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sudden degu death
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TOPIC: sudden degu death

sudden degu death 1 year, 5 months ago #1

Hi there,

I really hope you can help me. I had a young seemingly healthy male degu who was 9 months old. He was very alert, active and affectionate with clear eyes and no signs of any problems until yesterday afternoon - when I was stroking him before putting him back in his cage after a run around i noticed he had a small amount of white discharge round one eye. I wiped it off and noticed he was a little bit more docile than normal, letting me handle him more than he usually would and less interested in his bath and food . A couple of hours later he was hunched in the corner looking all bushy and sorry for himself - made an appointment for the vet for the next day -ie. today. but by the morning he did not want to get up out of his nest box and was barely moving. He eventually came out of his box only to lie on his cage floor with his head in his giant chew tube, breathing very shallowly. I took him out to rush him to the vet and noticed he had blood all over his mouth and nose. By the time we got him to the vet it was too late he was dead. I just don't understand how he can have deteriorated so quickly. He was very well looked after. I would like to know if you have heard of any other incidents like this and can offer some explanation as the vets were unable to give me any clues as to why this might have happened. I always fed him degu suitable nuggets, twigs and herbs. His cage was lined with timothy hay. The only thing is a couple of weeks ago i mistakenly bought a bag of timothy hay that didn't specify its suitability for degus but said it was for rabbits. it was softer than his usual hay, but as it was still timothy hay i thought it would be alright and he seemed to prefer it for his bedding at least - but did I do the wrong thing, could this have been the cause of his death? I am so upset and dreading telling my 9 year old when he gets home, but think it will be better for him to come to terms with if he has a reason to it. I also don't want to get any more degus until i understand what went wrong here.

I hope you are able to shed some light on this

Re: sudden degu death 1 year, 5 months ago #2


Re: sudden degu death 1 year, 3 months ago #3

very sorry to hear about your loss

I am afraid I have not heard anything about thisand after checking with a few breeders niether have they.

I am pretty confident the timothy hay change would not have caused a problem.

All I can say at this moment is it sounds like natural causes, some sort of disease or defect you couldn't have had an influence in.

Again, sorry for your loss
Owner of Degu World.com

Re: sudden degu death 1 year, 2 months ago #4

timothy hay is timothy hay, no matter what it says on the bag, like tesco value or heinz baked beans, same stuff just slight differences.

sounds like the series of events leading up to the death were the result of some sort of disease or internal problems, which i can not see you being responsable for.

i hope this hasn't prevented you from getting any more pets in the future
Last Edit: 1 year, 2 months ago by steph.

Re: sudden degu death 9 months, 2 weeks ago #5

The exact same thing happened to my degu about 2 weeks ago... in fact as i was reading what happened to yours i was tearing up again because it was the same thing with mine to the T. He was fine and acted normal and happy on Saturday. Sunday in the afternoon he seemed a little lethargic, just kind of tired...still moving around, but letting me hold him more than usual. I knew something was wrong but being a sunday, i had to wait until the next day to take him to the vet. I got up monday morning about 6 am to check on him and he was hardly breathing so I was rushing to get him to the vet and he ended up taking his last breath in my hands. If you find out anything I would like to know. I fed him properly, he had plenty of excersize and chews and entertainment. It happened out of nowhere.
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