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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello!
So Turbo has been scratching A LOT lately. Last night I was trying to sleep, and rather than hear the soothing sound of his wheel spinning round, all I heard was "scratch scratch scratch shake-the-quills scratch scratch scratch". I have noticed a little bit of dry skin, but nothing alarming. Also, he has lost 5 or 6 quills in the last 2 nights, which is more than usual (he's an adult, so he's not quilling). Is this just dry skin, or what could possible problems be?

also, a few days ago I tried to wash his feet and he ended up running underneath the faucet several times, thus getting soaked, and since I recently moved back to school, is it possible that minerals or something in the water could be irritating his skin?

Thanks!
 

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What type of bedding is he on? Continual scratching and quill loss sounds like mites. Sometimes stress can cause a mite outbreak, so your recent move could have triggered it.

Dry giving him another bath, just water with a few drops of flax seed or vitamin e oil in the rinse and see if it helps. If he continues scratching and loosing quills after the bath and oil rinse, I would recommend a vet visit to see if he has mites.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
He's had fleece liners ever since I got him 2 months ago, before that he had wood shavings. You'd think though that it would have been an issue before now if it was from the bedding. Anyway, I checked his quills that he lost and they still have the round follicle part attached at the bottom- don't mites eat that part?
 

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The little round part at the end of the quill means nothing. It can be there with or without them having mites.

Mites can take a a few months to show symptoms. It is thought that hedgehogs always have mites but a healthy immune system keeps them in check. When a stressful situation happens, then the mites take over.
 

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Um... never have the faucet on during baths. too much risk of hot water splashing them.
 

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iamdbf said:
Um... never have the faucet on during baths. too much risk of hot water splashing them.
I'm thinking as long as she is supervising and has her hand under the running water during the bath to check the temp then it should be fine. I don't know if this is the case.

Anyhow to the original point of this message... it sounds like mites to me - I hope it isn't though! Get the little fella a check up with the vet to see what is going on. Let us know what happens.
 

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First thing to check for is whether his skin is white and flaky looking. If it appears to look like dandruff, then it can be due to dry skin or mites. An easy way to tell if your hedgehog has mites, is to do a preliminary skin scraping yourself. You will need a black piece of construction paper and a butter knife. Hold your hedgie over the black paper and use the dull side of the butter knife to scrape back and forth over your hedgies back. This will usually cause white flakes to land on the black paper. You will need to rub their back several times, in order to get a good sample. Now, take the black paper and place it on a flat surface with lots of bright light. Observe the white flakes and see if any of them start to crawl. If you see any white flakes crawling around on the black paper, it is a sure bet that your hedgies has mites. Some people may require a magnifying glass to see the mites moving.
Pixie
 

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Also, just rubbing the cloth on your hedgie's back, (hedgie's back down, belly up) would work as well. That would eliminate the need for a butterknife. :)
 

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PixiesExoticHedgies said:
First thing to check for is whether his skin is white and flaky looking. If it appears to look like dandruff, then it can be due to dry skin or mites. An easy way to tell if your hedgehog has mites, is to do a preliminary skin scraping yourself. You will need a black piece of construction paper and a butter knife. Hold your hedgie over the black paper and use the dull side of the butter knife to scrape back and forth over your hedgies back. This will usually cause white flakes to land on the black paper. You will need to rub their back several times, in order to get a good sample. Now, take the black paper and place it on a flat surface with lots of bright light. Observe the white flakes and see if any of them start to crawl. If you see any white flakes crawling around on the black paper, it is a sure bet that your hedgies has mites. Some people may require a magnifying glass to see the mites moving.
Pixie
This method will work for identifying mites if you actually see moving flakes. Just because you don't see moving flakes does not mean the hedgehog is mite free. It just means there don't happen to be any on the flakes you shook off. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
So I gave him a bath with my Aveeno Skin Relief wash, and he's still scratching, but already much less and no lost quills today. Where can I get flax seed oil, is that something I can get at a pharmacy? I'm going to get some today, try that, and if it doesnt improve over the weekend I'll take him to the vet.

If I do have to take him to the vet, I know to not do Ivermectin, but is there anything else I should beware of?

Thanks for all the help!
 

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You can find flaxseed oil in the vitamin/supplement section of a drug store. Grocery & other stores that have these types of sections often have them too. Some flaxseed oils come in a bottle that is kept refrigerated, and some come in capsules that you can stick with a needle/pin and squeeze a few drops out. Do keep it cold once punctured though to keep the oil from spoiling.
 

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You can get flax oil at a health food store. I don't like the smell of Vit E oil, but it is also
available from a health food store. We've also had great luck with Jojoba oil. It has virtually
no odor and it only takes a few drops. From reading your posts, it does sound like more
of a dry skin situation than mites. If you want to go ahead and do some preventative treatment
for mites, a drop or two of Revolution (behind the ear) should do the trick. You will need to get
Revolution from your favorite vet. :roll:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
So I took Turbo to the vet today because the scratching didn't stop after the flax seed oil. Anyway, he has mites, and I convinced the vet to give me Revolution instead of Ivermectin. She gave me this little tiny bottle with about 3 drops of liquid in it and said to use half now and half in one month. Is this a correct dosage? Turbo is 315 grams. Also, any suggestions for how to get him to consume it? I don't have a syringe or eyedropper.
 

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That's the correct amount. He doesn't swallow it, it is used topically. Spread his quills between his shoulder blades and drop it directly on his skin. You can also put it on the skin behind his ear.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks Nancy! I got a little bit behind his ear and some by his shoulderblades (he was kinda squirmy today) and now I just hope he feels better! Are there any side effects or things I should watch for?
 

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It can be tricky to get it on sometimes. What I use is a syringe and just put the tip right down at their skin and then push the plunger. It's much easier to do that way.

The worst reaction to Revolution I have heard of and is very rare, but a bit of skin irritation where it's dropped on. I'm sure it should help fairly quickly. :)
 

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I think my hedgehog may have mites - his skin is VERY flaky and he's been scratching a lot (he can't run on his wheel for more than a minute before having to stop and scratch). He's also been losing quills lately. We aren't exactly the richest people in the world, so I don't know if we can afford a vet appointment, but is it possible to get Revolution from a local pet store, or do you need a prescription from a vet? I will make sure to do the skin scraping thing and make SURE that he has mites before I treat for it, but I just wanted to know if there was any way I could get Revolution (if I need it) without needing a vet appointment.
 

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Well, I've decided to buy some Flax Seed Oil capsules and some aveeno baby wash (just got all that today) and see if his skin starts getting better. Hopefully that will help with the scratching too, and If this still continues a week or two from now, then I will have to check for mites again. I did check last night, by gently scraping his back with a butter knife and letting the flakes fall onto a black piece of paper (he lost 3 quills in the process, he's also been losing a LOT of fur). I didn't have a very good magnifying glass but I didn't see any of the specks moving. So for now I'm just gonna treat it like it's just dry skin and hope that that's all it is.
 

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You won't find Revolution in the pet store, I believe it is only available via prescription. You may just have to take your little one into the veterinarian and have a skin scraping done.

One other thought, how dry is your house? I ask because if it is too dry you may want to increase the humidity. Mine will start to itch and get dry skin if I don't drag the humidifier out of summer storage early enough.
 

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I'm not sure how dry it is in my house, but I don't think we have a humidifier. How much do they typically cost? Anyways, I live in michigan, too, so I would guess it's the same as where you are in michigan.
 
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