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February 19, 2008

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Meatball, Noodles, the Pet of the Day
Name: Meatball, Noodles
Age: Six years old
Gender: Female
Kind: Degu
Home: St. Catarines, Ontario, Canada
   Meatball and Noodles are six years old. They started out brown but now Noodles is white and Meatball is spotted. They are extremely friendly and tame. They have a gigantic cage in my brother's room above his bunk bed. Before we had built their cage, we used to put up cardboard walls in an effort to try to keep them in their cage. The cardboard was no problem for Noodle's sharp teeth to get through and she got out of her cage regularly. Meatball was not so adventurous. Eventually Noodles decided to chew through a wire while we were out and Meatball came with her. When we came back we noticed that Noodles had no whiskers and Meatball was missing them on one side. A few weeks later we noticed white patches around Noodle's eyes. As the weeks progressed she turned completely white and Meatball is now brown with white spots. We believe she may be one of the only white degus in the world. We have talked to several vets about this and she seems healthy otherwise.

    They love sweet things but can only have a little at a time or else they will get diabetic (chocolate is one of the treats they enjoyed on their little adventures). They love dried apple and get some once a day for a treat. When it is treat time they will let you know by squeaking until they get their treat. If they want to listen to music (favorites are Great Big Sea, Queen, and classical music in general) they will squeak and the same thing goes for lights out for nap time. They both love their wheel and exercise ball. They sleep in a hammock with their toys and stuffed animals.

    Meatball loves to cuddle and is a lovely degu who hardly ever squeaks and just wants to get along with everyone. She drags things all around the cage and is surprisingly strong for her size. She has allergies in the spring and sneezes and gets bald patches. She enjoys crawling into a big pocket and will sit there quite happily. She loves to nest with tissues and soft fabric scraps.

    Noodles on the other hand has an attitude. She tries to take charge around the cage. She squeaks Meatball off the food but she always gets some. When they want something she will do the squeaking for both of them. We have several pet mice which Noodles thinks are baby degus so she will try to pick them up with her teeth, but the mice don't really enjoy it. She is extremely energetic and leads the way when they are in their exercise balls.

    They make great pets and we have had a lot of fun with them. I'd recommend degus as a pet to anyone.

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