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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wasn't so sure about the selection I made at Petco when I was about to purchase Pet Promise Dry Cat food for Adults and Kittens I think? Well it has no byproducts and all natural and has like 14% Crude Fat I think. So I asked the manager and he said it was fine. I bought it and also some live mealworms. When I got home I fed Juicebox 2 mealworms and she slurped them right up so fast! I was in shock haha. And i also handfed her some of the pet promise cat food. She had just pooped so I went to get some toilet paper to clean it up and when I came back she was at her bowl on the other side of her tank eating the cat food with her eyes slightly closed as if she was highly enjoying it. My question, is this cat food bad? And how often should I feed her mealworms?
 

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I checked out the analysis and ingredient list and it looks alright to me. Right percentages of protein and fat, and has chicken as the first ingredient. I didn't see anything in the ingredient list that would be toxic either, so it should alright for her. You might think about getting a second food from Reaper's list in the nutrition section to mix in, too, though. It's best to have at least two, in case one gets discontinued or something.
For mealworms, it kind of depends on the hedgehog, but I think about 3-4 a day is plenty. But if she starts gaining more weight, cut down on them, if she doesn't seem to be gaining any, she should be fine. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Lol okay. I will most def. try to mix in another brand. I only gave her one today because she's been on wet cat food since I got her a week ago and I didnt want to stress her out too much. She ate quite a bit of it for having eaten already today. And ill give her another mealie just to get her happy. :D mealworms dont bite right? lmao! im scared to touch them! but i heard it was bes t to hand feed them treats when theyre brought to new owners. It increases the bond or something quicker. Right?
 

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Yep, it's best to hand feed. That shows the hedgie that you=treats! And no, mealworms don't bite. :) And that's good that you're only switching the food one at a time. That won't stress her out too much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Lol ugh. I gave her her mealies and like, I picked her up, she wasnt asleep or anything and she still spikes up in my lap. -_- My hands dont smell like anything and she wont let me touch her. -_-
 

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A new hedgie owner here. I started hand feeding Bas mealies right after she does her business in the corner. A positive reinforcement. The danger with that, and I still get nailed, is that if I still have mealie smell on my fingers and get them in her face, WHAMO---that mealie (my finger) didn't stand a chance. :lol: So, now, learning the hard way, I scoop them with a spoon and place them on a lid container, which I move around, making her sniff them out. I've found with the beatles (growing my own), scooping up the chunk of carrot in the container usually has one or two beatles attached, and that helps to ensure that the beatle won't make it off of the lid, crawling in my house, and I also don't have to touch them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Haha guilty as charged. I just got her last week. >< Im still learning the ropes here! I was so scared of getting pinched at first. I still kinda am, i only pick her up out of her cage either with the blanket she sleeps on or i let her crawl into the hamster ball i bought for her and then i let her walk out onto my lap and once shes in my hands shes pretty much controllable but still if i have her in the ball or in a bag even in a blanket she spikes up completely so i cant pick her up. and to heighten the fear, she started with the biting now. ugh. -_- my hands were totally clean.
 

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Juicebox said:
Haha guilty as charged. I just got her last week. >< Im still learning the ropes here! I was so scared of getting pinched at first. I still kinda am, i only pick her up out of her cage either with the blanket she sleeps on or i let her crawl into the hamster ball i bought for her and then i let her walk out onto my lap and once shes in my hands shes pretty much controllable but still if i have her in the ball or in a bag even in a blanket she spikes up completely so i cant pick her up. and to heighten the fear, she started with the biting now. ugh. -_- my hands were totally clean.
Hamster balls are bad hedgies like to poop and pee when they run so it will get all over them also the air flow is bad and one more bad thing is that their nails can get stuck in the vent slits and get torn off.
 

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Like Aleshea said, hamster balls aren't really great for hedgies. Same reasons that she mentioned, also hamster balls are WAY too small for a hedgie, even a small hedgie.

With the biting, she may just be giving you irritated bites, saying "Leave me alone". Of course, you can't do that if you want to bond with her. When she bites you, try blowing lightly into her face to discourage it. Remember not to put her down or back in her cage right after a bite, as it reinforces the behavior.
She is still new to you, you said you've only had her for a week. She's going to take awhile to warm up to you, which means she may go into a spiky ball every time you pick her up for another few weeks or maybe even a couple of months. The best way to scoop her up is just to do it (yes, I know it hurts, but then moving quickly and carefully, move her to a blanket on your lap as fast as you can, that'll help), or to use a small fleece blanket to scoop her up, which will help minimize the pokes. To help her get used to you and your smell, try just holding her in your lap in a blanket, maybe with part of it over her, and don't try petting her right away. Let her relax a little bit and realize you're not so scary. You might also try offering her a mealworm right after you get her to your lap. Since she's biting, I wouldn't handfeed them, but place them in front of her so she can eat it. The treat will reinforce that you = good things. :) Good luck!
 

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If you're holding the mealies in your fingers, she smells the mealie and wants to get it--she can't tell the difference between where your fingers end and the mealworm begins. Place the mealie on your lap in front of her instead. Saves wear and tear on the fingertips.
If the biting was when you were trying to pick her up, she probably didn't want to be picked up at that time. Or if it was after you'd had her out for awhile, she was tired of interaction time and wanted to be put back in the cage. As Lilysmommy said, don't put her directly back into the cage if she bites or she'll associate biting with getting her way.

When she's in the ball (which is not the best toy for her, as Aleshea pointed out) and when she's in the bag, she can't see you. For all she knows, you're a giant predator coming in to eat her. Even my hedgie still balls up when I'm getting him out of the bag, and I've had him for 8 months and he's pretty socialized and friendly.

Hedgehogs can take months to warm up to owners, if they do at all--some are just grumps for their whole lives. You've only had yours for a week, so balling up is still totally normal especially when it's because you're taking her out of the ball/bag. If she's exploring on your lap, she's starting to warm up to you. You have to spend time with her (at least 30 minutes per day) and be patient. Odds are she'll come around before it's been a month, but you have to give her the chance. Mealies are definitely a positive reinforcement and help a lot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks everyone. I know the hamster ball is a bad idea but I dont use it for her to play in, only to get her out of the cage since when shes in the ball and i drop her into my hands shes calmer and I also use it for a small amount of time when im changing her bedding and cleaning the tank. I have also noticed that giving her meal worms has changed ALOT of her behavior. I use a fork to feed them to her and she starts attacking the fork haha. She also starts to bite the top of the container for the mealworms when i put the mealworm there but I guess its because of what you said with her not knowing the difference between the mealworm and whatever its touching.
 

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Yes, some can definitely be aggressive when they're being mighty hunters. :lol: You might want to the blunt end of a plastic fork, though, I'd be concerned about the tines of a fork hurting her mouth, or her chipping a tooth on the metal by attacking it so much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
yeah, i was noticing that too, i started using the other side lol.
 
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