Chinchilla Diary – How to Care for a Pet Chinchilla?


How to clean a chinchilla? In the wild, chinchillas use fine sand to keep their coats clean and in prime condition and you need to provide this for them in the form of a dust bath. Chinchilla dust can be bought from most pet shops. ever use ordinary sandpit or builders’ sand as this is too coarse and will damage the chinchilla’s fur and skin. The bath needs to be large and deep enough for your chinchilla to roll around in without injuring itself, so the dust should be about 10cm deep. Chinchillas should be offered a bath once a day, for about 20 minutes. If the bath is left longer than this, it may become soiled and your chinchilla won’t want to use it. Change the dust at least once a week. Also check their eyes because a buildup of dust can cause eye problems. What do chinchillas eat? Chinchillas are herbivores and, in their native South America, they eat grasses, low-growing green plants and chew the bark off trees. Chinchillas need a diet high in fibre and protein but low in moisture and fat. High fat foods will give them liver disease and greens which are too lush will cause colic or make them bloated. A diet lacking in fibre causes poor gut movement, allows their teeth to become overgrown and can even lead to fur chewing. They also need a high vitamin C diet, so they must not be fed rabbit mix. Chinchilla foods are available to buy in pet shops. The pellet type is best because with mixes your chinchilla may pick out favourite bits, leading to an unbalanced diet. The pellets you feed your chinchilla should be rationed to about one tablespoon per day for a healthy adult. Pellets are not enough on their own though chinchillas also need a constant supply of good quality hay. Put the hay in a small rack and refill it every day. As with all animals, As with all animals, make sure there’s a constant supply of fresh drinking water. Chinchilla treats Raisins and sultanas are ideal treats for chinchillas and can be used as a reward in training too. Avoid feeding your chinchilla too many though to make sure they still see raisins as a treat. Some chinchillas also enjoy a little slice of fresh vegetable, like carrot, but take care not to give them too much because it may cause diarrhoea. Peanuts and sunflower seeds should be avoided, as they are too high in fat. Do not give them too many treats because this can cause an upset stomach. Chinchilla dental care As with all rodents, chinchilla teeth are always growing so they need plenty of hard material to eat A piece of apple wood or rodent toys from pet shops for them to nibble will help prevent dental problems. Sadly, even the best-kept chinchilla may develop problems with their teeth and these can become serious if left untreated. Signs to look out for include reluctance to eat, drooling and wetness under the chin and runny eyes. it’s important to ask your vet to check their teeth. If your chinchilla shows any of these symptoms

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