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Old 10-20-2018, 02:10 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 2 Week URI Still Persisting

Hello all, I got my hedgie less than 3 weeks ago and I immediately noticed that he was sneezing (he was a pet store rescue). He is only a baby. The pet store said he's a month old but I would guess he's 6-8 weeks. Idk how to tell but he's got all his teeth. I'll insert a photo. He weighs about 128 grams.

I took him to the vet a few days after I got him. After 3 vet visits, and a terrifying day or two were he stopped eating and I thought I was going to lose him, I received baytril from the vet. Today marks 2 weeks that I've been giving him the medicine twice a day and syringe feeding him. I'm happy to say that while he mostly sleeps, he has quite the appetite and manages to wheel for an hour or two each night.

I'm supposed to stop his medicine in 2 days, but he still sounds rather congested. He'll be silent for a while but then kind of sputter and cough. I definitely don't think he's 100%. I'm going to call the vet again to ask what to do but I wanted some opinions on here too.

His appetite is back and he's as feisty as ever, but could the URI be progressing into something more serious? Today he did have a bit of diarrhea. Do URIs have a habit of hanging around for weeks on end? Any advice is welcome.
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Old 10-20-2018, 05:49 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Sorry to hear he's not 100% still.

I would have thought after two weeks of antibiotics it would have cleared up by now.

What kind of bedding do you use? It could be an allergy causing the sneezing etc. When I first got Yuki and used fleece he would sneeze sometimes and sputter a bit and I think it was residue detergent on the fleece. It was a sensitive skin one but still had a slight fragrance to it in my opinion. Anyways I started hand washing all his fleece stuff in hot water (do you also have a cold water washing machine?! ><) and then Id ring it out and put the damp fleece in the washing machine and only add white distilled vinegar to it which helps break up an residue detergent on the fleece. I noticed a big improvement doing this. Also when you first buy fleece its absorbency isn't great so the detergent just sits on the surface and leaves a sticky feel to it, so it is recommended to wash them a few times before using to help minimise this.

If you use any paper bedding they can cause dust, which can also irritate hedgehogs.

Also anything in the surrounding enviroment giving off a scent like candles, your own clothes detergent, perfume etc. basically want to keep any smells to a minimum. I bought an air purifier to help clean the room air and help with any allergies.

Last edited by Yukidama's mama; 10-20-2018 at 05:53 AM.
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Old 10-20-2018, 09:57 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I use fleece bedding that I ordered from a lovely place called "The Hoghouse" on Etsy. I do have a cold water only machine; perhaps it would be better to take their bedding to a coin laundry? The detergent I use is from Aeon and it's the "Free From" line. It's supposed to be free of parabens and other artificial stuff.

Since I got my boys, I moved all of my perfume and scented candles out of the room. I never spray them in the same room. An air purifier is a great idea. I've got one I think, but I believe it's mainly a dehumidifier? It's pretty big and can be used to dry clothes. How much was your purifier?
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Old 10-20-2018, 11:36 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I would take him back to the vet to rule out pneumonia. They may need to prescribe a different antibiotic.
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Old 10-22-2018, 02:11 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Going back to the vet today. My doctor here in Japan says they don't do x-rays on hedgehogs, which is annoying. Yesterday his breathing was very, very bad. He was wheezing, coughing, and sputtering all over the place. It turns out my neighbor has a fancy air purifier/humidifier and they let me borrow it. Today he seems to be doing better, but I'm still taking him in.

After I took a shower, I let him run around in the steamy room for 5 minutes or so. Is this ok? It seemed to help. When I called the vet they told me to either bring him in or keep him on the Baytril for another week. He's been on it for 16 days already. Does this seem strange to anyone else? I'm worried sick over my little guy.
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Old 10-22-2018, 08:31 AM   #6 (permalink)
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How did it go at the vets? Yuki just had xrays done two weeks ago, but thats in Tokyo. They of course needed to give him anesthetic in order to do them, and take a good look in his mouth and even took a biopsy of his inflamed gums.

I'd try calling another vet and ask if they can do xrays. Only thing I've been told they can't do is blood work in Japan. I'm going to try asking another vets about that but they should be able to take xrays if hey have the equipment, as its an In house service (bloodwork has to be sent off for testing and parently no company offers it in Japan for hedgehogs yet).
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Old 10-22-2018, 08:48 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Well I drove 40 minutes each way to be told: "Just keep doing what you're doing." Oh well, at least it was cheap (less than 2000 yen). The vet doesn't think it's pneumonia and he's pleased with Pumpkin's condition. I'm not though. Just when I thought he was over his URI, it came back with a vengeance. He wants me to continue the medicine for another week, which would make it 23 days total.

Supposedly this guy is the hedgehog expert in the area. Since I live in Kumamoto, I'm sure our vets pale in comparison to Tokyo. I've ordered benebac and Carnivore Care to try and keep his appetite and weight up. I'm so worried about him. I was supposed to work this weekend at an event, but I cancelled so I could take care of him.
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Old 10-22-2018, 08:51 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I forgot to mention that I took a look at Volcano View Hedgehogs website and found some cat food from Amazon Japan: Natural Balance Indoor Ultra Chicken and Salmon. Hopefully he and Latte take a fancy to it. Thank you for your help!
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Old 10-23-2018, 02:30 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Hmm is there any other vets to get a second opinion?

Just monitor him closely and keep taking the medicine unless you go to another vets and get new instructions.

Also try rewashing his bedding in hot water, I soak them in a washing bowl in hot water and detergent then put in the washing machine to rinse out (no more detergent). Do you have white distilled vinegar? I recommend buying some and using it in the rinse water to help get residue detergent off. Also use it in a spray woth water 1:1 to clean his cage and wheel etc.

Hoping he gets better soon
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Old 10-30-2018, 10:24 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I washed his bedding and did a second rinse with apple cider vinegar. It definitely took the pee smell out but he's still sneezing up a storm. The doctor told me to continue the baytril until the bottle is empty and call if he's still sneezing. The bottle is almost empty, I'd guess we have 5 days left or so.

His poo is green and tar-like. I ordered benebac and carnivore care a week ago but as I live in Japan, it takes time. There was no expedited shipping option, and Amazon estimates that it'll be another week before they get here.

Is there anything I can do to help him out? He's a very picky eater but I was thinking about trying some pumpkin puree. Any thoughts? This URI has us both exhausted.
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