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Old 10-05-2019, 05:27 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Constipation and Elevated Heart Rate

So my hedgehog has not been pooping her normal amount the last week. If she does poop, its small amounts. Took her to the vet today (Saturday) and I was a little frustrated with how little I actually spoke to the vet. Due to imaging being almost $700 (obviously does not include any treatment) I decided against imaging and we are going to move forward with the famotidine which I was told would help coat her stomach. Below are additional symptoms:

-Increased respiratory rate without any wheezing etc.
-Not running on wheel
-Small, and harder than normal poops
-Not eating as much of her kibble (blue buffalo) but still LOVES her worms
-Still bright and alert when she is handled, just less active

I'm worried about her and a little disappointed with the lack of advice from the vet. Should I feed her wet food? Should I try giving her olive oil? Looking for any advice. I'm going to set up an appointment early next week with a different vet, but looking for some help in the meantime.

Thank you!
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Old 10-05-2019, 06:52 PM   #2 (permalink)
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How much less is she eating? Less food in, can cause much smaller and far less stools. Is she drinking? Dehydrated?

How is her weight doing?

If she is barely eating, I would try to get her to eat whatever she will. Try to add a little water to her kibble to see if she eats it better. Or try canned food. If she eats the wet food where she wasn't eating the dry then we need to figure out why that is. Not eating dry food could be the dry food is getting old and stale, or it could indicate a mouth issue.

If she is eating a fair amount, but just seems constipated, you can try canned food to increase her water intake. You can also try unseasoned canned pumpkin, squash or even baby food peas can sometimes help get them to go. Even a little yogurt has been known to help digestive issues.

Are you in a location where it is getting cold? Could her cage be a little on the cold side and causing her to be less active, which could cause her to get up less to eat, etc.
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Old 10-05-2019, 07:21 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thank you for the response! I'll respond in order of how your questions.

She is eating less than she normally does. She is drinking, but I think less than normal. I will look up how to check hydration levels in hedgehogs.

She gained 5 grams between when I weighed her last night and when the vet weighed her today. She was 405 g now is 410g.

I tried getting her to eat canned pumpkin and was not successful. What type of wet food do you recommend? Maybe I can cover worms in pumpkin to trick her... I did throw out her old food and give her new to see if maybe it was the stale stiff. So well see if she eats tonight. I never thought of the mouth issue!

I'll pick up all of the suggestions and see what I can get her to eat. Yogurt is a good idea for the probiotics.

Weather is getting cooler, but her cage has been consistent with how it normally is so no changes there. Cermaic heat lamp is set to 77 degrees. And turns on when it hits 75.

Will update later!
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Old 10-05-2019, 07:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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For canned foods, I go for pate style foods as they can be multi-purpose. I keep a few cans of different types on hand in case I have one who's mouth gets sore and needs something that is easy to chew. The other benefit is pate style usually can usually be used with a syringe. I usually go for turkey or chicken variety and have had good luck with Wellness brand lately, but there are plenty of good foods out there to try.

Start with a fresh bowl of kibble. I'd also add a bowl with about a 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of water to it to just slightly soften it to make it easier to crunch. See how that goes.

For hydration, pinch her skin, I usually grab a pinch on their shoulders, and see how quickly is snaps back. It should go back quickly, if it stays in place for very long, she's dehydrated. Start by trying to get her to drink more. If needed, syringe her water, be careful to not choke her on it. If she's very dehydrated, you need to go to the vet and ask for a sub-q of fluids. That is the best way to rehydrate them.
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Old 10-06-2019, 10:32 AM   #5 (permalink)
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So she liked the pate food! Still has a decreased appetite, but we had a small nugget of poop this morning!
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Old 10-06-2019, 11:20 AM   #6 (permalink)
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That's good news. I'd offer the pate food at least twice a day for a bit to see if you can get more in her. Monitor her weight closely, if she starts to lose, you may have to syringe feed her to supplement her.

Always leave dry food in with her, and if you catch her eating kibble, try to watch to see if you can see any flinching or reaction to chewing. If you do then that could help a vet diagnose a mouth issue.

There could still be no issue with her mouth and something else is making her not feel well in some other way too. These little ones are good at hiding illness, its always best to talk to the vet again when things aren't improving after a couple of days of trying a treatment.
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Old 10-07-2019, 11:57 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Just an update: still no change. Small tiny poops, still not running on wheel, still has the increased respiratory rate. Will try tomorrow to get her in to a new vet tomorrow.

Why can't they just talk!!
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Old 10-09-2019, 04:17 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Last update: (avian and exotic animal clinc in AZ if anyone is looking for a great place, they were so beyond wonderful) after spending the night in a snyder machine at the vet, they took xrays and she was in heart failure, with fluid in her chest cavity and her lungs. The humane thing to do was euthanize. Just figured I would update. It sucks she was only a year old and the nicest hedgehog ever <3 love you hedgie <3
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Old 10-09-2019, 07:05 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I'm so sad to hear that! Poor little chica, so young. I'm sad to hear that something like that can just come out of the blue at just 1 year old. It's so good you found out sooner rather than later so she didn't suffer long. I'm really sorry for your loss.
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Old 10-09-2019, 07:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thank you so much, going to bury her soon.
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