Sexing Degus Guide

Link to Degutopia's degu sexing guide video on YouTube

If you're unsure how to tell the sex of your degus, this guide will teach you what to look for and how to tell the difference between male and female degus.

The video above will take you through the process step by step, or see each step with pictures below.

>Determining the Sex of Adult Degus<

Male and female degus look very similar in outward appearance (they are not markedly sexually dimorphic), so you can't tell the sex of a degu just by looking at them normally. The key to determining the sex of degus is to look at the anogenital region.
To start, you'll need to place your degu on a flat surface, facing away from you- a top tip here is to put a large pinch of porridge oats in front of your degu to keep them happy- while you gently lift their tail near the base. Doing this will allow you to see the anogenital region, which is a small area of unfurred skin containing two features as follows:
(1) A small circle of skin at the top near the tail, which is the anus.
(2) A pointy projection of skin underneath the anus, which is the urethral projection or 'cone'.
NOTE that the cone is NOT the penis as it is present in both male and female degus (males store the penis inside the body when not in use!).
The pictures below show the anogenital region of a male and a female degu:

Adult Male Degu
Adult Female Degu

Right away you can see that the most marked difference between the two is the distance between the cone and the anus in the male degu as compared to the female. The male degu has a gap between the two, about the width of a little finger, while the female degu has almost no gap at all. If we compare the two regions closely, you can see it helps to remember the rule "Gap = Male, No gap = Female":

Comparing Adult Degu Male and Female Anatomy

Now you can see that it's actually very easy to tell the sex of a degu, once you know what to look for!

>Determining the Sex of Juvenile Degus and Pups<

Did you know that it's just as easy to sex young degus? You can determine the sex of degu pups from the moment they're born, and the process is exactly the same as for adult degus!
For example, look at the picture below of two 4 week old pups. Remember the rule "Gap = Male, No gap = Female" and you can see the principle is exactly the same, allbeit a little smaller:

Comparing 4 Week Old Degu Male and Female Anatomy

And how about the picture below of two 2 week old pups:

Comparing 2 Week Old Degu Male and Female Anatomy

No problemo!

For some more detailed info on male and female degu anatomy, visit the appearance page.