The introduction was exciting but, utterly crucial – I have five degus and one of them lived downstairs…
– A story within a story –
Eddie was essentially rescued from our local pet shop (shocking, I know), he was discovered by my mam and dad when they were browsing. My mam’s heart dropped watching him wander around his oversized cage alone. Saddened, she asked a member of staff what the story was, probably assuming he had to separated from aggressive siblings. No, Eddie is a product of pet shop greed – she was told that a couple were interested in buying degus but, they refused to take all three brothers. Pet shop staff sold Eddie’s brothers without him and greed prevailed over doing what is right for the animals.
Degus should not be alone, they are incredibly social animals and must be paired or grouped.
Annoyed and upset, they went home. I am unsure of what happened in this time as I wasn’t in the house at the time. All I know is that my dad stopped whatever it was that he was doing and went back to the pet shop. He returned a little while later with the abandoned degu decked out in a new cage. An entire plan unfolded in my mam’s mind as she quietly watched Eddie look about his new forever home. I came home a little later on and saw a large metal cage in the corner of the living room, identical to my 4 girl degus’ cage they first had. Confused… I walked over to it and this small ball of frightened fur stole my heart. I sat close to the cage and monitored him, feeling more comfortable in his home as the hours went by. Had we done the right thing?
A year later, Eddie has been neutered and we are awaiting the new degu cage to introduce our four girls and one boy. Wish us luck!
Now that we are all up to speed, I shall return to the initial story.
The morning of the introduction, we put a confused Eddie in his carry case with a lump of straw and food to keep him calm and we headed up to the RSPCA. We parked up, my mind was wandering all over the place. Clutching at Eddie’s case, we waited for Smartie to turn up with his foster parents. Minutes later, they did. Smartie jumped out of the car, tail wagging and a big Staffie smile on his face. His coat looked beautiful in the sun, a sable kind of coat – so different from the all black or white Staffie’s you see. Walking through the RSPCA doors and going into a quiet corridor where the introduction would take place.
I clutched at Eddie’s case tighter as Smartie was released into the room. He was inquisitive and energetic, seemed to sniff every corner and every person before turning his attention to Eddie. He wandered over and instinctively pulled back nervously – Smartie pushed his big nose to the case and ran off to do the second round of new human sniffs. A sigh of relief left me. He was perfect. The remainder of the time was spent throwing a ball for him, giving him treats and learning about his habits and personality.
All the excitement was soon over and the introduction was a success and within the week the home check was also completed successfully.
Enjoy the photos!