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For the gender issue, just put him/her on a clear glass or plastic plate/bowl and look underneath for a "belly button" ^_^

Hedgehogs do lose the odd quill here and there, it's like us losing strands of hair. If there is not excessive loss, and there is no scratching, there shouldn't be mites. Though being from a petstore, you may want to take him to get treated as a precaution. Best way to check thinning quills is to actually get him to ball and hiss. With his quills standing straight up, it makes it quite easy to see if there are sections that are "thinning".

When he bites, you can blow a bit onto his nose, and very gently push your finger towards him, to get him to let go. Being that he's from the pet store, it's hard right now to determine the actual cause of the biting. Just continue with washing your hands really well, and for now, try to keep and eye on it while bonding. It could just be that he has no idea what fingers even are, and it will take months of bonding time to get him to realize that he really is safe. Never hand feed, just have a treat bowl/plate always handy near you to give him when he unballs in your lap.

My hedgie bites. I'm just extra careful. But the only time he bites is if I annoy him while he's sleeping in my lap :roll: He does not like to be disturbed while sleeping :lol: I know this, so I'm extra careful when I peek in at him, but at the same time, I'll bug him a bit till he stops hissing and popping, then give him a treat and leave him alone. Just a bit of positive reinforcement. ^_^ I've had him since Nov(7weeks old), and he started doing all that when he was about 3-4 months old, and he's 7 months now and he's still doing that. So you need a lot of patience. For all I know, he will always be a grumpy sleeper and will always try to bite the finger that's trying to wake him up :lol: But that's just how he is, and I find it really cute when he wrinkles his forehead and the rest of his quills are flat.

Once he has settled in more(unless he's really dirty), you can give him an oatmeal bath. Either aveeno oatmeal, or plain non-instant oatmeal in a sock or fabric and swish in the water until it's cloudy. After the rinse, you can do an "flax seed oil" rinse. You can buy flax seed(linseed) capsules in the pharmacy sections of stores like walmart and target. I usually poke open 1 capsule and empty it into his bathing cup that I use to scoop water. Add water and mix it real well to break up the oil blobs into smaller blobs and drizzle over his back. Then you can have some more cuddle time as he's drying, as he needs your body heat to stay warm as the water dries from his back. ^_^ The oatmeal and the flax will help moisturize and sooth his back if he really is quilling.

The flax oil can also be given in his food, 1 capsule per week will usually suffice. If his back is very dry, might want to try 1 capsule every 3-4 days.
 

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I think, for the most part, the new quills are replacing the quills that were lost. It's really hard to tell because there are so many quills. One day, you see skin, and the next, you'll see a quill starting to poke out, and have no idea whether there was another quill there originally :lol: But I believe it's just replacing, because my boy's quills haven't gotten much thicker. They may look thicker because the adult quills are bigger and thicker themselves.

You won't be able to really tell what his age might be. As there's no growth chart because there is such a large range of sizes. As for the quills, baby quills are very small, about the size of a dime or smaller, and they are much thinner. You'll notice that adult quills are longer than a dime and thicker as well. Depending on how much baby quills he still has, and how much adult quills have grown in, the estimate that you made before will probably be as close as you can get.
 
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