By Robbin L. Melton
If you’re thinking about buying a degu, which looks like a gerbil on steroids, read on to start your research on this unique animal before welcoming it into your home as a pet.
The degu (pronounced “day goo”) is a small, brown rodent known as the brush-tailed rat in Chile, where it originated. Initially used as a lab animal in the 1970s, degus are one of the newest exotic pets available in the United States today. In some parts of Europe, however, degus are becoming as common as a cat or dog, and are available in a variety of colors. The average life span of a degu is six to eight years. Degus grow from the size of a mouse to the size of a small, adult guinea pig.
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