogs who just never get friendly with their humans, I have one but as anti-human as she is (Hester), she still comes out of the ball so not as severe as your guy sounds.

1. What kind of bonding time do you spend with him, everyday or a few days a week, and for how long?

2. Where did he come from, breeder, pet shop, craiglists, etc?

3. How old is he?

How is he otherwise, eats and is active on his own time?
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Old 11-15-2010, 12:47 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Grumpy hedgehog

Just to add to the questions...

How long is "quite some time"? Months? Years?
Most hedgies can take 6 months to 1 year to really open up. And how long will depend on their background, which the above questions will help us understand. For brand new babies, they are easier to socialize, but it will still take at least 1 month, usually more.

Personally, I wouldn't put him in a populated area, but rather put a radio near his cage. It will help get him used to noise, without being completely overwhelming.

Have you put a worn tshirt in his cage?

When you take him out, do you have the lights on? Hedgehogs prefer dimmed lights when being taken out.

What food is he on? What treats do you offer him?
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Old 11-15-2010, 10:34 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Grumpy hedgehog

Awe don't worry! My hedgehog was the same way when I first got him. Everyday I would take him out (with a hand towel) while he was in a ball so his spikes didn't hurt me. I would place him on my lap and leave him there. It took him maybe a month or two before he would start to unroll. Now he unrolls but if you make too many loud noises he spikes up standing. It takes time, try and dangle meal worms over him while he's balled up maybe he'll smell then and open up a little. You just have to give it time and take him or her out a lot to get socialized more.
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Old 11-15-2010, 11:03 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Grumpy hedgehog

Something else I've noticed with my Zoey...When she's in my hand, she will ball up initially. But if I roll her so that her tummy is up against my chest, she will automatically open up just a bit. So I do that & just let her stay like that for a bit. Up against my chest with my hands on her back.
I think eventually they just get tired.



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Old 11-16-2010, 12:08 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Grumpy hedgehog

As many people have mentioned before, I think a lot of it just has to do with the personality of your hog. My Cricket is quite a grump as well. (Although perhaps not as bad as Hester. Sorry, Puffers, but I laugh every time you post about her!) Some days I tend to call her shy vs. grumpy, but I think often times the terms are interchangeable. My girl is a huffer & popper. I feel like she's pretty used to me now, but she will ALWAYS huff & pop when I first approach her, or with any sudden movement or sound. She now will get fairly comfortable cuddled on my chest, but still....sometimes I won't even move & something will set her off. She'll start the huffing (we call her a coffee perculator) & the visor immediately comes down. I've kind of resigned myself to the fact that she's got one of the non-social personalities, but it hasn't stopped me from continuing to try to socialize her every night.
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Old 11-21-2010, 10:12 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Grumpy hedgehog

it's just been the second day for PJ and me...yesterday he was awsome..today..not so much lol he's hissed at me and popped when i went to check on him this morning..visor came down...quillies came up and pop pop..i picked him up and gave him a talking too (very cutely may i add) and he unrolled and looked at me..so i gave him two mealies..he ate them and borrowed into his blanket. i held him for a bit then put him back into his cage for PJ time...
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Old 11-21-2010, 02:20 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Grumpy hedgehog

I've had Spike for well over a year and he is still a huffing puffing ball of quills and is very content with just being left alone, so thats what I do, I only disturb him in the morning to hear him huff and know he's alive and for cage cleaning and every couple weeks toi month for bath so I can attemp to get his nails trimmed. All I can do for him is give him all the necessities to have a healthy life. I'm content with it ass well. I've made his cage quite large so he has plenty of room to run and play to get his exercise.
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Old 11-21-2010, 03:27 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Grumpy hedgehog

Indeed some can be very 'anti-social' as I call it, they're not vicious or totally out of control, they just like to be left alone. My girl Hester is like this, and much like Jaimie I typically let her be, god, even if I get near the cage (which is totally covered at night) she gives me lip (hissing at me, to the point she still was hissing after I went back to my chair). Despite that I'm happy to give her a good home, because you know other people might not be so kind since she's not a cuddly little thing, and personally I find her "in your face" attitude cute. My Loki is a shy guy but he can be a cutey, he gets to come out and socialize with me.

@PJsMom: Others have said it, keep in mind they are nocturnal creatures, so if you're waking him up in the late morning, its like you're poking someone awake in the middle of the night. All hedgehogs usually huff and complain about being woken up, but they'll be more grumpy if its in the middle of 'their' night, there's nothing wrong with it though, as he did with you, he'll just settle back down and snooze on you. Yesterday he was up probably because of being brought home, so he was excited and exploring his new digs. But over all he sounds like he'll be a very social and cool hedgehog, especially over time since he's just freshly home.
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Old 11-25-2010, 04:53 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Grumpy hedgehog

Quote:
Originally Posted by Puffers315
god, even if I get near the cage (which is totally covered at night) she gives me lip (hissing at me, to the point she still was hissing after I went back to my chair).
Snarf and Hester were obviously related in a previous life. Sir Huffsalot seems to think HE is MY Lord and Master! Humph! We'll see about that. Just as soon as I re-fill his dish, give him fresh water, clean up his poop and wash his dirty blankie.
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