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Hands/Nails/Feet


Gotta' love those little grabbing hands and feet! Their hands have 4 fingers and a thumb. Their feet have 4 fingers and an opposable thumb. (*Opposable- Capable of being placed against one or more of the remaining digits of a hand or foot.) The first two fingers closest to the opposable thumb on the feet are fused together, if you can gently handle their feet, you can see how the first two fingers on the back feet are fused together with a small web of skin joining the two fingers. The reason the two toes are fused together is, they use this as a grooming tool/comb. These are the grooming claws. (While grooming, a Glider may spit/sneeze into their hands....this is normal.) On both the hands and the feet every digit has a claw/nail, except for the opposable thumb on the feet. The claws/nails allow the Glider to grip an object for better climbing/landing. (In the wild, while gliding a Glider will sink its claws into a tree at the moment of impact to keep itself from being bounced off by the impact of hitting the tree for landing.)





Click on a photo to enlarge...
Close up view of the Sugar Glider's Hands/Feet, and their strong grip.
Amy models - Back of the hands.       Tiny hands.       Strong grip... grasping skin.

Amy models - feet.       Amy models -  hands.



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Am I allergic?

Gliders nails can be very irritating to alot of people when they come in contact with skin. (sometimes the scratches turn red, burn, swell, etc...just plain painful!) This is due to the saliva on/under their nails from grooming, and the bacteria they pick up, that causes the irritation. Sometimes people with Gliders look like they lost a battle with a big ticked off cat...LOL! :-) Usually over time your skin sort of becomes immune to the scratches and they may no longer do this. Also, once a Glider feels more comfortable with you, they will loosen up on their grip when climbing you... lighter grip means less scratches. When your done playing with them it helps if you wash down the areas of your skin they came in contact with (wiping the areas with Rubbing Alcohol may help some too). Also, it may help a bit if you keep the nails trimmed when needed. (or wear long sleeves and pants ;-)


Click on a photo to enlarge...
Glider scratches can look pretty nasty
and be very irritating to some people.
These photos are of an extreme case of Glider scratches.
Scratches from a Sugar Glider.       Scratches from a Sugar Glider.



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How do I trim nails?

I only trim my little ones nails when I see that they are getting hung up or snagged on something, and then I watch and only trim the nails I see getting snagged/stuck. I figure if the other nails arnt getting snagged, then dont worry about it. (If it aint broke, dont fix it!) I do take a quick look at their nails regularly, just to make sure none are too long. They can get so long that they curl around back into the toe, and can be quite painful for the Glider, or cause them to have poor grasp. Usually I can just give my fuzzys a treat and they will sit still long enough for me to quickly but carefully trim the nail/nails. Sometimes you may have to hold a glider still for few a seconds while you clip the nail/nails (When their sleepy is a good time to trim nails). Sometimes two people help make it easier, or gently wrapping the Glider in a towel with the head covered, or in their pouch, and gently pull out one hand/foot at a time.
Take your time, be patient, and gentle... less stress is always better and makes things easier. Make sure and give lots of affection and a treat or two afterwards! (I always try to handle and mess with my 'kids' feet as much as I can. I rub them alot while their sleeping. Helps them get more comfortable with you handling their feet/nails. ;-)



Click on a photo to enlarge...
Where to trim the nail...
Where to trim nails.       Where to trim nails.

To trim- look carefully at the nail. You can see where the vein runs...the pink area of the nail. At the very very tip of the nail/nails clip off a tiny bit where its white/clear (I use baby nail clippers). Be sure and AVOID cutting into the 'quick' (pink area), it will be painful and bleed. Its good to have some Styptic Powder (available at most big petstores, drugstores, etc...) on hand in case you accidentally cut to far and it bleeds. (I no longer use Styptic powder, after I got it in a cut on my hand..it burned! Owie!) If you do not have access to Styptic powder, applying flour or mud (from a clean area outside) will work in an emergency. The point is to stop the bleeding. Some people also use a fine grade sand paper to line their running wheels with (make sure the sand paper does not contain 'Iron Oxide'). The sand paper is left in the wheel for a couple nights at a time to avoid being to rough on the pads of the paws. Some people say it works well for them, some say it doesnt. Some people file their nails with a nail file. *If you are afraid to trim the nails yourself, most experienced Vets are willing to trim them for a very reasonable price, and they can show you how. This is a good option if the Glider is hard to work with and/or your afraid to get bit.:-)

You may notice after triming nails that your Gliders grip isnt as good, or they appear to slip... in a short time they will get used to the adjusted nail length and grip/climb as usual.




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Fingerprints

I thought this was cool. In taking pictures, one day I noticed that Gliders had fingerprints... I examined several different Gliders, and like Human's, no two fingerprints were alike. (I mean why not? I just never really thought about it.) Pretty neat I thought. These pictures arnt the greatest quality in the world, but if you look really closely, you can see tiny little finger/palm prints. :-)


Click on a photo to enlarge...
Teeny tiny little finger/palm prints. :-)
Look closely... tiny fingerprints.       Look closely... tiny fingerprints.







Warning!
Read Here...

General Sugar Glider Anatomy

                      Ears - Oh my! What big ears you have! ~ "Better to hear you with my dear."

                      Eyes - Big eyes! ~ "Golly jeepers, where'd you get those peepers!"

                      Nose - Sniff...Sniff... ~ "Whats that smell?"

                      Teeth/Tongue - Oh my! ~ "What BIG teeth you have!" .... and alot of em'!

                      Lips & Smiles - Smile for the camera! ~ Love those little lippys! (just for fun ;-)

                      Fur - "What a beautiful coat daaahling!"

                      Tails - Tails are so cool!

                      Hands/Nails/Feet - "Love those tiny little hands and feet."

                      Patagium (gliding membrane) - "Look out below! Coming in for a landing!"



Male or Female?

                      What is it - Is it a boy or a girl? How to tell the difference.



Male Sugar Glider Anatomy

                      Head Scent Gland - That handsome balding look!

                      Chest Scent Gland - "To mark, or not to mark." ~ That is the question...

                      The Penis - "What the heck is that?! A worm? Intestines?"

                      General Male Info - Male Info IE: size, weight, sexual maturity, etc...



Female Sugar Glider Anatomy

                      The Pouch - Awwwwww! "Where babies come from..."

                      The Vagina - Its ok to say penis and vagina!

                      General Female Info - Female Info IE: size, weight, sexual maturity, etc...



Joey's (Sugar Glider babies)

                      Joeys - Some info on these precious wee little thumb monkeys, and how they get here. ;-)



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