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Old 03-18-2018, 03:25 PM United States
Skysurfer2010 Skysurfer2010 is offline
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 12
Chinchillas: 1
Default Is mine odd?

I finally picked up my little guy, Gambit, last Monday. He's 9 weeks old and an ebony. After I got him home I put him in his palace. He seemed really excited and was jumping all over excitedly almost immediately. I left him alone for the first 5 days except for occasionally observing him and talking to him. When I put more hay or food in his cage he seemed more curious about me and the open cage door (ferret nation) but I didn't bother him too much. He did try to dive bomb out the door once!

Last night (night 6) I placed my hands in his cage. He was so excited to play with me and instantly started nibbling at me and jumping/ climbing on me. I keep one door open and block the opening with my body while letting him sit on me. I didn't attempt to pet him, though.

Today I did the same things with my arms/ hands and slowly worked up to petting him. In no time he was loving his cheeks scratched and eventually his whole body! It's only been a week! He even fell asleep in my cradled arms while I was petting him and started this little light chirp sound. I'm amazed at how quickly this little guy is being affectionate.

I'm loving how he goes from being this little crazy Rambo jumping around in his cage at night to falling asleep on me during the day and loving getting scratched.

So two questions.... I have this wire hay rack that hangs off the side of the cage. He constantly knocks it off and all the hay ends up on the floor. He doesn't touch the hay if it's on the floor. What kind of hay holders do others use? I prefer in cage since it's slightly less mess.

Second... he won't take a dust bath! I put roughly a half inch of blue cloud dust in a plastic fish bowl shaped bowl. He'll walk in but eventually jumps out without taking a bath. I eventually take it out because it's plastic and he start s to chew it. Should I leave it in longer? Maybe not enough dust?
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Old 03-19-2018, 07:09 PM Canada
Amethyst's Avatar
Amethyst Amethyst is offline
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Alberta
Posts: 1,369
Chinchillas: 2

Kits from breeders tend to trust pretty quickly, everything is new to them so the rehoming isn't as much of a huge life change as it is for a rehomed adult. Also they have yet to have any real experiences with humans, so no reason to be very afraid of you, nothing bad has happened.

For hay I have a couple wooden box hay holders that bolts to the side of the cage, they are open on the top and have a hole cut in the front. Mine look like this one but any variation of that works. Even these work, but they tend to be thin and would need replacing from time to time. Other people have had luck with using clay pots or even large bowls to hold the hay. Hay on the floor gets peed on, so it's normal for them to not want to eat it off the floor.

Seeing as you have only had him a week I wouldn't worry too much about not bathing yet. Just offer him the dust for 5-10 minutes (longer if he is actually bathing), or until he tries to chew it, which ever comes first then take it out. If he didn't bath in that time offer it again in another day you don't want him peeing in it. He will likely bath once he decides he is dirty enough. If after a couple weeks though he still isn't getting the idea, try sprinkling and pat some dust on him to help him get the idea. It can sometimes take kits a little bit of time to get the hang of bathing. Do you know if the breeder introduced him to baths or not? Normally the mother teaches the kits.
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2 Chinchillas: Bazil and Wicket
10 Cats: Mystic, Coon, Rascal, Lucky, Mittens, Shadow, CJ, Tiger, Tux, and Nessie
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Old 03-20-2018, 01:01 AM United States
Skysurfer2010 Skysurfer2010 is offline
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 12
Chinchillas: 1

Thanks for the reply. Today he was being extremely affectionate. He fell asleep on me at one point. And he doesn't mind me petting him at all.

The breeder said he was taking dust baths while she had him. I tried again today and decided to take the top off the dust bowl leaving it like a pan. I also added more dust. No success. He did let me rub dust all over him though. I was getting worried about him going so long without a bath.
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Old 03-20-2018, 08:41 AM United States
Mt. Zion Chins Mt. Zion Chins is offline
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Central NJ
Age: 73
Posts: 2,063
Chinchillas: 40 +

most of the time they finally get the 'hang' of the dust bath. Some never do - don't know why. Don't worry just rub the dust in him after each time you offer the bath and he doesn't dust himself after 10 minutes.
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Old 03-30-2018, 04:29 PM United States
teppi teppi is offline
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 41
Chinchillas: 2

You are so lucky you got such an affectionate and trusting chin! I got my pair from a breeder as well, but they remain pretty wild, even after 7 years. But to answer your questions...

1) Hay holder. I have wooden shelves in my cage and we drilled a big hole in one of them, big enough to hold a terra cotta flower pot. I stuff that with hay and since it sinks into the hole and is held in place by the collar, the hay ends up being about eye-level with the chins so it's easy to access.

2) Dust bath. Try sprinkling a shallow layer of dust at the bottom of your bathtub, put the chin inside and let him run around in it and get used to it. Maybe he'll feel less constrained that way?
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