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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

This is the first time for me posting here. I have had my hedgehog for about five months and he is a little over six months old. For the last two months or so he has been biting on occasion which he did not ever do until he was around four months old. Around this time he also started having boy-time so I figured it was just a phase that came with the age. I am worried now however because he has been acting strange for the last two days. today he has been waking up at odd times and he became very agitated when I cut his nails. He actually made the yelp-like sound that you hope to never have to hear. After he did this I cuddled him and tried to calm him down. I am a little worried that I hurt his leg by his squirming during the nail cutting but I gave him his toilet paper tube so he would run around and he seems fine. He is resting now but I am just really worried about all of his behavior changes and about his general health... he is showing no signs of an issue but I know they sometimes hide it. another note is that his skin was really dry so I gave him an oatmeal bath today with an olive oil rinse (he has had this once before and had no adverse reactions) it really helped his skin but I wonder if the dryness has anything to do with it either. I just don't know if he is depressed or angry or what is going on.

help pleasee.
 

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Is he drinking his water? Dehydration can make hedgies a bit agitated.

It could also be that he is going through puberty, and has extra testosterone in his body right now. As he grows up those levels will decrease. I encourage you to keep holding him every day, even if he's balling up or trying to nip you (wrap him in a towel if it's too painful).

This most likely is not the case, but make sure you're hands are clean and do not smell like good. Hedgehogs have very poor vision, and most of the time if it smells like food, it is. Zeus nips at my fingers if they smell like his mealworms.

As far as the dry skin goes..

What food are you feeding him? The dry skin could also be caused by his food. Just like people hedgehogs can be sensitive to certain foods. Such as corn and wheat (in most cat foods.) also what treats do you feed him?

He may very well have mites..it's pretty common for hedgehogs. I would take him to see an exotics vet, or any vet who has knowledge in treating hedgehogs. As soon as possible. If he does have mites it's very important that everything in his cage is cleaned very thoroughly, I would do that soon anyway, just to be on the safe side.

Last thing I can think of is bedding, what bedding to you use? If it's any wood shavings I would get rid of them immediately. Petco brand wood shavings have been known to contain mites. And also, the wood shavings can get stuck in his penal shaft. Ouch! I always keep my male hedgehog on fleece cage liners, with lots of fleece strips for digging. Wood shavings can also dry out his skin.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
He eats purina 1 chicken and rice blend and meal worms for treats. He uses fleece bedding. I don't know how he could have gotten mites though since he hasn't been outside in over a month. is that still possible? and do you think that the biting will stop when his hormones have settled down a little? does the winter time cause dry skin? how can I check for mites at home... he is scratching but minimally and I just don't know how he could have picked them up. I do handle him every day though and he never balls.
 

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Mites sound unlikely without the frantic scratching, but you can always rub him down with a dark cloth and check under bright lights for little moving dots. It doesn't always work (lots of false negatives), but if you see something, you know it's mites!

The winter is often drier than the summer, both outdoor-environment (why the shampoo ads in Canada all change to "winter protection for your hair!" this time of year...), and with heaters/closed windows reducing humidity indoors. Careful not to over-do oil; too much or too often can lead to skin infections.

I have no idea about the behavioural changes. I'm a bit distracted by my own little friend having a bad week, so I'm not up for my usual archive-diving for ideas. Good luck!
 
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