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 on: October 16, 2017, 09:22:38 AM 
Started by Nibbler - Last post by GrayRodent
If he is running in circles I'm not sure if that is a sign of a problem. My healthy chins do that too. If his head is tilted to one side or another or he appears to have issues with balance that could be a sign of damage to the inner ear or brain. Give this one a really good quarantine.

 on: October 15, 2017, 10:06:37 PM 
Started by shelverman - Last post by GrayRodent
Another question. How long have you had the chins. Also peeing outside of the cage is unusual (though not unheard of) for a male. Are you are certain of their sexes? Also what behavior are you observing that makes you think they are not compatible?

 on: October 15, 2017, 10:04:31 PM 
Started by shelverman - Last post by GrayRodent
My chins will chew on the bars as well. It is normal behavior, although annoying. Having some wood toys will help but it won't stop it 100%. You can try the spray but I don't it will make a difference. I don't recommend using black pepper. That can cause eye irritation and possible issues you don't want to have to deal with.

 on: October 15, 2017, 10:02:45 PM 
Started by shelverman - Last post by GrayRodent
I use a two level FN-182. I have two chins, one per level. I originally wanted to combine them but they turned out to be incompatible. It turns out the space they have is just fine for them so I wouldn't be too critical of the space you have. They are thriving in their areas.

It's better to not switch them around for variety. Chinchillas like their space and are territorial about it. That practice may be contributing to your urine problem.

I recommend adding shelving to the cage as well as wooden or metal splash guards. This can also help and it gives your chins more space. Shelves should be wood, preferably white pine or aspen. The wood can be cut with a basic hand saw. Fasteners such as stud bolts, wingnuts, and fender washers can be easily installed with a drill and bit.

You can certainly swap the wheel back and forth with little effort. I have a chin spin as well and it's easy to set up.

My advice is keep the setup you have and save up for another wheel. Make the modifications described and you should be all set.

 on: October 15, 2017, 09:55:53 PM 
Started by Nibbler - Last post by GrayRodent
That's great. The closest that I have to a rescue was my first chinchilla that I found on craigslist. He was in pretty bad shape when I got him but that wasn't obvious until he developed symptoms of malocclusion and had to be put down. I had him for about six months. He was not tame and could barely be handled. He actually sprayed although he was a male, bit hard, ran out of the cage when I opened the door. He had so many horrible habits. My other two chins are a dream compared to this one. I loved him though and really hated to see him go. I learned so much too and saw a lot of improvement in him before it was over.

 on: October 14, 2017, 08:21:07 PM 
Started by Nibbler - Last post by Nibbler
I have posted a bunch on here about my froster chins. I have 14 left and I do not think it will be easy to find homes for these guys. All but 4 are old or have a problem. I did find my 3 legged chin a home so I will not give up hope.

So I had 50 Chins to find homes for 2 had to be put down. I only have 14 chins left but I am getting ready to keep at least 10 of the elderly ones. These guys are a mess and I am taking it one day at a time.

So have any of you ever fostered or helped a chin rescue? has anyone ever had to re-home a breeding heard?

I would love to hear your rescue stories. Even if it was just one chin you helped.

It has been very rewarding doing this and if I find all 14 chins a home I will rescue more unwanted chins. These little animals got me good. I love them. I said I would not keep any when I first sign up for this. So far I kept 2 and I think I will keep 2 more. I will also keep the old ones for as long as I have to. So I might just be a retirement home for chins.  These guys have found a safe home here with me.

PS. If you live in Nor Cal or Nor NV and are looking to adopt a chinchilla in need let me know.

Here are some of the ones that have found happy homes.

Spot by Sarah  Ireland, on Flickr

jenga by Sarah  Ireland, on Flickr

20170912_103657 by Sarah  Ireland, on Flickr

20170912_104655 (1) by Sarah  Ireland, on Flickr


 on: October 14, 2017, 03:59:14 PM 
Started by Omcl - Last post by Nibbler
Even if you don't get them to live in the same cage together just having another chin in the cage next to them is nice. They love being around other chins. out of the 40 rescues I have had only 2 females fight and not get along. My males have been a bit more annoying to to pair up. Each one is different. Personality just clash sometimes.

good luck .

 on: October 14, 2017, 03:49:44 PM 
Started by Nibbler - Last post by Nibbler
I have my last batch of rescues 14 sad old chins. This is a rough batch it will not be easy to place them almost all of them have problems or are elderly.

So the one I want to talk about today is a old male. I was told he got into a fight years ago and his eye was damaged. Yeah his eye looks dead. This same Chin will run in a fast circle stop and looks dizzy. He is old 10 or 15 years old would be my guess but all that info is lost.

He eats and gets around but I wonder if this running thing is caused by something more.

here is his eye.
20171011_170724 by Sarah  Ireland, on Flickr

His poor fur.
20171011_170659 by Sarah  Ireland, on Flickr

He has been good about taking a dust bath so that will help.

 on: October 14, 2017, 03:15:36 PM 
Started by susansu - Last post by Nibbler
Aneth that often will kill her kidneys eventually. By the time you notice the teeth need done, the chin has been in pain for a while. THen the procedure plus recovery every 3 months... thats more than half the chins live in misery. Its really not fair to the chin to continue your current treatment plan. Any vet that willingly does dental work without aneth is going against the avma code of ethics and personally I wouldnt trust them

I agree with this. You are just causing more problems in the long run. There is only so much you can do before it gets to the point where quality of life is an issue. One of my rescues came to me with very very advanced Malocclusion. He was put down.  I am now freaked out that all of my rescue have it or will have it. I warn everyone that adopts them about it. After seeing how bad it can get when left untreated I understand you wanting to help your chin. There is only so much you can do. Just give your chin the best life you can and know your time with her might not be as long. That's what I do.

 on: October 14, 2017, 11:29:27 AM 
Started by shelverman - Last post by shelverman
I'm really struggling with one of my new chins, Fitzgerald. I bought him simultaneously with another new chin, Hemingway, about 8 months ago.

{1} Despite planning to house them together, I have been unable to do so because Fitz is too hostile to Hemi. Therefore, their available space is cut in half, since each of them only gets half of my double-decker Ferret Nation cage. This is unfair to Hemi, who could have double the space – and a compaion – if Fitz were nicer.

{2} For a while, I was switching them upstairs/downstairs for variety, but Fitz has become a constant risk of peeing outside the cage. I had to take out his shelf because he was backing his little butt all the way up to the edge and peeing off of it. (He's even managed to pee out of the floor pans, which are 3 inches high, just because he neurotically piles his wooden shavings into the corners until he's created a "ramp.") Because I've had to take special precautions in Fitzgerald's half of the cage, I don't switch them anymore... which has cut off Fitzgerald's access to the wheel.

{3} Possibly as a result of losing his wheel and his shelf, Fitz has started to chew the bars of the cage. Due to my living situation, I can't move the cage out of my bedroom, so this is definitely a problem for me. I'd also rather not buy a second wheel because the Chin Spin is a hundred dollars.

For the record, Fitz is the same chinchilla that I posted about in this thread:,5202.0.html
He's gotten less aggressive and horny since then, but he's still not a great pet... and his life's mission seems to be foiling my best laid plans.

I've started to wonder if I should find another home for him (if I can) and try to match Hemingway with a different companion before he gets too old. Does anyone have any advice?

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