The common degu is a small caviomorph rodent endemic to the Chilean matorral ecoregion of central Chile. The name "degu" on its own indicates either the entire genus ''Octodon'' or, more likely, ''O. degus''. Common degus are in the parvorder Caviomorpha of the infraorder Hystricognathi, along with the chinchilla and guinea pig. The word "degu" comes from the indigenous language of Chile, Mapudungun ''dewü'' . The animal may be kept as a pocket pet.