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#925905 - 04/02/10 12:31 AM is biting inevitable?

I was just wondering, do ALL sugar gliders bute when you first get it and try to start the bonding process? Does anyone have any suggestions to prevent biting?

I spoke to a friend of mine about this, who might I add knows NOTHING about sugar glider (which is why I came on here to double check)...she brought up the idea of using a little bit of vinigar on the fingers that might get bitten. That way when the sugar gliders go to take a nibble, they taste the sour vinigar and learn that biting will result in a horrible bitter taste. The only reason she mentioned this was cause she had a neice that loved to bite people. She thought it was halarious to see people's reaction. So she made this wipes that had been doused in vinigar spray, and her niece quickly learned that biting wasn't as much fun as it used to be. She loves animals, and only thought of this idea because of her niece.

HAs anyone ever tried this or is Vinigar toxic to gliders?

#925942 - 04/02/10 07:50 AM Re: is biting inevitable? [Re: ]

I haven't been bitten as of yet, and I have two sugar gliders. The male I have have had for about a year, and the female a couple months. She has tried to bite me during bonding but that was only once and she didn't actually get me. Hehe. But I really think it depends on the glider, and the owner's approach during and after a bond. I have always taken care to not frighten and/or irritate them. So I don't think it is inevitable, likely maybe at times. I still, hopefully, have many years to get a good bite. agree As far as steps go to prevent it I have found taking it slow and working at their pace is very effective.

#925945 - 04/02/10 08:13 AM Re: is biting inevitable? [Re: ]
heidi Offline
Glider Slave

Registered: 10/08/09
Posts: 1661
Loc: conway south carolina/ us
I think that biting is caused by a few different things. It is a defense mechanism, really the only defense that they have.
They bite to taste, if they smell something on your hand/finger they bite to see if they can eat it.

I have a male & you nibbles sometimes. If I am giving him a licky treat or meal worms sometimes he will nibble on my finger thinking that it is still there.

"promise me you'll always remeber:you're braver than you believe,and stronger than you seem,and smarter than you think" christopher robin to pooh

#925947 - 04/02/10 08:15 AM Re: is biting inevitable? [Re: ]
suggiemom1980 Offline
Glideritis Anonymous

Registered: 03/05/07
Posts: 13746
Loc: Vincennes, IN, USA
Biting is a gliders main defense when it's terrified. As mentioned in Fact of Fiction, removing a gliders only means of defense, only causes it to submit, not bond.

If a glider feels the need to bite, it's because something scared it to the point of it feeling the need to protect its life. When I get new gliders, if they try to bite me, it's a sure sign I'm moving too fast in the bonding process. I'm moving at MY pace, not THEIRS. It's vital, to bond super slow. The slower the bonding, the stronger it will be.

Instead of taking away a gliders only defense, take 2 step backs in the bonding process. Go to a point where they felt safe. After you're there for a while, you can go to the next step.

bonding gives you a fantastic opportunity to observe your gliders body language. You'll think you can read their minds, if you just take time to learn their body language! Their body language will let you know when it's ok to take the next bonding step and when to back up.

812-890-9734, 24/7 Emergencies/Joey issues


"The greater the challenge, the sweeter the reward"

"Glide free :rbridge: Silly "Ozball" Ozzie. You left us 11/21/12..way too soon. You're forever loved, remembered, missed."

#925970 - 04/02/10 10:01 AM Re: is biting inevitable? [Re: suggiemom1980]
1daddyglider1 Offline
Glider Guardian

Registered: 09/20/06
Posts: 770
Loc: Lecanto Florida
Crabbing is your first warning of a scared lunging biting, if you don't listen and stop moving forward. Until the suggie calms down or you move slower so they can see you.

Nipping or grooming are not always a sign of moving too fast as it can truly be a form of communication, that they want something.
Bambi will nip me through the pocket pouch when she wants out for a drink, potty, or treat. Once she gets it she goes right back to sleep and never crabs at me.
Pin head nips if he is tired of being showed off after a few times and will get a little harder if I don't listen to what he is telling me. Other times he is like a little ham as he loves to show off and meet people. He totally learned to bond by watching other gliders being handled as he was a biter, now he truly communicates when enough is enough. He was also surrounded by a group of kids and they were grabbing him over the top and he was loving by chirping, chittering, and how he acted. I stopped the grabbing as we were surrounded by persons that wanted to know more about suggies(hard to answer questions and watch your glider at the same time)
Then Jester and Jelly: They like to lick my hands, neck, ears alot. But they use to lick a few times and then nip(like a dog that flea nips) like pulling my skin slightly up. It was not scared, aggressive, it is cleaning me or grooming. Thankfully he just licks and skips the nips.
Kay Kayand Suggie: They are my dancers(sqwaggle dancing or "booty dancing) They mark/claim/initiate me on my back and the reason I think it is a ritual or accepting me into their family is because when they are done I get a light pinch on my ear lobe and they purr lightly in my ear. My males that MARK their territory do not pinch my ear. Same behavior possibly two diff meanings. But when they start sometimes(Kay Kay) will bite the material on my shoulder. She has learned that a ett ett kayy kayy makes her stop for a second or Psst(if the other doesn't work) She looks in my eyes and she will wiggle her behind a time or two. I say with sweet high pitch voice good girl and pet her lightly on her back and then she dances without the nips or bites. We communicate but her nips are not scared.

For me I want to know why they crab, bite, or if it is something that I have done that caused them to be scared I stop and let them calm down and get relaxed.
Even holding babies away from parents for the first time. If I see a certain movement that they do that if I continue is going scare them, I stop until they relax. Even if talking to them gets a crab, I will try diff loudness, softness, and no talking to start out with until they show me that they are more comfortable around me. I may say only one word, one little pet, offer a live treat. What ever works and what ever makes the suggie comfy and calm around me so we can bond together. I take my ques from my suggies behavior, sounds, movements, body language. I always have for years as that is why I started handling moms and babies together. If you would of seen how Suggie acted when her baby cried and she had this look in her eyes as to say why did you do that to my baby as she picked it up away from Paulette and placed it in my hand. She had a look of distrust and her body was not in a relaxed position for a few seconds until she ran off to play. It broke my heart that she saw us as somebody scaring her babies and I promised her that I would try to never do it again to any suggie. Hard promise to keep to never scare a sugar glider, but I try...


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