Hedgehog lives to fight another day

Swan Notes
Swan Notes

This week I thought I would tell you about one of our hedgehogs, Little Green.

She is a female hedgehog that came in on August 4 weighing just 135 grams. She was covered in fly eggs which had to be taken off individually with tweezers, a very time consuming process.

She was immediately put on the Hedgehog First Aid Treatment that we use to worm them and buck them up a bit. Kay took her home with several other tiny hogs so that she could feed them round the clock.

Little Green was the only one of the babies that would not feed easily. She would not take the hedgehog milk supplement the others tucked into happily. She was eating very little of the mashed up meat that she was being fed either.

We began to think she was not a doer and would fade away and die. She was a strange little hog being very furry underneath.

By the end of August all the babies were back down to the Rollo Centre and onto meaty food, all were growing at a very steady pace except Little Green. The others all came off their heat pads making their own beds in their towels except Little Green.

By October all the other hogs were over 700 grams except Little Green who was just about 500 grams but she was still with us. She was still very furry and very gentle and easy to handle never putting up her spines.

Every time we took her heat pad away she lost weight and we had to put it back again. She always had the best food and was totally spoilt.

In November she suddenly began to pick up by the end of the month and reached 760 grams. I took her heat pad away and we waited for her to lose weight but she didn’t. In December I took her to a nursery school in Eyemouth and she behaved beautifully, loving having her tummy tickled, as she is still very furry and laid-back.

Last week when Jordon was cleaning her cage he noticed she had a thread that had come loose from the towel caught on her front leg. It would happen to Little Green! We cut the end off the thread and gave her a whiff of anaesthetic to get her to uncurl. Thankfully the thread was caught just on her claw which was very long. We decided to cut them while she was out cold. When this was done we realised she was not breathing.

Angela and Jordon held their breath whist Kay and me massaged the hog’s chest. Kay was telling her she was not going to die now. Nothing seemed to work, she was blasted with oxygen, massaged and rubbed.

Eventually Kay administered Dopram V to stimulate breathing on the hog’s tongue. Even this did not work but we had nothing to lose and gave the hog a second drop. Thankfully this worked. Just as well as I think Jordon and Angela were still holding their breath. We gave the hog a heat pad for the day but within an hour of her recovery she was having a good feed. Little Green lives to fight another day.