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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just got a 10 wk old hedgie about 1 1/2 wks ago. She's definitely underweight, as she only weighs 102 grams when I got her and a few days ago when I weighed her, she was 110. She is smaller than most 10 wk old hedgies too though. I can post a picture of her by something to show her size, but she's definitely underweight too. She is slowly gaining, but I'm worried its not enough and now I'm starting to see more and more of her food still in her dish the next morning. (before it seemed she ate most of it every night!! I did see obvious markings (saw little baby food foot tracks on her fleece after walking through her baby food :roll: :D ) and maybe a few pieces of kibble are gone, but not much at all. Before she was eating maybe 10-15 pieces of kibble soaked in chicken broth (doesn't seem interested in it, if its still hard) and maybe some of the baby food gone. Now its just a few pieces gone. What else can I offer her that she might like?? We bought some crickets yesterday and are going to try them today. Next time I get to the pet store I'll look for the canned insects too, because right now crickets are the only thing you can get because they've been back-ordered w/ mealies for months. :( Any thoughts on how much she should be eating and what to offer her to encourage her to eat??

Jessie
 

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I would suggest that you get some Royal Canin Baby Cat 34. The kibble is very small, so it is much easier for little ones to eat. There is lots of fat and protein in it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Do you know of anywhere I can find the Royal Canin online??? I can't find it locally and when I looked it up on the site anyone even somewhat close only sold the dog food. :( Right now she's eating Chicken Soup for Cats (they have been all out for kittens) and now that we've had her just about 2 wks we are slowing adding a bit of Eagle Pack to it. (for cats and kittens) Both have 20% fat and I'm not sure about protein.
 

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Roayl canin kitten is good too. That is part of Jade's mix.
 

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I had a WEE LITTLE hedgie also. But at about 3 months, she had a tremendous growth spurt and is now the size that she should be (for her age). When she wasn't gaining weight, I realized one day that she was knawing the cat food kibbles, but could not bite them hard enough to break them up and swallow. She looked like a little dog chewing on a raw hide.

I put her food in a zip lock bag and crushed it up into finer and smaller bites. Then I mixed it with "Fancy Feast (canned) Elegant Medley's". It's a Whipped Egg base (rather than gravy), and comes in 3 or 4 flavors: Wild Salmon, White Meat Chicken, etc. I also gave her 3 to 5 CANNED mealworms, twice a day. The canned worms are much softer and smellier than the freeze dried ones.

She ate this mixture for about 2 months and then I began to wean her from the canned cat food. After that, I had to start introducing WHOLE kibbles again. She refused to eat anything but the crushed up food, so I finally decided to go cold turkey and remove all the crushed food. It took her 2 days to decide that she was hungry enough to eat the whole kibbles. By this time, she was older, larger, and stronger, and could eat the whole kibbles with no problems.

TODAY, you'd never know she was ever an 'extra small runt'.

Pixie
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanx Pixie!! I will definitely try that!! I have been soaking it in the chicken broth, but it seems to be drying out now that I had to turn on the heater in there too and I was wondering if she wasn't able to eat it. Right now I have some Max Cat (by Nutro) Chicken and Liver Kitten food that is canned. (Haven't used it, but it was what I found when I went to look a few wks ago, but at that time the chicken broth was working) Would that work or should I look for the Fancy Feast one?? I also just ordered some canned mealies and I did see she's been eating her crickets or at least they were gone from her dish (not sure if my son dumped them when dumping her food, I'll have to ask him) so I'll give her a few mealies each day too as soon as they get here, which should be by the end of the week. Now I just need to find wax worms too, because someone said they have the most fat. The only place I can find them now is the bait shops and I have heard not to trust them from there, so have to wait until I can use the credit card again to order some. Hopefully this will help get some weight on her though. Thanx again.

Jessie

ETA...YAY, I just found somwhere I can get waxworms too!!!
 

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I was wondering if she had been to the vet yet as well. Her image on CnQ reminded me a lot of Buttercup. Buttercup is a rescue at Flash and Thelma and has scoliosis. I had the pleasure to meet her at the Milwaukee hedgehog show earlier this month. She has a very pronounced hump on her back. Buttercup is an extremely tiny hedgehog, I believe Standing Bear said she topped out around 250 grams and entered his rescue somewhere around 190 grams (my numbers may be a little off).

I'd be very interested to see what a vet has to say and I'd also recommend emailing Standing Bear if it is a deformity of the spine. He's always willing to share his experiences.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
If it was a spinal deformity though, would it just appear or have been there since birth?? The lady said it has just appeared a few days before she brought her here?? I haven't went to vet yet, but am calling today to see when I can get an appointment made. Next week my hrs are a lot less at work, so I can get her in then.

Jessie
 

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It could still be a spinal defomity...that is showing up more as she gets older, also you don't know for sure that the person you got her from was telling the truth. It also could be an injury that will be harder to correct the longer its left...either way you have a responsibility to her to see a vet asap.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'm sorry if you misunderstood me, I wasn't asking because I was looking for reason not to bring her in, just looking for possible answers sooner. As is, I have talked to the vet today, who actually has a hedgehog of her own, so hopefully will be really good w/ Hedgie. She will be seeing her either October 28th if I can get a late enough appointment to go after work or she'll see her her on Saturday November 1st. So yes she will be going in very soon.

Jessie
 

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Hi, Jessie. I'm glad to know that you're taking your little girl to a vet soon. She's such a sweet-looking girl. Hopefully, her hump isn't anything serious.

LovingQuills said:
YAY, I just found somwhere I can get waxworms too!!!
I just wanted to let you know that waxworms are great for those who are underweight or in need of extra calories to boost their energy after a surgery or serious sickness. They are said to stimulate one's appetite too. However, I found live waxworms a bit more difficult to maintain than mealworms. You can't gutload them and they're a lot more perishable. You can keep live waxworms in a fridge, but if too much moisture gets in, they mould easily. Live waxworms are more expensive than mealies as well.

You want to keep in mind that many young hedgies don't take to feeder insects right away. Young hedgies tend to stick to the food they're already familiar with. So it's wise to get as few as possible at the beginning just to test them on your hedgie (FYI: I phoned around, found a pet store specializes in reptiles, and got a variety of feeder insects for a few dollars).

You could also try canned (freeze dry or dry roasted) bugs. They last longer. However, our hedgie refused to eat dead bugs for 8 months. Yet, he gobbled up live ones on the first try. So don't be discouraged even if your girl doesn't take to feeder insects right away. Keep offering them to her from time to time.

If your little girl wouldn't touch bugs, I recommend Chicken Soup For the Kitten Lovers Soul. You can order a small sample bag (1.5lb) from PetFoodDirect.com. It has good wholesome ingredients and other formulae of CSFCLS are very popular among HHs.

Good luck and please keep up posted on your vet visit. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Got her appointment, Tues the 28th at 6 pm, so I'll update once we get home. Its w/ a vet office that I was to for my chinchillas and was very happy w/ them then and the vet we are going to see this time, actually has a hedgehog so hopefully is well-informed on them.

Thanx for the info on the waxworms. Its a pet store I'm getting them from and hopefully 1 container won't be too expensive. My sister is picking them up for me tomorrow when she picks up her kids from school and then bringing them to me. I had went today, because they said they got them Tuesday mornings, but I was too early. (got there at 10 am, they don't get them until about 11:30 am, but I had to be back to my town by then to pick up kids from preschool so couldn't wait for them) I am hoping she'll eat them, as we are still having trouble finding something she will eat consistently!! I do have some canned Mealies on the way as well, so hopefully we'll find something she will eat. I am feeding her Chicken Soup for Cats because the place was out of the Kitten variety, but I'm hoping next time I go in, they'll have for kittens too. She's also getting Eagle Pack for Cats/Kittens mixed w/ some wet cat food by Nutro (is that a good one, the ingredients seemed good). I'm hoping when I go to the bigger town for her vet appointment that I can maybe find the Royal Canin for Kittens too (which do you get, I noticed on the website there were 2 for kittens??). Is the Royal Canin or the Chicken soup for Kittens better?? I'll check out that website too for the Chicken Soup for Kittens too. Thanx.

Jessie
 

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Our hedgehog Buttercup came is as an owner surrender at the denver dumb friends League on May 16, 2007 weighing 190 grams, reportedly one year old, and has a pronounced hump on her back. On the surrender sheet, it was stated that a veterinarian "thought it was an abscess." We got her up to 258 grams (mainly on Royal Canin babycat 34) as we knew our vet would want to do an xray and we did not want to put her under anesthesia at such a low weight. The xrays showed severe khyphosis and scoliosis. That did not slow her down - as she won the IHOG (International Hedgehog Olypmic Gymboree) Gold Medal at the Denver Show in October 2007. I wrote an article in the IHA News about her ("She Doesn't Know She's Disabled") and it appeared in the January/February 2008 issue. The National Scoliosis Foundation found out about the article and sponsored us to go to Boston to participate in a Scoliosis screening and educational DVD for 5th graders in March 2008. As a result, this year Buttercup will been by some 18 million 5th graders all over North America!

As it seems that your hedgehog has a prominence on her back, it would be very interesting to know what that is caused by. Buttercup is now two years and 5 months of age and is her usual energetic and zippy self. She has lost weight lately and is now back down to about 210 grams. One of our veterinarians suggested that with her spinal condition, she probably should not gain a great deal of weight anyway. Anyone wishing to see her photos and xrays may email me at [email protected] and I will be glad to send along a sample copy of the IHA News that contained her photos as an email attachment (maybe you might like to join up when you see our newsletter!).
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Buttercup sounds amazing. Glad she "fell" into such a great home!! Glad her disabilities haven't slowed her down at all!!

I'd love to learn more about scoliosis, esp. if that is Hedgie's diagnosis as well. The breeder said it had just appeared before bringing her to me, but then again never mentioned it until I emailed her and asked her about it, so who knows. Hopefully the vet will be able to give us some insight. I'm also hoping she can give me an idea of why she's so small and how much weight she should gain. Hopefully its nothing too serious and she'll be able to live a happy life here, as we are very attached to her already. If it was scoliosis would the bump be off to the side a little though?? I notice esp. when she walks that its not necessarily right in the middle (assuming hedgie's spines are in the middle of their backs like most animals) it seems to be off to one side, almost more like a shoulder??? I guess I'll find out more when I bring her in on Tuesday.

Jessie
 
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