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Old 01-03-2017, 07:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Safe to let fat hedgehog hibernate?

Hello everyone,
I have a very young hedgehog and she just keeps getting fatter, I feed her about one and a half tablespoon kibble a day now but that doesn't make any difference. I have a thermostat that keeps my two hedgehog's cages on 22C my other normal weight hedgehog is fine but this other fat one keeps trying to hibernate, I think the fact that she is fat (545 g) also stimulates here to do so. I know domestic hedgehogs may not hibernate because they aren't able to store enough fat but mine has plenty. Is it safe to let here hibernate or is it to dangerous and should I make her cage warmer?
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Old 01-03-2017, 07:58 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Domesticated hedgehogs have lost the ability to safely hibernate, it has nothing to do with weight. 22*C is only 71.6*F and that is way to low. Most hedgehogs need to be kept at a temperature of 75-78*F (24-25*C). If you let your hedgehog hibernate it will die.
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Old 01-03-2017, 10:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Nope hibernation is not safe for any pet hedgehogs no matter the size. If you Heggie attempts hibernation take it to the vet ASAP.
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Old 01-04-2017, 04:48 AM   #4 (permalink)
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OK, I'll higher the temperature.
Thanks for the response.
One last question, can the vet do anything for her? You mean bring her to the vet for tests?
Xx
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Old 01-04-2017, 11:35 AM   #5 (permalink)
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If your hedgehog attempts hibernation, you need to slowly warm it up by putting it against your skin on your chest/stomach under a t-shirt so your body heat can warm it up. You could also use a heating pad on the lowest setting too, as long as you're careful and vigilant. You need to feed small amounts of food as it becomes active again, and keep a close eye on it.

P.S. Definitely bump up your cage temp! Your hedgie will thank you for it!
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Old 01-04-2017, 02:07 PM   #6 (permalink)
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All you can do once they are trying to hibernate is warm them up slowly. After a hibernation attempt you need to watch your hedgehog carefully for a week or so as it can lower their immune system and make them more likely to get sick.
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Old 01-04-2017, 02:24 PM   #7 (permalink)
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As for your hedgehog's weight, reducing her food to only half a tablespoon isn't going to help with that. It's just going to make her even less active and more prone to hibernation attempts (which are deadly, as said above). They still need enough fuel to operate, and generally any less than one tablespoon isn't enough.

If you want her to lose weight you need to feed her a mix of low fat kibbles, but still give her at least a tablespoon. You can check out the list in the diet and nutrition section of the forum and pick a couple low fat foods from there. You will likely find that she will become less lazy once she has shed the weight.
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Old 01-04-2017, 06:26 PM   #8 (permalink)
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You said she keeps gaining weight no matter what.

Is it possible she's pregnant?
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Old 01-04-2017, 08:05 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I just meant you could take her to the vet because hibernation can kill them so they would probably have some good tips on how to keep her healthy. Is she doing better now?
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