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GliderGossip GliderGossip
Sugar Gliders
Aug 12 2018
10:12:33 PM
I don't usually start new threads much anymore, nor post about what I do with my gliders really unless I'm answering questions. But one of my cages was being cleaned a little earlier so I had those gliders in their sleep pouch in my lap and figured I'd share what I usually do.

The cage consists of 4 gliders Cocoa about a 5 year old girl, her daughter Danco who is about 1.5 The girls don't really need any work both are super mellow and confident and socialized... and 2 neutered Caramel brothers Hu and Mu, that are still pretty flighty and need some work.

A little back story on the boys, they aren't really socialized, weren't really ever given treats but other wise were taken care of very well, just not handled much, I got them last nov. Gradually they are getting used to the routine around here. But i haven't been able to focus on them alot since they arrived, due to medical issues in my other two cages.

I know the girls are much more confident than the boys so I tend to use the girls to teach the boys I'm not a threat. Danco is typically a nosey little brat that loves being petted so I usually use her .

So today, I brought them upstairs to my bed, sat their sleep pouch in my lap and just let them hang out, they got treats and the boys are now finally digging treats and taking them very nicely from my fingers with no negative behaviors. I can pet them while their eating but it makes them nervous still. So I focused on Danco.... after a while she laid on her back and bellied up for good belly rubs.

Hu, the larger of the boys watched intently, Mu watched and finally got curious enough to go over to Danco and see what i was doing to her. I paused n let him check my hand out then rubbed her a little and gave him a chin rub too.

I didn't really lift my hand i just moved my index finger enough to rub his chin and throat. Not lifting my hand and not petting them on top of their heads seems to keep them calmer and doesn't startle them as much.

He did ok but retreated back to his brother, so I worked on Danco some more belly rubs......then Cocoa bellied up and she got belly rubs. It didn't take long and both the boys were checking out my hand, getting chin rubs, holding my finger, half climbing onto my hand.... then and after a little while both bellied up for belly rubs.

They didn't stay that way long but long enough to get bellies rubbed like Danco and Cocoa were, so they now know i wasn't harming the girls, or them and it felt pretty ok lol.

Bellied up is a big thing, they are totally exposed when they lay on their backs. So even if it was for a moment, that moment is a huge milestone for them. They did it a couple times and each time stayed on their backs a little longer.

This was a ton of progress for them and really good positive note to end the bonding session on. So they were given one more treat then returned to their cage.

I had them in my lap for about a 2.5 hours just sitting here on my bed. Didn't take them out of the pouch. Didn't trim nails. Didn't try to pick them up. Didn't chase them around the pouch.

Put hand in the pouch, take it out and let them settle, put hand in the pouch again and pet them.... leave hand in the pouch a while and repeat.

This gets them used to me opening and closing the pouch, my hand reaching in and interacting with them then closing the pouch and let them relax and settle down again.

That's it. That's all I usually do.

There are no magical tricks to bonding,this is why I don't make posts about it, it actually seems pretty boring as i'm typing this all out .

It just simply takes time, being calm, being confident, moving slow, and letting them come to you instead of insisting on them doing everything on your terms.

That's it. And it doesn't matter how long you've waited to try or how soon you try.

These boys have not gotten as much attention as i usually like to devote to gliders that are this timid, but it hasn't prevented me from bonding with them at all, we just got a later start

They have come a long way in the last month or so and leaped miles ahead today.

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Aug 13 2018
05:54:27 AM
ptamom Glider Visit ptamom's Photo Album 145 Posts
Thanks so much for your helpful information; I personally love reading your post.

I recently moved and finally received my belongings on Saturday; I think my ladies were elated to have to get out of the travel cage and into their normal home.

Until this am, I had them in my bedroom and would let them out in the morning to play. My original plan was to let them have their own playroom; well, that didn't quite work out so I decided to use my closet instead. As long as I spend daily time with them, are they ok in the closet?

I have some fleece ropes hanging to enable them to reach the shelving and glide but they don't seem to like the ropes. The cage is tall enough to allow this as well but I was looking for other ideas.

Do you think it would be ok to put these in the closet?

I want something that wouldn't cause to much damage to the walls as I am renting.
I am also hoping to make something out of plastic tubing for them to explore.

PS. I love that your ladies let you pet them on their belly. Is this normal for all gliders or dependent upon the gliders' personality. My ladies never volunteer to let me pet them on their belly unless they are in the pouch.

Thanks again for the help.
Aug 13 2018
08:42:57 AM
Leela Goofy Gorillatoes Gliderpedia Editor Visit Leela's Photo Album Leela's Journal 2919 Posts
gmorning ptamom and ty. Oh I bet they are much happier now lol

Are you in the closet with them? or just letting them go in the closet to play?

When they were in the travel cage, free time out of the cage was probably very enjoyable to them and allowed them to spend some pent up energy before bed time.

But now with their regular cage there, if it's just the gliders in the closet by themselves, I wouldn't bother with free time out of the cage. Here's why.

To me it's not much different than being in the cage, but unless you have a see through door or are in there with them you can't really watch them and be sure they are ok.

If the cage is set up to be stimulating and enriching with a safe wheel, toys etc... they have just as much fun in there as they would outside the cage in another space. Then you are only cleaning up one thing instead of two spaces for them.

When we first got this trailer I was sooooo excited because it is contained and I could safely let the gliders out in the living room to play and roam. That lasted about a month Even though I knew they couldn't get outside it stressed me out so bad that they would get up in the furniture or something stupid would happen that I hadn't thought of until they were out running around.

The few times I did turn them loose they ran around for about 20 minutes mostly visiting the other cages then returned to their own cage, climbed up and went in the pouch.

I don't know maybe my gliders are weird but they are more content and have more to do in the cage than out of it. If they are out of the cage, it's to spend time with me.

I know a lot of people have a whole room dedicated to their gliders set up like playgrounds. And yeh I can see how that is enriching and all that, but if your not interacting with them in those spaces it just seems counter productive to me.

The other BIG thing for me is this. I've worked on a lot of other peoples medical issues.

The more spaces, the more toys, the more freedom.... the more things and variables you have to look at when something is wrong with a glider.

All of that can make it harder to figure out the root cause of what happened and how it happened to prevent it from happening again.

Because of that, I don't change my routine much, that includes cleaning products, laundry soaps etc.. if i make a change I try to write it down with a date so if something does happen i can start building a time line of the when I changed the routine or products.

I prefer to limit the space they use to keep all that to a minimum as well. The cage alone can take a couple hours to inspect for issues if you are doing a thorough job of it. A whole room omg

The belly rubs.. personally i think it depends on the gliders. Cocoa is a very confident glider and often sleeps on her back, her Daughter is also pretty confident she has always enjoyed chin rubs that lead to full on belly rubs since she was a tiny joey. The boys are following the girls lead in this cage. This is the only cage i can do it with while they are awake, it's easier when they are asleep.

When you sit with their sleep pouch in your lap and let them really relax and go back to sleep you can usually coax them to let you rub their bellies, but you have to sit still, and do it slowly.

Aug 13 2018
09:37:03 AM
Leela Goofy Gorillatoes Gliderpedia Editor Visit Leela's Photo Album Leela's Journal 2919 Posts
i forgot the products you asked about lol sorry i was pre coffee before...

The cork tiles are pretty cool!!! Natural cork is often used for gliders by many people and is considered safe.

My boyfriend won't let me use it for ours though. I've got two gliders with long term bacterial infections that despite multiple vets, multiple medications and treatments we can't seem to get rid of. We are currently trying a few new things the gliders are actually starting to look better!

Cork can be washed, but there are so many nooks and crannies for urine, poop and food to get stuck in he just feels it's a unnecessary addition to our cages and could harbor bacteria.

A friend of mine tried a cork log in her cage once, she absolutely hated it, there was a fine black gritty stuff than kept falling off of it, it drove her nuts cleaning it up so she removed it and won't use it for the gliders.

Personally I think it could be a lot of fun for the gliders, but there are those draw backs to consider.

An alternative and cleaner thing would be to hang some fleece panels on walls in the closet. This way you can easily take them down and wash them, and the gliders have something to climb on. To prevent making holes in the walls you can use tension rods or tension shower curtain hangers Those would be secure and weight bearing and not damage the walls in any way.

The viney things.....I'm not sure how those are made, it doesn't specify if there are wires inside them, for that reason I would pass on those.

An alternative....... pvc covered with fleece. You could literally build one to custom fit in your closet. These types of "trees" are glider safe, easier to clean.

Edited by - Leela on Aug 13 2018 09:55:17 AM
Aug 13 2018
12:12:34 PM
ptamom Glider Visit ptamom's Photo Album 145 Posts
Thx Leela,

Yes, I am always in the glider room watching and playing (usually when they come to me). Funny, my ladies love getting out of their cage and exploring.

For your reasons, I am going to pass on the cork bark and use fleece instead. I never thought of the urine or feces (duh..) The closet is a walk in so hanging is an excellent idea.

When you cover the tubing with fleece, what would you use to keep it secure?

The next time I hold them, I am going to try to rub their belly (I think Athena usually sleeps like this)

Keep your good ideas coming!

Aug 13 2018
02:15:09 PM
Leela Goofy Gorillatoes Gliderpedia Editor Visit Leela's Photo Album Leela's Journal 2919 Posts
some people ( that are skilled at sewing ) sew tubes that slide on the pvc, the rest of tie it on.

When your cutting the sides only leave enough room in the middle for the width of the pvc pipe, that way when you start tying the fleece it is as tight as possible.

The easiest way was to draw it out yep it's just about nap time lol

Edited by - Leela on Aug 13 2018 02:22:18 PM

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Sugar Gliders