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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all. I understand that there are so many posts about hedgehog being prone to oral tumours/cancers. And as mentioned in my previous post about the suspicious lump in her upper right jaw, ******, has underwent a mouth surgery to remove the tumour today. It has yet to be confirmed if it is cancerous, as it has to be sent to the lab.
It was a really hard decision because the vet himself, did not recommend to euthanise him, instead suggested the surgery for the tumour to be known, what exactly it is an not putting her to sleep, unknown on the tumour.
I have no idea if allowing a surgery to be performed on ****** was the right decision, but what i had in mine was hopes that it would be a miracle, and that she would survive and beat the tumour, it was not to prolong just a few months of her life, in my favour. As ****** was not unfit nor anything, but she was losing weight. Also, the vet himself, seen hope and did not mention anything on how it spreaded to her jaws, bones or brain.
****** was gased with anaesthesia, and out of surgery in less about an hour. It was mentioned by the vet that the tumour was so brittle it was broken into pieces when simply pushed with a blunt scissors, a scapel wasn’t even needed. And 4 tooth were found within the tumour, wrapped. The vet said it was tough to remove all of it due to it being so brittle. But, the vet did mention that he was certain more than 80% of it was removed, and that a huge lump was able to be taken to be sent to vet.
I know the possibility of it being non cancerous is low, but i would like to seek help as ****** is currently lethargic post op, it has been only 7hours after her surgery. Any experienced hedgehog owners whose hedgehog underwent surgery successfully and is doing better or well now? Any particular post op care to take note of? Should I syringe feed or should i just wet/soften her mazuri hedgehog kibbles?
I am currently in a dilemma, as it pains me seeing her undergo a surgery, and feeling groggy after it. She has woken a few times time to time, to walk abit in the cage hover over her water and food, but i just hope that doing this surgery was the right decision as i have 0 intention to prolong her pain, but i was just holding onto every last hope.
I know she is in a lot of pain right now, but i would like hedgie owners who have had surgery performed on their little babies before, and experienced hedgehog owners to give me some suggestions. ****** is about 4years old. Please enlighten me and provide some post op tips if any, thank you.
Below is a photo of ****** post op, and still groggy after anaesthesia.
Grey Whiskers Fawn Rodent Terrestrial animal
 

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Keep her warm. If her cage is normally 72F/22c, increase it to 75/24 or maybe 77/25 to help her stay warm. Occasionally anesthesia can make it hard for them to maintain their body temperature.

If she won't eat. Get an oral syringe and feed her. Make a slurry with her kibble or buy some canned cat food that is in a pate style, no chunks so that it syringe feeds. But she has to eat.

I'd also add a bowl of normal dry kibble and moistened kibble in her cage. Give her the option so that if her mouth hurts she can pick which she wants. You could even leave a little canned food in there too. Whatever she wants right now until she feels better.

Did they vet give her pain medication? If not, call and ask for some. If he did, what did he prescribe? Some do make them groggy and this may be a normal reaction to it. Contacting your vet to ask what side effects to watch for and when to panic is always a good idea.

Good luck. Hopefully you get the best results possible and this turns out to be something you can treat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Dearest Kalandra,
She was given Buorenoronine and Meloxicam injection shot during her surgery, and prescribed Meloxicam Oral Solution for pain relief post op. Would it be recommended to hold her time to time to provide warmth, or to leave her to rest in her cage, with a fluffy bed, that is cosy enough to keep her warm? Also, is it recommended to syringe feed her water as well? Thank you.
 

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buprenorphine can cause her to be more sleepy and seem out of it. I have had it prescribed to a hedgehog or two and it definitely made them sleep and seem out of it. I don't remember how long it took for it to wear off though.

To give you an idea of how much it can change behavior. We gave it to a girl who had a tumor removed from her foot. She was a rescue who would freak out and chew on her chest if she was stressed. She was on that drug 3 days to allow her foot to heal and I could definitely tell a difference of when she was on the drug vs off. She would calm down and nothing bothered her while on it.

If your girl likes to be held, hold her. If she wants to be left alone, just keep her cage warm and provide her a comfortable place to rest. I have had some that liked to lay on me with their wound laying against me. I think the warmth of my body felt good.

Syringe feed and water to her if she won't get up. Be careful with the water so that she doesn't aspirate.

If things get worse or she doesn't improve, call your veterinarian's office and let them know what is going on. It could be the buprenorphine causing the grogginess or a reaction to the anesthesia. Hopefully its just the buprenorphine and as it wears off you start to see a normal behavior again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hello, Kalandra.
I would like to ask if you’ve any idea regarding some issues about White y. She’s eating and drinking well, taking her oral pain relief well, thankfully. She woke up quite a few times and walked around for abit, seem a lot more active than the night after her sugrery, even though she falls over time to time. And seem to have a hard time balancing at times, However, she’s only peeing and not pooping at all, even though she ate quite abit. It has only been a day, but i am a little concerned as she’s a post op hedgie. Her swelling went down, and she’s reacting to us, not as big of a reaction as before though but i can see a huge improvement as her eyes were not as bulge-y as before, and she’s able to close her mouth fully as compated to before, where she falls asleep with her mouth ajar.
Should her falling over a little time to time be a concern though? As i recalled you mentioned that buprenorphine causes hedgehogs to space out a little though it has been more than 24hours since her surgery, also her not clearing her bowel makes me a little concerned as it has been a day and she’s only peeing…
I have contacted my vet directly of course, however would just like to hear from your experiences a little. Thank you so much once again.
Fawn Rodent Whiskers Snout Terrestrial animal
Domesticated hedgehog Hedgehog Erinaceidae Wood Rodent
 

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Definitely talk to your veterinarian about what is going on. Make sure she is staying warm, and you are getting food into her. One other item to check is her hydration level. Pinch the skin on her back. If it snaps back to normal position, she should be ok, however if it takes very long at all to return to normal she is dehydrated. Talk to your vet about that. You'll need to get fluids into her. One quick way to do that is to take her to the veterinarian and ask for fluids to be injected under her skin.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hello kalandra, thank you again for your help. She’s definitely eating and drinking, but just not clearing her bowel. She’s peeing quite a lot as well too. It has been 2 day’s after her surgery, and I’ll definitely bring her back down to the veterinarian tomorrow if she still seem lethargic and sleepy. I’m praying she’s fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Hello, Kalandra! White y is eating well, walking well and drinking well. However, she's still not as active as before(Not running fast, and sleeping a little bit more than usual, especially after meloxicam oral intake.) But her face swelling has went down, and so did her eye swell. She's clearing her bowel now too, definitely still little but better than nothing. Thank you for checking on her, I'll be bringing her back to the vet for a simple check up on the wound and such this week. However, is there anything else I should take note of though? I'm hoping she'll gain weight fast.
 

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Small improvements but better than nothing yes. Hopefully improvement continues. I'd just keep a list of questions and keep track of her condition, her weight, etc and show it to your vet when you see him next. That way he can see how things have been going. How much longer is she on meloxicam? Will she be off of it when she sees him next?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Meloxicam was prescribed to her for 5days(starting on 8th nov evening), was wondering if it’s better to let her finish it or actually bring her back in once the 5days prescription is up(12th nov.) And yes! I’ve noted down her daily odd behaviours(if any) and her improvements since day 1. Can’t thank you enough for your constant help, and checking up on White y. Fingers crossed that your kind help, together with the vet along would help her cross this stage. Thank you so much, and I’ll definitely keep you updated on White y once checked. Hopefully only good news.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hello Kalandra, White y’s lab report has just been out. Unfortunately, her tumour is diagnosed to be oral squamous cell carcinoma, neoplastic. There were little bone fragments found when viewed under microscope. Thankfully, it didn’t spread to her lymph nodes and lungs, and the only way to sadly have it gone fully was to remove her jaw, which of course i would not head for, putting white y in pain. All i can do now, as mentioned by the vet was to let her live comfortably, and if this cancer does not spread or erupt, white y can live up to years, as mentioned by the vet. However if it does return and eat into her jaw, i might have to let white y go, if it does return and not erupt or eat into her bones, she can be around for 6months though. Praying that she’ll be that lucky hedghie that gives the eruption a miss. Nonetheless, thank you for your help the past week.
 

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That sucks. SCC is common in our hedgehogs and it often is very aggressive. Instead of typing a wall of text, I'm going to post a few links below for you to read through. They contain posts where I have posted a wall of text. I haven't seen any new treatment ideas for SCC, but several years ago a few people tried Palladia. Its a chemotherapy drug. One tried it for a mast cell cancer and it seemed to help slow the growth. The other tried it with SCC, and she reported on here that her hedgehog was taking Palladia and they got a year before she saw problems, she didn't post a final update and hasn't visit the forum in a long time. But I wanted to share these as ideas and things you may want to discuss with your veterinarian. I don't know the costs, or if it is available in your area, but wanted to share nevertheless.


Palladia being tried with SCC
 
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