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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Board Certified Veterinarian
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 21419
Experience:  General practice veterinary surgeon with extensive experience in a wide range of species.
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Our hedgehog is barely moving. He was active and ate

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Our hedgehog is barely moving. He was active and ate yesterday, but today, barely moving and doesn't want food/water?
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. The Veterinarian will know if the hedgehog will be able to digest that. What is the hedgehog's name and age?
Customer: Ozwald is 3. He is blinking and taking a gasp every 5 minutes or so
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Ozwald?
Customer: He has been very healthy up until now. East and drinks fine. Eats kitten food, high protein and plenty of water

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today.

Any gagging, lip licking, drooling, vomiting, or diarrhea?

Are his gums or inner eyelids pink, yellow tinted, or white?

Are his gums moist or sticky?

If you press on his belly, any tensing, tenderness, discomfort, or pain?

Could he have eaten anything harmful (ie bones, toys, plants, chemicals, human meds, etc)?

You noted that he is gasping, can you take a breathing rate for me (just count his breaths for 10 seconds + multiply by 6)?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Hi, thank you for responding. Here are the answers:No gagging, lip licking, drooling
Gums seem to be white and moist
Doesn't want his belly pushed looks uncomfortable
Didn't eat anything funny or swallow toys
Breaths seemed like 4 per 10 seconds so 24 with your formula
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
We have a little dog. They touched noses yesterday when the hedgehog seemed to be fine. Not sure if that would cause anything...they've been around he other before. We did notice tat yesterday around 7:00 when it was still light out, Ozwald was VERY active. He doesn't usually behave that way until it gets dark. It almost seemed odd and so we took him out of his cage and he ran around in circles. Is that a sign of today he's laying still, barely moving.

Oh dear,

Now those white gums are a real worry. We can see this kind of paling with lung issues (less likely with that normal breathing rate), heart disease (common in this species), anemia (low red blood cell levels --common with ticks/fleas/worms but also seen with internal bleeding, bone marrow problems, etc) and circulatory compromise from a blockage (something eaten usually causes this but severe worms, tumor, or gut inflammation/twists could do this too). And just to note the circling doesn't quite fit (usually that is a neurological sign) but if he has a brain bleed with any of this or those oxygen levels are so low they are starving the brain than that could be our cause for that. Though more often and as we are seeing now, we tend to see lethargy and reduced movement as the body tries to conserve oxygen.

Now in this situation, there isn't much that can be done at home unfortunately. If Ozwald was my patient, I'd want him seen now to assess his heart, lungs, and blood. of course, at the same time we'd need to have his vet checking for gut blockages or compromise. If his oxygenation is poor, then he can be put on oxygen as he is checked. And based on those findings that would be key for determining if and how we can help him. Heart disease can be managed with medication but blockages or course need to be removed. If he has severe worms causing all the signs, then he'd need to be wormed but monitored closely (since killing all the worms at once could worsen a blockage). And that way we can try to treat the treatable and give him the best chance here.

Finally, just in case there is any delay getting him seen (though if it is just a few hours we'd hold off on trying to feed him so we dont' delay any diagnostics that may need to be done), we can given him some support. First since he is lethargic and off food, we can try boosting his blood sugar by rubbing a sugary syrup (ie glucose syrup, honey, karo syrup, pancake syrup, or even non-grape jam) onto the gums. This will get some sugar into his and hopefully perk him up for us. Pedialyte can be gently syringe fed (4.8ml per 100g of his weight daily) and

we can offer or syringe feed watered down canned kitten food, Hill's A/D, Royal Canin Recovery, or Clinicare Canine/Feline Liquid Diet to her daily feeds. All of these are critical care diets that are calorically dense, so a little goes a long way nutrition-wise and that would hopefully keep his body going until we can get him seen for those very worrisome signs here.

In this situation, just in case you do wish to see an ER vet, you can check @ or

Kind regards,

Dr. B.


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Hello again,

How is everything with your wee one?

Warm regards,

Dr. B.

Dr. B. and 2 other Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Thank you very much for checking. The honey helped slightly for half hour, but unfortunately, he passed a couple of hours later. Thank you for your help. It Was indeed very helpful!