Bit stuck with my foster hog…
27th November 2019 at 11:51 pm #20041
Took on the care of a small hoggy a week ago, weighing in at 300g. He is really bright and well but just isn’t eating enough. Have tried chicken in jelly cat food and hedghog biscuits and whilst he will have a little bit, it’s nnot enough. I weighed him again today and he’s dropped to 275g.
He has been treated for lungworm and Im following advice from my local rescue charity, but wondered if anyone had any bright ideas to get him to eat?!
In terms of environment, he’s in a big indoor cage with a big straw bed (that he loves to tunnel in!) And is left in a warm quiet room.
Thanks in advance, i really want to get him through the winter!28th November 2019 at 12:59 am #20042
I’d keep weighing him every day at the same time – and I know the rescue centre’s can give the sc fluids (I think it’s like IV),
If that’s what needs to happen, perhaps he’d have to go back to the rescue centre.
Unfortunately I have no bright ideas to get him to eat. I wonder if it’s because he’s moved to your’s and will start eating soon after he realises he’s safe. But if he continues to drop weight, he might end up on Sc fluids.
How did the rescue centre get him to eat?28th November 2019 at 7:47 am #20047
They didnt, he has been with me since being identified as too small for hibernation (neighbours garden).
He is drinking plenty so there’s no appapparent need for subcut fluids (I work in a vets). Just can’t quite understand why he won’t eat more.
I dont really want to weigh him every day as want to keep handling to an.absolute minimum to keep stress levels down.
I maybe just need to give him time28th November 2019 at 7:54 am #20048
I have never known a hog refuse Purina One kitten biscuits or Royal Canin mother and baby cat biscuits – though the Royal Canin’s a bit pricey! While I was fostering they would often pick out the Purina One from the mix and leave the rest, the wild hogs do the same! 🙂
Good luck with the little fella. 🙂28th November 2019 at 8:33 am #20049
Firstly he doesn’t need to be in your house – no matter how quiet you think it is, for a hog with far better hearing it’s probably very noisy
It needs to be taken back to the rescue centre for urgent further tests. Although it’s been treated for lungworm, lungworm are becoming resistant to treatment and it may need several cycles. It could also have any number of other internal parasites that haven’t been treated for
I keep saying it – it is proven that stress of captivity can increase internal parasite burdens in a hedgehog and this should be kept in mind at all times
A healthy hog will eat
Finally it may be that in the rescue he was among other hogs – despite being solitary in the wild they often do better in captivity when housed with other hogs – only once healthy obviously – and you need to monitor to ensure no bullying28th November 2019 at 9:24 am #20050
The rescue centre have asked me to hold onto him because they are struggling to cope. As I said, I work in the veterinary profession and he is clinically well.
My house IS quiet, there is only me here and thats for a few hours a day when not at work.
Penny, thank you. I will try the Purina kitten biscuits28th November 2019 at 11:38 am #20051
Sorry to hear the little hog isn’t eating enough.
It might sound a bit strange, but sometimes experienced hog rescuers/rehabilitators know more about rehabilitating hogs than vets do. I have heard before about hogs being cared for in vets, where they haven’t thrived until it was suggested by a rehabilitator that they were checked for internal parasites and that has turned out to be the answer.
I would take stef’s suggestion seriously, if I were you, and get the little hog checked out again for lungworm and other internal parasites. She has a lot of experience in this field.
Good luck.28th November 2019 at 3:42 pm #20055
I want to second what Nic has said.
I recently had a large adult hog at the vets who needed an amputation. The nurse said he was making a great recovery except not eating much and he was smelly.
Stef advised re internal parasites and stress and also the meds to use. The nurse took this on board and he started eating within a couple of days. He is now hibernating in our hedgehog house in the garden.
Our vet does a great job but hedgeehog care can be very specific and being couped up causes great stress for them
Let me know if you want me to look up the meds used.
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