Your Degus Cage is its home, where it will spend most (if not all) of its life, and needs to be perfectly suited to their needs in order to help them have happy, healthy lives. To be right, the cage need to have:
- A solid metal base, not wire, to help prevent bumble foot and painful feet
- Plenty of ventilation
- Loads of space and platforms
- Loads of room for living space
We provide a guide on the basics on building your own cage, making it to your own requirements as well as your pets to make the perfect home, but in order to get the maximum inspiration, visit this German Website to see some of the best home made cages the internet has to offer!
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Why are Degus Great Pets?
- They are easy to keep
- There sleeping patterns mean they are awake during the early morning and evening, when you are most likely to be at home, and sleep when you do unlike other pets such as hamsters
- Degus are intelligent, quick to learn and easy to tame and train
- Although they look similar, each Degu has their own distinct personality
- Degus rarely bite, and even when they do its usually an attempt at grooming their owner
- Degus are fascinating to watch and easy to interact with for people of all ages
- Degus do not stink out the room, their urine is odourless and stools are hard and easy to clean up
Overall these pets are fascinating creatures that are easy to keep, great to interact with and fun to look after
We are looking for sellers of degu-related products to come and advertise on our site, bring thier items or services to the attention of the degu community and help raise awareness of what is out there for the owners of these wonderful creatures. Get in touch!
Hello! Degu World needs you! we are looking for everyone from new owners to seasoned breeders to join in with the making of this website from submitting photos to our gallery and helping other owners on the forum to even having thier own blog page! If you would like to help this growing and popular website with increasing visitors every week please get in touch on our contacts page! There are pleanty of opportunites to join in and become known to the online degu community.
Hello! Welcome to our first blog entry! over the coming months we hope to turn this into a weekly blog with degu related information such as product reviews, mini-guides, suggestions and all manner of things! To start off we are going to do a review of the vailable degu foods out there to see which is the best for your pet (i.e. which one my pets prefer!) see keep checking back for more information! In the mean time, if you have any suggestions for what you would like to see please let us know!
Frequently Asked Questions
To submit a question, please visit the contact us page. Please remember that were are not qualified vets and cannot legally give medical advice, although most websites do, and do not suffer the consequences of trying out guessed medication on some one else's pets. At the first signs of illness take your pet to a qualified vet. No amount of research can compete with a trained professional.
To Jump to a particular section, please select a link below
|Q. How big should my Degu Cage be?|
|A. The bigger the cage, the better for your Pets! a general rule of thumb is 100x100x50cm for 2 Degus, doubling for each addition pair.|
|Q. I don't think I'd be able to look after two Degus at the same time, can I keep just 1?|
|A. NO! Degus are social creatures, they need company to stay happy and healthy. No amount of human interaction will make up for that.|
|Q. All I seem to find is wire cages, which most websites say are bad for my Degus, what should i keep them in?|
|A. Wire cages are perfect for your Degus as long as the base is solid, not mesh. Preferably a glass tank could form the bottom of the cage, but you cannot keep your pets in an all glass tank as this will restrct circulation, as well as shelves and fixtures inside the cage.|
|Q. Why does my Degu keep biting on the wire in the cage?|
|A. Degus bite the wire to try and 'expand' their territory, thinking they have a change on getting through. This is normal behaviour, and can sometimes indicate your cage is too small or does not contain enough distractions.|
|Q. Does my cage need an exercise wheel?|
|A. In short, YES! Degus need plenty of exercise to stay healthy, of which 99% will come from a wheel. It needs to have a solid base, not the mesh or barred ones you see in pet stores. You can find more information on our Toys and Exercise Page.
If you cannot find a good wheel, we have given instructions on how to make a Metal Wheel in our Create Your Own Range.
|Q. Can my Degu be neutered?|
|A They can, although due to the health problems and risks of putting an small pet under anesthetic, we highly recommend against it, and should only be used as a last resort.|
|Q. My Degus keep fighting! what can I do?|
|A. Please refer to the fighting guide, and if all else fails, they may have to be separated|
|Q. One of my Degus died and the other looks very lonely now :( is it possible to introduce a new Degu to the cage?|
|A. It certainly is! see our new introductions guide for more information. You should never let a Degu live alone, and despite difficulties in introducing new pets, every effort should be made|
|Q. Does a Degu have to live with other Degus, or can I move it in with one of my other pets?|
|A. Degus should only live with other Degus, any other living arrangements will result in deadly fights over territory, and incompatibility due to different sleeping patterns, dietary requirements and other factors.|
Degu Fighting Guide
Degus fight. Its used to establish dominance, set the social hierarchy, and express dislike. This behaviour is normal among all species, and is present in the cage as much as it would be in the wild, possibly even more as their is less territory to control and more (sexual) frustration. On 99% of occasions you should do nothing and leave them to it, as interfering would only harm proceedings and cause more fighting. It is only when things get serious you should break them apart. Degus will tend to fight more during the breeding season, which is winter-spring time, as the breeding hormones cause a greater need for dominance.
Most fighting will be non-serious, where they are establishing the social hierarchy by displaying dominant behaviour over each other. This can include chasing each other around the cage, squeaking at each other, mounting each other so the one below becomes submissive and the one on top dominant, and standing on the hind legs and 'boxing'. This is normal behaviour and nothing to worry about, and you should not intervene as it will only set them back a stage and make them fight more. These fights are fought in a way as to not cause injury, just a bit of friendly rough and tumble. Fighting can also occur when there are limited resources to share such as food and treats, with Degus showing such behaviour as turning their backs, blocking access to the food bowls and treats, and loud squeaking to warn them away, so great care must be taken to ensure everything is equal and is placed far enough apart for the Degus to see there are 2 (or more) separate areas without coming into too much contact with each other. Put simply, place the food bowls around 10cm apart.
You should only step in and separate them when there is biting and lunging at each other which causes wounds, and when they become locked in a ball rolling around. This is serious fighting, and can cause injury, as both Degus are unwilling to back down and fight to the death. Any injuries sustained during these fights should be checked by a Vet, including any observable changes in behaviour or discomfort. Remember, a Degu can not speak and tell you they need treatment, so it is up to you as a good owner to ensure their health and well-being takes priority. If you do need to separate them, it may be hard to introduce them back together, and may need to be kept separate for a few weeks before being able to be reunited. Our new introductions guide gives some tips on how to re-introduce our pets, including ensuring the cage is neutral (fully cleaned so it does not smell of one Degu more than another) and the Degus first reunion is in a neutral setting where they can be monitored without escape (such as a dry bath tub).
Preventing Degus from Fighting
A lot of serious fighting can be avoided by following a few basic steps:
- Have separate food bowls for each Degu, placed suitably apart
- Have plenty of shelters to provide hiding places for one to run to instead of being forced into a fight
- If you give one Degu a treat, give the others a treat
- Have a spare cage (I use the one I place my pets in whilst cleaning the main cage) ready for if the worse happens
- Treat each pet equal, do not favour and treat one more over the other