my girls are fighting! heeeeelp! - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-19-2004, 01:43 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 2
my girls are fighting! heeeeelp!

here is a repost of an email i sent to the admin of another board. any insight would really help.


thanks for sharing your experience and information with everyone on your website! it was very valuable to me and my wife a year and a half ago when we brought home 2 degus. pookie and spec have been the best pets ever!

we have run into a problem and i was thinking you may have some, insight for us. yesterday night, while running around the living room (a degu safe area we have boxed of for them) spec (the dominate female and much larger of the 2 even though they are sisters from the same liter) got a small cut on her front paw. she is ok, it did bleed a little, but she seems ok and is putting wieght on it and running around as normal. the problem is when we put them both into the same space (their 60 gallon living tank) spec starts a fight with pookie every time. the fights are very short and lots of shavings and food go flying, but no one is getting hurt (not that we can see).

even when we let them out this morning, pookie was doing her own thing, when spec would find her and a fight would start. i feel bad for pookie as she is just minding her own business and her sister pushes her around. is there anything we can do? should we keep them in the same area and let them sort it out? or try to keep the seperated until things settle down? we did leave them in the tank last night, and while it was a mess this morning, everyone looked ok.

any advice would be great.

thanks in advance

bob and daniela
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-22-2004, 09:55 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 39
Hi there,

Don´t worry. The fight with lots of noise aren´t the bad ones. As long as nobody gets hurt (even ripped ears, little wounds are still okay), they are fine. They probably need to sort out who the boss is. I wouldn´t let them out of the cage though before the issue is solved. Smell is very important for them and if they are in an "unknown" area which is not marked like their home is, they can feel threatened in their position and will want to reestablish the hierarchy.
Same thing when you clean the cage. Make sure that you sprinkle some of the old litter over the new, it definitely makes them fight less.
In a group of two there shouldn´t be constant quarrelling once they have sorted it out.
I have no clue what the measurements of a 60 gal. tank are but to give them more room, you could add a wire cage on top because they really like to climb. You´ll find an example on
A running wheel (at 11-12 in. in diameter and tailsafe) will also help to redirect energy.
Good luck, I´m sure they´ll be fine, it didn´t sound critical what you wrote. But watch them closely and make sure that nobody is too afraid too eat and that they still act normal. As long as they still talk to each other or cuddle once in a while, things will be fine.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-22-2004, 10:09 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,382
Well said Phoebe.... We used to have a cage for our degu's that was similar to our Chinnies, they had plenty of running and jumping room, giving them plenty of space as well to get away from one another when needed.
I was wondering something though, did the fighting start after spec got the cut on her paw? If so this could be a small reason as to why she is picking fights with the other one as well, becuase of her slight injury she may feel like she has to pick fights in order to keep the dominance, just a suggestion.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-27-2004, 06:00 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 2
hey thanks for the replys!

the girls worked out there differences out and agian spec is back as head of household, and the includes me. hehehe

the fight did start after the cut on her paw and we were guessing that she was feeling the need to show pookie that she was still in charge, even with the injury.

thanks again!

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