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Basic Chinchilla Care

Are you looking for a pet that is small but super cute? Chinchillas may be a great match for you! A North Dallas, TX vet discusses basic chinchilla care below.

Basics

Chinchillas are very sociable, and are always happiest with friends. We recommend getting at least two. Otherwise, your furry pall will be sad and lonely!

Toys

In order to keep your chinchillas happy and entertained, you’ll need to offer lots of toys and playthings. These little guys like wooden items, like blocks and ladders. Tunnels and mazes are another good bet. Your furry buddy will also love having some branches to climb and look cute on. Just stick to safe woods, like pear, apple, hazelnut, or willow.

Cage

Chinchillas love to climb, so your furry friends will need a cage that is more tall than wide. It should have a solid floor. Wire floors won’t hold bedding, and they can also cause injuries. The cage bars should be spaced under a half-inch apart.

Accessories

Once you have the cage, you’ll need to add some substrate. Aspen is fine. Don’t use pine or cedar substrates, as they are toxic to small animals. Your pint-sized pal will need a dust bath to clean off in. A hidey-hole and water bottle are also necessary.

Location

Chinchillas are fairly nervous by nature. After all, they are prey animals in the wild. Your adorable little pets will be happiest in a quiet spot where they can see and hear you, but aren’t completely surrounded by a lot of noise and bustle.

Temperature

Chinchillas can overheat very easily. They get dangerously hot whenever it gets over about 80 °F. These little furballs should be kept in rooms that always stay around 68°F.

Food

Fresh grass hay should make up the bulk of your pets’ food. Your chinchillas can also have commercial food, such as pellets, for their main meals. To round out your chinchillas’ menu, you can also offer suitable treats, such as rose hips, nuts, dried fruit, and berry leaves. Ask your vet for more information, including serving sizes, more snack suggestions, and safe and unsafe foods.

Veterinary Care

Watch for signs of sickness, such as diarrhea, lack of appetite, lethargy, drooling, breathing issues, and red/runny eyes. Call your vet immediately if you notice anything amiss.

Please call us, your local North Dallas, TX vet clinic, anytime. We’re here to help!

 

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