Hedgehog Central banner
41 - 60 of 73 Posts

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,738 Posts
How'd last night go? One thought I had last night was will she eat fruits or veggies? I have used sweet peas and applesauce in the past to help sweeten meds.
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #42 ·
Last night wasn't as bad, but we still had a bit of a fight. I will be doing it again tonight, as I have it so I may as well give it another shot.

Shes pretty good with her fruit veg actually, I made her an applecake with some applesauce I made - all totally hedgehog safe, and she loved that!
So I will I definetly keep that in mind if we still struggle with the broth!

I'm not sure if its all the taste of the meds or if she is unkeen on the syringe as well.
So once I have tried everything to try make it taste better, I think I will be inclined to say she isnt liking the syringe either.
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #43 ·
Okay so tonight, (about half an hour ago) I had to have another fight fir her meds with the broth.

As I have pate wet meat, thats my next thing I will try tomorrow, and if that still fails or the ones I use for my dog clog up the syringe.
I will be buying things to make the applesauce to see how that goes.

If all these things still fail, then I have no idea what else I can try to not have to fight her to take the meds!
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #44 ·
I have had great progress with Holly taking the meds! Though It takes 2 of us since she doesnt like the syringe! But its no longer a fight which is brilliant!

Though the amount if water she is drinking is mad! 160ml in the last 24 hours!
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #46 ·
Oh okay, she started to drink more water when I first found the lump and then the vet said the meds should help a bit, but it seems to have increased from a bowl 90ml, to a bowl and a bit 160ml.
So its great to know its probably just all a side effect of the cancer and Meds.
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #47 ·
Okay so I am calling the vet today, as I need to get her more meds, in the next few days, but life is busy so sorting it today. So I will probably mention a lot if this to them to.

Holly has been 430g-440g for ages now.
14th November 2021 she weight 416g. (Having been 440g the week before)
21st November 2021 she weighed 412g
28th November 2021 she weighed 405g.

She isnt using her wheel anymore, the odometer records nothing, the camera shows she isnt and the wheel is always totally clean while the litter around it is a mess.
I'm going to have a look at the wheel and her nails later today to be sure its not that before jumping to it being a huge bad thing.

She also seems to be eating her biscuits a lot less. I don't think its appetite because she was super keen for her salmon last night, and she always eats her wet meats and plain cooked meats! It just seems to be the biscuits she is eating less of, I have watched her eat and it doesnt look like she is struggling, but she is very big on water, so maybe the biscuits are a bit to dry for her now? But she wont eat them once I add a bit of water or broth and make the biscuits damp. So not sure what I can do there.

So where she ate 7g biscuits each night, she is eating about 3-5g of it. She is eating all her insects which is 10 some nights and 14 other nights.
She gets meats and wet meats 2 days a week. And she only gets about 6-8g of it.

Is her weight loss likely just her eating? I'm not really sure what to do about her food. I'm sure its not her appitite though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
532 Posts
If she’s drinking a lot and eating less kibble, if it’s possible I would put her on a mostly wet food diet - if not complete wet food diet.

her inactivity & lack of interest in her food could honestly be a multitude of things. I have no experience with this type of cancer nor do I have any experience with a hedgehog on the same meds as her. It could potentially be a medication side effect, it could be signs of advancing cancer unfortunately, or it could be something completely unrelated to her cancer at all.

hopefully someone else who has experience with this type of cancer can offer you advice, all I can offer really is to bring up your concerns with the vet and try incorporating more wet food into her diet to see if that helps.

keeping you guys in my thoughts!
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,738 Posts
The weight loss and lethargy are concerning to me. Talk to the vet about them. Pred typically is known to cause weight gain, I think due to water retention and due to increased appetite. I know it can cause mood changes/irritability in humans and I think it can cause lethargy in humans too. So maybe its having an impact on her too and doc needs to be aware of it. Pred is a powerful steroid, but it can have some nasty side effects when given in large doses (not sure how strong of a dose he is giving Holly) over long periods of time. Which can be frustrating if you encounter them as you cannot stop giving it without going through a weaning process.

I never saw any issues with basal cell causing problems, nor was I warned that it would. The main warning I had was that it would grow very large, would respond with rapid growth if cut/injured and would likely cause pressure on other organs, or in Riley's case his throat. I think we encountered a salivary cancer once, but I think it was removed and never came back as I don't recall who had it nor have it logged as a cause of death in any of the hedgehogs I've cared for over the years.

We have quite often seen weight loss in hospice care as cancer takes a lot of the energy the hedgehog eats to feed itself. Ask doc about diet changes, I have been told many a time to increase protein and decrease carbs as carbs feed cancer. I have also had my vet recommend other supplements, like omega fatty acids, to help support the body. But those were typically with hospice cases.
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #50 ·
Thank you both! Unfortunately I got a cold and when I woke up I could barely talk, (found out when I started trying to talk after writing my post in the morning) so I asked my mum to call the vet for me to arrange getting new meds, and mentions these things, although I think she has only asked them about the meda as she said she will get it for me tomorrow afternoon, and didn't mention anything else!

The bottle says "2x prednidale 25mg tablets. Give 0.15ml by mouth once daily"
I know it says tablets but its a liquid.

When she is out, she still climbs all over me and explores, and she is still keen to forage through the viv for her insects ect all her activity is normal except not using the wheel.

If she was lethargic wouldn't she move slower, and not do anything, and not just stop using the wheel? Or is stopping using the wheel like the start?

Also she eats her insects the same and she will eat a lot of wet meats, or cooked meats, it just seems to be the biscuits (the main part of her diet) that she isnt eating as much. But still eats a bit.
When I had the salmon last night that she absolutely loves, she was pawing at me, trying to climb me and trying to get to it, she was also going pretty quick to do this!
If she had a lack of interest in food would this not affect her wanting the things she loves, the insects and other foods, not just eating less of the biscuits?

Because of how she is and the problems I had ages ago with her weight, we have done out absolute best to keep the carbs as low as I possibly could while maintaining the protein and fat at the right levels.
Honestly the carbs are pretty low as it is.

I can change her so she has some wet meat each night, and still offer the biscuits. Or maybe I can mix the 2 like I do with my dog?

I will be talking to the vet as soon as I can, and I will try get my mum to tomorrow if she can.

I have been worried, but the first one I thought was just an off week, she has those sometimes, and then the second week was just so hectic I never had a chance to really look for help.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,738 Posts
I'd increase the wet food to see how she reacts. You are already monitoring her weight, so if she starts to gain too much, you can start to switch back to the kibble. I've quite often had a fat hedgehog who I have fought hard to keep weight off of, that I'm suddenly reversing and trying to put weight on once they have had a cancer diagnosis. It can change their chemistry drastically depending on what kind they had.

In my experience, with older and sick hedgehogs they usually stop using the wheel first but will be active when with me. But they do seem to tire. If she's overly active with you, it could be a sign of her being irritable. I've also had hedgehogs not eat kibble, but would other more tasty options when they weren't feeling well. So both to me are items I'd talk to the vet about to get an opinion of if it could be the pred making her not feel well or if he thinks it is concerning.

As you know its always best to chat with the vet to get his opinion. These little ones will keep us guessing.
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #52 ·
Alright thank you!

I will write some stuff down for my mum to mention and ask about if they have a couple mins to talk to her. (She is going straight from work so I wont be there and she doesn't want me driving at the moment so she is very insistent on me not doing so!)
Or even to leave there and get them to contact me when they have a chance to.

I'll start giving her some of my dogs wet meat tonight, but still offer her the biscuits incase she wants some of that to and see how we go there as well.

Other than these I haven't found anything else wrong at all, like theres no seeable or feelable lumps I know that doesn't mean that nothing is there at all but its still good I think?
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,738 Posts
Fingers crossed that its nothing. I agree no seeable/feelable lumps is always a good thing. Don't panic yet, lets see what the vet thinks is going on. Hopefully she's just having an off week or two and things will settle soon.
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #54 ·
I never came about when we went back to get the meds on the 30th, my voice was a bit better enough I could talk, although very quiet.

We wasn't able to talk they were very busy, but the receptionist there is super knowledgeable and will always talk to the vet about things she isnt sure on, or thinks are a concern.

Anyway she thinks that giving her a more wet based diet with an increased amount of food (not by loads just a bit) might help.
Because she seems to have only gone off the biscuits she doesn't think its an appitte thing.

She is hoping sorting the food might get her more active, but to call if she gets more lethargic, and or looses more weight.

We was also given 3 months worth of meds this time, 2 of them I need to mix up myself when I need it but thats written on the bottle was explained really clear so thats easy.
Better than making the trip every month.
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #55 ·
Okay so for the last week, I changed Holly's diet.
Sunday 28th November weighing night 405g

Monday: I did her normal 7g biscuits, 13g Applaws Chicken, 14 insects
She ate all the insects and meat, but only about 3g biscuits.

Tuesday: 3g Biscuits, 13g Applaws Chicken, 10 insects
She ate everything here.

Wednesday: 0g Biscuits, 13g Lily's kitchen Chicken and turkey casserole, 14 insects
She ate everything here.

Thursday: 3g Biscuits, 13g Lily's kitchen Chicken and turkey casserole, 10 insects
She ate all the insects and meat, left a little over 1g of biscuits.

Friday: 7g Biscuits,13g Lily's kitchen Chicken and turkey casserole, 10 insects
She ate all the insects and meat, and about 4g of the biscuits.

Saturday: 3g Biscuits, 15g Lily's kitchen Chicken and turkey casserole, 10 insects
She ate all the meat and insects, and about 1g of the biscuits.

Sunday: 0g Biscuits, 5g Salmon during bonding, 12g Lily's kitchen lamb hotpot, 10 insects - Weighing night 881g.
She ate everything

On Friday 3rd December 2021, I thought Holly's tummy seemed a bit round like a bump and felt a little off, I asked my mum incase I was imaging it, but she insisted its fine and normal. It felt the same Saturday to.
Last night, Sunday 5th December, It felt hard for sure, I didn't bother asking my mum since I think she is just going to always tell me that she is fine even when its clearly larger like a round bump and feels hard.

In the last week, Holly has gained 76g.
I was hoping for a weight gain but I cant see the food really causing that much of a jump!
The lily's kitchen overall for the pot is 10% fat (not in dry matter so I know it would be higher if it was worked out in dry matter), and Holly's 7g biscuit mix is 13.6% fat.

When I said it to my mum she was like "but did she poop this time like she normally does?" and she hadn't, so I got her out first thing this morning and she weighed 446g, so maybe a lot of it was just going to the toilet?
This morning her belly didn't feel as hard either. But off to one side it felt a bit hard and like there is bump.

The belly could it be another tumour growing or more than 1 tumour growing?
Or maybe it's just bloating from all the extra water and different food and nothing to really worry over?
I'm really worrying! I cant talk to anyone around me about any of this that's become very clear.
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #56 ·
So it's been a while since I posted anything.
From her stopping using her wheel in November, right through to just after boxing day, she was running her viv still, although from the start of December she did slow down a bit.

We found a new lump around the beginning of December.

Holly's abdomen had become huge in a matter of time, from the last week of dedecember.
And then 18th, 7pm she was fine running around my bed like normal before I could put her in the blanket to come downstairs. Through bonding time she was asleep but would move around here and there like normal. But when it got to 9pm, and we was giving her the steroids, her legs from like the ankle seemed limp, and she wasn't walking well just sorta dragging her ass around but she was trying very hard.
I moved all her bits so they were all closer to each other instead walking the length of the enclosure for everything.
The next morning I checked on her and she was the same.
So I called the vet and they said they could fit her in they day, so yesterday Holly went to the vet.

The vet said that given her history, it seems theres a new tumour, thats leaking.
He said that I have 2 choices.
1 We can drain off the fluid and make her more comfortable and then give her diuretics to help the fluid not build up too much again.
2 We can put her to sleep now.
Removing the tumour is out of the option, the location of where it is, and the fact its leaking, means the vet wouldnt even want to do a surgery to remove it as its way to risky.

Holly still seems happy, and bright and she doesn't seem like she is ready, I cant give up on her if she hasnt given up fighting. Plus I'd really prefer her to go around us, not in the vets if I can help it. So we went with option 1.

When he drained it out, a lot of blood came out with it.
But she went from 488g (weight from Sunday might have been higher when she was at the vet) to 442g.
He said due to the blood, they were limited in how much they could drain out, but they did as much as they could.
She is moving her legs better, but not fully to walk. But It might just take a few days to get back to it. And a little more sleepy because of the loss of blood. From the draining.

The vet said that she will probably go downhill fairly fast from here and that being on a hopeful side she probably has a month.
But she is a fighter and he seemed a bit surprised that she was still going as well as she is!

I think she might be a bit worse on her feet from here, so to keep her comfy as possible would it be best to keep everything flat? So changing her little tray from its step up to get in, into a puppy pad be better for her?
And should I try keep it so its all as close to each other so she can minimise the walking from one end to the other when she's struggling?

We don't have much time with her left now, and I want to make her as happy and comfy as I can in the time we do have.

We have no idea which cancer it is thats back, both are aggressive and likely to come back, but there isn't much of a point trying to find out now.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,738 Posts
I'm sorry Ria that this is happening to her. I have had 2 now that had a leaking tumor, we opted for euthanasia on both.

For Holly, I'd recommend putting everything she needs as close as possible to her. You might even consider putting her wheel in her cage if you took it out. While she won't likely use it, it can be comforting for them to have it in their cage. I had one who got upset if his was out of his cage, he'd look over to see if it was there then crawl back in his bed.

Give her whatever she wants. Keep her living area soft and snuggly. Keep things low. If you use a water bowl with tall sides, try to find a bowl that is more shallow so that if she tires she can sit to drink. Snuggle often and lots of bugs if she wants them.
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #58 ·
I took the wheel out a while ago to give her more space to use the littler tray without it being in the way, but I can put it back in if its better to have it even not used. She hasnt seemed too phased when I check on her but it doesnt mean she doesnt look when I'm not checking on her.

I'm really hoping that she can die peacefully without having to go through a vet for help. But if it looks like that wont happen, then I will have to make that choice.

She has been getting what she wants. She will definetly be getting extra cuddles, kisses and spoilt in the time we have left.

This is what she has right now,
I'll be swapping the little tray out to like just a puppy pad like after her surgery.
And I'm in the process of making a fleece liner to put on the floor, with the stipes on top still. Just to make it easier for her, she is walking better on my bed and carpeted floor than she is in the enclosure.
But everything is all close (her food bowl is there she just covered it in fleece stripes)
I'll also probably be changing her bowl to as per your suggestion.
Linens Market Ingredient Vegetable Plastic
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,738 Posts
Looks good to me. You might see if you can build up a little ramp of sorts so she can get into her box easier.

Oh and my preference has always been to let them go naturally so long as they aren't suffering. Talk to her, let her know its ok and look in her eyes often. I've found that they generally can tell you when its time to help.

Take care of yourself too. This is the hardest thing to go through with them. Stay strong now, which is easier said than done.
 

·
Registered
Holly is 3 years old. Super cuddly and loving.
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Discussion Starter · #60 ·
So I swapped Holly's bowl to a more shallow one like her biscuits are in, which I know she can sit and lay down to reach inside even if its near the bottom.

I did leave her normal water bowl there to incase that one ran out over night and she needed a bit more water.

But it looks to me that sometimes she goes to move and just doesnt have the strengh so she doesnt bother moving in the end.

She seems a bit dehydrated to. She is still eating well though so I don't think she has really given up if that makes sense? Just isnt drinking as often as she used to/probably should.

After her meds, I gave 2.5ml of water through a syringe which she seemed to be happy for extra the water.
I told myself I wouldnt force her to eat or drink once she gives up. But I don't think she has really fully given up more like doesnt have the strength making her weaker, which means she is in like a circle that she cant really win to make herself stronger.
I really hope that all makes sense!

Anyway I have never been through anything like this before, so to help with giving her a bit of extra water, how much and how often would I need to syringe a bit extra?
She is still drinking normally herself to. So its not like all her water intake just like to boost it a bit to where it should be as she isnt drinking quite enough.
 
41 - 60 of 73 Posts
Top