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Old 01-15-2014, 09:20 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 8
Default Hedgehog having nightmares?

Heelo everyone
I wen't back looking for threads with the same question but didn't find anything. Hope I'm not posting a question, that has already been discussed.

I got a boy hedgehog (Mr. Quills) nearly a year ago from some guy, who obviosuly didn't know or care much about hedgies. I don't have any history and, judging by this hedgie's grumpiness and behaviour issues, he's from a pet-shop and wasn't treated at all or wasn't treated well. I got my first hedgie (Harry) just about half a year before this one so I'm a young hedgie mom, but I've done a lot of research about hedgies and I've decided to specialize on theese prickly guys, rodents and small animals, when I finish school, but I don't have the practicall experience of a long time hedgie owner...
Anyway - Mr Quills did settle down a lot in his new home and seems quite happy when he's not handled much and can just run around in my room all night long. But sometimes he has theese sequencies of screaming and making all theese scary noises throughout the day. It last usually just a couple of seconds and before I run to his box, he stops, but sometimes he carries on for nearly up to a minute, if I don't disturb him.
In summer I took both hedgies out with me, and we sat in the garden - well, they slept in there boxes, but we were outside and obviously, there is a lot of noise outside and Mr Quills had hi screaming sesions more often, when we were out. But he does it inside as well time to time.
Obviously, it freaks me out everytime, so I run to him and take him out of his box and he always seems upset about me waking him up and he only puffs at me and never seems in pain or frightened or whatever. I even took him to school for an X-ray and we found nothing. Except for the fact, that a hedgehog x-ray is a really funny picture His tummy has been palpated and there's nothing there either, his legs, nose, quills have been checked and all is negative.
So I did some researching and found, that some people's hedgies do this, and that it might be dreaming. When I found out Mr Quills has his "bad dreams" more often, when he's outside I did a bit of testing and took Mr Quills deliberetly out (it was a bit cruel but I wanted to find out the cause, so I could distinguish if it's a medical issue or he's really just dreaming and try to prevent it from happening). As I said, the frequency rises when he's outside (althoug in his box, where he sleeps normally) and it always occurs, when he's falling asleep. When I hear the sounds, I always take him out to check if he's allright, he's always angry, I woke him, I put him back and in about 2 minutes, he start's off again. I didn't really have the heart to let him scream, so I woke him again, and all was the same afterwards. Once I didn't wake him up, I got my phone to film him and I got a video of Mr Quills just sleeping and screaming and it lasted for a couple of minutes and he was slowly quieting down and then the sounds stopped and he carried on sleeping. It really does seem like he's having nightmares as a reaction to some stress when or before he falls asleep which go away as he falls into deeper sleep, but there's possibly no way in how to prove it. So I'd like to ask if anybody has ever seen or heard about this behaviour? My other hedgie is fine - I heard him puff about two times in his whole life and sneeze once, otherwise he's so quiet.
I red some of the behaviour topics here and watched some videos and was surprised that apart from screaming, some of the sounds Mr Quills makes, while dreaming, are the same as the sounds male hedgehogs make while dating and mating...makes me wonder, if he was dreaming about Mrs Quills with sexy quills and I woke him from that...that would really explain his expression
I do know, that dogs dream, I've seen my rats dream a lot of time, even my horse once - but they all were just running or sniffing or something like that, not really vocalizing (althoug dog's do...).
Thanks to all for your experiences
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