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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just recently got a little hedgie (I named her Zoey :) ) and overall she's been doing pretty well, if not a little sleepy, but I guess its just because she's a young'n. I have, however, noticed that occasionally she'll make this odd jerky movement forward, almost as though she were choking/coughing. She'll do it for about 5-10 seconds then she'll go about her business. It's very odd, and I can't figure out what could be the cause of it. She doesn't cough up anything so I don't know if it could be her bedding (I use Carefresh, because fleece liners are very impractical for me right now as I'm in a dorm.) She can't be cold either, because my room is usually around the 74-76 degree area, and 80 when I have her lamp on. Any familiarity or ideas on this issue?

Also, I've gone through 2 wheels already trying to find one just right for Zoey. The first one was too loud and kept me from sleeping at night, and the second was too small. So, I settled on the 12" Silent Spinner wheel. Now I am aware of the issues with their nails getting caught in the small holes, and to remedy this I put some duct tape over the holes to cover them up. It will probably be a pain to clean, but safety is more important!

Which leads me to my question - do you think the duct tape might be a health issue? Is it safe to use, in terms of the adhesive causing problems and/or her chewing on the tape?

Thanks in advance :D
 

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Formaldehyde is commonly used in glues and adhesive agents and is a preservative used in paints and finishes as well. My guess is that the adhesive rubber compound used on duct tape contains formaldehyde, although I'm not 100% sure.

According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, formaldehyde is a "probable human carcinogen". Knowing how cancer-prone our quilled babies are, I'd be very leery of using anything that contains and/or emits formaldehyde.

I'm not sure about jerking, but I thought someone else recently asked a similar question and was told it was common for a young hedgehogs to pulsate or have a seizure-like motion from time to time. Ahh... here is the thread "vibrating and pulsing". If what you're describing is the same thing, the thread says it's normal. :)
 

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Covering the holes in the silent spinner isn't a good idea. With the "bowl" shaped running surface the wheel will hold in urine with no holes to allow it to drain. This wetness isn't healthy for your hedgie to be running in all night. A commercially available wheel you can try is a flying saucer wheel. They are virtually silent and appropriate for all sizes of hedgies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Ah, ok, awesome - I was beginning to worry the shaking might be a precursor to an illness or something *whew* Thanks!

As for the formaldehyde, I'm doing a search on google and wikipedia right now to see if Duct tape contains it - it doesn't look as though it does. According to wikipedia, it is used mainly for industrial strength adhesive materials and paint, but I can't find anything that says it's used in the production of duct tape. I'll keep looking into it.

@ nikki - maybe if I were to punch smaller holes into the tape covering the holes, allowing the waste to flow through, while not being a hazard to Zoey? I'm afraid I'm completely broke at the moment from providing her with everything she needs, so a better wheel will have to wait. I'm going to try to get the Cake Walk, as the Flying Saucer can't really fit into her current cage. It's a 12" by 30" aquarium cage - just barely too small for it :(
 

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:eek: OMG!!! I HAVE A HEDGEHOG NAMED AFTER ME!!!!! I AM SOOO HONERED!!! CEPT MINES ZOIE, but ive had alot of animals named after me, snake,ferret, rabbit, and my cousin named her dog zoey lynne kimes, and mines zoie, same middle name, and kline!!!!! and they said they never thot of that!!! :? wow i feel loved!!!!! and so for the time i stayed with them, they would say ZOEY!!!! NO BAD DOG ZOEY!!! ZOEY SIT!!! ZOEY, OUTSIDE!!! I WAZ LIKE WHAT DID I DOOO????? :?

P.S. SHE'LL PROBABLY BE THE CUTEST HEDGEHOG EVER!!!!! LOL

P.P.S, SRRY I CANT HELP WITH THE WHEEL PROBLEM!!!! :roll:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
hedgieluver said:
:eek: OMG!!! I HAVE A HEDGEHOG NAMED AFTER ME!!!!! I AM SOOO HONERED!!! CEPT MINES ZOIE, but ive had alot of animals named after me, snake,ferret, rabbit, and my cousin named her dog zoey lynne kimes, and mines zoie, same middle name, and kline!!!!! and they said they never thot of that!!! :? wow i feel loved!!!!! and so for the time i stayed with them, they would say ZOEY!!!! NO BAD DOG ZOEY!!! ZOEY SIT!!! ZOEY, OUTSIDE!!! I WAZ LIKE WHAT DID I DOOO????? :? :
Hehe, well, it's always been my favorite name for a girl :D It's very endearing!
 

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You might want to think about getting a different cage soon as well. An aquarium has very poor ventalation. An inexpensive alternative is a sterlite container, you can get the 106 qt version for 11-15 dollars depending n where you get it. unlike aquariums, with the sterlites you can heat the plastic and drill holes all the way around about half way up to allow for better ventalation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
dorasdaddy said:
You might want to think about getting a different cage soon as well. An aquarium has very poor ventalation. An inexpensive alternative is a sterlite container, you can get the 106 qt version for 11-15 dollars depending n where you get it. unlike aquariums, with the sterlites you can heat the plastic and drill holes all the way around about half way up to allow for better ventalation.
Yea, I'm definitely going to invest in a better cage and wheel once I get the cash to do so. This aquarium is looking pretty cramped with everything she needs in it right now - the wheel especially takes up a lot of room. Hopefully once I move into an apartment I'll have the room to accommodate a Hedgehog mansion. Thanks for the advice :D

Edit: About the formaldehyde, I've found a few websites saying duct-tape is non-toxic, including this yahoo answer: http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index ... 743AAlhSP3

Hopefully they're right..
 

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duct tape is non toxic, and tastes bad (i have tried).

It was actually suggested to be used along with plastic wrap to seal doors and windows from teh outside to prevent form terrorist attacks that use formaldehyde.
 

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From what I remember, someone on another thread said their friend used duct tape to make a mesh wheel safe for hedgies, to create a solid running surface.

I too would dread to clean that. :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Alright, thanks for the definitive confirmation guys. I used some more tape to secure it to the bottom of her cage in order to keep the wheel from possibly tipping over, as I've read the Silent Spinners do sometimes.

I really want that Cake Walk wheel now! Curse my impatience to find the best buy :oops:
 

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Dubersive said:
About the formaldehyde, I've found a few websites saying duct-tape is non-toxic, including this yahoo answer: http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index ... 743AAlhSP3
I wouldn't trust Yahoo! Answers answers unless the answers are written by or quoting qualified sources (I've seen numerous answers being wrong on the site, some even chosen as Best Answers). Which website did you find said duct tape is non-toxic? Is it a trust-worthy, independent source?

I've done quick online search and so far none has clearly stated that the adhesive on duct tape contains formaldehyde. However, many items used for duct work (e.g. duct sealant, duct wrap, duct liner, etc.) contains formaldehyde. However, I haven't seen anything that confirms the adhesive does not contain formaldehyde either. Let me know if anyone finds a definitive answer to this question.

ETA: My apologies, duct tape probably is "non-toxic", which means it doesn't kill you or your hedgehog even if licked or ingested. However, that does not mean it's not harmful. If the adhesive contains formaldehyde, it emits harmful gas and it may cause cancer. It's still a health risk and that's what I'm talking about here.
 

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hedgieMate said:
Dubersive said:
I've done quick online search and so far none has clearly stated that the adhesive on duct tape contains formaldehyde. However, many items used for duct work (e.g. duct sealant, duct wrap, duct liner, etc.) contains formaldehyde. However, I haven't seen anything that confirms the adhesive is non-toxic either. Let me know if anyone finds a definitive answer to this question.
As a HVAC installer i can tell you that all of the things that you have listed also contain fiberglass insulation and that is what contains the formaldehyde. I dont know if duict tape contains formaldehyde or not, i tend to doubt it. It is the fact that those things contain fiberglass that they have in common, not the fact that they are used in duct work.
 

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dorasdaddy said:
It is the fact that those things contain fiberglass that they have in common, not the fact that they are used in duct work.
Yes, I do understand that - the info I quickly looked up stated that too; it's silica-based fibreglass and/or resin in things like sealant are the root of formaldehyde in the items I mentioned above. Sorry if I gave the impression that all material used in ductwork contain formaldehyde; that's not what I intended to convey. What I'm saying is that common household items used in ductwork contain and emit a low-degree of formaldehyde. Although no one has said for sure that formaldehyde will cause cancer, it appears it may. It's a fact that many glue and adhesive agents do contain formaldehyde. We also we know hedgies are so prone to various types of cancer, so why take risks with the health of our hedgehogs?

EAT: Besides the issue of formaldehyde, a Silent Spinner is an unsafe wheel as many issues including what nikki already pointed out, so an easy solution is to get a safe wheel. The OP asked if duct tape is safe, and I gave my opinion. So far I haven't seen any solid evidence to think otherwise. Assuming something is safe without adequate proof to back it can expose your hedgie to unnecessary health risks. Personally, I'd rather assume it's unsafe and not use it until it's proven safe. :)
 

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i used to chew on the front of my jacket when i was a kid, so my dad wrapped my entire jacket in duct tape. Needless to say i still tried to chew on it and it tastes bad.

also i often sue my teeth if i need to make more precise rips than just my fingers would allow. Duct tape tastes almost as bad as packing tape.
 
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