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A few question from a new hedgie owner.

3153 Views 15 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  -TF-
Hello everyone,

I just got Akeno Yesterday as an early christmas present. I've been wanting a hedgehog for quite some time now and finally convinced my mother into allowing me to have one. I bought Akeno at a local pet shop (pets unlimited) and they said he was about 6-9 months of age. I was wondering if him being older would take him longer to get use to me then a younger hedgehog. I have some concerns though. I`m at my sisters house for the holidays and will be returning to my house afterwards and I`m worried that all the travel will be stressful to him,the drive is about 40 minutes. Adding to the fact that for the time that he will be here and trying to adjust to what goes on he`ll have to repete it all over again.
Also, he seems awfully scared.I`ve only seen him move about once since yesterday,and that was when I moved him into his cage.He seemes fine there,I mean he still quills up at any quick movement and loud noises but I expected that to be normal since I`ve just gotten him. Though this morning I went to pick him up and he immidently balled up, so I sat there for at least an hour as quiet and still as I could and half of the time he made some noise. It's hard to describe, like some vibrating,huffy noise. After a little while he would settle down and peak out of his ball for a few seconds just to retreat back in. By that time my neck and back were aching so I set him back in his cage. Even then it was another 10-15 minutes untill he came out of his ball to rush under my shirt and fall asleep.
Will it always be like this or is it just going to take time? I can understand him balling up for the few first seconds or even minutes untill he decided to peak out but a whole hour?
Is there anything I can do to help make him as comfortable as possible? Expecially with the future traveling he will have to do.
Any advice would be greately appreciated, I'm going to try to be as patient as possible,I'm just eager to make buddies with him.
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Welcome to HHC!

Congrats on the new guy! Sounds like he's just acting like a normal hedgie. He'll settle down and be more comfortable with people once he's used to his new home.

Many, many grumpy hedgies have found good homes at older ages, and been great, friendly pets. Time and patience is key. Don't be discouraged by the quills or huffing. To get him used to your scent, you might want to put a t-shirt that smells like you in for him to sleep with (unless this is what you are already doing, which may be so. ;) ).

Travel can be very stressful. Some hedgies don't mind the car drive, but some will get sick. Just depends on the individual. Make sure when travelling to keep him in a hard-sided cat carrier, that is the safest. Holding him, or keeping him in any soft-sided carrier can be dangerous because if there is an accident or anything, cat carriers will protect from being squashed, any moving objects, and is easily identified as an animal carrier. Other types may not be recognised as an animal carrier and in an accident, the hedgie may be left behind unnoticed.

If he is in the cage he will be at your home as well, just focus on letting him adjust to that. Nothing should change once you get home, and that will help him feel more secure.

Good luck! Sounds like he landed a great new owner. :)
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That is great! Sounds like he'll warm up to you. ;)
I'm not sure about noise being comforting (mine is the opposite ;) ), but it is very good to get him used to the sound of your voice. Talking to him, humming, singing, what ever you want, is good for the bonding process and will make him more comfortable with you. :)
Don't worry about asking questions, it's how we learn.

Hedgehogs are nocturnal. Some have stranger hours than others, but most are up primarily at night and asleep by morning.

I think the other word you were looking for was Crepuscular, which is basically animals that are up at dawn/dusk/twilight.
What temp is it? Does he have about 12-14+ hours of light a day? Are there any drafts you can think of, near the cage? All of these can cause hibernation.

His hours seem normal. Some like to come out a bit in the evening, and again early morning. Just depends on the individual.

It is normal for them to eat little when introduced to a new place. Once he's settled in, he should start eating more.

Do you have a scale? If not, you might want to get one. A gram scale that weighs in increments of 2 grams or less, is best. You can keep track of how much he weighs for any clues of sickness. A significant drop would be a good reason to go to the vet.
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