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Old 09-21-2014, 11:44 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Smile An unexpected rescue! :)

Hi,
I've been stuck to this forum for the past 24hrs finding out lots of information for our..erm..unexpected new family member
I've had some sort experience with most animals and have always considered getting a african pygmy hedgehog and have researched before so my knowledge wasn't completely nothing but i didn't know everything.
for just over a year me and my mum have been running Medway Hedgehog Rescue (for wild european hedgehogs in the UK) we have calls frequently of injured,ill or orphaned hoggies..and we had a call yesterday and went to pick the hedgehog up from their house and on the way out the lady showed us her african pygmy hedgehog, my mum had just told the lady i really had an interest in them so she lifted the cover and a beautiful aph was in a bed of hay in the corner, snuffling, popping and just generally very angry, the woman then told us its her daughters and she doesn't care about it.. which was obvious. there was a small sprinkle of cat biscuits in with her sawdust and a bowl of water..no wheel or anything else to entertain her..(she clearly hadn't done the slightest of research in bedding/substrate or toys etc) but the conversation went on and she basically begged for us to take her on as she already was overrun and overwhelmed with animals (which was sadly clear), i let the lady know she was going to a lovely home and we went on our way...I got her home and searched around for information on aph's and found out that her substrate and bedding needed changing so she's on towels as a 'flooring' and her bedroom is a fluffy vet bed,towels and a microwavable bean bag teddy thing, i have ordered her a 12' wheel, and I've given her cat biscuits that are 33% protein and 10.5% fat and also gave her a few mealworms....but feel i would like a bit of advice/opinions from people. we are unsure of her age, but im sure she is fully grown, she is very very protective and angry when handled/disturbed but I'm sure with regular handling this will be sorted as she is quite confident walking around once she is left i noticed her nails seemed a bit long and bad condition not that i would be able to trim them right now but i will need to in the future, she weighs 541 grams, I've seen many different average weights for females..is this ok? Also is she a particular colour or?... Thank you for reading and sorry for rambling, also i named her polly
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Last edited by tayla1494; 09-21-2014 at 11:48 AM.
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Old 09-21-2014, 01:41 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hi! Congratulations and welcome! Hedgehogs show up at the oddest times, don't they? I'm sure Polly is going to make a wonderful addition to your family though! She is very different from your average out and about hedgie that I hear about across the pond, and as you know, she has different needs. So, I have scoured the forums looking for some helpful links for you.
Let's start with this tidbit of info I stole from this thread:

https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...baby-home.html

These are things that must be considered BEFORE GETTING A HEDGEHOG! Before one even considers adopting a hedgehog and bringing it home, you should make absolute certain that you are able to provide
-a good quality cage that is appropriate for hedgehogs
-PLENTY of high-quality recommended cat food
-a suitable wheel
-a comfortable temperature.
-veterinary care with someone experienced in hedgehogs


Not that you don't know this, but it totally bears repeating. Let's start with part 1, a good quality cage. This is important as it is where Polly will live. Everyone has different ideas about what a good quality cage is and since Polly was sort of dropped on you I would start with something simple. I use these:



But I have a bunch of hedgies They do the job though and keep my little ones safe when they are unattended. For a longer term solution with lots of space any of the ideas in this thread: https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...-examples.html

Number 2! Food is oh so important for a hedgie. And we have older threads that cover tons of various types of kibble, or biscuits as you say, and also a few recent and wonderful threads on raw feeding.

https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...nutrition.html
https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...endations.html
https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...adventure.html

I don't actually know what foods are available across the pond, but I feed my brood a mix of 5 different kinds of blue buffalo kibble and about 15-20 grams of raw/cold/wet cat food every evening to keep a balanced diet. They haven't died yet, so I think its ok...

#3! a suitable wheel! I think you may want to look at something like this:

https://www.facebook.com/Hogwheels?f...rofile_browser

I don't know if it's local, but it's a lot closer than Larry, who I would otherwise recommend in a heartbeat. Very similar product.

And now the killer, a comfortable temperature. I recommend this thread:

https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...implified.html

I am a big fan of a CHE with a thermostat for a single hog, and for a quality room heating space heater with a thermostat for multiple hogs. That is my opinion, a lot of other people have different ones. But we all agree that for the APH, temperature is crucial to their health and well being.

As for veterinary care, if you are out rescuing your local breed, I'm sure you have a pretty good contact in the area that would have a decent idea of what to do with an APH. But we do have this forum:
https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...rian-listings/

Other things you may want to consider:

Bedding: https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...-cage-bedding/
I'm a Fleece girl myself.

Lighting:
https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...-lighting.html

And of course, since Polly came from a bad environment and you are just getting to know each other, try here as well:

https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...ectations.html

And the entire forum area is pretty helpful so try this too: https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...ity-behaviour/

And this: https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...bie-owner.html

Bonding with Polly is going to be very important. This was my recommendation to a member who asked me about how to tame his hedgie:

The general wisdom is this:
Spend AT LEAST 30 minutes a day with your hedgehog. Holding him, or just being with him while he wanders around you.
Remember, not all hedgehogs are cuddly. They just aren’t. A couple of mine really prefer to just run around and be talked to during their bonding time.
You can bond by holding your hedgehog in a fleece sack, holding him directly on you under a fleece, or you can bond as I just mentioned, by just being with them while they do their thing. But you have to BE with them. Talk to them, pick them up sometimes, chat them up (hedgehogs are awful at talking back though, so it’s a one sided conversation) Speak softly. Use nice words. I don’t know how they know, but they know.
Find out what kinds of treats your hedgie likes. Give them to him sometimes. But don’t over do it. Too much is just as bad or worse than not enough.
Does he have a wheel and all the important stuff for his cage that are mentioned in the forums? Wheel, fleece, igloo/hiding spot, etc? Is he kept of a strict lighting schedule? Is he warm enough at all times? I ask because a well kept hedgie is a happier hedgie.
Are you afraid of him? Like, are you nervous of his quills? Because they know that too. They can smell fear, and if he thinks you fear him, he will respond to it.


Maybe it will be helpful for you too

I hope the information here is helpful to getting you and Polly both settled. I know what it's like to have something unexpectedly drop on you. But gosh knows you can't walk away from that adorable little twitchy nose. I'm sure it will take Polly a while to acclimate, but she will be fine after a while. And so will you!
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Old 09-21-2014, 02:05 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Lol. I have been wanting to do something like that for a while. Thank you for being my Guiana hedgehog
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Old 09-21-2014, 02:17 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thank you so much, Yes i think polly's cage is the same size as your purple ones (but its pink!), as for food i think she likes the one we have now but my mum has since been in contact with someone who has lots of experience with aph's and lives local i think she's coming over with a few essentials to help me , Ooo those wheels look alot better and are cheaper than what ive been looking at! definitely! (and i can get it in pink too:'D ) yes, i think myself and polly prefers blankets and fleeces , and temperature shouldn't be a problem as she's in my bedroom, and i am determined to get her handle'able so i'm starting a routine of handling/being with her every night for 30-40 minutes, and i know i can't get over how adorable her eyes are too!
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Old 09-21-2014, 02:26 PM   #5 (permalink)
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So, a lot of people seem to think that having hedgie in a bedroom or other interior room will be enough as far as heating goes but in truth, unless you live in a tropical climate, it just isn't enough. Hedgie needs her own dedicated heat source that guarantees, as much as anything is guaranteed, that she will be comfortable at all times. A hibernation attempt could be disastrous. I strongly recommend getting Polly her own independent heat source, such as a CHE with a thermostat.
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Old 09-21-2014, 02:35 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Okay, we have some heat mats for the rescue. ill see if there is one that isn't being used thank you x
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Old 09-21-2014, 02:39 PM   #7 (permalink)
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And mats... gosh I feel like such a bummer... But mats are also not recommended because they only heat the bottom of the cage, they don't heat the air of the cage and hedgie can burn herself by laying on it too long. It's ok for a very short term solution but not for the long term.
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Old 09-21-2014, 03:46 PM   #8 (permalink)
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well from my point of view anything im doing right now is a l o t better to what she had, i'll speak with my mum in the morning and sort out some more long term heating thank you x
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Old 09-21-2014, 04:27 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Polly is adorable! She looks like my Penelope. best of luck!!
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Old 09-21-2014, 04:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thank you!, she's so cheeky and is getting more confident. she's definitely my mission to tame haha! it's so strange that we have 'tamer' wild hedgehogs in
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