How to Find a Lost Degu

Published in Degu FAQ, Featured, Housing & Cages  |  68 Comments

Ugho! Empty Cage, Open Door! Not Good! (credit below post)

One of the worst moments is when you look over at the cage or habitat and no one is inside!

We had that moment today with one of our newest degu’s: No Name. We looked at the cage and someone had left the top open and there was no one inside. Best we could guess the top was open for over 30 minutes and we began searching. We have a small apartment so she was very easy to find (under 5 minutes) but here’s what we find works best.

Step 1 – Get Quiet

We turned off everything that we could. TV, computer, fan, AC, portable heater even temporarily shut down any aquarium filters if your animals can tolerate that for a few minutes. This will help you hear anyone chewing on the floor, baseboards or furniture – and will also help you hear is anyone is chirping or yelling.

Step 2 – Lock it Down

Go and shut all the doors in the house, but mark which doors were open when the degu was discovered to be missing – if you have post it notes around you could use those, or place a shoe, sock or something unusual to find on the floor in front of the door. This will stop them from escaping to a different room if there’s a chase. Also, you may have to search through the house, room by room.

  • When you close off a room turn all the lights and tv’s off and even shut the shades

Step 3 – Secure Cabinets & Doors and Close Toilet Seats

If the degu could have escaped to the bathroom or kitchen then immediately search any cabinets that were open or any shelves that are within 18″ of the ground that may have cleaning products or food. Then if possible clear the whole room and close it off to continue looking for the lost degu.

If the bathroom is open make sure you check the toilet and close the toilet seat. I know it’s kind-of morbid but I’ve heard of pet rodents drowning int he toilet because they escaped and that’s the only water source then can find when not in their cages. Then do a sweep of the bathroom and any open cabinets. Then close off the room and continue looking.

If you have any open heating vents or doors dog doors I’d secure those too.

Step 4 – Start From the Ground Up

Grab your flashlight and search under everything – TV cabinets and stands, coffee tables, computer desks. Look under cabinets that are more than 1″ above the floor – degus fit just about anywhere. Check under the heaters, couches, beds, dressers etc. Piles of laundry, closets. It’s a pain but keep looking.

Step 5 – The Weird Places You May Find your Degu

Closed Dresser Drawers
You don’t always realize it but most dressers or cabinets with doors don’t have full bottoms. Small animals like degus and ferrets can get under the dresser, behind the drawer and hop right in. I’ve seen them do it – I used to live with someone who had 4 ferrets and I ended up boarding up the bottom of my dressers so I didn’t find any ferrets in my underwear drawer!

Inside Couches
If your couch pulls out, or has removable cushions a degu can get into the insides of the couch. Often times couches are “sealed” at the bottom with a very thin sheet of fabric that tears easily.
If you are concerned you have a degu in the couch you may have to flip it on it’s back to get them out. I’ve had more than one degu get away from me and into the couch – it stinks to get them out.

When You Find the Degu

When you locate the lost degu it’s important to be careful, gentle and talk to them. Often times they are scared. Use a baseball cap to scoop them up – it will smell like you which is comforting but often scares a degu less than your hands reaching for them.

Can’t find them?

There’s a certain point where you may be concerned you’ll never find your little buddy. Don’t fret yet! There were two times where my degus had gotten away from me and i had to search for them. The first time after Rascal had been lost for over an hour he got close to where I was and started crying and yelping. It still took me a good 10 minutes to catch him but he was in an unfamiliar place – no easily available water or food like in his cage, and no safe place to rest like in his cage.

Same thing happened today with No Name. She was in the bathroom after I’d shut the toilet seat and the door. It was dark and we think she got scared just like Rascal had before – we were in the other room and could hear her crying and tracked her down to the bathroom under the cabinet before we’d even finished looking in the living room.

Remember to NOT Make the Chase a Game

It’ so important to not let your degus think it’s a game when you are trying to catch them. It can be very fun for them but very stressful for you. All of my degus know that if I can’t get them in my hands or hat the first couple times I’ll just keep them cornered until they come to me. By cornered I mean making sure I have them in a small controlled area. When a degu is lost or loose there’s usually only one and they hate being alone. They love the attention and affection; if they know you can provide them with those things plus food and water they know who to come to when it’s time to go back in the cage.

Still Can’t Find Them?

I may have a freakishly good relationship with my degus – if you can’t find them you may need to set a trap. I don’t mean a mouse trap but a trap for catching mice, rats, chipmunks or squirrels might be good to have around. Just pick one that’s big enough to not catch their tail when it closes. You can usually find Havaheart traps at home improvement and tractor supply stores.

Best Way to Find a Lost Degu

Remember the best way to find a lost degu is to care for them properly by not leaving their cage open and by not using materials they can chew through or broken habitats!

Have any tips to share on how you’ve found your degu when they were lost – or how you caught them when they get loose? Share it in the comments below! It’ll end up helping someone later!

——————————-

Photo Credit: Some rights reserved by Jez PageOriginal Photo of empty dog crate

Responses


  1. Kerrie
    March 20th

    We have had a couple of occasions when our degus have got out and we use their ball to catch them. We put the ball down low and tap it gently until they come to it. Once they have climbed in then you can return them safely to their cage.

  2. Kerrie thanks for sharing your tip – that reminds me, sometimes we use the wheel tho transport our degus places too. With most metal wheels the wheel detaches from the base and we’ll hold it close to the ground and let my big boy who is convinced he’s too big to be held hop in and then we transport him to the other cage when we clean his or to a setup play area. The wheel is very familiar to them so I bet it would work to coax an escaped degu into their wheel to help bring them safely home to their cage.


  3. Tofi
    April 4th

    I often setting traps using other degus. They come out to meet each other, then i can catch runner.


  4. Libby
    April 12th

    I trained my 2 male degus to associate my clicking with food(treats) so when one of them got out I just started clicking and he came running from under the sofa and let me pick him straight up ready for his treat.


  5. melanie
    May 16th

    I have a lil degu herd. There has been a steady stream of vet visits lately. So they are all pretty comfy with their carrier cage.one of them is kind of a runt and pretty damned sneaky ;-). So he gets loose every so often. I just keep a close eye on him and he tends to hop in his carrier and wait for me to put him back when he is done adventuring.


  6. Barb
    May 23rd

    Similar to Libby, we have been training out degus to associate the sound of a bell with a treat or food. Now when we feed or treat them, they come running when the bell rings. I know other degu owners who have used this technique as well to bring the babies home…


  7. ashleigh
    June 20th

    i have had a degu now for about three months and for some reason i still cannot handle him, everytime i try to touch him he will freak out and run off. He is confident to take treats out of my hands but thats about the only time he will come near my hands other than to sniff me and i was just wondering what i could do to make him confident enough for him to let me touch him or hold him in my hands. Thanks, ashleigh.

  8. Ashleigh – just spend plenty of time with them. It sounds like you only have one degu and as has been mentioned on the site a few times they are much happier, healthier and friendlier if they have someone else to play with.

    Sounds like you are doing good getting them to eat from your hands, I would recommend trying to get them out of the cage, either by allowing them to come out to a safe area or by scooping them up. They are always nervous when you first pick them up but if you’re wearing a sweatshirt or at least long sleeves you don’t get scratched by their nails and they have something to grip to which can alleviate their fright! Then it’s a matter of making sure they associate coming out nicely with good things, like treats when they get back in their cage.


  9. Stephanie
    August 5th

    I have just managed to get one of my degus back in it’s cage after over 2 hours of searching. I am completely fraught and I think my poor little friend is terrified. He is now back in his cage but is squeaking like I’ve never heard him do before, a really loud, piercing squeak every few seconds. I have tried him with some treats, but he really was very scratchy and nervous when I finally got hold of him, so I’m worried he’s hating me right now! Anyone have any suggestions? Thanks!

  10. Oh my goodness Stephanie, I’m so sorry that I missed your comment while I was on holiday!

    When degus are scared they will usually get just above their house or the the very top of their cages and squeek an alarm call. It’s not cause they hate you, it’s to alert degus in the area of something. I bet after letting him relax he settled back down huh? When mine get carried away with their alarm calls I sometimes cover the cage with a bed sheet (towels are very heavy) but make sure to not restrict air flow. The sheet makes it darker in their cage simulating evening or night when mine tend to relax the most.


  11. Melissa
    February 15th

    I just got a degu, and he’s already managed to escape. I have not had him long enough to form a bond, so he won’t come to me. At this moment, he is hiding under my desk drawers and I have all but one escape route blocked. Any suggestions for getting him out of there and back in the cage.

    On a separate note, I believe I’m going to have to get a different cage. I think he got out through the bars…

  12. I’ve been planning to buy a couple of degus for a while now but have been researching a lot before I do – I’m completely new to rodents (and these guys don’t seem like your typical rodent) and I want to know exactly what I’m getting into and how to take care of them first!

    How common is an escaped degu if they have a well-sealed and comfortable habitat? Also, when you take them out of the cage, are they more likely to run away than stay in view and play? Am I looking at chasing after degus and repairing chewed furniture for the next 5-10 years?


  13. Vicky
    October 20th

    Hi there our degus had 3 little girls. They are 9 weeks now and we are trying to get them back in the big cage (we had to take them out they were getting out between the rungs). So i tried them back in the big cage today; however the 3 babies managed to STILL escape! Between my 4 year old and I we managed to retrieve 2 of them. But there is still one running around the house someone. We’ve been listening and haven’t heard anything. Also we put some treats that she really likes on the floor to see if she would come to them and that’s been out for about 20 minutes now and she still hasn’t come. I’m beginning to worry about her! How long will she survive on her own away from her sisters and mom?


  14. Erich Honzell
    December 3rd

    i always use polymer based computer desks since they are cheaper and reliable too. *

    <a href="Remember to visit this useful internet page
    http://www.melatoninfaq.com/melatonin-overdose/


  15. Chelsea Shawler
    March 16th

    There was a time when the home computer was relegated to a hastily put together extra room or cramped, inefficient home office. They rested on old, clunky desks that were not designed for computer use. Now, computers are busting out of the home office. Computers have become one of the centerpieces of both work and entertainment. People have their computers in living rooms, bedrooms, expansive home offices, or almost anywhere imaginable. To keep up with the demand of new computers, computer desks are now available in a variety of shapes, sizes and styles to fit all needs and tastes.”

    Have a look at the most interesting article on our very own web blog
    <.http://www.beautyfashiondigest.com/best-dandruff-shampoo/


  16. caitlin b
    March 26th

    Hi, I got 3 boys and I decided to let them out of the cage. When it came time to put them back in 2 came quietly but one of them refused to come and I had to grab him, he bit me 4 times before I could get him back in the cage. Is there any special way to make them come back to the cage? P.s do I need to put antiseptic on these bites , is there a chance for me to get anything from them?

  17. Hello There. I found your blog using msn. This is a really well written
    article. I will be sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful information.
    Thanks for the post. I’ll certainly return.


  18. Amanda
    May 16th

    Baby sitting 2 Degus getting them used to being handled. Went to feed them this morning one of the little critters escaped thought it would take ages to get him, I just shook the food jar and he appeared as from thin air. It took just 10 mins of panic to bring him back home. He looked really cheekily at me through the bars.

  19. Web Development Australia is basis for materializing your cyber web dreams.
    Search engine marketing, or SEO Sydney, allows you to
    easily gauge the effectiveness of your online campaign through detailed reporting and analytics software like Google Analytics.
    Here are few factors that need to be consider before choosing a professional and best SEO agency:.


  20. Learn Now The Academy Zone
    July 18th

    I every time spent my half an hour to read this website’s articles or reviews daily along with a cup of coffee.

  21. I simply couldn’t leave your web site prior to suggesting that I actually loved the usual info a person supply to your guests? Is going to be back steadily in order to inspect new posts

  22. Hello there! This is my first visit to your blog!
    We are a group of volunteers and starting a new project in
    a community in the same niche. Your blog provided us beneficial information to
    work on. You have done a outstanding job!

  23. Hello there, simply turn out to be mindful of the blog page thru Yahoo and google, determined that must be really informative. I will beware of the city. Let me appreciate for those who carry on this particular in future. Many folks are going to be had good results out of your producing. Kind regards!

  24. This is a very good tip especially to those new to the blogosphere.
    Short but very precise information… Thanks for sharing this one.
    A must read post!

  25. Hi folks, I am something of a watches enthusiast.
    I was looking over this website and definitely loved it.

    It includes a number of genuinely nice insights for me
    to soak up. I have got to bring up, I have
    become lonesome in recent months simply because
    my best mate no longer is here with me. Researching the internet gives me some piece of mind .

    I’d personally like to thank you for this superior web site article in which helps to pass the word on the subject of watches even more! I was wondering if you provide rss list so I could always keep current on this page.

  26. For newest news you have to pay a visit internet and on world-wide-web I found this
    web page as a best web site for hottest updates.

  27. I’m not sure where you are getting your info, but good topic.
    I needs to spend some time learning more or understanding more.
    Thanks for wonderful information I was looking for
    this info for my mission.

  28. Beginning with a small, blank farm, you can customize your avatar (the “you” character in the game).
    There is a status bar for your Level badge,
    Energy, Food and Stamina. You may have to drop
    them several times to begin the dismantling process.

  29. Fantastic blog! Do you have any helpful hints for aspiring writers?

    I’m planning to start my own site soon but I’m a little lost on everything.
    Would you suggest starting with a free platform like
    Wordpress or go for a paid option? There are so many choices out there that I’m completely overwhelmed ..
    Any suggestions? Thanks a lot!

  30. Thank you for the gold writeup. It in fact was a amusement account it.
    Look advancd to more addded agreeable from you! However, how could we communicate?

    my wweb site: viagra

  31. I was curious if you ever considered changing the layout of your site?
    Its very well written; I love what youve got to say. But maybe you
    could a littyle mofe in the way of content so
    people could connect witth it better. Yoube got an
    awful lot of text for only having one or two pictures.
    Maybe you could space it out better?

    Alsso visit my page … video games in ps3 sonic


  32. Teresa
    December 4th

    We got the degu about a month ago it’s my daugther n laws and we keep it here at my house.It escaped after the grandson left the cage open and we didn’t notice til the next day. She is under my stove I have tried everything to get her to come out with no luck. She keeps going somewhere up inside and runs when I get near her or she sees me..ughhh I don’t know what to do. She has been running loose for 5 days now.

  33. Nice weblog here! Additionslly your web site lotfs up very
    fast! Whatt hos are you the use of? Can I am getting your associate link on your host?
    I desire my website loaded up as quickly as yours lol

    Feel ffree to surf to my site kids online games to play ffor
    free (Justin)

  34. Hi, just wanted to mention, I loved this article. It was practical.
    Keep on posting!


  35. Linnea
    February 19th

    One time my friends degu disappeared. They could hear her running in the walls…
    Another time it jumped pot from a window two stories up… Onto their roof and then the lawn. She survived, lives happily. She was just really tired after the incident…


  36. Amanda
    February 27th

    Hi! I am in a complete panic now ! :( my Degu escaped her cage it has been hours now Iv brought out her sister to play to “help” me find her. nothing seems to be working Iv seen her a few times but never got close to catch her and now I haven’t seen her for about an hour !! my son (5) is totally upset he LOVES her ! and I think its making me panic more

  37. You’re actually a excellent web site owner. The site launching swiftness is actually awesome. It form of can feel you are accomplishing almost any special trick. Additionally, The subject matter are generally must-see. you must have done a fantastic job about this make any difference!

  38. Very great post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wished
    to mention that I’ve truly enjoyed surfing around your weblog posts.
    In any case I will be subscribing for your feed and
    I am hoping you write again soon!

  39. I have to thank you for the efforts you have put in penning this site.
    I’m hoping to see the same high-grade blog posts from you later on as well.
    In truth, your creative writing abilities has motivated
    me to get my own website now ;)


  40. Nagi
    April 20th

    It’s great when you have a relationship with your degu on the off change he/she DOES become lost. We’ve had a few times….Especially when we had babies…That they would escape in some way.

    What I did, since my room has a lot of places I can’t move in case I injure them, was sit down in the middle of the room an allow them to come to me. They’re naturally very curious animals, and they also know my voice and my smell. Unfortunately it is a little bit of a game to them, but since we have a good bond it’s rarely a long game. They will usually come out and sniff around me within 2-5 minutes…Which is good for me to know. I have a cat (who by the way adores them and sits nose to nose with them daily but he is a cat and I don’t want them unsupervised together! ) and usually I can talk them into coming within range to be scooped up and placed back in the cage. Only once, with one of the babies, did I have a long and exhausting chase. The littler goober kept coming behind me and leaning against me with his back paws…Only to run away when I tried to catch him.

    Since having my goo’s for a little longer now…I have not had any escapes. It’s just good to know that the stronger the bond, the easier it will be to catch them.

  41. I every time used to study article in news papers but now as I
    am a user of internet so from now I am using net for articles
    or reviews, thanks to web.

    Here is my blog post; Golf Star Hack 2014 New (Ahmed)

  42. Greetings! Very helpful advice in this particular post!
    It’s the little changes which will make the greatest changes.
    Thanks for sharing!

    My website – CSR Clasics Hack 2014 New

  43. I will right away clutch your rss as I can’t to find your e-mail subscription link or newsletter service.

    Do you have any? Kindly allow me recognize so that I could subscribe.
    Thanks.

    Also visit my web page – Hack for Clash of
    Lords 2 (http://imgur.com/)


  44. Sam Gillihan
    May 8th

    I have a male degu who recently escaped, and is now going on over 24 hours missing. We can hear him in the walls and he’s gotten out into the attic before. However we haven’t seen him in this entire chunk of time. Should I do to lure him back home?

  45. I’ve been browsing online more than three hours these days,
    but I never found any fascinating article like yours. It’s beautiful worth enough for me.

    In my view, if all web owners and bloggers made excellent content as you probably did, the web will likely be much more helpful than ever before.

    my weblog Despicable Me Minion de Rush Hack Trucos, androideiostrucos.blogspot.com,

  46. Today, I went to the beach front with my children. I found a
    sea shell and gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She put the shell
    to her ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear.
    She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is totally off topic but I had to tell someone!

    my web page; saga caramelo crush hack trucos [http://androideiostrucos.blogspot.com/2014/05/candy-crush-saga-hack-descargar.html]

  47. Amazing! Its really awesome article, I have got much clear idea concerning from this piece of
    writing.

    Also visit my web page Fifa 14 Hack Tool y Trucos, http://androideiostrucos.blogspot.com,

  48. Right here is the perfect webpage for everyone who really wants to understand this topic.
    You realize so much its almost tough to argue with you (not that
    I actually will need to…HaHa). You definitely put a new spin on a subject that’s been written about
    for many years. Wonderful stuff, just excellent!

    Also visit my weblog Deer Hunter 2014 Hack Trucos (blogspot.com)

  49. gibbered gibbeted gibbsite gibingly giddiest giddying
    giftable giftedly. It iss said tha one nasty green creature is responsible for
    their existence. sorb     sord     sorfe     sori
        sorn     sort     soth     sots.

    my web blog: Examine extra

  50. Hello, i think that i saw you visited my weblog so i came to
    “return the favor”.I am trying to find things to enhance my site!I
    suppose its ok to use some of your ideas!!

  51. Hey! This is my first comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and say I truly enjoy reading through your articles.
    Can you suggest any other blogs/websites/forums that cover the same subjects?
    Thank you!

  52. seo…

    How to Find a Lost Degu…

  53. Keep on working, great job!

    Also visit my web-site: Gamdroids The Amazing Spider Man 2 Hack – Marsha -

  54. The number of companies and individual freelance designers on the internet are growing every
    day, providing more and more competition, and ultimately it brings down the cost.
    Kane is reporting in good faith multi-dimensional events he experienced.
    9 billion) and customer-relationship software developer Right – Now ($1.

  55. Je suis tombée sur votre site internet par hasard
    et puis je ne le regrette point !!

  56. Undeniably consider that which you stated. Your favorite reason seemed to be at the web the simplest
    factor to consider of. I say to you, I certainly get irked whilst people think about issues that they plainly don’t recognize
    about. You managed to hit the nail upon the
    top and also outlined out the whole thing without having side effect
    , other folks could take a signal. Will likely be again to get more.

    Thank you

    Here is my page – Empire Quatre Royaumes Hack (https://Www.Facebook.com/pages/Empire-Quatre-Royaumes-Hack/1439754469606749)

  57. I every time used to study piece of writing in news papers but now as
    I am a user of internet so from now I am using net for articles, thanks to web.

    Check out my webpage :: Hack for Clash of Lords 2 (https://www.facebook.com/)

  58. Good article. I will be dealing with many of these issues as well..

    Here is my page – Company Of Heroes 2 Hack Download
    (Cornell)

  59. Excellent, what a weblog it is! This weblog presents useful information to
    us, keep it up.


  60. Vikki
    June 12th

    Mine got out and I can not get it back. I’ve only had them a short time and do not know to do as they won’t let me touch them. I’ve tried food I’ve tried moving it’s cage and brother to the room he is in and noting I just need it back. It’s been 4 hours now. What can I do?

  61. In areas prone to severe weather, metal roofing is a desirable hedge against lightning
    strikes, as it would widely disperse lightning energy across the structure.
    If you encounter any construction related problems after moving in, you should contact
    HUD or the State Administrative Agency for help. One such myth
    is that anyone can easily install a metal roof.


  62. Bugbat8
    July 13th

    Hi, me and my partner just acquired a set of male degus. Rodney and Percy. Rodney seems to be a little escape artist and has gotten out of the cage again. He did it last night but my partner happened to be there at the time. But he did it again today and is in a cluttered room. We haven’t yet formed a bond with him, and I’m worried. Will he come if we leave food and water out? At the minute his brother is in the big cage all alone and Rodney just doesn’t seem to want to come back. We can hear him but can’t seem to locate him. Does anybody have any tips, ideas or anything to help? Thank you

  63. I think the admin of this web page is truly working hard for his website,
    as here every data is quality based material.

  64. My friend encouraged I’d perhaps like that web page. Your dog once was completely correct. That publish truly made our working day. You cann’t consider purely exactly how a great deal occasion I had wasted just for this information! Thanks a lot!

  65. visit the up coming internet page…

    How to Find a Lost Degu…

  66. visit the following webpage…

    How to Find a Lost Degu…

  67. making money online for beginners…

    How to Find a Lost Degu…

  68. blog.com…

    How to Find a Lost Degu…

Leave a Response

Want an icon by your name when you post? Go get a Gravatar. It's free and linked to your email address!