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Old 12-31-2018, 09:28 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Dangerous Nail Trimming Incident

Okay, so I have three hedgehogs: Violet, Blue, and Perry. Violet has never enjoyed getting her nails trimmed, but roughly once or twice a month (depending on if she had let me trim them last month or not), they need just a little clip. And, because of how much she squirms, every month I accidentally nick the quick of one of her nails. It's never been bad. In most cases, I don't even need corn starch because it doesn't even bleed long enough for me to grab it from my cabinet. But. This last time. Was awful.
For some reason, she was especially squirmy. She would do this thing where she would hold still, and at the last second as I would go to clip, she would squirm and I swear I'd almost cut her whole toe off. I had someone else hold her for me so I could get a better handle of her foot, but it just didn't work out. One of her poor little nails got clipped so short, the bleeding wouldn't stop for a while no matter how much pressure I would put or cornstarch and q-tips I would apply, and I called all the vet clinics that all told me that there was nothing they could do for me that I wasn't already doing since they didn't have an exotic vet on call. (This was a Saturday)

What else can I do besides clipping her nails? She doesn't trust me right now, and I don't blame her. I don't ever, ever want to have this horrifying experience again, or put my hedgehog through this again. I was so worried that she was going to bleed out and none of the emergency vets around me were going to do a thing to help.

***Side note: She's fine, and for the most part she was just looking at me like "wtf are you crying about? Put me down, I'm ready to go to bed." She didn't limp, and even more than that, my hedgie is a climber, and she immediately started climbing the bars of her cage when I put her back! Her nail is growing back fine, and we have been keeping an eye on it daily. This happened a little more than a week ago.
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Old 12-31-2018, 01:55 PM   #2 (permalink)
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You can try distracting her with treats while you cut her nails. Place some yummy treat that she likes and cut her nails while she's distracted. Don't feel like you have to get all the nails at one time. Take it slow and take what you can get. You can also try to cut it while she's getting a foot bath that way she won't curl up since she knows she's in water.
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Old 01-01-2019, 09:23 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Has anyone tried something like a nail file or emery board? We have tried treats before like mealworms or super worms, but at this point I'll even dangle some chicken in front of her if it will distract her enough to stay still! We're going to go back to trying to clip her nails during bath time, the only problem is that we bathe her in the tub, so she runs from us when we grab her feet. She's my stubborn hog.
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Old 01-01-2019, 09:44 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I trim ours after foot baths. When I scoop her up with my hand I try to get a back foot between two fingers so it sticks out below my hand. I can then keep her from tucking it in and can trim the nails with a small finger nail trimmers. I try to get one foot a night. Her fronts never need trimmed because she loves to dig. If I could just get her to dig in 4 wheel drive she wouldn't need any nail trims.
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Old 01-02-2019, 02:01 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I nip my hedgies nails sometimes too but he just reacts like yours (not bothered). I typically do it after I take him out of the bath and put a bit of food in front of him to distract him. I then hold his foot for a few seconds first to get him comfortable and then I just clip them. He squirms sometimes but mostly he's pretty cool with it. I wouldn't worry about your hedgie too much as long as she's acting normal.
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Old 01-19-2019, 10:37 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Our method is to have one person hold the hog in their arms and just let them wander around. The second person will then grab and snip opportunistically at dangled legs. Back legs are usually easier but of course when you come for their front paws they see it coming and freak out a bit. There's a technique we've perfected where the holder uses the palm of their hand to block their view while the clipper comes in for their front paws. Even with these techniques it's still too difficult to get all the paws in one sitting, but maybe this could work for you.
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