Found in the grass prairies of Mexico, Canada and central United States.
A prairie dog is a variety of a ground squirrel. Most prairie dogs are the black-tail variety. A prairie dog is diurnal meaning it is active during the daylight hours. Prairie dogs are very social animals. They are very loyal and expressive. Prairie dogs are extremely hardy and healthy and live up to 12 years in captivity.
Prairie dogs feed on Prairie Dog Chow* by Sugar Gliders *R* Us, with a sprinkle of Prairie Dog Booster*, hay, fresh fruits and vegetables. Any hay will do just fine but do not use alfalfa hay except as a treat. Fresh corn on the cob and sweet pototoes are a favorite with prairie dogs.
Greens, carrots, green beans are also recommended. Do not give prairie dogs any green part of a potato because it is toxic to them. Monkey Biscuits*, Critter Blocks*, Whole Oats*, Sugar Beets*, Timothy Hay Cubes* or Timothy Hay Pellets* may be used for treats. Try to offer a variety of items since all prairie dogs don't have the same preferences. A good treat for a prairie dog's teeth is dried corn on the cob, Monkey Biscuits* or dried pig ears. . A prairie dog should not weigh over 4 pounds. Prairie dogs love to eat but if prairie dogs are overfed, they will not be healthy. Provide fresh water in a water bottle (make sure you see your pup drinking).
The best cage for a prairie dog is a multi-level cage like the Build-A-Cage*. It is closest to a burrow and gives the prairie dog adequate room to move around and stand up. Plus you can add levels to it as your baby prairie pup grows. Prairie dogs can move between the different levels to keep them from becoming bored. The cage tray bottom may be lined with pine shavings or aspen bedding to absorb moisture. Hay and bedding material may be added for them to weave a nest .
When you first bring your prairie pup home, hold it lots even if it protests. You may use gloves if necessary and must not let the prairie dog loose. Prairie dogs love treats so use them to help bond with your pup. We recommend using the Paracord Leash/harness* for walks etc. If the prairie dog bites, discipline it. Don't let it jump out of the cage when you open the door. Teach your baby to jump or walk into your arms and then you may put it down. A prairie dog should be taught that you are the boss. Don't give an inch with them while they are pups. Once a prairie dog has bonded with you, it will love you like its own family. A prairie dog has a variety of vocal signals and body language which you will learn to recognize and respect.