My chinchilla’s ears are very red, what should I do?
Chinchillas can’t sweat, but they expel excess heat through their ears; therefore if their ears seem red, they’re too hot which can potentially lead to heatstroke. If a chinchilla seems hot, move him to a cooler location and lightly dampen its ears with a cool, damp cloth and provide plenty of fresh, cool water. For further information, contact your vet.
My chinchilla is biting his fur. Is there anything I can do to stop him?
Fur biting is thought to be caused by a number of factors including stress, boredom and lack of sleep. To prevent fur biting, provide your chinchilla with interesting toys, lots of interaction with humans and a quiet place for undisturbed sleep during the day.
My chinchilla keeps scratching, what should I do?
Your chinchilla may be suffering from a variety of skin conditions caused by either fungal infections or mites. Please contact your vet for advice. (link through to pet health guide pages)
My chinchilla is suffering from diarrhoea, which should I do?
Diarrhoea can be caused by a variety of reasons including feeding too many treats such as fresh fruit or raisins and damp hay and unfresh water. For mild diarrhoea, remove fruit and hay from your chinchilla’s cage and only feed it pellets and water. For more extreme diarrhoea, please seek veterinary advice as soon as possible, as dehydration caused by diarrhoea can be fatal to small pets. For further information, contact your vet.
My chinchilla is constipated, what should I do?
Constipation can be caused by overfeeding, inappropriate diet as well as not enough exercise. Ensure that your chinchilla has plenty of fresh water and hay and try giving your pet a couple of raisins. If the condition persists, please seek veterinary advice as soon as possible as the constipation may be caused by an obstruction. For further information, contact your vet.
Hair is trapped around my chinchilla’s penis, what should I do?
Hair ring is caused by hair trapped around the penis and is common in breeding and young males. The hair often winds tightly around the penis, stopping blood flow which can cause blood poisoning and can even be fatal. Symptoms include the penis sticking out from its sheath, unusual swelling and excessive grooming. It’s advisable to regularly check chinchillas for hair ring. If you think you’re chinchilla has hair ring, please seek veterinary advice as soon as possible. For further information, contact your vet.
My chinchilla keeps drooling, what should I do?
Dental problems are a major health issue for chinchillas. They suffer from a problem called open root which is caused by the back teeth growing inside the mouth and upward towards the eye sockets and through the jaw. It’s advisable to feed your chinchilla fibre and provide a wooden block in your pet’s cage to wear down their continuously growing teeth. If teeth don’t get worn down enough this can cause drooling and lack of appetite. For further information, contact your vet.
Are chinchillas good pets for children?
Due to their delicate bones and the fact that don’t like being held, chinchillas are not considered to be good pets for small children. It’s advisable to do your research when you’re thinking about buying a chinchilla.
How often should I carry out a healthcheck on my pet?
You should check your pet on a daily basis to make sure there are no signs of disease or injury. Simple changes in behaviour in relation to feeding, activity and toilet habits often give a clue that all is not normal. If in doubt or you find anything abnormal contact your vet for advice.
How often should I feed my chinchilla?
The easiest way to feed your pet is to feed him daily with a complete food specifically for chinchillas, which provides all the nutrients in the correct amounts and proportions. Water must be accessible at all times and bottles are often easier to keep clean.
What should I put in my chinchilla’s cage to keep him occupied?
Regular exercise is important to keep your pet fit and prevent boredom, which could lead to behavioural problems. Exercise can be made as fun as possible by using boxes, fruit branches, wooden shelves and wooden toys.