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Any ideas on how I can manage my bloody degus

(24 Posts)
hereidrawtheline Tue 07-Jul-09 13:48:38

Yes its the crazy animal woman here, I have 10. If it isnt one species giving me hassle its another.

Today its the degus, they are driving me MAD.

We have had them for around 6 months, we rescued one on her own and they arent supposed to live alone so we adopted her 3 sisters to keep her company. They are interesting, odd little things, and DS adores them but they are pissing me off. And it isnt really their fault!

Firstly I must admit I am just tired of seeing a whopping huge cage in my conservatory. And the cleaning, feeding etc. But I took them in and so that is my responsibility.

But they wont stop throwing their sodding poos all over the place. They pick them up and throw them. And straw. I do clean but I am so fighting a losing battle. The area around their cage is always covered in straw and poo. You clean it up and 5 mins later there is more. I just dont know what to do its driving me mad! The poos are hard btw like rabbit poos so they dont splatter. I am just feeling very put out by it all. My other 6 animals are very well looked after and I do their cleaning but it doesnt seem so bloody invasive as needing to sweep poo up 3 times a day in your conservatory!!! I dont know what to do. DS loves them, and is (in diagnosis process) ASD and if I rehomed them he would be soooo confused. And I would feel terrible. But I just am so grossed out by the mess. I did of course research them thoroughly but no one, and I mean, NO ONE tells you they throw poos out of the cage! There are flies!

hereidrawtheline Tue 07-Jul-09 14:04:48

must say I'm not surprised I'm the only one with poo throwing degus

You are all probably far too sensible to adopt small animals from Chile.

sweetnitanitro Tue 07-Jul-09 14:37:57

They have degus at the animal park near me, can't say I've ever seen them throw poo! I will keep a close eye out next time I'm there grin

Can you put their cage in some kind of tray (like a big litter tray or something) to prevent the poo being thrown a long way? I dunno if this is recommended, I've never kept any kind of rodents. Just an idea to keep the poo-throwing contained to a smaller area.

They like to dig like gerbils, right? Maybe they just need a little sandbox to get their digging fix?

hereidrawtheline Tue 07-Jul-09 14:58:11

they have a sand bath, a litter tray, and a 3 foot long space full of straw! The cage is too big to put inside anything. Maybe mine are especially badly behaved.

sweetnitanitro Tue 07-Jul-09 17:22:55

They must be sad send them to degu boot camp. Maybe if they had a target they would only throw the poo in one direction grin

CarGirl Tue 07-Jul-09 17:26:04

Can you make some sort cover (like budgies used to have) that goes around the bottom and half way up the sides.

Am off to google degus, never heard of them!

hereidrawtheline Tue 07-Jul-09 17:36:33

most vets have never even seen a degu so there are sadly no researched degu behaviour techniques. grin

I dont think the cover would work either because they are multi-level animals, they climb all over like squirrels. So they can throw poos from their ceiling.

CarGirl Tue 07-Jul-09 17:46:32

perspex sheets is clearly the way forward then!

They look fab, how long do they live for?

hereidrawtheline Tue 07-Jul-09 17:57:07

do you want them?

I am being very difficult I know but they cant get too hot so perspex is out! I have a fan pointing at them all day blush

I honestly cant remember how long they live for, but I'll look it up in my book. I seem to remember it was quite a long time. Mine are all very young. One of my girls, Gannymede, has lost her tail. Did you know their tails are detachable? They dont grow back. And they are naturally diabetic so must have a specific diet.

I must be mad.

CarGirl Tue 07-Jul-09 18:02:27

you clearly are. Hmmm can you move the cage to somewhere cooler and then do perspex?

Wonder if they are bored.

Chinchilla's live for about 20 years wonder how closely related they are.....

hereidrawtheline Tue 07-Jul-09 18:05:35

Well they have loads of toys. And I am a big animal nut, my animals (all bloody 10 of them) live very well. My rabbits live in a purpose built enclosure with around 160 sq ft, PLUS underground burrow (they built that bit, I'm not that bad)

But god I am at the end of my patience.

I just cant stand looking at them and their poo.

The only other room they can go in is my living room and they were in there before and I refuse to do it again because when I am sitting down relaxing I dont want to find stray poos. They have a huge chunk of my conservatory.

Ugh. I am short tempered wrt them today!

moshie Tue 07-Jul-09 18:12:33

Can they live outside?
You're going to say 'no, they can't get too cold' now, aren't you? smile

CarGirl Tue 07-Jul-09 18:14:18

Shed with heating for the cold months?

hereidrawtheline Tue 07-Jul-09 18:15:27

LOL

Well they just arent meant for this climate so no they cant live outside here. Anyone fancy taking some extra baggage with them on holiday to Chile?

They need to live in a private home who will care for them or a bloody zoo of some sort.

My house appears to be across between the two.

CarGirl Tue 07-Jul-09 18:16:52

A well insulted shed would be okay for 10 months of the year surely? It gets cold o/night in chile?

snigger Tue 07-Jul-09 18:25:42

Mosquito net?

Air will get through, it'll look all wispy and attractive, and if you attach the base to a hula hoop, you'll have a distinct rebound area?

hereidrawtheline Tue 07-Jul-09 18:30:56

Ah the brilliance of MN.

You can put your minds to anything cant you. grin

CarGirl Tue 07-Jul-09 18:36:39

circular tray at the bottom?

snigger Tue 07-Jul-09 18:55:58

CarGirl, would you expand on the construction of a well-insulted shed?

"You B****, you're not even bloody MDF, are you?"

grin

CarGirl Tue 07-Jul-09 19:05:21

<<confused>>

you get insulation stuff and then dry line on top of that - all walls & ceilings, thermostatic electic heater, monitor carefully to ensure you don't cook/freeze degus....alternatively donate degus to local zoo.

snigger Tue 07-Jul-09 19:07:58

insulted

rather than

insulated

grin - sorry, wasn't being a pedant, just made me giggle.

CarGirl Tue 07-Jul-09 19:10:17

ha ha - yes very funny typo!

I'm on the laptop standing up in the kitchen whilst clearing up and listen to dh put the 3 horrors to bed!

mumski Mon 13-Jul-09 15:51:44

Hi hereidrawthelin
sorry you are having trouble with your Degus - must look up what they are.
You were kind enough to send me your e mail address to try and help me with my house rabbit. But have been totally unable to find it. blush Would you be able to send it again?
many thanks

mumski Wed 15-Jul-09 13:35:33

bump

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