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Signs My Hedgehog Is Dying | 11 Signs Of A Sick Hedgehog

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Do you have a sick hedgehog? Is your adored hedgehog showing signs of resignation? Are you scrolling through all search engines looking for “signs my hedgehog is dying?” It’s worse when no search comes up with a valuable and consoling answer. 

We know how draining the feeling of not knowing what is happening to your precious hedgehog is so let’s set the record straight. If you are looking for signs of a sick hedgehog and you need to know how bad it is, then continue reading.

We have done all the hard work to uncover the 11 signs your hedgehog is in bad shape and what to do to nurse them back to health. We just want to have our hedgehogs around for as long as possible. 

Here is how to tell if your hedgehog is sick or healthy, and how to provide the best hedgehog care.

Related: Best Hedgehog Cages

Signs My Hedgehog Is Dying

If your hedgehog is losing weight has reduced stool or has blood in their urine your hedgehog could be dying. Other significant signs of near-death are discharged from the nose, mouth or eyes, long panting or difficulty breathing, lethargy, reduced appetite and uncontrollable coughing.

If your hedgehog is ill, then you might be losing him/her. However, not all illnesses will kill your hedgehog. Make sure you catch the signs of disease as fast as you can.

Here is how to tell if your hedgehog is sick:

1. If your pet stops being active.

Make sure to check if your hedgehog is active and doing the things that they normally do every day. If they are not then you may have a hedgehog who is sick. You can try a simple small pet heating pad to ensure they stay warm at night as well.

2. If he/she looks weaker than usual.

A good indicator of a weak or unwell hedgehog is their strength levels. Are they not able to walk up and down ramps like they used to? Are they navigating their hedgehog cage more feebly? If so, you may have an unwell hedgehog.

3. Reduce appetite

Make sure you check on your hedgehog’s appetite.  If your hedgehog has a reduce appetite and they are not eating what they usually eat then this could be a sign of poor health. Just like other pets hedgehog do go through periods of eating less food and other periods of consuming more. However, if they have had a reduced appetite for 7 days or more and they are not eating at least 50% of what they usually do then it may be time to take him to a VET.

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4. General Weight Loss

An observation to watch out for Signs My Hedgehog Is Dying, is weight loss.  Make sure you check the weight of your hedgehog constantly. Another sign that you have an unwell hedgehog is if you can see a noticeable difference in their weight. This is especially the case if they are losing their appetite and look weaker then usual. If your hedgehog is losing weight fast then they are very sick and you should get immediate help.

5. If the poop has reduced 

Make sure you check their poop cycles. A reduce in the amount of waste is a sign that there may be an underlying problem that needs to be treated. Hedgehogs have varied diets so can produce more or fewer amounts of waste depending on seasonal factors. There are no hard and fast rules on hedgehog poop but a reduced amount for your hedgehog will be an important factor to take into account.

6. If the pee has reduced

Less uring is also a factor that something could be wrong. Your hedgehog may be retaining water to fight off disease or bacteria. Hedgehogs are notoriously good at hiding illness until they are too late to treat. Try to keep a close eye on how frequent your hedgehog pee’s and if you see a big change in his urine then this could be a sign that he is unwell.

7. Bloody urine

One of the clearest Signs My Hedgehog Is Dying, is finding blood in your hedgehog’s urine. This is a solid sign that your hedgehog is sick and needs additional treatment or surgery. Blood will only enter your hedgehog’s urine if they have internal problems. Seek professional help immediately

8. Difficulty when breathing.

If your hedgehog is having breathing difficulties then is a serious concern. Even if it’sonly been happening for a short time you should see a medical opinion. The only time this won’t be cause for concern is if your hedgehog has just done a big exercise routine and they are just trying to catch their breath.

9. Uncontrollable panting 

One of the unfamiliar Signs My Hedgehog Is Dying is breathing problems. Make sure you check that your hedgehog isn’t uncontrollably panting. If your hedgehog is uncontrollably panting for long periods without doing any exercise then this could be a respiratory infection or disease and you will need to seek out a professional opinion.

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This is usually a very bad sign as your hedgehog is overcompensating for a major illness.

10 Discharge from the eyes or nose 

Any suspicious discharge from the eyes or nose should be treated as a top priority. To ensure correct hedgehog care you need to be vigilant and try to stop any skin or face conditions before they get worse. Usually, this condition can be treated with cream or other low-level treatments like antibiotics

11. Lethargy 

While this is important, you mustn’t exaggerate if your hedgehog is showing signs of lethargy. (a lack of energy and enthusiasm) Sometimes this can just be down to old age or simply tiredness.

Many times it could be a personality trait. If, on the other hand, you usually have a very active hedgehog but they have been sleeping for long periods of the day and night and not showing any signs of activity then you may indeed have a sick hedgehog.

When thinking about “signs my hedgehog is dying” you must think of all these signs together. A sick hedgehog may have multiple unhealthy signs so try to keep an eye out for physical and mental changes. 

If you can see any of these signs is best that you take your pet to a vet before it is too late.

Remember to use a heating pad to warm your hedgehog at night as well.

Signs My Hedgehog Is Healthy

“A healthy hedgehog should always be bright, alert and responsive,” says Dr Wilkinson DVM, at Avian & Exotic Animal Hospital.

If your hedgehog is active, especially at night, alert, and very responsive, then your little buddy is in good health. They also have quite an appetite when healthy. Since hedgehogs are not very social, they tend to stiffen up and hiss when touched. If this does not happen when you touch your hedgehog, then maybe she is not feeling well. 

Hedgehogs are very active at night and sleep during the day. When active, they are always exploring and sniffing around. Also, a healthy hedgehog pees and poops a lot during the night when they are active.

You can also tell if a hedgehog is healthy, depending on its poop. To know if it is healthy, confirm if the poop is brown, soft and formed. However, if the poop is green, black, tarry, and loose or with mucous, then you need to get to a vet immediately.

How To Take Care Of A Sick Hedgehog

People searching for Signs My Hedgehog Is Dying will need to know how to take care of them.  If your hedgehog is, indeed, sick, then there are a few ways you can take supportive care of her at home. To check for clinical signs that may tell you your hedgehog is unwell:

  • First, visit a vet for proper diagnosis and medication. 

“Any time you notice something out of the ordinary with your hedgehog, it at least warrants a phone call to the vet,” Dr Wilkinson suggests. 

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You can also increase some heat in the rooms where the hedgehog is in case it is showing signs of lethargy or weakness. If the temperatures are below 65 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit, hedgehogs tend to hibernate. The warmer you keep them, the stronger they become. 

  • Keep away from her

Also, you can help reduce your pet’s stress levels by staying away from her. Keep her in the dark and quiet environment and away from other hedgehogs in case you have more than one. 

Some canned foods like turkey, kitten, or chicken baby food might help in case she is not eating. If you do not have these, you can soak her regular food in chicken broth with low sodium or water then feed her. Some water, too, will go a long way.

  • Watch out for critical signs

If you see extreme shortness in breath, physical abnormalities or blood anywhere bring them into to a veterinarian immediately.  These are life and death signs and the faster they are checked out the better.

We hope this helps answer your burning questions of signs my hedgehog is dying. It is always best to seek professional help if you see your pet is not at their best.  

How do I know if my hedgehog is dying?

“A sick hedgehog will often be less active and/or weaker than normal and usually will have a reduced appetite,” Dr Wilkinson remarks. 

As is the case for a variety of hedgehog illnesses the signs of bad health may not show straight away. Look out for weight loss, a significant change in appetite and lethargy. If your hedgehog suffers from a repository infection lookout for sneezing, discharge and issues breathing.

Do Hedgehogs curl up when they die?

Yes, but just being curled up doesn’t mean they are dead. Hedgehogs will curl up in a ball for a variety of reasons. For example, If they feel threatened or as a last response to escape. They may also curl up in a ball if they are stress or in fear. In general, hedgehogs don’t automatically curl up in a ball to die.

When thinking about Signs My Hedgehog Is Dying it’s important you take a full picture of your hedgehog’s health and if in doubt head straight to the vet.

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