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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We got Bertie almost 3 weeks ago, and she started out not eating or drinking much at all, and sleeping pretty much all the time. But now, although she's not eating A LOT, she is eating a good bit more than she was, and she's more active. She seems as interested in gnawing on the stem of her water bottle as drinking from it though. She chews and tugs on it until it falls out of the mounting spring and onto the floor of the cage, where, obviously, it can't dispense any water at all, and she goes thirsty until we pin it back up. Right now, she's never alone for more than a couple hours, but when I go back to work, it'll be a different situation.

I'm a little nervous that the bottle isn't dispensing water fast enough for her liking, but I've read that open water containers are a bad idea because hedgies like to spill. Anyone else have issues like this with their hedgie?
 

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Hi,

You could try a bowl. I use a shallow, round, ceramic cat one and it works great. When I used shavings I put a square dinner plate on one side of his house with the food and water bowls on it.
This kept the bedding out of it and if he dumped his food it was easy to pick up.
I use fleece liners now and it works out even better, no plate needed. Maybe worth a try :)
 

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Most people here will recommend using a dish or bowl of some sort, because having to tilt their heads up to drink from a bottle is an unnatural position for little hedgie necks. The only problems with using dishes instead of bottles are that sometimes they spill or get bedding or food in them. As long as it's changed daily, there shouldn't be any reason why you couldn't switch to a bowl.
 

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I highly recommend trying a bowl with her. I had a hedgehog many many years ago that would bite and pull on the nozzle of her water bottle. She ended up breaking a tooth on it. I will also note that I noticed her water intake increase once switched to a bowl.

For each hedgehog I have had the pleasure of caring for since, I have switched them to bowls if they were using bottles. Each stopped using the water bottle within a day or two of the bowl being introduced.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I got her a water dish, and a chew toy, since she seems so enamored of chewing on the bottle stem, but she's showing no interest in either new item. Should I just take the bottle away all together to discourage that behavior, or leave it until she realizes that the dish and chew toy are alternative options?

In other news, we discontinued the use of the hedgehog food we got at the pet store, and started with an organic kitten formula, and her food intake is so much improved! I spent so much time learning their behavior and social needs, I wish I'd spent a little more more time researching their nutritional needs. But now she's doing great with the food. Hopefully she'll get over this water bottle gnawing before long too!
 

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Have you tried to place the water bowl under the water bottle?
It might help her figure out what it's there for.

When I first got my girls they had been on a water bottle and it took a few days for one of them to try the bowl but once she didn't she stopped using the bottle.

I would leave both bowl and bottle in there for a few days to give her an option.

I'm no expert and fairly new hedgie owner but that's what had worked for me.
Hope it helps
 

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Put the bowl next to or under the water bottle. and then give it a couple of days. They may at first continue using the bottle because that is what they know, but mine have always switched once they discovered the bowl. After you see her drink from the bowl, take the bottle out.

I have had 3 hedgehogs over the years that had a fascination for biting at metal objects. One of my current hedgehogs has that fascination. Which was a huge problem when we were trying out a wheel that used metal screws & nuts to attach the bucket to the skate.
 

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Kalandra said:
I have had 3 hedgehogs over the years that had a fascination for biting at metal objects. One of my current hedgehogs has that fascination. Which was a huge problem when we were trying out a wheel that used metal screws & nuts to attach the bucket to the skate.
We started Dora on a water bottle but switched her to a bowl after a short period of time. We never saw her attack her water bottle but her water intake did go up after switching to the bowl.

She also seems to have a fascination with metal and will randomly attack the button/zipper on my jeans.
 

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Mine also likes shiny things. He'll see it, then run and attack it :lol: It's the ONLY thing other than mealies that he'll MOVE for XD So I drag it just out of teeth's way and he'll chase it, then I give him the leather end to chomp down on, so he feels satisfied he's caught something. :lol:
 
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