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Common Diseases of Degus


Degus are very sensitive to some diseases. Below I will mention the most common degu diseases and health problems. I will also try to mention the symptoms, so that you can recognize a disease, and what you should do when your degu has a certain disease. If you can't find out what's wrong with your degu, ask for it in the pet's store, or better, consult a vet.


Disease Diabetes
Symptoms  Drinks much water, has white eyes (cataract). A diabetical degu won't become very old.
Prevention and cure  Diabetes cannot be cured, but it can probably be prevented. Don't feed your degus much sugars and fat. Cataracts doesn't have to be a sign of diabetes. Many degus get cataracts when becoming old.

Problem Broken tail
Symptoms  The degu's tail has let loose
Prevention and cure  The degu's tail can let loose when somebody pulls it, or when it's stuck somewhere. This mechanism serves survival in the wild. The tail lets loose when an enemy pulls it. Never pull a degu's tail, and never hold a degu at it's tail ! When broken, a degu's tail won't recover.

Problem Broken limbs / wounds
Symptoms  Your degu has difficulty walking and/or is bleeding
Prevention and cure  Degus are very flexibel, and they won't get hurt or break their bones very soon. Even when they fall from a high place, they most times seem to have no problems. But I still recommend you to sensibly furnish the cage. Make sure that your degu can't fall from too high distance, and that there are no sharp objects to which a degu can hurt itself. If a degu unfortunately is hurt, then you can first wait a few days, and see if the wound heals. If it doesn't heal, you should go to the vet.

Problem Tooth problems 
Symptoms  The degu has white teeth (instead of orange), teeth are broken, teeth are too long and have grown into the jaw (If this last thing has happened a degu can't eat anymore).  
Prevention and cure 

If your degu's teeth have broken, you probably don't have to do anything. The teeth always keep growing, so a broken tooth is no problem. But make sure that your degu keeps eating. If the teeth have grown into the jaw, you have to go the vet as soon as possible, because in this case your degu can't eat anymore. A vet can cut the teeth. The teeth can grow into the jaw if the teeth are not straight in the mouth, or if there are not enough possibilities for gnawing.

If your degu's teeth are white it probably has a mouth disease, which cannot be cured. Your degu won't live very long after it's teeth became white. You can prevent mouth diseases by regularly refreshing the drink-water.


 

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