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Chinchilla Care





ThornsOfSorrow
So, I just bought a chinchilla two days ago, after wanting one for a loooong time (since elementary school). I've learned quite a bit about them from online sources, but I was wondering if anyone else has tips for taking care of them. For example, mine sometimes makes loud noises at night, and I don't know why. Does he want attention, or is he just making the noises for no reason? Also, the guy at Petco told me that it's okay to feed him lettuce, but I saw one website that says it's bad for their digestive system. Does anyone have a chinchilla that they feed lettuce? If so, how often do you give your pet this treat, and has it affected him/her in any way? Last, I've been letting my chinchilla have some exercise time in the bathroom, but I recently read that this is bad because of the bacteria that could be in that room due to steamy showers and water in general. Does anyone know of chinchillas actually getting sick from this?

Besides those questions, any tips would be greatly appreciated. I know that there aren't a lot of people who own chinchillas, but if you do have one, feel free to post any pictures or stories about them.
foxysc
Ok, here's a start...it is best to keep them in a cool, dry place not nr direct heat like radiators etc. They can overheat very quickly and dehydrate Sad Lettuce isn't good for them in large quantities..unless u want a chinchilla with an upset stomach, but it is ok to give them perhaps half a leaf once a wk, but carrots are just as good for them as a treat as well. A sand bath is very good for them just put an old biscuit tin at the bottom of the cage with some chinchilla dust which is available from all pet stores. There are also mineral blocks that you can buy which help keep them healthy. Also a solid block of wood to keep their teeth from overgrowing!
They are mainly nocturnal animals so yes they will make more noise at night especially by bounding around the cage.
Freedom or 'playtime' should definately not be done in the bathroom, the dampness in the air alone can cause them to get ill, maybe a small bedroom (or your living room once it is a little tamer)
I hope this helps a little if you need to know anything about these cute bundles of fluff just ask...I have owned them so has my mum, my aunt still breeds them!
Take care and have loads of fun with it x
gducnguyen
ThornsOfSorrow wrote:
So, I just bought a chinchilla two days ago, after wanting one for a loooong time (since elementary school). I've learned quite a bit about them from online sources, but I was wondering if anyone else has tips for taking care of them. For example, mine sometimes makes loud noises at night, and I don't know why. Does he want attention, or is he just making the noises for no reason? Also, the guy at Petco told me that it's okay to feed him lettuce, but I saw one website that says it's bad for their digestive system. Does anyone have a chinchilla that they feed lettuce? If so, how often do you give your pet this treat, and has it affected him/her in any way? Last, I've been letting my chinchilla have some exercise time in the bathroom, but I recently read that this is bad because of the bacteria that could be in that room due to steamy showers and water in general. Does anyone know of chinchillas actually getting sick from this?

Besides those questions, any tips would be greatly appreciated. I know that there aren't a lot of people who own chinchillas, but if you do have one, feel free to post any pictures or stories about them.

I don't know but i can .... Razz
ThornsOfSorrow
@foxysc: Thanks, that helps me a lot. I've been watching the heat very carefully, since it's been warm for the past couple of days. One of my guinea pigs got heat stroke when I was just a little kid, so having another pet die that way is definitely not something I want to relive. And thanks for the tip about the lettuce; I wouldn't want him getting sick, so I'll definitely limit that treat. He already has a sand bath house (I love watching him in there), a mineral block, and some wood (although he doesn't seem to like chewing on that very much). As for the bathroom, I'll just need to look for a better area in my house to let the little guy free. Very Happy Thanks again for your help.
foxysc
You are very welcome! They are the most adorable furry friends, but they remind me of Gremlins because you are not supposed to get them wet (although at least they don't turn into vicious little ugly monsters!) I'm sure it will bring you many hours of amusement anf fun...and you will make a great Chinchilla owner!
Take care x
Qube
Ever since middle school (5th grade) I've wanted 1 of these things.
They just seem so awesome!
Cute too.
All fluffy, spinning around in their dust baths.
I even saw a video on Google where they taught it to do things like wall jump and such.
That's gotta be so funny to watch, hah.

Once I save up enough money and have everything settled down, I'm definitely gonna pick 1 of these little guys up.
Is it ok to let it run around the living room though?
I'd rather put them inside 1 of those giant versions of the hamster balls.
I'm kinda worried though, I wonder if it'll play nice with my dog.
ThornsOfSorrow
I've wanted one since around 5th grade as well, and I've only just gotten one (I'm a freshman in college now). They are very cute though. Very Happy As far as wall jumping goes, they don't even need to be taught how to do that; mine started doing it on his own!

If you get one and let it run free in your living room, you'll need to make sure that there are no exposed wires or anything that it might knock over on itself. As I've already discovered with mine, if there's something that they can do to be mischievous, they'll definitely do it. Also, be careful about what kind of wood is in your living room. Chinchillas will chew on just about anything, including your furniture and moulding, and certain types of wood are very bad for them.

As for playing with your dog, that depends on the dog's temperment and size. Personally, I always watch my cats and dog very carefully when they're around my chinchilla, even when he's in the cage. Chinchillas scare very easily, especially when there are large animals around. My dog is actually scared of him, but I keep him out of the room when the chinchilla is out of the cage, just because I don't want the dog to accidentally step on it. So you need to use your best judgement, I guess.
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