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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

I am BRAND new to the hedgehog work. I just got my first hedgehog yesterday. So... he wont let me pick him up, if i pick him up he curls up, quills,hisses and, pops... The breeder i got him from said he is the largest in his litter and he is super shy... How do I get him to be comfortable with me? I already did the shirt and I held him in the morning and I just got done holding him now....

Please help... I know I made a mess of this but I have noo idea what else to do...
 

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Hedgehogs are notorious for taking a very long time to get used to people. You may not see your hedgehog come around for weeks or even months. Just keep doing what you're doing and be patient.
 

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I let him sit on my lap in a towel (smells like me) and i just talk to him and pet him. He is now opening his head up faster after i stop petting him... it just kills me
 

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Don't panic! I promise he's just being a hedgehog. You really just need to give him time. You've only had him for a day. Getting him to know and trust you could take weeks, months or even longer.

The only thing you can do is make sure you take him out every single day and have him with you for at least 30 minutes. Longer is better though. If you're having a hard time picking him up, use a fleece blanket to protect your hands, plop him in your lap and cover him up with the blanket. After that just wait. He may sleep on you, and that's fine. He may decide to get up and explore after a bit. That's fine too. Either way he's getting used to you. Just be patient with him. This isn't a fast process and he's just had his whole world turned upside down. He'll come around. It may help a little to dim the lights in the room and have something in the background going like the tv.

Good luck! If you have more questions just ask :)
 

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Thank you everyone! it just scares me when he pops because i feel like im hurting him. but last night when I brought him home he ran on his wheel, ate food, and drank some water... so im guessing thats a good sign?
 

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Adding to what's been said, maybe you could try and cover him on your lap with a blanket. I use a baby receiving blanket because I don't want it any warmer than it needs to be.
Also towels, assuming your referring to a terry cloth towel with the little loops isn't really a good idea. Little toes can get caught in the loops.
 

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Thank you everyone! it just scares me when he pops because i feel like im hurting him. but last night when I brought him home he ran on his wheel, ate food, and drank some water... so im guessing thats a good sign?
You're not hurting him. He's just using his natural ability to scare you away. The important thing is not to let him. Be persistent and consistent, and it'll eventually get better.

And, yes, wheeling, eating, and drinking are all good signs. They mean he's not so stressed and scared that he's unable to do his thing.
 

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Absolutely! If he's eating, drinking, and running then he's probably settling in fairly smoothly. I know it's scary sounding when they pop and hiss, but that's just their way. To him, you're a giant scary monster that wants to eat him. All he wants to do is make the scary thing go away. After a while he'll realize you aren't so scary.
 

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I can say with 95% certainty that you aren't hurting him. He wants you to believe that he is a big evil tough guy. But we all know that isn't the case. Pick him up when he is acting like a Tasmanian devil, take him out when he is a cute easy going guy. Remember you are much bigger than him. The jumps and pops and evil noises are intended to scare you away, don't let them.
 

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Persistence, consistent handling. That's giant thing number 1. Aside from that, a calm, quiet room that's dimly lit along with some music or the tv in the background to cover up sudden noises. Talk to him gently. That's really all there is to it. Add in time and you're golden.
 

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It also depends on if you are trying to get over fears with him. One thing we have done to work on both hedgehog and people fears is once they are out of the cage and safely on a lap. Gently hold your hand over their body, they still have movement, you are barely touching them. But it works with your fears of the quills and tells the hedgehog that jumping isn't going to make you run away.
 

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Another thing you can do if you're not comfortable holding him is making a little play pen area and just letting him run around or sleep by you.

One of the first things I did to get Reggie to bond with me was put him in a very large hoodie I had. It was easy to spend a lot of time just watching tv or whatever with him in the pouch, and he had the freedom to sleep or burrow. Make sure it's a large hoodie though! You don't want your hedgehog to get stuck if he decides to curl up.
 
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