A Complete Guide to Raising a Tribble

Updated on December 2, 2017
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Cleo Addams is a published science fiction author. In her free time, she enjoys researching and writing articles on various topics.

A multi-colored, long hair Tribble.
A multi-colored, long hair Tribble. | Source

Tribbles (Polygeminus grex) are pleasantly soft, fuzzy, and loving creatures. Everybody wants one as a pet but, unfortunately, most people do not know the first thing about taking care of them. In this guide, I’ll give you some background on where these cute creatures come from, how to care for them, and where you can purchase a Tribble if you’re ready to add one to your family.

Where Do Tribbles Come From?

Tribbles come from the planet Iota Geminorum IV (otherwise known as Tribble Prime). Iota Geminorum IV is a planet located in the Beta Quadrant of space and is identified as a Klingon planet.

In the 23rd century, the Klingons destroyed the Tribbles’ home planet, but thanks to time travel, we can now enjoy these little creatures here in the past. Plus, owning one helps preserve the Tribble species.


Tribbles are mostly round but some are oblong in shape. Round Tribbles are usually not bigger than 5-6” in width and oblong Tribbles are usually not more than 12” long. (These are just averages, of course.)

Tribbles have short or long fur and come in a variety of colors from white to purple to rainbow. They can also bear patterns such as stripes or spots.


A Tribble prefers a vegetarian diet consisting mostly of whole grains (although they have been known to consume meat in survival mode). Their favorite food is wheat, but will eat other grains such as oats or rice. You should feed your Tribble one cup of whole grain twice a day and try to stick to a schedule. I’ve found that my Tribble takes well to eating once in the morning and once at dinnertime. Note: A Tribble doesn’t have any teeth and consumes their meal whole, so make sure the grains are not stuck together and small enough for them to eat.

Tribbles can be quite gluttonous and will often seek out snacks between meals, so keep any grains (or foods made from grain, such as bread or pasta) locked up. An overweight Tribble is not a healthy Tribble.

My Tribble, Punk, eats popcorn with Gizmo during movie night. Punk is messy and sometimes will get popcorn in his fur.
My Tribble, Punk, eats popcorn with Gizmo during movie night. Punk is messy and sometimes will get popcorn in his fur. | Source

Hygiene & Grooming

Tribbles are relatively clean and usually have no smell, but occasionally your Tribble will pick up odors and dirt outside or from other pets. If this happens, all you have to do is give your Tribble a bath with a wet washcloth or sponge using a soap or shampoo formulated for sensitive skin. Note: Be sure not to submerge your Tribble or leave them unattended around water sources. Tribbles cannot swim and will drown.

Brushing your Tribble every day will prevent their fur from matting. I've found that my Tribble enjoys being groomed with a wire brush. Regular brushing massages the skin and distributes the natural oils evenly for a healthy coat.


Tribbles are hermaphrodites and are born pregnant. Their litters usually consist of ten offspring.

Due to such a rapid rate of reproduction, Tribbles purchased as pets have already had their reproductive organs removed. Currently, Tribbles are only allowed to reproduce in labs under strict supervision.

Mobility and Exercise

Tribbles are relatively slow creatures and move by contracting their lower muscles like a snake, carefully inching along. It's also believed that their fur contains properties that help them hold onto things, although this has not been scientifically proven.

A Tribble doesn’t need exercise, but does like to spend time outdoors. Sometimes Tribbles will climb trees or hide in piles of leaves.

Unfortunately, the creature's slow speed does make it an easy prey for predators, so be sure to keep an eye on your Tribble when outside.

Tribbles occasionally like to climb trees. This keeps them away from most predators.
Tribbles occasionally like to climb trees. This keeps them away from most predators. | Source


Tribbles love to be pet and coo when they are happy and content. However, if a Tribble feels threatened, they let out an ear piercing scream.

Tribbles Need Plenty of Space

Tribbles do not like to be kept in small cages and prefer to roam free throughout your home. However, if you must keep them in an enclosure, make sure that it's at least a 20 gallon size tank with plenty of thick branches for them to climb on and fiber bedding for them to sleep in. In the winter, be sure to include a heating pad so your Tribble can stay warm.

Where to Purchase Your Tribble

In the very first days when Tribbles were brought here via time travel, you could only purchase them from licensed dealers. However, now you can get them just about anywhere. In fact, I got mine from a clothing store called Rainbow Shops. I had originally went into the store to purchase a dress to wear to Christmas dinner. When I had finished trying on two cheaply made dresses (one the zipper wouldn't even work), I exited the dressing room and spotted a display full of these little critters. I instantly fell in love and had to have one. The next step was the most difficult - trying to pick out which Tribble that I wanted. I did settle on a purple, black and pink mix long-hair Tribble that I named, Punk.

But, you don't have to go to Rainbow Shops to get one of these awesome pets. You can buy one right off the web from sites like eBay and Amazon.

Tribbles Do Not Like Klingons (Star Trek: The Trouble With Tribbles)

Raising a Tribble can be fun and rewarding. It teaches children responsibility and how to care for an alien life form. With the information and tips provided in this guide plus lots of love, your Tribble will live a long, healthy and happy life.


Questions & Answers

    © 2017 Cleo Addams


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