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Old 12-10-2013, 12:13 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default New owner with questions.

Hello everyone, I bought a hedgehog, she was born in April, from a family that no longer had time for her when their children began school and other activities. They told me she was friendly and enjoyed people. I have had her for 5 days and I have a ton of concerns.

- She is losing quills, I find a few per day after I hold her. I thought this may be due to stress since she was taken away from her old home and around new people and smells. I don't know when I should be concerned. Her skin under her quills looks dry, I put oil on her and that seemed to help with the dryness. Her butt is getting quite thin on quills, and she is dandruffy, none of these white spots move. I can take a picture of her butt and post it on here, once I figure out how.
- When she is out of her cage on my lap or next to me on the couch she doesn't move, she just balls up or goes face down with her quills up. She does this heavy breathing(sounds like hissing) and "hops" if I try and touch her. I assume this is to detour predators in the wild.

I just want to make her comfortable and help her get used to being around my boyfriend and I. She isn't food motivated, I gave her an old tshirt of mine and she avoids it and hides in the corner.
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Old 12-10-2013, 12:24 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Location: Kansas City
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Does it look like she's getting any quills back in? If not, I'd head for a vet visit. Dry skin and quilling don't generally lead to an area of thinned or no quills, so it's possible she could have mites anyway (especially if she's on wood bedding), or a fungal infection (someone else recently went to the vet for what seemed to be dry skin, but turned out to be a fungal infection).

Yup, she's just being defensive. Make sure you continue to get her out each night for at least half an hour. Letting her stay covered up in a blanket may help her to be more comfortable for right now while she's getting used to the new place and a new owner. It was good to try putting the t-shirt in there...just leave it in & she may come around.

Also, I'd really, really recommend taking your location off your profile. Hedgehogs are illegal in PA, and everything I've ever seen says that PA is the worst state regarding illegal hedgehogs - people are actually afraid to even drive through. I'm not sure if it's still that bad, but we really don't recommend owning hedgehogs in illegal areas on here, so it'd be good to at least avoid advertising the fact. Make sure you also can get her to a vet out-of-state if necessary to keep her safe and give her proper medical care.

Lastly, here's a great book with lots of information that I'd recommend checking out. It's free to download -
~*~*~ Kelsey ~*~*~

RIP my sweet Lily ~ 6/12/08 - 1/20/12
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Old 12-10-2013, 02:53 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 156

It's pretty normal for a hedgehog to be timid and defensive in a new surrounding. That's just their way. Be patient and gentle and she'll come around.

As for the dry skin, it could be a number of things. Putting oil directly on the skin is okay for temporary relief, but it's not a cure.

If you can get her to a vet, have them take a skin sample and test for mites. If it's a fungal or parasitic infection, you'll be given meds.

My Hilde had severe dry skin issues for a long time and I took her into the vet a few times for different tests.

Turns out the thing that helped her was calcium and fish oil on her food. That's something you could try yourself and isn't a bad idea anyway.
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Old 12-10-2013, 05:35 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Hey lemmy welcome aboard!


" With great power comes great electricity bill... "
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