Urogenital Health Issues

Jun 6, 2013 by

Urogenital Health Issues

Genital Irritations

  • It is important to watch for any signs of irritation and clean this area as soon as an irritation is detected.
  • Hedgehogs are very low to the ground and so both male and female hedgehogs can get bedding stuck to their genital area.
  • Clumping cat litter should NEVER be used and clay non-clumping, clay cat litter.
  • When a male urinates bedding may stick to the penis and get drawn up into the penile sheath.
  • Bedding trapped in the penile sheath can cause local infection and urinary tract infections.
  • Allow your hedgehog to walk in shallow, warm water to relax your hedgehog and hopefully soften what needs to come out before gently removing it.

Urinary Tract Infections

  • Urinary tract infections are usually bacterial in nature.
  • Females are usually more inclined to urinary tract infections because they have a shorter tract to the outside of the body and it is closer to the anal area.
  • Symptoms to recognize
    • Change in elimination habits.  For example urinating in ball or sleeping bag when previously did not have this problem.
    • Blood in the urine.
    • Frequent urination of small amounts.
    • Straining to urinate
  • The sooner a potential problem is noticed and treated the better your hedgehog will have for a complete recovery.

Yeast Infections

  • Yeast infections .are typically caused by an overgrowth of existing organisms caused by weakened immune systems.
    IMG_0511

    Female hedgehog with a yeast infection.

    IMG_0512

    Male hedgehog with a yeast infection.

  • Females are usually more inclined to yeast infections because there is a change in pH in the area during breeding.

Uterine Cancer

  • At this point in time studies have not been done to determine if there is a link between females that are not bred and an increased risk of uterine cancer.
  • Some hedgehog experts believe female hedgehogs that are not going to be bred should be spayed as a preventative measure.