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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone, im a first time hedgie owner, i recently bought an 8 month - 1 year old Albino from a pet store, i originally was going to go to a breeder, but when i went to the pet store to look if they have any books on hedgies, i saw this albino, and i just felt so bad that he was there, and i knew, that if i didnt get him, there was a large chance that some little kid might just get him and not give him the love he deserves, by the way, im a 15 year old male, so, anyway, i named my hedge Justice, this is my 4th day having him. When i bought him, they filled a basket full of items i should buy for my hedgie, in it, was VitaKraft hedgie food, a metal wheel, Super worms, a packet of wooden chew blocks, a little hamster thing that holds one chew block, and the cage came with like a wooden tunnel thing, also it came with 2 bowls, and 4 plastic cat balls with bells in them.

First of all, i thought super worms arent good for hedgies? and the metal wheel isnt safe cause hes little feet can slip through, i read that hedgies drink best out of a water bottle, and he seriously doesnt chew anything, so like =[

but i put a t shirt that i had worn, in the cage with him and half the time he sleeps under it, the other half, he sleeps under the wooden thing, but burrowed into the woodchips

i think he's extremely sensitive to light,

it seems like he sleeps for 23 hours a day, and every night he comes out for around an hour at 12 30 to go on his wheel and eat a little bit, and i dont even know if hes drinking

i am like MADLY inlove with this hedgie, hes all i think about, and i dont think ive ever felt closer with an animal. But anyway, today i went out, and bought him a big igloo, a chain thing that you put chew toys on, and a water bottle,

also i forgot to mention, the pet store also told me to buy a salt lick and mineral stone, both of which im pretty sure he hasnt touched


hes not one whos up for playing i find,

also, in the 4 days ive had him, i feel like hes liking me better already, daily i take him out 2-3 times, and wrap him in a blankey, and he sleeps on my lap, and sometimes when i pick him up, and hold him into my hands, he goes and cuddles inbetween the bend of my elbow and my body


i realise, this is more of a rant than anything, its just i have so many thoughts and questions about my hedgie, and i just wanted to get a bit of the background out,

ugh

sorry, please tell me what you think, just about how he is right now or anything

<3 <3

thankss
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
ALSO

his hedgie food, has like, nuts, raisins oats, some like kibbles, and stuff,

i dont think he really eats much of it

should i switch him to cat food?


but ive heard cat food makes a hedgie fat due to low protein?
 

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1. Vitakraft can KILL him.
2. He is not a rodent so the mineral lick, the salt wheel, and all gnawing blocks should be removed. Rodents teeth grow constantly so they need to gnaw to keep them wore down...this is the only set of teeth your hedgie will get.
3. look on the diet and nutrition thread and pick 1-3 of the dry cat foods there and feed them to him, i also mix in grape nuts cereal to get the fiber content up.
4. what kind of wheel? is it at least 11" in diameter and solid bottom? if not it needs to be. any smaller and he will soon out grow it. and if it is mest he can get his toenails caught in it and rip them off, if it has the metal rungs he isn't coordinated enough to hit the rungs and can break a leg. he may have an injury already if he isnt running much.
 

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I think its great that you have such a love for your hedgehog.
We want pics.
Its great that you came to HHC for help.
Theres lots of that here.
If your going to feed him super worms cut the heads off. They can bite and there have been rumors they can bite through a animals stomach lining. I presonally prefer meal worms.
A metal wheel is no good. There is to many risks. Your gonna want to get a standing plaastic or bucket wheel or one that hooks to the side of the cage. Hedgehogs can get caught in the axel thing on some wheel if they try to step of when its stiff standing so if you get a standding wheel make sure that it is safe.

Hedghogs unlike rodents have teeth like us. Rodents need chewing blocks etc because their teeth never stop growing. If A hedgie loses his/her adult teeth they dont grown new ones. So out with the blocks.


Actually water bowls are much more better for your hedgehog. They are more natural for them to drin out of and they drink much more water. Plus some hedgies cant use a water bottle properly so they bite them and can break their teeth.

I would suggest trying liners. They saved me loads ofmoney Basically its a piece of fabric cut to fit your cage that you can change every few days. Just shake off the poo's and throw it in the wash. Much less costly and much safer for your hedgie. They have respitory problems.

NO SALT LICK OR MINERAL STONE !! lol.. Not for hedgies.

Yes switch him to a high quality dry cat food.
Note * Albinos have no pigmentation and are EXTREMLY sensitive to sunlight. So dont leave him in the sun for a long time.
 

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You definitely need to switch him to cat food. VitaKraft hedgehog food is nothing but garbage, and raisins are poisonous for hedgehogs. This thread-http://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=15 -has a list of the brands of cat food that are healthy for hedgehogs.
Also, you were right about the wheel. If it is a metal one that has the bars, a hedgehog's legs can slip between the bars and be injured. There are a couple of other types of wheels that are better for them, like bucket wheels, or Flying Saucers. I think either of them can be bought at a pet store, or at least I've seen them at the Pet Supplies Plus near my house.
He shouldn't need the wooden blocks at all, as hedgies don't chew on anything. Their teeth don't grow like rodents do. The cat balls should be alright as toys for him, as long as you make sure they don't have any slots where his mouth could get stuck. There are other good toy suggestions in the toy section of this forum.
Superworms aren't bad for hedgies, I don't think. They can bite, but not hard enough to hurt your little one, and if he likes them, I don't think they'd even get a chance to bite before the hedgie would gobble them down. :lol:
There is a debate about whether bottles or bowls are better for hedgies. It's supposed to be bad for hedgies to have to tilt their head up to drink from a spout, but if you move it down so it's at face level, it should be fine. You could just put both the bowl and bottle in there and see which he seems to prefer.
Some hedgehogs are more sensitive to light than others, I know my Lily doesn't like to explore my bedroom floor much if I have the big overhead light on. But you should make sure he's getting 12 hours of light a day, so he's not tempted to go into hibernation.
And one final thing, I noticed you didn't say anything about the temperature. Are you making sure that his cage is staying about 73 degrees Farenheit, or higher? If the temperature is too low, it can also make your hedgie try to go into hibernation, and he could die.
Sorry this was so long, just wanted to help out as much as I could. :) Oh, and Lily does that same thing, snuggling between my body and my elbow. :D I love it!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Ah! His name is Justice, for multiple reasons

k well looks like im gonna haveto go shopping tomorrow,

is it okay if he has vitakraft hedgie mix tonight? or should i just like.... let him starve.. which sounds like the worse of the two options

k well, i totallly just took out the blocks and licks, thanks for warning me, im really glad i came here, UMM i got aspen wood shavings for him cause aspen doesnt have oils in it that will bother him, hmmm his cage looks so bare without all those things in it, umm at the local pet store they have a plastic wheel that has like little grips every inch, it has a solid bottom,

um, POOR BABY, omg, i wish the pet store actually knew what they were talking about, i feel so guilty now,

should i substitute the fact that a few things are gone, with more hiding spots? he has 2 right now


ahh

AHH

=[
 

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I'm not sure about the food thing, really, but don't beat yourself up too much. I suppose you could've done a bit more research, if you had been planning to get a hedgehog, but it isn't your fault that the pet store wasn't properly informed. The important thing is that you are trying to do best by your little guy now, and you found a great place to get lots of advice and support! :) Don't worry about putting more hiding places in for now, I don't think, he should be fine until tomorrow as long as he has at least one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Lilysmommy said:
You definitely need to switch him to cat food. VitaKraft hedgehog food is nothing but garbage, and raisins are poisonous for hedgehogs. This thread-http://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=15 -has a list of the brands of cat food that are healthy for hedgehogs.
Also, you were right about the wheel. If it is a metal one that has the bars, a hedgehog's legs can slip between the bars and be injured. There are a couple of other types of wheels that are better for them, like bucket wheels, or Flying Saucers. I think either of them can be bought at a pet store, or at least I've seen them at the Pet Supplies Plus near my house.
He shouldn't need the wooden blocks at all, as hedgies don't chew on anything. Their teeth don't grow like rodents do. The cat balls should be alright as toys for him, as long as you make sure they don't have any slots where his mouth could get stuck. There are other good toy suggestions in the toy section of this forum.
Superworms aren't bad for hedgies, I don't think. They can bite, but not hard enough to hurt your little one, and if he likes them, I don't think they'd even get a chance to bite before the hedgie would gobble them down. :lol:
There is a debate about whether bottles or bowls are better for hedgies. It's supposed to be bad for hedgies to have to tilt their head up to drink from a spout, but if you move it down so it's at face level, it should be fine. You could just put both the bowl and bottle in there and see which he seems to prefer.
Some hedgehogs are more sensitive to light than others, I know my Lily doesn't like to explore my bedroom floor much if I have the big overhead light on. But you should make sure he's getting 12 hours of light a day, so he's not tempted to go into hibernation.
And one final thing, I noticed you didn't say anything about the temperature. Are you making sure that his cage is staying about 73 degrees Farenheit, or higher? If the temperature is too low, it can also make your hedgie try to go into hibernation, and he could die.
Sorry this was so long, just wanted to help out as much as I could. :) Oh, and Lily does that same thing, snuggling between my body and my elbow. :D I love it!
Ah

well, do you know how many degrees celcius 73 farenheight is? my rooms pretty warm usually, and alot of the time i have a heater on and it gets pretty hot

not like unbareably hot ( dont know if unbareably is a real word) but Ah

should i feed him the VK tonight, and like, pick out the raisins,

also, i wanna get him a cute pink litter tray thing, that fits into the corner of a cage, cause like, he needs it, FRICk, i dont think he even likes the vitakraft, so he isnt eating much, so hes sleepy, so he sleeps alot, and then he doesnt drink enough water

and then

well then

=[

AWWW

=[ =[ =[
 

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Welcome to HHC! It's great to hear you'd like to learn how to care for your new little guy properly.

The first thing I can say is read the stickies and other posts! In each section, there are huge amounts of information on nearly everything. Use the search, and you can probably get the answers to many of your questions.

VitaKraft hedgie food, a metal wheel, Super worms, a packet of wooden chew blocks, a little hamster thing that holds one chew block, and the cage came with like a wooden tunnel thing, also it came with 2 bowls, and 4 plastic cat balls with bells in them.
Vitakraft is the absolute worst food possible to feed a hedgie. I would go out ant immediately replace it with a mix of two or more high-quality cat foods. There is a list of great foods here: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=15

A metal wheel- is this a mesh metal wheel? If so, toss it! These things are death traps. You want something with a solid running surface and preferrably no crossbars. A bucket wheel, cake walk wheel, or flying saucer wheel would be best. There are Comfort and Silent Spinner wheels, but there are much better (more comfortable, quieter, etc) ones out there.

Superworms are fine to feed but you may want to cut off the heads prior to feeding. As numo said, there are rumors of them biting through the stomach lining of some herps or other small animals.

Hedgehogs are not rodents, so there is no need for the chew blocks, salt licks, or any hamster/guinea pig related objects.

The cat bell balls can be used as toys but be careful because hedgies can get hurt on them. Our Nancy has some graphic pictures of what the slots in these toys can cause.

It is good to hear you are starting the bonding process and letting him sleep in one of your shirts. You might not want it back. :lol: ;)

Hedgies are also nocturnal, keep that in mind.

Since you have only had him 4 days, don't expect to know everything about his personality or preferences right off the bat. It will take a bit to get to know eachother. :)

Good luck with your new little guy!

ETA: Oh wow! There were about 5 more posts than before, when this actually got submitted! Sorry for the repetition.
 

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Aw, calm down! You really are doing good by getting on here to find out more about his needs. 73 is 23 degrees in Celsius, and some hedgehogs actually need even warmer than that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
i just spoke to my mom, we're going first thing in the morning to get him a new wheel and food,

=[

i feel horrible, oh my god,


k well my room is like 23-24 degress celcius with my heater on

omg, its been like 20-22 in the last 4 days, could he have started to try and hibernate?

=[ =[
 

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Depending on the hedgie, he may or may not have. I've accidentally let my room get down to 69 before ( :? ), but Lily's never tried to hibernate and I got the temp up as soon as I could. The signs of hibernation to watch out for are a cool belly, inability to ball up, and sluggish movements. As long as Justice has seemed active and had a warm belly, I'm sure he's been fine. But you should probably add to your shopping list for tomorrow:
a ceramic space heater or heat emitter with a built in thermostat, or a thermostat that you can plug them into
or you can also get small heating pads that you can place under the cage, maybe under his sleeping area to make sure that stays warm. You should try to make sure that the room temperature stays a constant 23 degrees or higher. It can affect a hedgie's immune system to have the temperature change a lot. It might also help to have a humidifier in the room if it starts getting very dry. Hedgehogs have naturally dry skin and it can get even worse in the winter when the heaters dry the air out even more. A good humidity is about 30%, from what I've gathered.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
oh and also, i dont want everybody to think i went into this without researching how to take care of my hedgie, but when i got there, the lady who helped me was the manager, and she said she owns 4 hedgies, and she said, take these things, and i was like, well i guess she must know whats right cause she has so many hedgies, but oh god, i guess i was horribly wrong, now i just feel bad for her hedgies
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Lilysmommy said:
Depending on the hedgie, he may or may not have. I've accidentally let my room get down to 69 before ( :? ), but Lily's never tried to hibernate and I got the temp up as soon as I could. The signs of hibernation to watch out for are a cool belly, inability to ball up, and sluggish movements. As long as Justice has seemed active and had a warm belly, I'm sure he's been fine. But you should probably add to your shopping list for tomorrow:
a ceramic space heater or heat emitter with a built in thermostat, or a thermostat that you can plug them into
or you can also get small heating pads that you can place under the cage, maybe under his sleeping area to make sure that stays warm. You should try to make sure that the room temperature stays a constant 23 degrees or higher. It can affect a hedgie's immune system to have the temperature change a lot. It might also help to have a humidifier in the room if it starts getting very dry. Hedgehogs have naturally dry skin and it can get even worse in the winter when the heaters dry the air out even more. A good humidity is about 30%, from what I've gathered.
thanks so much =]

i dont think i saw any heaters like that at the store, so im thinking, im gonna check with my mom to see if we can go further, to a hopefully better store

ugh
 

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I don't know if they'd have the space heaters at a pet store, although they should have heat emitters in the reptile supplies section. I got my space heater from Meijers, just a general convenience store. I'm sure you could find them at hardware stores, too.

Btw, as for what to feed tonight, I'm not really sure what would be best, unfortunately. If you do end up feeding the food you have, make sure you do at least pick the raisins out. From what you said, he doesn't eat much anyway, so I doubt he would tonight, either. Just for tonight, you might offer a little bit of chopped up plain boiled chicken or turkey, if you have it. Generally you only feed that for treats, but I would think even that would have to better than the VitaKraft, just for one night. But at least he'll have good food for tomorrow night! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
i think im gonna give him the VK with the raisins out, cause i have no chicken or turkey =[ =[
what if i found some veggies? or apples or bananas?

also, every morning when i checked his bowl, i saw that all the raisins were still there, meaning he didnt eat them =]
 

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I suppose you could offer him some apple or banana. But he may not even want to try it, sometimes it takes several introductions of a food before a hedgie will try it and find he likes it. He should be fine for the night, though. He's lucky to have such a devoted hedgiedaddy. :) I'm glad you ended up getting him instead of someone who wouldn't bother finding out what he needs.

One moment on the website, trying to get it to load. But if it's a large pet store, I'm sure you'll find lots of good things. :) You should find the right type of wheels in the small animal section, bucket wheels, flying saucers, and silent spinners are all pretty good from what I've read. If Justice is a larger hedgehog, make sure the wheel will be big enough for him to run comfortably. Heat emitters should be found in the reptiles section, I think, and obviously cat food in the cat section. :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
which two cat food brands would you reccommend?


and ya hes a big hedgie, not fat, but like, long, i love him to death

and thanks so much for everything

like

i was so close to crying tonight, and i hardly ever cry, i honestly care so much about this little hedgie
 
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