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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone,

I don't know if anyone else has had this issue but I'd figure I would ask anyway. My hedgehog, Henry, has the habit of biting himself around the neck every once and awhile. He will mostly do it after he gets a bath. I'll set him down on his blanket after drying him off, and he'll go hide under a shirt and I can hear him gnawing on himself. i always try to intervene, but he's managed to actually create wounds on his neck a few times.

I had this problem once about 8 months back, i didn't know how he had gotten the wound. So I took him to the vet and we concluded that he might have rubbed his neck along his food bowl. I got some ointment to put on him, which i still use when he bites himself badly.

I think it is linked to the bath, but I can't really stop giving him footbaths and such because he gets pretty messy by morning.

Any suggestions to avoid the biting in the first place? I worry about him getting an infection.

Thanks
 

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Inky regularily bites himself after footbaths and regular baths, whether I use a soap/wash or oil on him or not. He'll usually roll into a ball and bite the quills right in front of his nose, though. Kind of a silly "take that I'll bite my quills, see how mean you are?" kind of non-sensical trying to make me feel bad for torturing him thing.

If he is actually hurting himself and breaking the skin, you definitely need to find a way to keep him from doing that. I'd try wrapping a blanket under his chin so he can't look down and nip at himself, until he calms down. But then if he does it randomly and not just right after the bath, that's difficult. You'd have to put something on his skin that would discourage him though I'm not sure of any safe products to use. Hopefully someone will have a better suggestion for you!
 

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Is Henry a more chunky boy? If he is biting under the neck, it is not always but often the bigger ones that do it. I think they get moist in the neck roll and it gets itchy so they bite and it becomes a viscous circle of biting, itchy, biting, more itchy... When my Lexie was younger and a much bigger hedgehog, she used to get the sores under her neck all the time. When I bathed her, I had to make sure she was dry under there or she would start to chew. She had open sores many many times over it. Once they get a sore and the sore starts to heal, then it gets itchy.

If the area he is biting is a bit further down it may be because he has gotten some semen on his fur. When it dries, it can pull at some of the hair so they start biting at the area.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yeah he is a bit of chunkster, I'll try and dry his neck more thoroughly and see if that helps. He usually does not bite if he has the medicine from the vet on his neck. Unfortunately, I am almost out of it, I just had a little tube. I have also tried using rubbing alchohol around his neck, that seems to work a little, but I am kind of concerned about the saftey of it. Although i havent had any problems with it the few times I have used it.

On a semi related topic, do you guys have any suggestions for a over the counter ointment I could buy to heal his bite marks. I would prefer to not to go through the vet, as my last visit cost me over $100 for speculation on what the problem was and a little tube of medicine. Would something like neosporin work or is that too strong for the little guy?
 

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LizardGirl said:
Inky regularily bites himself after footbaths and regular baths, whether I use a soap/wash or oil on him or not. He'll usually roll into a ball and bite the quills right in front of his nose, though. Kind of a silly "take that I'll bite my quills, see how mean you are?" kind of non-sensical trying to make me feel bad for torturing him thing.
Litchi does the same thing, a lot of her quill on her side are chewed off. She seem to do that too after a bath (even water only ones) I can hear her chew when I dry her on my lap. I try to dicourage her as much as I can but if she do that in her hedgie bag in her cage, I might not notice. I tough I was alone with that problem.
 
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