Keeping degus as pets

Degus are small, social and vocal rodents. They have long silky coats that are grey-brown tinged, and a long, thin tail with a tufted, black tip.

  • Degus are native to northern and central Chile and can be found living at high elevations (1,200m) in the Andes mountain range.
  • Degus are diurnal, which means they're active during the day and sleep at night.
  • Degus are sociable - in the wild, they make communal burrows and live together in groups.
  • Degus are active - they spend lots of time digging and chewing.
  • Degus are very vocal - degus will chirrup and squeak at each other.
  • Degus have yellow teeth - their teeth are naturally a yellow-orange colour, and white teeth can be a sign of illness.
  • Degus typically live for 6-7 years in captivity.

How to look after degus

Degus have only been kept as pets for a relatively short time and experts are still learning about how best to care for them. As they're not commonly kept as pets, we recommend registering your degus with an exotics specialist vet who has experience in treating this species. They'll also be able to talk to you about the specialist care and resources they'll need to stay happy and healthy.

Read our pet degu care advice to find out more about their needs:

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