Yarmouth Veterinary Center

75 Willow Street
Yarmouth , ME 04096

(207)846-6515

www.yarmouthvetcenter.com

HEDGEHOG HEALTH PROBLEMS

These are hedgehog problems we can diagnose and treat at YVC:

SKIN

  • Normal quills: soft and white at birth, hardening in a few hours; harder, darker quills emerge 2 days after birth; quills are then replaced at 2, 4, 6, 9 and 12 weeks. A good description of the quilling (quill shedding) process is found at http://hedgehogheadquarters.com/secure/quilling.htm.
  • Itch: mites, bacterial infection, cancer
  • Abnormal quill loss: dermatophytosis (ringworm), mites and other parasites, bacterial infection, cancer
  • Scales and crusts: dermatophytosis, bacterial infection, cancer
  • Erosions and ulcerations (sores): wounds, ruptured abscesses and tumors
  • Changes in pigmentation: dermatophytosis, mites, cancer
  • Parasites: mites, ticks, fleas, flies
  • Neoplasia: benign, wart-like lumps, mast cell tumors, mammary gland tumors, squamous cell carcinoma, sebaceous gland carcinoma, neurofibroma, osteosarcoma, hemangiosarcoma, lymphoma
  • Ear problems
  • Trauma: bite wounds, foot injuries from excessive rubbing on an exercise wheel

RESPIRATORY TRACT

  • Bacterial pneumonia
  • Fungal pneumonia
  • Parasitic pneumonia
  • Neoplasia: bronchoalveolar carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, pulmonary adenocarcinoma

DENTAL / ORAL

  • Periodontal disease
  • Broken teeth
  • Tooth root abscesses
  • Osteomyelitis - infection in the mandibular bone
  • Bone cysts
  • Neoplasia: sarcoma, squamous cell carcinoma, salivary gland cancer

DIGESTIVE TRACT

  • Viral infection: parvo
  • Bacterial infection: Salmonella
  • Fungal infection
  • Protozoal infection (single-celled parasites): Cryptosporidium, Eimeria, Isospora
  • Parasites: roundworms, tapeworms, thorny-headed worms, flukes
  • Nutritional: lactose intolerance, dietary indiscretion (eating things they should not)
  • Neoplasia: carcinomas, sarcomas, plasmacytoma
  • Stomach ulcer
  • Foreign objects causing intestinal blockage, eg., carpet fibers
  • Intussusception: intestine telescoping into itself
  • Megaesophagus
  • Liver disease

NUTRITIONAL

  • Obesity: very common
  • Hepatic lipidosis: fatty liver disease, common in obese hedgehogs that stop eating well for any reason
  • Vitamin deficiencies: thiamine, A, D3
  • Calcium deficiency: resulting in metabolic bone disease

LIVER

  • Viral: herpes
  • Nutritional: fatty liver, ketosis
  • Neoplasia: lymphoma, metastasis of tumors from other sites, hepatocellular cancer, bile duct cancer
  • Inflammatory liver disease: non-infectious hepatitis

SPLEEN

  • Fungal: histoplasmosis
  • Neoplasia: hemangiosarcoma, hemangioma, lymphoma

PANCREAS

  • Neoplasia: carcinoma, islet cell tumors

HEART

  • Bacterial: endocarditis, pericarditis
  • Neoplasia: lymphoma, hemagioma, hemangiosarcoma
  • Cardiomyopathy: heart muscle disease

SYSTEMIC

  • Viral: retrovirus (possible cause of lymphoma), pneumonia virus of mice, herpesvirus
  • Bacterial: septicemia (especially from dental/oral disease), mycobacteria
  • Fungal: histoplasma
  • Neoplasia: lymphoma, various forms of bone marrow cancer
  • Torpor: extreme lethargy from too hot or cold environment

MUSCULOSKELETAL

  • Bacterial
  • Parasitic: pentastomids
  • Neoplasia: osteosarcoma
  • Trauma
  • Fibers wrapped around toes or feet
  • Arthritis
  • Orbicularis (eye) muscle prolapse
  • Bone cysts

NERVOUS

  • Viral: herpes, rabies
  • Bacterial: meningitis, middle or inner ear infection
  • Nutritional
  • Neoplasia: lymphoma, other
  • Toxins
  • Torpor
  • Intervertebral disk disease
  • Wobbly hedgehog syndrome - possibly genetic

EYE

  • Bacterial: Salmonella, mycobacterium, bone infection of upper jaw and eye socket
  • Nutritional: obesity, vitamin A deficiency
  • Neoplasia
  • Cataracts
  • Retinal degeneration
  • Trauma

ENDOCRINE (HORMONAL)

  • Neoplasia: glands possibly affected: thyroid, pituitary, parathyroid, adrenal

URINARY

  • Bacterial: cystitis, leptospirosis
  • Neoplasia: lymphoma
  • Bladder and kidney stones
  • Inflammatory cystitis (bladder inflammation without infection)
  • Inflammatory and degenerative diseases of the kidneys

REPRODUCTIVE

  • Bacterial: mastitis (infection of the mammary glands)
  • Nutritional: ketosis/pregnancy toxemia
  • Neoplasia: mammary tumors, ovarian tumors, uterine tumors
  • Endometrial polyps
  • Dystocia: difficulty giving birth