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Baby Chinchilla Care

Chinchillas belong to the rodent family, but unlike most other rodents, these have a sweet disposition.

This makes them safe to handle even by children. Male and female chinchillas live together harmoniously and also raise offspring, known as kits. Baby chinchilla care involves some basic tips which are given below.

Here are some simple pointers on how to care for chinchillas. Chinchillas are known to live up to the age of ten years on an average.

Some also live for up to twenty years. The babies or kits weight just 1 to 3 ounces at birth and ideally baby chinchilla care must begin immediately after birth so that they become accustomed to the owners. If you need to feed a baby before weaning has taken place, ask your vet to recommend a formula and feed the kit every two to four hours. Once the kit becomes a week old, you can feed him moistened food.

The frequency of feeds may be reduced as they grow. The teeth of rodents keep growing and the same is the case for chinchillas. As such it is advisable to make available adequate chew toys to the kits. Chinchillas diet must be vegetarian and contain large quantities of fibrous food. Chinchillas tend to shed fur when they experience fright and hence one should be gentle and calm around them. Chinchillas achieve sexual maturity at eight months and if you do not wish to breed them, it is recommended that you keep one just one sex or segregate your pet chinchillas.

Dust baths are preferred by chinchillas and special materials for this are available at pet stores. Leave the dust bath materials in the cage daily for fifteen minutes to one hour. Also place a dish with about an inch of dust in it for the chinchilla to roll about in. Baby chinchillas are very active and so you will need a larger cage. The cage must be kept dry and shouldn’t be too warm. Timothy hay, chinchilla pellets, grains and dried apples may be fed to chinchillas. An important part of chinchilla care involves having them undergo routine medical check-ups. These must take place once every year so that any nutritional deficiencies and other health problems may be ruled out. Chinchillas may be prone to certain diseases such as heat stroke, ringworm, respiratory infection and fur chewing. Giving your pet chinchilla the proper care will ensure that they live healthy and longer lives.

  Submitted on June 1, 2010