Do you know how to take care of degu at home?
Squirrels are cute and nimble animals, capable of touching anyone. And if you really like them, then try to keep at home degus. But such a pet requires special care, the features of which will be discussed in detail below.
What kind of animal is that?
Daegu is a species of South American rodents, found in countries such as Peru, Chile, Argentina, Bolivia. Sometimes this animal is called the Chilean squirrel, as it is really very similar to the habitual for many forest dweller.
It is also small, because its body size rarely exceeds 20 centimeters, and the weight is usually 500 g. The tail length, which, by the way, is not very fluffy and can have a brush at the tip, is about 10-15 cm. The fur is soft and short, color can vary from yellowish-brown to brown-gray, but spotting or other tones are possible, for example, blue (it is obtained due to artificial breeding of new species).The muzzle is elongated, the eyes are small.
Degas lead a predominantly daytime lifestyle and are active during the daytime, but they prefer to sleep in the same way. If you wonder how long such animals live, then under favorable conditions of life expectancy can exceed seven to eight years.
Providing comfortable accommodation
If you plan on keeping a degu, then purchase a cage. And it should be spacious enough and high that the pet had an opportunity to move freely and spill out energy. The optimal size of the dwelling of one animal is 60x40x40 centimeters. The bottom can be covered with wood chips or paper scraps.
In the cell must certainly be present:
- The feeder, and it is desirable to use metal, as the containers of other materials can be simply chewed.
- Automatic special drinker for rodents.
- House. In it, your pet will sleep soundly at night and hide from prying eyes.
- Running wheel is also a mandatory attribute, because the degu are very active and love to run.
- Sand tank in which the animal will take baths and clean its wool.
- A few twigs. Their degus will be used for grinding teeth, which is necessary for proper development.
It is important not only to equip the cell, but also to clean it regularly. This should be done as far as pollution, rubbing the rods and bottom and replacing a layer of sawdust.
Advice: since the rodents in question do not tolerate cold, direct sunlight and drafts, the cage should be placed in a place protected from the sun and wind and a warm enough place.
How to care?
Taking care of degus at home requires the following conditions and rules:
- The squirrel degu is an active animal, so do not limit the territory of its habitat to just one cell. Periodically let your pet on walks. But be prepared for tricks, so for the preservation of property, all breakable, wooden, textile and plastic objects that an animal can chew or smash are better hidden. Highlight one room for activity and stay close by. And in order to return the degu to the cage, open its door a little and put inside the treat.
- Protect your pet from loud and harsh sounds, unpleasant odors.
- Remember that such a pet does not tolerate high humidity, so do not bathe it in the water! Enough sand baths.
- Changing the litter cell, you should not completely throw away all the sawdust. Leave a small part of them so that the animal smells. Otherwise, he may not recognize his home and feel uncomfortable.
- For prophylactic purposes, once every three months, conduct anthelmintic therapy.
What to feed degu? They are herbivores, so food of plant origin should be included in the diet. The menu may contain vegetables (preferably solid, which provide additional grinding of teeth), unsweetened fruits, various grains, seeds, nuts. You can also offer grass or petals of non-poisonous flowers. But all products must be of high quality.
For example, only ripe fruit is allowed, not green or overripe. Sweet is completely excluded, as degus have a tendency to diabetes. Dairy and dairy products should not be given either. It is important to change the water in the drinker every day, it should always be fresh. And replace the remnants of food with a new portion, as they may deteriorate.
Tip: if you doubt the quality of the food, then feed the pet food for rodents (for example, for chinchillas).
Sexual maturity occurs at about the age of a year, but fertilization can occur much earlier. In one offspring can be from one to six to eight cubs. And for a year, a female living in favorable conditions can bring two or three offspring.
Some tips on care and degu maintenance:
- Do not grab the degu by the tail. The fact is that in case of danger a pet can throw off the skin covering it, and then bite off the rest.
- If you are not ready to devote a lot of time to degu, then get him a friend. Such animals live in flocks, so they are in good contact with companions. If you deprive the animal of communication, it can become wild and become fearful and aggressive. Tame it from an early age: communicate, iron, take in your hands.
- If you just bought a degu, then let the animal get used to the new environment. You should not immediately relocate it to the cage, leave it for a while in the carrier, then release it, and only then offer to go to a permanent home.
Look after the degu properly, and your pet will be happy and sociable!
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