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Old 10-03-2013, 10:54 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Paranoid?

I got my little hedgie Penelope about a week ago and I've done a lot of research and am freaking myself out worrying about her. She is only a little over 6 weeks old and I'm pretty positive from other's opinions as well as my own that she is in fact quilling.

But I am scared it might not just be quilling. I'm 90% positive she doesn't have mites. I've checked her skin thoroughly many times.

My question is: Is it normal for a young hedgie (6 weeks) to not have a full coat of quills? Ive seen pictures of adult hedgies with a thick coat, but mine isn't adult and I can see more skin than I think I should.

Her quills are distributed evenly over her body and there aren't any bald spots or patches. I can see tons of tiny quills sprouting up in between her already grown "baby" quills, but they aren't prominate yet.

Am I being paranoid?
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Old 10-04-2013, 01:33 AM   #2 (permalink)
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When my little guy got mites while quilling, the key symptom was that he scratched a LOT. Like, he'd wake up in the daytime to frantically scratch, doze for a few hours, wake up to scratch more. At night when he was awake, it was more scratching every 5-15 minutes. Such a miserable little quill-ball...
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Old 10-04-2013, 12:18 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Mine only scratches 2-3 times a day if that. She does sleep a lot, but I am pretty sure that is normal. She's more active at night since she is nocturnal. She's not frantically scratching at all. I just wanna make sure its normal for them not to have a full set of quills at 6 weeks.
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Old 10-04-2013, 03:10 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Sounds like just plain ol' quilling, then!

Some hedgehogs have distinct phases of quilling, others just start and keep on going until around the 12-week mark (+/- a few weeks, just to keep us all nervous). Quilling at 6 weeks is totally normal.

Quill-density seems to vary a lot by hedgehog. I don't have experience with it, but I wouldn't be too concerned yet. You can look for dry skin, keep an eye out for skin infections, but you'd need to lure someone else into the thread to give better advice about what that looks like. :\
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Old 10-04-2013, 04:01 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I don't think you should worry! Some hedgehogs when their quilling have less quills. They are just quilling, but the quills haven't grown in much. Totally normal.
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Old 10-04-2013, 06:41 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Skin infections and mites have a few similar appearances. One thing is that you will see her skin start to crust over with dead and dry skin. Basically, a buildup of dead/dry skin. This sounds like quilling, but if you take her to the vet, ask for a skin tape and a skin scrape. Bacteria will show up, meaning there is a skin infection, but sometimes mites won't show up on the scrapes/tapes, even though they really are there. Ask your vet to treat Penelope with Revolution, a topical solution, but DO NOT under any circumstances allow them to treat her with Invermectin. This is a type of medicine that is injected into the hedgehog. There are several sitckys about it in the Mites section of Health. If the vet won't give you Revolution, you can buy the Kitten solution at a pet store. If it's a skin infection, the vet can give you anti-biotics to treat it.
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Old 10-04-2013, 09:54 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Sorry, I totally blanked about the Revolution! I forgot that you can not buy it from the pet store if you live in the U.S. You can order it online or get a vet prescription, though.
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