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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,

We got our first hedgie about two weeks ago now. We followed everything to a T, treated her when necessary, bonded with her - and surprisingly enough, after about a week, she was extremely social with us to the point where you wouldn't disagree if we were to tell you that we'd had her for years. She would even let us hold her without squirming at all after being out to play for a while.

She got her first and second bath in the past two weeks (second was necessary because her paws were covered in poo!) and she's been getting enough exercise and today we went out and bought her a little fluffy comfortable pouch type house thing that we put in the middle of our L shaped sofa when we're lounging to watch TV so that we can sit and talk to her / let her relax with us.

We noticed two evenings ago, however, that she has begun to act again like a new hedgie again, she'll huff and ball up, she doesn't want her quills stroked and she won't relax long enough to be held / spoken to. She seems really scared, like how she was when we first got her. I'm wondering why? She's almost nine weeks old so I'm thinking perhaps it's because she's quilling or something? Or perhaps it's because she's had to deal with quite a few people coming in to coo at her (family etc), which we have now put a stop to.

Either way, nothing has been done wrong, she hasn't been mistreated or hurt or anything of that nature, yet has done a complete 180 comfortability wise.

What's going on? Any suggestions? We're just taking it slow with her again, talking to her softly, letting her come to us when she's out, trying to bond.

Help!
 

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she is most likely going through quilling. If you notice any quills falling out then it is *almost* guaranteed that it is the new quills poking through her back that is making her grumpy.

Not only will this make her more irritable, but also explain why she doesn't want to be touched.

In order to help her with quilling give her an oatmeal bath. For instructions on how to give an oatmeal bath please search the forums. Also you may want to put 2-3 drops of flax seed oil on her back (one on each shoulder and one in the middle of her back) right after a bath to help the new quills poke through. Repeat this process every week to help new quills coming in.

This can last anywhere from a week to a month and a bit. Just be careful, and during bonding time do not place anything on her back or touch her back. Let her sleep or run around of her own will. DO NOT STOP BONDING. Just because she is in pain does not mean you should stop bonding, talk softly to her and let her know she is doing a good job and that you will help her to feel better.

After quilling is over she should be back to her normal self now that thousands of needles are no longer poking her back.

Please keep us updated and if you have any new questions don't be afraid to ask.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you azyrios, that's really comforting to know, I'll research the oatmeal bath and whatnot and try it out as soon as possible :)
 

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Also, you dont have to give a full bath to get rid of the poopy boots...you can just put about a 1/4 inch of water in the sink or soak a rag or piece of fleece and just let her run around on it. We have to do this for Dora and Millie daily.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
She seemed to be a lot better for the earlier portion of the evening, we took out her little fluffy house and sat it on the sofa again - she interacted, let us handle her slightly (we did it with caution), ate some mealworms and seemed to be okay, we also gave her an oatmeal bath.

As the night progressed she got more and more grumpy, so we left her alone in the house sitting with us, she eventually curled up and fell asleep, after a while we put her into her cage again.

Just went in a few minutes ago and she was laid out, under her heatlamp (she's not cold, the room is perfect) in a position that you could tell was due to her being really, really uncomfortable.

I feel really bad, her bowl is untouched and full of treats, is there anything else I can do to help relieve her?
 

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What do you mean by "laid out"? Is she on her belly with her legs spread out in all four directions? If so, the she is spaltting and too hot.....sounds like she is going into the reverse hibernation thing...is the heat lamp on a thermostat? It really should be a ceramic heat emitter on a thermostat to keep her from getting to warm. turn off the lamp and let her cool off and she should eat and drink.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
dorasdaddy said:
What do you mean by "laid out"? Is she on her belly with her legs spread out in all four directions? If so, the she is spaltting and too hot.....sounds like she is going into the reverse hibernation thing...is the heat lamp on a thermostat? It really should be a ceramic heat emitter on a thermostat to keep her from getting to warm. turn off the lamp and let her cool off and she should eat and drink.
That's what we use, a ceramic heat emitter on a themostat. No no, it wasn't like that, she was just curled up, but not quite.. it was just the way she was laying, you could tell she was in pain from the quilling.
 
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