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Thread: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

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    Default 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Hi, I've an 8 week old orphaned Eastern Grey that is doing very well on Fox Valley - good appetite, gaining weight, very inquisitive and playful. I have had him since 5 weeks. My questions are about bedding and the Henry's blocks.
    - Litter/Bedding: I have fleece in the cage, but now that he is older he won't let me stimulate him to pee/poop after he eats and I'm going through fleece pieces very quickly. I have pine shavings and wheat based cat litter in the house. Is one of those suitable or is there something else I should get?
    - Henry's blocks: I read here that this should be his first solid food. I change out a half block every day or two. He shreds it or ignores it. Won't eat it. Is this normal? Do I just wait him out or try to make them more interesting by dripping formula on them?

    Also, how important is it to create suspended sleeping options? Are the fleece cubes from Henry's worth it or do they outgrow them?
    Thank you! Very much appreciate the information I have found here.

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Congratulations on being a parent to a little fuzzbutt.

    I use fleece for bedding. I also put small bathroom rugs in the bottom of the cage. I especially like the little noodle/nub type rugs, as their absorbent and the little poo pellets most times drop down between the nubs. Im not sure about the pine shavings but I’d be concerned about him eating the wheat based cat litter. I know that cedar shavings can irritate their lungs, but I don’t know if the pine shavings have a scent.

    Definitely only Henrys blocks till he’s eating it well. The best liked blocks are the Picky Eater and the Hazelnut. I have never been able to get any of mine to eat the high protein ones. Giving half a block is good and less wasteful. You can even save the ones you take out that are hard and dried and grind them up and mix with a tad bit of almond butter to keep them from going to waste. I would just put them in a separate baggie in the freezer and save them up till you have a stash of them then grind them. It would be better to only offer this once he’s eating the regular Henrys well. Make sure before you freeze the dried ones that they are not moldy. And yes, you can drizzle formula on the block and see if that encourages him to eat them.

    Your little guy will LOVE a hanging fleece cube. It will also work well to put in a release cage along with a wooden nest box till he learns what the nest box is for.

    This is the type rug I’m referring to.
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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Quote Originally Posted by MrSploot View Post
    but now that he is older he won't let me stimulate him to pee/poop after he eats and
    That is totally normal at his age, eyes open they take care of their own business. Generally, they won't poop where they sleep, especially if there is enough space.

    On the positive side, cleaning up their poop keeping you in touch with how they are doing, which is critical to dealing with any problems promptly.

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Back to report that you were right, he LOVES his hanging cube. That was an immediate hit and well worth the money.
    I've also moved him to a room where he can spend more time uncaged. As we work to squirrel-proof it, what are the big dangers to watch out for? Electrical cords obviously are high on that list of things to eliminate. I'm ok with him chewing on the furniture in there as it is all destined for giving away or for the dump. Can I leave curtains for him to climb up or will he shred those?

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Iím glad to hear the cube was a hit . He will probably leave marks in the curtains, Iím not sure if theyíll be shredded, though. He may also chew on the door framing or framing around a closet.

    What type windows do you have? I had a released squirrel that I had to bring back inside because he was injured. He REALLY wanted back out so he chewed the hand ledge that you grab to open a single hung vinyl window. tap He didnít totally destroy it, but......? Iíve also had drywall chewed along the edge of a window.

    Watch out for anything that he could jump on that might come toppling down and land on him.

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    You can find some oak branches and cut them into small pieces. This provides an alternative for chewing. They can be moody sometimes and that can sometimes be expressed by chewing on things. I have been pleasantly surprised to find that on her own she mostly behaves herself, and will chew on the stick and not the furniture. They are capable of engaging in negative behavior because they think you aren't paying enough attention to them.

    The best time, in my experience, to strengthen the bond between the two of you is the hour before sunset. A little mutual grooming will make them much more likely to mind you. The fewer the small objects the easier it is leap from place to place. Assume that they will try to reach every surface in the room. Be on the look out for things that have sharp corners. When they are leaping to new heights they sometimes miss.

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Thanks - we cleared out the obstacles and he is left with a big giant teddy bear (that he is "burying" food under and climbing all over), a high dresser (secured to the wall) and a bunk bed. Carpeted floor to cushion falls. So far so good as far as not chewing on unsuitable things. I am bringing in interesting things from outside and leaving them for him to discover - some dry maple leaves, branches, etc.

    I have vinyl windows... newly replaced two years ago, so I REALLY hope he doesn't chew those. I was thinking about leaving the window open on good days for some fresh air/sights/sounds, but got worried he might chew through the screen. Maybe I could make a hardware cloth frame for that window that would allow it to be open but also protect it from chewing. Something to think about.

    Question - we'll have to overwinter him and release in the spring. I was concerned that bonding would be bad for him when he returns to life outside, but that's some months away. I guess he needs the social/bonding stimulation now and then gets weaned off our contact during the soft release time?

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    You are right about continuing to interact with him through winter. It will make both of your lives more enjoyable.

    Do not open the window unless you have a very sturdy hardware cloth screen. Actually, Iím not sure itís a great idea period for fear that after itís been opened and then is closed he may be more likely to chew the window to get out. You might be able to make a hardware cloth frame that completely encloses the window and secures to the drywall or press fits inside the window opening to prevent him from having access to the vinyl windows....just a thought.

    Hereís a photo of what my little monster did to the vinyl window. shakehead
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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    You say "little monster" but somehow the love comes through.
    "I hope everyone got or gets their Baby Love today"~Shewhosweptforest

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Quote Originally Posted by Mel1959 View Post
    You might be able to make a hardware cloth frame that completely encloses the window and secures to the drywall or press fits inside the window opening to prevent him from having access to the vinyl windows....just a thought.
    Definitely a good suggestion with these vinyl windows.
    At a past residence the home owner had new vinyl windows installed,
    they were the type that could un- latch and swing inward for cleaning.
    ... they weren't even a year old.
    My girl chewed the latches off flush down to the frame.
    Step-N-Stone
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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    This is what my husband made with hardware cloth.
    Wood frame drilled in widow frame. My windows swing out so that works well for us.
    Notice the fancy work my two did to the frame above , no worry it's old anyway house built in 1926
    Hey we live with the squirrels. They have us trained well
    And of course pic came out sideways, top is to the left 😉
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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Every squirrel is different, some are chewers on everything, some leave things alone and only chew branches.

    I overwintered two squirrels and built a large room sized cage that included a house wall and window as two sides of it. They chewed the drywall, so I ended up covering it in cardboard like wallpaper. They then chewed the cardboard, but I would replace the sections as needed as I had a never ending supply of cardboard from amazon orders etc.

    Because the window was a beautiful old house wood window, I figured out a way to cover the entire thing. I took c-clamps and clamped a pine board to cover the bottom window ledge, then made another ledge halfway up to cover the window lock which they loved to lay on. This was great because no part of the real window was showing, thus completely safe. I reframed it without nails, just using clamps etc.

    I would hesitate to open the window. I did this with my spring baby this year, as I wanted him to be as close to nature as possible; it backfired. The little guy heard the outdoor noises and wilded up in an instant. He became obsessed with getting out the window. Even when I closed it, he ran around around and around the room in a panic trying to free himself to the outdoors. This did not stop for days. Actually it did not stop. The only way I could stop it was that I put him in the release cage at 10 weeks old, he was in there for about 2 months until release. It was huge, so he had a big room to himself outside. This worked, as he did not try to get out. For most intensive purposes, he was outside. This was my experience, it might not be yours.

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    I appreciate all the insight. He basically has the whole room to himself to run around in which is doing, all day, every day.

    The latest unpleasant development is him clawing at my face. Out of nowhere he's started staring at me intently then leaping at my face/neck. If he's on my shoulder he'll reach around and try to claw near my eyes and mouth. He's drawn blood twice, yesterday. I read elsewhere here that clawing/pawing at the face is squirrel for "take me someplace else" but obviously that's not an option. I yelled both times and then left the room, but if anyone has tried and true fixes for face attacks I'd love to hear them. Otherwise it's going to be an unpleasant coexistence for the next three months. I really don't want to evict him prematurely after all the time and effort expended so far.

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks


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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Okay, this is freaking adorable. This afternoon went I went in for some food and play, he was sniffing really intently in the palms of my hand and base of my fingers for the longest time. I took advantage of the stillness and was giving him all kinds of head scritches and loving, and he just closed his eyes with his head pressed firmly into my hand, gripping my fingers, and just chilled there for a couple of minutes while I gave him some loving. That hasn't happened since he was a wee little sploot! So cute!

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks


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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Just wanted to say thanks to everyone in this thread... has been very helpful to me too!

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Quote Originally Posted by CrazyCatLady View Post
    I would have said dollar store safety goggles, but the spaghetti strainer is
    "I hope everyone got or gets their Baby Love today"~Shewhosweptforest

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    Default Re: 8 week old questions - bedding, Henry's blocks

    Quote Originally Posted by Chirps View Post
    I would have said dollar store safety goggles, but the spaghetti strainer is
    I agree. I only wish there were pictures. That would be a sight I'd love to see!

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