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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone,

I have a quick question: I bought my hedgehog off a family who had her about 2 years. I assume they never used an outside method of heating - the hedgey seems fine. I had never heard about an outside source of heat until I started looking through peoples cage set-ups in which they had heating lamps and such.

Can someone let me know the deal on this? Is it really necessary? Is my hedgehog freezing cold at night?
 

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You must have a thermometer for your cage so you can monitor the temperature at all times.
Most hedgies prefer temperatures around 75F, and can easily go into fatal hibernation at temperatures as low as 70F.

Now, if you look at Free3Dream's recent thread, I talked about more or less the exact thing...

http://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=3348

Hibernation is fatal to APH's. Your hedgie has been very lucky so far that nothing has happened to her. If your hedgie is freezing cold at night, she can easily slip into hibernation, and not be able to come out of it.

Do a search for "hibernation" and many threads will pop up detailing how it happens, what it looks like, and what to do.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Does EVERYONE use heaters? I'm so scared now! I'll probably go out and get one but I'm concerned about the price of them (I'm a student). I'm pretty sure the last family never used a heater or they most likely would have given it to me or had a digital thermometer. I'm very surprised she never went into hibernation. I read on another site that they "can" go into hibernation but its not that usual - except on here everyone is talking about it and is concerned. Is this just paranoia?
 

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Hey there :)
I am paranoid about heating i will admit.
so i went out and bought a heating lamp and heating light for mine..but that because i live in the basement and it does get a little cold down here.
i herd that if the room the hedgehog is in stays at the normal room temp (73-75 degrees) that it wont need a heat lamp.
i also herd if you want to heat the cage but don't want to use a heat lamp people sometimes buy cheap space heaters for like $15-$20 and set them kinda close to the cage so that way the whole cage gets heated.

but if the room he/she is in is 73-75 i wouldn't be to concerned, but do some more research and decide what you want to do on your own :)

hope this helped a little..it wasn't much but owell :roll:
 

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If you had read the other thread, you would've seen that "I" personally do not use an outside heat source(except in the winter at my mom's house), BUT this is because my room and my apartment, is always kept so that my hedgehog's cage thermometer ALWAYS reads 76F. So if you like warmer temperatures, and don't mind turning the heat up at home, then the answer would be "No" you don't need another heat source.

IF the temperature of your cage is not kept at a constant preferable temperature, then it would be wise to use an outside source of heat, especially if you prefer your home at cooler temperatures.

Here, I don't think it's really paranoia. It's more like... We are CHOOSING to give these cute little creatures a home with us, and the least we can do is make them as comfortable as possible, without having to risk them going into hibernation.

Plus, there HAS been cases here where people's hedgies have attempted hibernation, and the owners found out in time, and were able to warm them up.

So...It's really up to you whether or not you want to take the risk. As hibernation usually happens in the span of about 12 hours or so. However, at least go out and buy a digital thermometer, so you always know what the temperature of the cage is at. Once you know, then you can decide if you need another source of heat.

Also, many who never used heaters, then added a heater to bring temperatures up to around 75F have noticed an increase in activity as well.

Also, IF you decide to get a ceramic heat emitter, do a search for them on here, as you MUST have a thermostat with it, otherwise you risk burning your hedgie. Again, just do a search for more information, as this topic has been covered many times. You can find links to buy them online as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I had read some threads but I'm at work so it was a bit more of a scan than a definite read. Thanks for your reply though.

I think i'll need to get a digital thermometer and see how regular the temperature in my apartment is.
 

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When I got my first hedgies, they lived in the family room quite comfortably. Then one morning I checked on them and found that my one female, Sadie, was balled up tight and not moving at all. She was trying to hibernate. I took her out...warmed her up under my shirt and imediately moved all of the hedgies into my office and put a space heater in. The family room was 73F when she tried to hibernate, and she had been living in there almost a year before it happened. All my Hedgies are now in a seperate room, my hedgie room, and I have a space heater I run 24/7 year round. It keeps the room at a steady 74-75F and the only time I've had anyone try to hibernate now was a little girl that had a URI. This shows that just because a lower temp has been ok, doesn't mean it always will be.
 

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I guess it also shows that temperature is not the only reason they try to "hibernate". Good to know!

FYI, as far as costs, it should be about $100 for everything you need - which isn't too bad. It also lasts a really long time.
 

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I don't use an outside heat source. My thermostat is set to 75 so if the temperature drops below that at any time - even in the summer the heater goes on. It's worked for us so far and it's not a ridiculously hot temperature for the apartment to be at.

Because you are a student there are other things to consider. For instance where are you living, do you have full control of whatever type of heater you have? Some student living apartments do not allow you to control your own heating and cooling, if you are living with roommate will they be ok with the higher temperatures? Are utilities included in your rent (if in an apartment) and if not what source of heat would be cheapest in terms of your utility bill?

Lots to think about. When I take my hedgehog to visit my parents we do not control the central heating and my parents keep it cool so we use a space heater in the winter months. I'm not sure if most newer space heaters have thermostats or not but if you can't set it to keep the space a particular temperature it would require more monitoring.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yeah those are definitely all different things to consider!
I'm going to start by getting a thermometer and seeing what the temp is in there.
Its a very good point that she could still go into hibernation even though she hasn't for the last 2 years without any outside heat source.

I cannot control the heat in my place so I'll have to look into all that. Especially in the winter time. She seems alright so far though! :)
 

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I've had a couple that needed a heating pad 24/7 despite having a 76/77F room. These girls did not get temperature sensitive until they were 1.5 and 2 years old. Emma required 75+ but not until she was almost 3. I've had a couple that would hibernate with a sudden drop in temperature, even if it was still very warm. This would happen in the summer when their room would be 83ish during the day and drop to 78/79F at night. This was prior to them having an air conditioner in their room. Many require more warmth as they age.

I personally feel there should be a heating system in place for every hedgehog so when it is needed, it's ready to go.
 

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to add to what I said earlier...and along with what Nancy said... I have a heat emitter that I keep just in case one of my more elderly hedgies needs the extra heat, and I also have a heating pad that I used for a rescue that had WHS and needed the extra warmth on the bottom of his cage as he wasn't very mobile.

I also use the heat emitter if I take any with me on holidays, camping, etc.
 
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