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burritotaco 05-08-2019 11:27 AM

huge hard lump
I'm not sure how long it has been there but only noticed it these past 3 days. At first I thought it was poop but it's become very noticeable.

The lump is hard and it's around 2 cm big situated right next to his belly specifically left of his belly when flipped. We're taking him to the vet tomorrow but hoping to gain some insight before hand. Thanks in advance.

Aj.t 05-08-2019 06:12 PM

Do you have a picture? Is it something on the outside or is it an internal growth? Good job making a vet appointment; hedgehogs can easily gain problems very quickly so it’s definitely a good idea to get a professional examination!

burritotaco 05-09-2019 01:50 AM

A little update: Went to the vet scheduled a surgery tomorrow morning. It's a tumor but luckily it's away from the organs however it's a pretty big lump.

The vet mentioned there is a possibility of death from the anesthesia and also apparently hedgehogs hate stitches. Just wondering anything I need to know beforehand and also how to care for my hedgehog post surgery especially keeping him away from his stitches. Thanks for your time :)

Kalandra 05-09-2019 08:48 AM

Couple of things to get you started. A lot of post surgery wound care really depends on where the wound is, how bit the wound site is, and how invasive the surgery. But here are some quick thoughts the cover most surgeries and are outside of monitoring the wound site for redness, swelling/infection.

Keep the cage clean. You may have to clean the cage a couple of times a day. If you are using substrate bedding, discard that and put in a layer of soft fleece bedding, I prefer light colors, white, pale yellow etc so that I can see if there is any discharge or bleeding more easily.

You may need to remove the wheel for a bit to keep the wound clean and to help the wound heal. For larger incisions in the abdomen I tend to take it out for longer, other locations and smaller incisions that heal quickly it goes back in sooner.

Monitor appetite. Get a couple of oral syringes from the vet for syringe feeding just in case, and have on hand a pate style canned cat food. If he doesn't eat you'll need to syringe feed.

Get pain medication from the vet. We always give pain medication for about 3 days after surgery. It really helps a lot. Its been my experience that they really do not bother their stitches if they are provided pain medication for a few days. Plus pain medication can make them sleepy. Sleepy isn't a bad thing, especially if you have one that is missing their running wheel.

Post-surgery, you may find your hedgehog needs their cage warmer. I've never had one die from anesthesia, but I have had some that woke up very slowly or required more warmth for the first 24-48 hours afterwards. It really just depended on the hedgehog on who needed more and who didn't.

Post if you have questions and keep us updated.

burritotaco 05-21-2019 09:39 AM

Update: So the test results are here and turns out it's a basal tumor apparently it's an aggressive form of tumor. Luckily the tumor didn't grow on any organs so it's just the skin and it's been removed but the vet said it will spread or something not entirely sure. Worried for his health yes but would also like to know about life expectancy and how to care for this kind of things. Currently he's been playing and eating normally doesn't seem to be affecting him but then again hedgehogs are pretty good actors.

Kalandra 05-21-2019 04:25 PM

Basically all you can do is to help him heal from his surgery and continue to monitor his activity, eating and for any additional lumps.

Its nearly impossible to estimate how long they have left. If the tumor was removed with clean margins you may never see a regrowth of that tumor. If a small piece of it remained, or it had already spread, it will really just depends on the tumor in how fast it grows. Some are prone to grow quickly, others have great blood/nutrition supplies and grow quickly, and yet others grow so slowly that you get a lot of time before they become problematic.

It is an emotional roller coaster dealing with tumors. What I try to do is to consider this extra time. Having the tumor removed hopefully will give us extra quality time with our quilled friends. Enjoy every day you get where they are not suffering from a tumor but monitor and make decisions one day at a time.

Floyd 07-13-2019 10:30 AM

Amazing advice thanks it's always good to be ready

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