Animal Stories - Eastern Gray Squirrel

Animal-World Information about: Eastern Gray Squirrel

   The Gray Squirrel is perhaps the most familiar of all squirrels!
Latest Animal Stories
kim rogers-moore - 2013-04-18
Potty training advice for a squirrel would be greatly appreciated.

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  • Clarice Brough - 2013-04-23
    It's said that potty training squirrels is about the same as for  a cat or dog. But they are just not quite as excellent at it, because they do have occasional accidents.
Anonymous - 2013-04-18
For anyone that lets their squirrel have free run of the is my question.....Does anyone have any knowledge on 'potty training'?

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  • Clarice Brough - 2013-04-23
    From what I've read, they can be potty trained with methods similar to how you would train a cat or dog. Provide a box with 3-4' high sides and using Carefresh litter is said to work well.  Then it's all about showing them the appropriate place to go and re-affireming them with praise and treats.  Once trained it is suggested there is about a 90% success in them using the box for pee, and about an 80 - 90% success rate with poo. Apparently poo sometimes just happens!
James Peter - 2011-11-29
My squirrel Zosi 'Zosimos for survivor' is my best friend and beloved companion. He was rescued on freezing Octorber night when I heard a presistent crying outside my window. He was no bigger than my thumb with eyes still closed. He couldnt move on his own and was 20 feet from the tree canopy and 2 feet from his mothers remains '1 paw and a tail' It's clear that she had been fleeing with Zosi in her mouth when she was caught. 'I think a red-tailed hawk was responsible' because she fled the tree. Zosi is 3 years old now and our bond is stronger than titanium. He sleeps with me every night and we spend nearly 24/7 together. We go on walks and bike rides 'where he rides on top of my head' already he's warmed the hearts of hundreds of people and children that he meets while were out and about. Even for a raised squirrel, he's unusually affectionate and loyal. I have had dozens of previous squirrel owners that have expressed amazement in Zosi and often ask me what my secret is. 'You'd have to ask Zosi that one.' :) If you want to see Zosi, you can see some videos I posted on youtube 'search Zosi squirrel.' I wanted to share this for any squirrel lovers out there and anyone that has rescued one and is wondering what it's like. I'll be more than happy to answer any questions or give advice on these matters. :)

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  • Charlie Roche - 2011-11-30
    That is awesome. I didn't know they could be that tame. My grandma had one and you could pet and hold it. Hung out in the house and then would go out the window but not ride on my head on a bicycle. Wish I had known. Thank you.
  • sarah - 2011-12-11
    Did Zosi ever play too roughly? My squirrel has my arms all scratched up fromo rough play. He's only four months old. I'm hoping maybe he'll outgrow it? Thank you!
  • James Peter - 2011-12-16
    As for the scratching, you'll probably just have to get used to that one :) if i wear a thin shirt, it hurts like a sob when he climbs up my back and such, don't ever get caught without a shirt on, lol that SUCKS. the scratch marks I get from zosi are always minor and usually on the back of my neck.
  • James Peter - 2011-12-16
    Nope, He plays very energetically but NEVER over does it, he's very conscious about how hard he bites HOWEVER he jumped on my face once while I was laying down watching a movie and scratched my eye and put a long scratch on my forehead because of my reaction. He can annoying though when he wants attention because he'll relentlessly bite and tug gently but it can hurt when he grabs the underside of my forarm or something. He'll also bite at my feet while I'm walking thru the house if he's in a real playful mood, this can be a little annoying too and also makes me a bit worried about stepping on him.

    I've heard of MANY of people with squirrels that had serious problems with aggression toward other people, even others that shared the same household. I've come to believe that this behavior is more common among females, especially when they consider their caretaker to be their nest. One women I met, her squirrel had nested in her cleavage and would attack anyone who got near her.
  • Kathy Lee - 2012-02-22
    Rescued a baby eastern gray squirrel when he was about a month old. Bottle fed him until he could eat on his own. He's about 7 months old and seems very healthy and happy. He is very tame and rides around on our shoulders. Curious about one behavior of his, moving his bed around his cage. He has a HUGE cage and has a bed in his hammock, his house and in each corner. We tore up t-shirts and he moves the strips around to a different location weekly. We have noticed that he stashes his pecans in his beds. Any reason he moves around?
  • Charlie Roche - 2012-03-02
    In the wild, squirrels move around. They move because of weather changes, to keep their young safe, to keep themselves safe. They can change nests quite frequently. I think, even though, your little guy is safe in your home and probably not major storms and rain inside the house, they sense a storm coming or seasons changing. Just their nature to move and remain safe from predators and sheltered. Because they are indoors, some of this innate behavior would go away but not all of it.
  • James Peter - 2012-03-02
    I don't know why he moves around, but I can tell you that my squirrel does the same thing. I've tried to 'designate' his nesting location, but that never worked. He chooses where it will be. So far he's changed nests 3 times averaging every year
  • Nickie - 2012-04-30
    I rescued a gray squirrel, we named her Figit. There is not many people around where I live that know alot about keeping her as a pet. How much exercise does she need a day? She is about 12 weeks old now, we have had her since she was 5 weeks old. She loves to climb me and my husband, but if you don't have long sleeves on it tends to hurt!! She eats apples, lettuce, broccoli,carrots,mice food mix and nuts. I give her branchs to chew on and dirt to play in. I let her out of her cage twice a day for about an hour each time, she has branches to climb on and she loves to look out the windows. Is all this okay?
  • jason - 2012-05-06
    yes are u allowed to keep a squirrel in pa, if so how do I go about it. I DONT WANT TO GET IN TROUBLE OR ANY THING. I was thinking on getting one for a pet if it wasn't to much trouble
  • JENNIFER - 2012-12-06
    I want to say that I love reading all the stories of pets rescued. In august I rescued a little eastern gray Peanut NUTNUT for short haha..... and although I have 2 dogs and a cat this little guy has lightened up my life and letting him go into the wild would be insane considering he has a brother boxer named Whiskey and a a sister named Pixe bluetick/choc lab and a tabby cat named Matilda. He would not manage. I don't think but his diet consist of 4 hickory nuts 2 walnuts and 2 big acorns cracked and ready to eat every morning noon and night.  He also likes mushrooms (alot) and pumpkin seeds alot and not a big fan of cooked meals at all.  I however am just curious about his own personal set of nuts they seemed to have dropped all of the sudden want to make sure nothing is wrong:)
  • Charlie Roche - 2012-12-06
    Yep, it is normal.  He is a boy and his testicles dropped.
  • Diana - 2012-12-10
    My pet grey squirrel is iching himself raw. He has iched himself so bad he makes himself bleed. He's losing hair where he is inching himslf! He's not losing anywight yet. That's a good thing! Please help me find a way to help him!!! I am so worried about him!:(
  • Becky - 2013-04-02
    @James Peter--Zosi sounds Awesome!! That is so neat that y'all have such a good bond! I have a squirrel Rocky (I thought it was a boy but is really a girl, but I still call her Rocky)& I've raised her from a plastic syringe & I'd hold her & she'd snuggle in the crook of my arm. Now I'm weaning her, she loves fruit & our thing is, after she eats, I'll have a hoodie on & I'll put her in my pocket & she'll stay there sleeping for hours! :) I'll even vacuum, walk around, & she's cool. I've thought about going out in public with her in my pocket, but not sure what people would think:/ She likes to climb in my shirt too and I try to discourage that but it's cute too (except for the scratching). Oh, & she'll bite on the tips of my finger a little (I think she thinks I'm the plastic syringe that has the formula) & I'll try to discourage that habit by giving her this fruit/nut flavored stick made for them to chew on. I'm trying to get her litter trained because I read it's possible. I put a small box that jewelry came in in her pen to test out until I get a proper box, & she did poop & pee in it a few times, but also poops in her food bowl after she finishes eating. Poop's tiny so I just clean it up, but want to try to get her trained. I love my Rocky! She has really lit up my world:D
Tracey - 2012-09-04
This is a great website. I have enjoyed reading everyone's comments about their pet squirrel or nursing a baby squirrel to life. We found our squirrel, Lucky, last Thursday. We were in a parking lot and as I was stepping down from the curb I noticed this tiny little guy. It's super hot out and I was surprised he was alive and hadn't been cooked on the asphalt. We waited around for the mother, but she did not come. And I felt too bad leaving him there when someone could run him over or step on him. We have since taken him home and fed him 3.25% milk mixed with water. So far he's going to the bathroom and eating out of the eye dropper. We keep him in a box with pillow cases and toilet paper is bedding. I read that his nails would get stuck in a towel if we used that. He is so young his eyes are shut and there is no fur on him. I estimate he's maybe 10 days. He is getting more active and now hangs on to your finger when you are feeding him. I am glad we found him, or he would be dead, fingers crossed that he makes it.

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  • Charlie Roche - 2012-09-04
    Good for you - enjoy
  • Becky - 2013-04-02
    I just read your post and even though it's been over 7 months ago, I wonder if you still have 'Lucky'? I've been raising a squirrel for the last month and it's been a joy and wondered how it's going:)
Anonymous - 2013-03-26
I have 2 baby grey squirrels 9 weeks old i have had for the past 7 weeks i noticed when their thicker fur started growing in the male 'which is a sloppy eater' had matting under his chin neck and front legs i bathed them it helped at first now the poor guy looks like he has dread locks and is losing patches of fur. Anyone have any suggestions on what to do or if their formula is causing it or if it is mange the female isn't as sloppy but is matting some

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  • danmoore - 2013-03-27
    You need to put him on Fox Valley formula immediately! Please go to, there are many highly experienced rehabbers there who can help you.
curt mahood - 2013-03-26
I have 2 baby grey squirrels 9 weeks old i have had for the past 7 weeks i noticed when their thicker fur started growing in the male 'which is a sloppy eater' had matting under his chin neck and front legs i bathed them it helped at first now the poor guy looks like he has dread locks and is losing patches of fur. Anyone have any suggestions on what to do or if their formula is causing it or if it is mange the female isn't as sloppy but is matting some

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  • Clarice Brough - 2013-03-26
    It could be the 'sloppy' eating which is causing the matting, but yeah, it could also be other things like the environment or the food. You could try visiting the Squirrel Board as it is a good forum where you may be able to help with your specific questions. Good luck!
Kathy Anderson - 2013-01-30
I have a pet squirrelSammy, that I have had since he was 5 weeks old. My cat brought him and laid him down at my husbands feet. His eyes were not open yet and we weren't really sure if he was even a squirrel. But anyway he has been happy and healthy for 9 years now until this morning he woke up acting strange. Not wanting to play or eat. I noticed that he had not peed in his usual pee spot in his cage. As of now he still hasn't peed. So I belive he is stopped up and I don't know what to do for him. Could someone please let me know, I am really worried about my little guy. Thanks

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  • Clarice Brough - 2013-01-31
    So sorry to hear about Sammy. At first I thought, maybe its age, but as they can live over 20 years in captivity, that's not it. You may want to take it to a vet that specializes in rodents. But I also found this site WildAgain Wildlife Rehabilitation, Inc., that has some information about the digestive aspects of  squirrels. They also have several resources and some contact information. Starting there, you may be able to get some good suggestions.
Roxie - 2012-11-04
please say a prayer our 3 month old Roxie that the neighabors pit bull brought to us at 4 weeks old. I took her out side today an she played on the porch then we stepped in the yard. Roxie jumped on the ground then back on me several times. then in a blink of the eye she bolted off of me an ran up a big oak tree an is still up their. please pray she will come down, its going to be 37 tonight an she is not use to being out side in the cold. my heart is broken. pray GOD will protect her an keep her safe till she comes home. thank you al for your prayers for Roxie an us. GOD bless those that serve my LORD. peace/ Sandi/ Roxie

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  • Cheryl - 2012-11-30
    I really hope Roxie came home safe... We've been there;). My husband had to climb the tree and get her at around that age When he was trying to hand her to me  I couldn't help him. I was froze. Fro. Watching the blood run down his face:)... She accidentally scratched him as she jumped onto his shoulder.We recently did a slow release..she was 13 months old...she has built her. Nest across from our fence... She came back and forth for 2 1/2 months now she's out on her own ... We worry everynite.  I feel your pain anyway Hope she's ok:) I pray :)
Anonymous - 2013-01-25
I love squirrels.

Mindy Leane Godwin - 2013-01-06
Hi everyone..I need help trying to figure out what may be ailing my pet squirrel ( squiggles). I will start with a little about his back ground..My husband rescued him from a hawks mouth when he was about 5 days old, the hawk damaged his back right leg so he will not be a candidate for release. When he was around 3 weeks old he got MBS , once we figured out what it was & changed his diet he got better , then started loosing his hair around his backside & had a sore ..we treated him for mange with neem oil which has seemed to cure it. He is now 6 months old & all of a sudden he has started acting strange..He is laying on his babydoll in the bottom of his cage & wont eat. He is drinking excessively but will not eat. Do any of you have any idea what could be causing this? Also he had something that resembled oatmeal on the side of his mouth...Is this vomit? Please help.

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  • Jasmine Brough Hinesley - 2013-01-07
    That doesn't sound too good. My first thought would be to check the area to see if there are any exotic pet or wildlife veterinarians. You could also try and contact a local zoo and see what they recommend.
  • Chris - 2013-01-07
    Mindy hi my name is chris and I hate to hear that your squirrel is sick. I would first treat for worms that could be the problem. I'm just wondering what you are feeding him. One thing you can't give them is the food that you eat. No snap peas. Cauliflower, broccoli, and hazel nuts are good for them and fruit. But if you would ask me I would get him to a vet as soon as possible. So please keep me informed because I love my squirrel sammy he is the best pet I ever had. So good luck. And I hope that this was helpful.