What makes this specific representative or the Rodents family a popular pet? Let the facts speak for themselves!
- First, compared to their cousins’ Guinea pigs, chinchillas have a long lifespan.
- Second, chinchillas are odor free so if the smell is a problem for you, opt for a chinch instead of a rat.
- Third, you might think that a chipmunk is a better choice since it is a diurnal creature but in fact, it spends several weeks of the year sleeping.
If you want constant interaction with your small sized exotic pet, chinchillas are a good choice. Last but not least: chinchillas are friendly small animals. They like being handled. They are not likely to bite you even if this exotic pet is frightened. In this situation, it can lose patches of fur. Compared to these calm creatures hamsters and ferrets are considered “biters”.
Chinchilla Facts: Shape and Size
This cute animal has the size of a big squirrel or a baby rabbit. Normally it is long about 16-20 inches with its tail included. Compared to its large head, the chinchilla has small ears. How can we predict the size of our fluffy pet? Chinchilla breeders advice to check both the parents and the other baby chinchillas since the height and weight depend largely on genes.
Chinchilla Facts: Fur
The main features of the chinchilla fur are density, smooth surface, and silky texture. Their hair varies in length but the most common is the medium-sized coat. An interesting fact about chinchillas is that they can lose fur when feeling stressed. That is why they should be approached gently. The Chinchilla’s fur is considerably softer and denser than a human hair or any terrestrial animals’ fur. To maintain its skin healthy and beautiful, the pet needs a special dust bath every other day. In the summer this process should be repeated every day. That way you can help your pet to remove moisture or odor from its fur. When you touch a chinchilla, carefully dry your hands and remove any oils from your fingers in order to keep its fur dry since water can harm it seriously.
Chinchilla Facts: Temperament
Chinchillas are active in the evening and during the night. In the day they sleep or hide in dark and quiet places. It is not easy to gain the trust of your exotic pet but if you do your best, this fluffy creatures could be an adorable domestic animal. It will jump like a ninja or roll over during its daily exercise. Your chinchilla pet will come to you if you stay calm and motionless. Some chinchillas could be lazier or sleepier than others. In this case, maybe your pet needs more exercise.
Chinchilla Health Facts
Moderate temperature and balanced diet can help your chinchilla to live up to 20 years. Anyway, these exotic pets are vulnerable to injury or digestion problems so you have to observe symptoms of Illness.
Diarrhea and changed excrements are symptoms of inflammation or digestion problems. This problem is often caused by bigger food portions or poor food quality. Diarrhea can easily cause dehydration which can be life-threatening.
Loss of appetite
When your chinchilla refuses to eat or drink, you have to call your veterinarian. These exotic pets can live only 8 hours without food. To prevent the fast weight loss and dehydration you will need an immediate advice.
Lethargy is a symptom of many health problems that could affect your pet. It could be related to excessive gas in the stomach or infections. Sometimes your pet may lie stretched out due to broken bones or muscle disorder. In all these cases your chinch needs a veterinary treatment.
Bacterial, fungal infection and even stress can cause fur or skin disorders. Sometimes you can notice areas of baldness on the chinchilla body. It is important to ask your vet how to treat these areas.
Chinchilla Facts and Myths
The More I Feed Chinchilla the Happier is it
This is a common mistake made by chinchilla owners. In fact, chinchillas need only two tablespoons of balanced, low sugar food daily. If you provide your exotic pet with plenty of resins or almonds (more than once a day), it will soon become fat and lethargic. Instead of food, give your pet attention and play with it.
Chinchilla Fur May Cause Allergy
The chinchilla fur is not considered to be an allergen. These fluffy rodents have a very dense coat that bacteria and parasites are not able to live in. Some people might be allergic to the dust powder from the chinchillas’ bath.
Chinchilla Barks When it Feels Lonely
Chinchillas communicate through sounds. Most of the noises are messages to other rodents. Since these creatures are nocturnal, they might be very noisy during the night. When they bark that means they need affection. What can you do to make it stop barking when all your family sleeps – approach it in a quiet way, give it a hug and switch on the lights in the room.
Travel with your Chinchilla Pet
If you’ve decided to take your rabbit-like pet on vacation, you have to consider some essential chinchilla information. It is recommendable to transport the pet by car, not by plane since you have to watch it closely.
First, purchase a wire or plastic travel carrier. Place and secure the chinchilla cage in the passenger compartment and try to keep the temperature moderate in order to avoid stress. Cover the floor of the travel carrier with paper sheets or cardboard. Give your chinch something wooden to chew during the trip. Do not forget a water bottle, some food, and hay.
Before the trip, find an available vet specialist with good chinchilla experience in the new place. Do a small research on the internet or find local rescue services. You may need a vet’s bits of advice during your vacation. Often in a new place, you may notice an absence of normal behaviors. Unusual medical problems may also occur. When you arrive, try to provide your exotic pet with its routine procedures – place it in its common cage, give it its favorite food and even walk it in a secured place.
Do not leave your chinchilla alone for long hours because your exotic pet may feel stressed in this unusual surrounding. An interesting but not well-known fact is that the chinchilla could make squeaky noises and that could be very frustrating for the hotel guests. To prevent the people around from complaining, simply leave the chinchilla cage underneath a lamp.