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Old 10-27-2014, 09:46 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Unhappy Suddenly angry hedgie

So Sonic is my 8 month old girl, and she's always been a little huffy, but has gotten over it quick, like once she realized she was outside her cage and the was something to explore.
About me: I got her to help my depression that I got after a nasty car accident a little over a year ago... Was originally going to get a cat, but my landlord said no, and we all agreed to a hedgehog instead.
However, in the last month or two she got really itchy skin, and after a vet visit, I found out that the aspen bedding I had her on was giving her a mild skin reaction, so I switched her bedding to fleece! She wasn't too thrilled about it the first few days, and showed it by sleeping in her litter pan.
However, I switched out her igloo for an old blanket she was used to, and she's been fine since.

Now: tonight, I got her out to play and she started biting me immediately. I've gotten the nibbles before, because my finger smelled like mealies or something, but tonight she literally bit my finger anytime it got close, and she would not stop huffing for anything. She didn't even come out of her blanket to explore. Is there any reason for a sudden behavior change like this? I washed my hands with the same soap I've always used (and never had a problem with) since I got her, and didn't stick my fingers in her face threateningly or anything, she just used to like sniffing my fingers so she'd know it was me.

Needless to say, I tried being tough about it and not letting her be bossy, but she kept biting, and huffing, so I put her back in her cage...and then cried.
My husband doesn't know what to do either.

Help, please!
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Old 10-27-2014, 10:13 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I know it's hard but next time do not put her back. Put her in a blanket or something and keep her out. Avoid letting her get to your hands or any piece of skin. You can always pick her up with a piece of fleece.

How is the temperature in her cage? Has anything changed besides the fleece? New food? Check her over, gently, to see if anything is bothering her. A quill poking her, maybe a hurt toe. If she will let you, check her teeth too.

Other than that, there are these devices that emit a sound that humans can't hear but are used as rodent control and have been known to annoy hedgehogs before. If you live in an apartment or have neighbors that might be a good place to check too.
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Old 10-27-2014, 10:50 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The temp hasn't changed in her cage, that was one thing I was sure to check with the fleece change. And her food has always been the same mix for months and months. I would love to check her over, if she wouldn't bite me. I didn't put her back in her cage immediately, I kept her out for a few minutes, but she just kept popping and huffing, and she was in her blanket the I keep in her cage.

If there was a device bothering her, wouldn't she be acting up while in her cage, too, though? Not just when I take her out?
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Old 10-27-2014, 11:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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You might not notice her antagonism in the cage. She would just be more agitated when she is out.

To look her over for her health go ahead and use gloves just this one time to make sure she isnt being hurt. I'm sure I am missing things to check. My head isn't the clearest as I'm getting over being sick.

Is there a new smell in the house? New air freshener. Did someone light a candle? Some hedgies are super scent sensitive. Did you change which detergent you are using for her liners?

I know it's frustrating. Hopefully we can figure out what is going on. maybe she will be better tomorrow and was just cranky tonight for no reason.
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Old 10-28-2014, 12:43 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The thing with hedgies is that they can't speak, so they can't tell you if they have a headache or they didn't sleep well last night. Sometimes they'll just be in a bad mood for "no reason", and then they'll be okay later.
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Old 10-28-2014, 01:44 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I am wondering f she might be quilling? I understand hedgies can go through another quilling abaout this time. If that is the case then try a nice warm bath with some oatmeal in it to sooth her poor irritated skin.
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Old 11-01-2014, 04:59 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I see that you're from the "Wisconsin Tundra" (as am I). The air is EXTREMELY dry here right now, and it is ruining my life (and making Giz not feel too great herself).

I just read your other post about the skin reaction she was having. That may be the reason why she's a grump. Is she still eating regularly?

Maybe throw a worn T-shirt in there with her-I'm sure she's used to you by now, but it might help. I usually do that with Giz when she starts getting really hissy when I go to grab her, and the next day, she's usually quite a bit more relaxed.
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