Male degus fighting when cage is cleaned - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-25-2006, 04:20 PM Thread Starter
 
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Male degus fighting when cage is cleaned

I have two male degus (not sure of their age but probably approximately one year old +). I clean their cage out completely every Saturday and they're usually perfectly fine with it. They go in a smaller cage while I clean their bigger one out. Usually when I put them back in, they're so happy and cheerful and I love to watch them. But for the past two cleanings, they immediately start fighting badly when they get into the cage. The second both of them are in the cage, the teeth chattering starts and within a couple minutes, they're full-on fighting. I try not to seperate them, but rather use a towel to keep them from doing too much damage to each other (I wear gloves as well). I'm just wondering if there is some way to make it so that they don't do this whenever I clean the cage? The only thing I can think of that's making them mad is that they look at the clean cage as a new territory and have to fight for dominance. They just seem to fight until they're too exhausted to go on. Today they fought like mad until the smaller one crawled into the hidey-house and "cried" (made whimpery noises). Then they both laid out flat and slept for awhile. Now they're perfectly back to normal, grooming each other and chirping happily. I just hate spending my Saturday afternoon babysitting them so that they don't hurt each other. I don't know if maybe putting one or the other into the cage first would help? Or somehow marking the cage so it's not so "new"? I just feel so bad for the smaller one because he gets picked on badly in these "dominance fights." He hasn't been badly injured (a small scratch once or twice) but still

If anyone has any suggestions, I'd really appreciate it
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-02-2006, 02:40 PM
 
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Try having a dustbath that they have already used in the cage when you put them back in.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 04:20 AM
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I agree with Phawn i would rescent their cage with either their old used sandbath or maybe keep a little of the bedding each time so the cage always smells the same. Both of these things should help, goodluck

Kirsty


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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 07:10 PM Thread Starter
 
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Well, today was cleaning day and I tried out both of your suggestions I sprinkled in some of their dust bath from last night and scattered a handful of old bedding that they've already used. It did the trick and I didn't see any fighting. Thanks for the help!
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-08-2006, 06:06 AM
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aaaawwww glad to hear it has helped. Degu's are funny things when it comes to territory and change

Kirsty


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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-08-2006, 10:14 AM Thread Starter
 
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Yeah, they're crazy little things Haha, I think I need to find a new cage location now though. Last night one of my degus ate part of a poster off my wall! I don't know if I should be worried about it or not but nearly everywhere in my room has posters up. Looks like I'll be clearing a space on the wall today, lol.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-08-2006, 10:21 AM
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If they can get their little paws on it and pull it through then it will more than likely have a chunk missing off of it next time you look is what i've learnt over the years as they are very nosey and mischievious. I wouldn't worry yourself about it they won't have eaten it, they normally just shread things up and i'm sure most degu's in their life time consume a little bit of paper occasionally so i wouldn't worry too much

Kirsty


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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-08-2006, 04:04 PM Thread Starter
 
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They've shredded up paper before and I can usually find it in the cage but this time an entire chunk of poster seems to be missing. No one seems ill so I think everything's fine but I definitely learned my lesson
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