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Old 02-11-2011, 07:18 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Hedgehog affection?

You know, I think Ziggy and I have come a long way, but I still am not sure whether he is expressing affection or just tolerates me...

He huffs a lot when I go pick him up but seems to be ok with letting my hand go under him to scoop him. When I pet him, sometimes he stays still, sometimes he huffs. And after some handling he always tries to crawl off my lap towards his cage. He seems to be fine sleeping under my sweater though, except for one time where he peed on me...

How do your hedgehogs show affection? It seems unlikely for them to show affection, so I need some pointers as I can't tell.
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Old 02-11-2011, 08:21 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hedgehog affection?

They're not exactly affectionate animals. It's important to note that by nature, they're solitary animals that prefer their own company. Some of them can be very sociable though. Norman occasionally gives me kisses while he's sitting in my lap. And while it's not exactly a show of affection per-se, he always climbs back up into my lap after exploring the couch for a few minutes and wants to settle back in for a nap somewhere safe. I've heard that a few offer little "love nibbles" as well. Some might even see their being tolerant of you handling them as a sign of affection if they have a more grumpy personality.
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Old 02-11-2011, 09:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hedgehog affection?

My boy doesn't usually show affection well either. Usually, no matter what I do, if I move a little, make some sort of nose, he'll pop and hiss at me

But that being said, when put into an enviroment he's not familiar with, like the vets, he will actually run back towards me. Vet will put him down on the table, and he scurries over and tries to burrow into my arms, while I just put my arms around him.
Same with taking him outside. Put him on the grass, he will climb back into my lap, or lay down right next to me, usually partially under a thigh, or if I'm leaning back a bit, right at my back.
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Old 02-11-2011, 09:43 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hedgehog affection?

I think it depends on the hedgehog really, yes they are solitary but there are some theat seek out their owners to snuggle.

For instances, "Wrigley" and little Naomi. Naomi looks for her "momma" also wants out when she comes.

Also a lot of my herd give kisses and nose nudges. I make point with all my hedgies to kiss their faces and noses from day 1 of them coming to me. I love giving them kisses of their cheeks and faces and I know they secretly like it as well. I am very very hands on in my guys, get them used to everything from an early age. Most of mine don't make fuss at me kissing them.

Also a lot of mine love their noses and bridge of theirs noses rubbed and they seek this out with passion. They do a low purring vibration and close their eyes when I rub their noses.
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Old 02-11-2011, 10:15 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hedgehog affection?

here's a story about Sweetie that dates back to the summer. i'm copying it from my email:

"so last night my mom covered Sweetie's cage with a blanket 'cause it was supposed to get chilly (he has the heat but we thought a blanket wouldn't hurt). it was *her* blanket. that did not go over well. Sweetie went nuts--he repeatedly stood up (propping against the wall) sniffing the air and then dug under the liner where it was really tight. when my mom tried to get him out, he put up a real fight. she ended up removing the blanket. here's the real kicker: i took him tonight and he started licking my hands. so i'm thinking, "is the Baby gonna bite me or what?" he licked and licked like crazy and then--mystery solved--he self-anointed. then he kinda stood up propping against my hand and resumed the frantic licking. he self-anointed twice more. then we lay down on the couch and he again went crazy licking my legs, hips, and arms (in that order) and self-anointing. and then he let out a tiny sigh and snuggled tightly next to me.

my jaw was on the floor. it was such an amazing "i love you mommy *hug hug hug* where were you????" experience (i mean i very bad that he felt desperate like that but it was still amazing). now my mom feels so bad for giving him the blanket with so much of her smell... note that Sweetie is not into anointing--i've seen him do it only a couple of times, tops."

even if it wasn't for this, i have absolutely no doubt that Sweetie loves me deeply. i am lucky that way.
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Old 02-11-2011, 10:19 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hedgehog affection?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Immortalia
But that being said, when put into an enviroment he's not familiar with, like the vets, he will actually run back towards me. Vet will put him down on the table, and he scurries over and tries to burrow into my arms, while I just put my arms around him.
Same with taking him outside. Put him on the grass, he will climb back into my lap, or lay down right next to me, usually partially under a thigh, or if I'm leaning back a bit, right at my back.
I second this note! Snarf had been a hissing, huffing ball of quills when he moved in and quite frankly, I had accepted that he and I would never really 'get along' and he was just not a social hedgie. No biggie...just the way he's made, right?

Then we went to the vet (two weeks later) and the vet wanted to see him walk. I put Snarf on the floor and stepped out of the way...Snarf walked to me...I stepped back...Snarf walked over and tried to sit on my foot. I didn't think much of it until the vet said 'He sure knows who momma is!'. That's when I realized he might actually know who I am! And might even like me a teensy bit. It's amazing how popular you become when a hedgie feels his life is in danger.

Time and LOTS of patience...two musts with a hedgie.
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Old 02-11-2011, 10:20 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hedgehog affection?

P.S. since i'm disabled, my wonderful mom is the caretaker of our animals (food, cleaning, etc), so she surely wasn't a stranger. there was no reason for Sweetie to panic so badly except that he lost my smell somehow and thought that he lost me.
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Old 02-12-2011, 01:55 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hedgehog affection?

Niblet definitely enjoys his own time doing his thing...sleeping, wheeling, munching, etc and 99% of the time, if he is interrupted, he is going to huff and puff and prickle...
But there are the special occasions where he shows us he loves us...
I usually work 3 nights in a row and he is usually sleeping when I leave for work and sleeping when I get home. So on my night off after I have been working for my 3 nights, I will go over to his cage and say "Niblet. Mom has missed you!" and he will stick his nose in the air looking for my scent and scurry over the wall of the cage where I am. It is so cute. It shows me that he remembers my voice and my scent.

Also another thing that is so adorably cute is when I change his liners. I use the All free and clear detergent to wash his liners and to me they don't really have a scent but to he loves his new liners. I will let him run around the bedroom while I am changing his liners and cleaning his cage. And when I get everything changed and put him back in there, he will run around and rub his nose around on the liners and then anoint. Then he will pull at the edge of the liner to try to pull it over him (which he can't) and then he anoints again...this goes on about 5 minutes after his liners are changed. He is so cute. He loves his clean cage.

He also will give little nose kisses to my fiance and I. We will pick him up and put him up to our face and he will lick our noses. Its cute. Little Niblet kisses.
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Old 02-12-2011, 04:05 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hedgehog affection?

I agree with the whole thing that Sandslash is indifferent to me until a stranger rolls in. Then he's the world's biggest momma's boy. He's all 'tough and gruff' until one of my friends tries to pick him up then its into mommy's pants or behind her feet.

And I'll get maybe one night a month where he'll put his head on my chest and just sigh as I pet his nose. Every other day if I try to touch his face he acts like I'm a chainsaw-wielding psycho.
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Old 02-12-2011, 04:18 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hedgehog affection?

Mine make little whistle like noises when they are really happy. Loken likes to do his own thing but is still friendly, even though he's not big into cuddling he still makes the happy noise and seems content when he's out, quills super flat when he makes it with such a cute little face. My hedgie Sandra will sit and wait for me and I can call her and she will climb into my hands. She started making the content whistling noises recently and I was so pleased to hear it because it is a very heart melting sound. It has been so cute because recently Sandra has really gotten into her schedule so when she heard me cleaning Lokens cage on top of hers she came out from her bed and sat there patiently waiting until I put him back knowing that I was coming to get her next to clean hers lol
So I laughed and said come on and she walked into my hands. She has done this since and will come out and wait when she hears me cleaning his cage, it makes me laugh how receptive they are.
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