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Old 10-16-2013, 06:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I am at a loss to figure out what is wrong with my hedgehog Bug I have had for for a year. got her from a friend of a friend who could no longer care for her, she was previously a classroom pet for kindergardeners and was never handled. She is now a very handleable bundle of prickles that i adore. She has had diarrhea now for over a month! Have been to vets who all have no clue whats wrong with her. 3 fecal smears negative for ALL parasites, blood cultures normal except lack of nutrition from not eating, xrays normal with no anomalies. I work with animals on a daily basis as well and cant figure this out. She is a very picky eater normally even more so now. Put her on an anti parasitic just in case and a round of antibiotics with no change. she only ate eggs for a while, then only chicken, now only tilapia (and wax worms) got oxbowl critical care force feeding via syringe. after this 2 solid stools. but now she spits out the oxbowl- no matter how far i put it down her throat she waits until i put her down to refill the syringe and she spits it up when im not looking (she's a smart little bugger). she wont eat yogurt anymore either. wont eat squash or pumpkin. she has been slowly gaining weight now that she is eating tilapia. but VERY slowly. her normal weight was around 320 or 330 she was losing almost 10 GRAMS a night at the height of the sickness. she went all the way down to 200grms and has been slowly going up but with no change in stool. It is so frustrating to not know what is wrong with my little one. she is still fighting and therefore so will i but i want this to stop! does anyone have any suggestions?!!
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Old 10-16-2013, 11:55 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Yikes! Poor little one
Have you offered any dried cat food? Most people feed a high quality cat food (first ingredient actual meat, protein around 28-30%). My Thistle's poop was noticeably healthier when I switched her from cheap crap she ate when I got her to a high quality cat food.
Also, I've heard of Small Animal Benebac being added to food to help with tummy issues, it's a probiotic you can find at pet supply stores.
I've never tried it, but I've also heard of people giving Pedialyte to help with dehydration, which is going to be one of the biggest concerns with diarrhea.
Good luck with everything! Fingers and quills crossed for your little one to pull through!
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Old 10-18-2013, 09:28 AM   #3 (permalink)
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How are things going? Any luck?
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Old 10-18-2013, 10:53 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Did they do the fecals inhouse or were they sent to a lab? There should be two separate samples. One is for parasites, the other for bacteria etc. The ones done in house only catch the obvious so you can't rule out parasites or an intestinal infection if the only testing was done in house. If samples have not been sent out, that would be my first step. To do the samples, she needs to be off all antibiotics for 3-4 days.

By diarrhea do you mean full on liquid, or very soft, mushy? If the latter, it may be because her digestive system is upset with all the different foods.

Have you tried different kinds of canned cat food? I have a little guy who came to me as a rescue/rehome. I won't go into all the details except to say, I had to syringe feed him or he simply would not eat. The only thing he would eat on his own was scrambled eggs but wouldn't touch them two times in a row. For 3 months I syringe fed him while trying different types of canned and kibble which he would not touch. Being on a soft diet, his poop was almost always a mess. Sometimes it would firm up, but then back to the mess and he was vomiting on occasion. Then I bought Hills Natural Balance Chicken and rice canned food to try. http://www.hillspet.ca/en-ca/ideal-b...-cat-food.html He ate it, and continued eating it licking the dish clean each night. After two weeks on the canned I decided to try the kibble and OMG, he ate it too and now will only eat the kibble. This is a guy who I thought I'd be syringe feeding for the rest of his life. Parker was legitimately sick when he came to me which is why he came to me, but even after he was better, he still would not eat on his own. Now that he is eating on his own, he no longer vomits. I am unsure if before the Hills was there really no other food that he liked, or is it just a coincidence that it took this long for his intestinal system to fully heal from the infection he had.

I'd keep trying different foods and see if you find something she likes. Try putting the food in bed with her.

Poor girly and poor you. It's difficult when we don't know what is wrong and how to help them.
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Old 10-18-2013, 01:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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did the inhouse test as well as the lab tests, all negative. tried feeding her probiotics and she wont touch it. i have tried over 10 different kinds of wet cat food and dry cat food and she wont eat that either. i will try the natural balance chicken next to see if she likes it. i take her out for about 2-3 hours a night to feed her tilapia and worms and try the oxbowl as well as to put antibiotic cream on her butt because she is all sore. trying to keep a barrier between the feces and her open wounds is extremely difficult, because she does not get up to poo anymore just goes where she is and lays in it. i have put absorbent pads in which help alittle and then the cream and it seems to have helped her skin some. i leave chicken in her cage at night and she usually eats it (i stopped leaving fish in there because it made my whole house smell of rotten fish by the morning) she has started eating the chicken left in there at night. but she has started to lose weight again as of yesterday. Will try the natural balance and see if she likes it.... its a day to day battle with my little Bug thank you for the suggestions im going to try them tonight and ill post again tomorrow
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Old 10-18-2013, 01:36 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Is her bum raw like diaper rash? If it's not infected, try using a small amount of Vaseline. Vaseline will create a barrier to keep the feces away from her skin and from sticking. I've found it works the best of anything I've tried. Try a tiny spot just to make sure she doesn't find it interesting and chews at it. The majority I've used it on have been fine, one girl decided it had to come off.

How old is she?
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Old 10-18-2013, 02:43 PM   #7 (permalink)
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used Vaseline first but she licks it all off so i stopped using it. she hasnt been interested in the antibiotic or the hydro cortisone. Its raw from all of the acids from her stomach i guess like diaper rash. poops have been liquid and mushy. rangin in color from green to brown. they SMELL!!! which is why i am sure that she had a bad bacterial infection but must have been a bacteria that we did not test for. anyways i think she is getting over it it has just screwed up her intestinal tract so much she is trying now to recover.
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Old 10-18-2013, 02:57 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for the update! I've been thinking of your little Bug and sending positive thoughts!
I have a very picky eater too, the ONLY thing outside of her kibble that she will touch is the Chicken baby food in a jar. I finally got her to try the chicken and sweet potato baby food for a little variety. Might be another thing to try to at least get her to eat SOMETHING. But you also want to be careful to not introduce or offer too many different things, that could cause more tummy upset.

Keep us updated on the progress! Its also useful for others to read and learn from your experience.

Oh, and... welcome to the forum!

*Edit: side note about the stinky poop, I can't let Thistle eat fish anymore because fish makes her poop knock-you-on-the-floor-stink!
So that could be another reason adding to such a strong smell

Last edited by AngelaH; 10-18-2013 at 03:05 PM.
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Old 10-19-2013, 09:34 PM   #9 (permalink)
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More weight loss last night. 177 it now officially the least she had ever weighed. Now she won't even eat her fish. Or wax worms. Feeding her oxbowl via syringe and she actualy seems to be taking it now and not spitting it out. Very lethargic she's just curled up sleeping in my lap.
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Old 10-20-2013, 12:01 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Do you know if she is weak from not eating or if she is not eating because she is weak?
By this I mean could it be WHS making her weak thus unable to eat well which would lead to diarrhea.
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