Posted: March 31, 2008, 5 a.m. EDT
Via Nick and Shelien Hadfield/Flickr
Healthy hedgehogs like this one have bright eyes and are full of energy.
Healthy hedgehogs have:
- Bright, alert expressions
- Plenty of energy
- Firm stools
- Good appetite
Signs a hedgehog is sick include:
- Lack of appetite
- Reluctance to move
- Dull expression
- Weight loss
- Discharge from the eyes or nose
- Loose stools
- Panting or labored breathing
What To Do If Your Hedgehog Is Sick
If you suspect your hedgehog is under the weather, contact a veterinarian who specializes in exotics right away. (Veterinarians who treat ferrets usually treat hedgehogs as well.)
While you are waiting to take your hedgehog to the vet, reduce its stress by leaving it alone as much as you can. If your small pet lives with another hedgehog, remove the cage mate right away. Provide your ill hedgehog with a dark, quiet environment with a room temperature of around 75 degrees Fahrenheit to keep it comfortable until it’s time to see the vet.
If your hedgehog is sick, do not bathe it unless your veterinarian instructs you to do so. Don’t expose your hedgehog to drafts or loud noises. Avoid handling it if possible.