JUL

15

The Emo, or Quilling Hedgehog

All hedgehogs go through periods during their early life (typically between birth and 13 weeks old) where they lose their prior set of quills and grow in new ones. This is equated with teething in people.

Some hedgehogs cope very well, while the majority become angry, hissing balls of quills.
OUCH!

Hedgehogs who are having a hard time quilling are quite often anti-social. They may lose their appetite, stop wheeling, and worry their owners incessantly.

Treatment/handling of the hedgehogs during these times ‘can’ be pivotal. To anthropomorphize(attribute human emotion/behavor) it, they become depressed.

This can spiral out of control, leading to quite an unsocial adult hedgehog if you let it.

What to do?

Interact and handle your hedgehog daily DESPITE the fact that the hedgehog doesn’t seem ‘fun’.

Hold the ball of unhappiness on a sleep sack, lap pad, etc.

DO NOT PET HER BACK! But rather talk calmly and quietly to the hedgehog, watch a tv show, get on your computer and post on the HedgehogWorld.com forum, or what have you.

Patience, time, and consistent behavior on your part will reward you with a happy friend again.

If your hedgehog seems to be having a really rough time of it, Aveeno oatmeal baby gel (unscented) in a warm (tepid) is highly soothing and recommended. Be sure to snuggle the hedgehog in a towel for about 45 minutes after to make sure the hedgehog is fully dry and does not catch a chill.