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Old 01-14-2017, 12:15 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Personality Change

Hey Everyone,

Last month was not a good month for my little girl Tilly. Tilly is just turning one year and was generally a really active hedgehog at night with her wheel and when she was out of her cage she would love to be held and petted on her back. She had an awesome personality and loved being around humans.

Well in December, she broke her comfort wheel where it just started to squeak and so I was going to buy a new one. She was running on it, but just not a lot so I decided to order the CSW and was waiting for that to come in. Then something bad happend, at night the temperature dropped in our apartment to 61 and I did not have my heater on with the thermostat, so when we woke up she was trying to hibernate. Well we warmed her up and monitored her for about 2 weeks. She has a heating pad in her cage and she always liked her cage about 72 or warmer. Well when we set it to 72 she started doing this face thing that the best way to describe it was like a human shiver (has anyone seen this before) when being cold. When we warmed her up to around 75 she was fine again, but after the hibernation attempt she did not want to wheel anymore and she became a ton less active. At this point, we took her to the vet and he ran tests, from stool samples to blood work and an overall exam and the initial findings were that she was fine and just a little bit chubby (lol), but he wanted to send some of the blood work and stool samples to see if any bacteria grows.

After a week she was acting the same, very inactive and maybe up for about 20 min a night. ( For Black Friday I bought a camera that tracks motion and records it ) She did not seem sick at all, just extremely inactive. I got a call saying that some of the cultures grew some things and so he put her on doxycycline for 10 days. She was fine the first day with taking the medicine (drops on her food), but after that her intelligence shined. She hated taking it, she would not take food out of my hand that smelled like it. I would offer her food without it and tried to outsmart her and everyday she found a new one to try to get out of it. One way she took it out of my hand, dropped it and faked chew, like I would not see it. Then I started giving it to her in her cage. She then flipped the food over and dragged the medicine on the bottom of the food bowl to clean it off and then eat it. I then started putting it on mealworms and I watched her chew it and then spit it out. The last attempt I watched her “chew” a mealworm and a minute later she went to her food bowl and spit it out.

At this point she still liked to cuddle, but she slowly changed to being more active outside of her cage. She just wanted to move around and not be held. She will move around for a minute and then go to sleep somewhere. She is not aggressive or bites or even balls up, she is generally real nice even now. She was still not running on the wheel during the medicine and right after (this was around December 26). By this point, we had the CSW and she was not using it, so I bought her the comfort wheel again and tried that with no luck. I even tried blocking her in and she would not run. The last thing, I tried was setting up her playpen and putting all 3 wheels in there, with nowhere to hide. I then put her down and watched her panic and I took my eyes off of her for one minute and she was mission impossible climbing out of her cage, so I picked her up and she started doing like a fake run motion and I plopped her onto one of the wheels and she just started booking it like no tomorrow and she went from one wheel to the next and I was super excited!

During this time, she was also getting up in the middle of the day for 20 minutes for a snack and then at night to eat. She was still pooping and peeing and eating and she seemed very healthy, just lazy and not the same personality. She still loves her worms and other then those 2 things, everything else is fine with her. After that night, the following night she ran for an hour and kept doing it for about about 2 weeks now. She has now become very picky. She will only run from 6-7 PM. She will not run if the wheel is not cleaned freshly. Also she still likes her comfort wheel better and she does not fall off as much. It seems when her old wheel was breaking, she was compensating for its wobble and she still tends to run at an angle. She would never usually let me watch her run before December so the fact that she does when we put her in her play pen is strange as well. She usually slips off then hops back on and keeps running. I am not sure if this is normal or not as well.

I am wondering if this happens and now her personality and running habits are permanently changed. She is still my best friend and she loved running, so I don’t know what to do, or if I should give her more time. Any advice would be greatly recommended! She has her own heater, temperature controlled heater, and humidifier as well. Thank you!
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