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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My sweet little girl has cranked for a while about drinking out of a bottle, so I've switched her to a gravity bowl. She's thrilled with it... me, not so much. Her water intake has increased (that's good), her food intake has increased (not bad), but her "output" has increased SIGNIFICANTLY... ALL OVER THE PLACE!!! :eek: We went from being fairly litter pan trained to making a total mess everywhere! Her floor, bedding, bowls and wheel are totally covered in poo and pee. HELP! Do I cut back on her water, or switch her back to the bottle (it didn't seem to be negatively impacting her)? Is there any such thing as too much water? What can I do besides hose her and the cage down every morning?
 

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Clean more often.

Restricting water can cause permanent kidney damage, lead to UTI and bladder problems. She's drinking more because she needs it. She's flushing toxins out of her system and trying to stay healthy. You can help her by keeping the water fresh and cleaning her cage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Her water and food bowls and cage are cleaned twice daily - I wasn't planning on restricting her water significantly, just switching her back to her other water source, where she seemed to be functioning just fine, and her stool was more normal and solid. She's drinking more water now because she has open access to it - not because of toxins. When she does drink out of the bottle, she goes back to a more normal intake. Now, she's drinking close to 3-4 ounces a day and her stool has considerably less form, if any (more like baby food), and she's not using her litter pan. I was more concerned that she's drinking too much water and not getting the nutritional value of her foods, since they're passing through so quickly, and that perhaps in not using the litter pan now, she's trying to tell me something. I was looking for insight and advice on that aspect, something a little more than clean her cage more often, but thanks.
 

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You need to take her to the vet, a significant increase in water intake could indicate diabetes. the main reason she is not drinking as much with the bottle is frustration since it takes alot longer to get the water out. Also, if you are using tap water there could be things in it that are making her poo softer than normal....either way i would take her to the vet for a blood panel just in case.
 

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The thing is...Animals drink because they NEED to, not because they CAN. (you can lead any animal to water, but if they don't need it, you can't force them to drink, they will drink when they need to drink. While you can tell a human to drink and they will)
So your girl drinking all that is because she needs to. The bottle may be "seem" like it's not negatively impacting her, but if she's increased her water intake, then it's obvious she wasn't getting enough water out of the bottle.

And what HedgeMom means about toxins, is because of the lack of drinking before with the bottle, her body accumulated the toxins that would normally be flushed out with the urine. But with the lesser amount of water, bits of toxins would be left behind each time. And now, it's a matter of cleaning out her system, and making her feel good.

How long have you had the bowl out for her? You may notice a slight decrease in water intake once her internal system is running as it should.

How long was she on the bottle for? I'd worry that she had already started to develop the problems HedgeMom and dorasdaddy stated, considering the vast difference in water intake amount.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks, everyone, for the good advice. She was on the ‘bottle’ for about 5 months, and has been on the bowl for about 2 weeks, so maybe she's still cleaning out. I’ll get her to the vets, just to make sure she’s ok. THANKS!!!
 

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I don't know if anyone has ever seen OCD behavior with hedgehogs, but I know that some dogs can exhibit an over in-take of water. One of my friends had a puppy who would sprawl out at the water bowl and drink the whole thing down until his stomach was so distended he'd whimper from the discomfort. But if you put more water in the bowl he'd keep on drinking even though he was in pain. It is possible that your hedgehog wasn't getting enough water before, but it's also possible that she is drinking too much now. Dehydration is a serious matter to watch out for, but over hydration is just as deadly and dangerous. I'm curious about what the vet said.
 
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