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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm hoping someone reading this will be able to help us with Crash. He's a little wobbly today, which has happened before. We've given him the booster milk and some moist cat food, which usually gets him better almost immediately.
When I first looked at him this morning, he was sleeping on the floor of his cage instead of in his tunnel, which is unusual. That was the first clue that he wasn't feeling well. I picked him up (he was balled up as normally he would be when sleeping), and he didn't immediately wake up. He did wake up after a few seconds. I was holding him facing up (with his back facing the floor), which he NEVER allows. Usually he'll struggle and fight til he's back on his feet. Today, he just let me hold him that way and didn't complain. I finally turned him over and noticed that his belly felt cold, which is totally different than normal. That's what made me think he'd be wobbly. So I set him down, and he barely moved, but enough to confirm he's wobbly. So I got him his cat food and booster milk, along with a piece of banana (his favorite thing in the world) which I also put a bit of booster milk on. He nibbled at the cat food a little, and ate some of his banana. What bothers me about this is that normally, he devours a banana chunk til it's gone, no stopping for rest. Today, he only ate about a quarter of it and seemed only slightly interested in it.
Sue soaked a washcloth in warm water and wrapped it in a small towel to create a little heating pad for him. She put it in his igloo and he walked in there and burrowed under the heat pad, and he's still sleeping there now.
I'm really worried about him. He's been wobbly before, but always devoured his cat food and banana anyway. He's never been this lethargic, never let me hold him face-up before, and certainly never felt cold to the touch (we keep it 73-77 degrees in our room).
Also, one of his feet seems a bit swollen (though possibly not, it could just look that way). He was completely normal last night, friendly and energetic like always.
I'm letting him rest right now, as he would normally be asleep this time of day. But I have to admit, I'm very worried about him. I almost don't want to let him sleep right now because I'm scared he might not wake up.
Any ideas here, people?
 

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Cold belly, lethargy, and lack of interest in food all sound like hibernation attempt. I'd keep him warm on a heating pad and turn the temperature up.
 

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No, I don't think so. I think sometimes they can have a hibernation attempt, even if they're at the same temperature they've been kept at for a long time. He should be fine if you just keep the temperature a little warmer, maybe with a low of 74 or 75 instead of 73.

By the way, here's a good post on hibernation and what to do in case of attempts: http://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forums/v ... p?f=5&t=41
 

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Could be from not enough light. Hedgehogs need 12 - 14 hours of light a day. Cloudy days require supplemental lighting, some needing more than others.

(we keep it 73-77 degrees in our room)
This is quite a bit of fluctuation. You need not only a STEADY temperature, you need to stick a thermometer in his cage and see what his temps are. Every room has microclimes with different temperatures. His cage needs to be at LEAST 74, never less and always steady. I've had hedgehogs who hibernate when the temp drops below 78.

If his cage is on the floor, cold floors can cause chilling and there is less light at floor level.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Re: Help with Crash (update)

Sue took his makeshift heating pad out and re-warmed it, and I put his fleece strips (we call them his blankets) in the dryer to warm them up. While this was going on, Crash ate some more of his banana, walked around (much less wobbly, but not completely un-wobbly yet), and seemed MUCH more alert. He's obviously still not back to normal (his belly still feels a little cold but nowhere near as cold as before) but it seems like progress is being made. He's in his igloo now, under the heating pad and his blankets, getting some rest. I'll be checking on him throughout the day, though probably just to make sure he's breathing. I don't think I want to wake him up many more times today, unless anyone thinks I should?
So... does all this sound like signs of improvement?
 

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It definitely sounds like a hibernation attempt since he's better since warmed up. Be sure to keep the temperature a little higher from now on and steady--some will hibernate if there's a five degree fluctuation. Keep the temperature 75 or so and watch him carefully to be sure he doesn't start acting sick, because hibernation attempts weaken the immune system and allow them to get things such as URIs more easily.
Be sure he doesn't get wet. I don't know how you have the washcloth wrapped exactly but if water soaks through the towel and he gets wet it can make the situation worse. You might try a bottle with warm water and wrap that in a towel instead. Or a rice sock wrapped in a towel. I'd definitely be concerned about him getting wet after a hibernation attempt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
He definitely won't get wet. The moist warm washcloth is in a ziplock bag, all of which is wrapped in a folded towel. And his cage isn't on the floor, it's on a coffee table, which also has a blanket on it, and his cage has a blanket on the top as well.
 

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Make sure that he is still getting enough light with the blanket on top. As HedgeMom said, lack of light can also cause hibernation attempts. They must have at least 12 hours of light every day.

If you have some spare time, a quick way to warm him up, is to take him to bed with you :lol: Our body heat quickly supplies a nice warmth for them, even just letting him snuggle up in your lap, on your tummy, next to you, will all warm him up much quicker than the quickly made heating pad. And the heat will be much more consistant as well. Might want to do that until he is no longer wobbly, then you can put him back in his cage with the makeshift heating pad.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I actually did that this morning when we first found him to be cold. I held him in my lap with a blanket over him, but he climbed down to the bed and wanted to be by my knee. Weird, right? But I wasn't about to tell him he couldn't cuddle with my knee, I was worried about him.
 

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Immortalia said:
If you have some spare time, a quick way to warm him up, is to take him to bed with you :lol: Our body heat quickly supplies a nice warmth for them, even just letting him snuggle up in your lap, on your tummy, next to you, will all warm him up much quicker than the quickly made heating pad. And the heat will be much more consistant as well. Might want to do that until he is no longer wobbly, then you can put him back in his cage with the makeshift heating pad.
I usually stick them in a hedgebag and then inside my sweatshirt. You're right, body heat is the most effective way to warm them up.
 
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