There have been several enemies in the DK series that have very similar characteristics to them, such as the Neeks. They can be defeated easily, from the classic method of jumping on their head to using any type of barrel to the usage of Animal Buddies.
There is a larger boss version called Very Gnawty, as well as Really Gnawty, which can be defeated by jumping on their head. Gnawties appear in different colors, though there isn't any difference between the alternate colors. They are usually a lime-ish green color and resemble a beaver.