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Dracula Or Chinchilla?

What to do if your chinchilla bites.

By Jessica Cordia

Chinchillas make great pets. They are cute, cuddly and have an enormous personality. They are the Barry Manilows of the animal kingdom, always dancing and entertaining. But all good things must come to an end or sometimes a pause.

Sometimes chinchillas bite. Bite! Yes, it’s true. Chinchillas are animals, animals with teeth. From time to time, they sacrifice their adorable reputation by unleashing their inner beast. But don’t worry, chinchillas are small and light, so you won’t have to worry about a pack of them taking over your village. With a little preparation (No, you won’t need garlic, wooden stakes and holy water) you can control your beast, and return it to its cute Barry Manilowish self.

Take Action
Oh no, your chinchilla bit you. What should you do? First, isolate your chinchilla. It is probably a little irritated with its current environment, and isolation helps calm anxiety. Speak to your chinchilla in a calm and soothing voice. Once your chinchilla feels at ease, it will stop acting out in defense.

Second, if you think the bite is serious, report it to Animal Control, and go visit your physician. Veterinarians usually don’t vaccinate chinchillas. You want to make sure that there is no infection or transfer of disease.

If your chinchilla bites another chin you need to separate them. Check your chinchillas for bite wounds, and report the bite to your veterinarian. If your chinchillas are biting each other, it is a sign that they do not get along. It would be best to avoid the situation all together by keeping them separated at all times.

Try and get the aggressor to bond with a different chinchilla, or have it live alone. If there is any sign of animosity toward or between other pets, don’t let your chinchilla interact with the other pets.

Prevention
To keep your chin's inner Dracula from coming out, continue easy handling. Chinchillas are much more sensitive than dogs or cats, and they are easily dropped or hurt when handled improperly. Children should only handle them with adult supervision.

If your chins are hissing at each other, it is usually a sign of a potential biting episode. When you hear hissing, hold your chinchilla until it calms down. Housing two males or two females together increases tension, and may lead to biting. If you want your chinchilla to have a cage buddy, try housing a neutered male and female together. If biting persists, house your chinchillas in separate environments away from each other.

Posted: April 2, 2008, 5 a.m. EDT


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Dracula Or Chinchilla?

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Reader Comments
Good advise i will use that.
Derek, Kansas city, MO
Posted: 8/7/2009 6:59:35 PM
good info
Ryan, Chicago, IL
Posted: 4/27/2009 4:28:09 AM
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