Rodents often make great pets for those who want a loving soul in their house but don’t have enough time to look after them. Most rodents are very sociable and easily get attached to their owners while they don’t need their constant pampering or daily walks.
However, make sure you always keep your pets in a welcoming and safe environment and look after their needs. Also keep in mind that most rodents are nocturnal animals meaning they will mainly be active during the night, which could be a problem if you plan on keeping them as pets for your children.
Out of all the rodents, chinchillas are probably the most pretentious animals. However, they are very sociable and will grow fond of their owners eventually. Here are some of the most interesting facts you need to know about chinchillas.
- Chinchillas are the furriest animals. Their fur can have up to 50 different hairs growing from one follicle which means that about one square centimeter of chinchilla fur can contain around 20,000 hairs. Their coat is also very shiny so you need to pay close attention to grooming it.
You should purchase specific grooming brushes and provide a nutritious and balanced diet if you want to maintain the healthy look of your chinchilla’s coat. Always feed your pet organic and fresh fruits and veggies which are rich in vitamins, minerals, and natural antioxidants.
- Parasites will have a hard time surviving in the fur of a chinchilla due to its great density. All of them will eventually die of suffocation, which means your chinchilla is a resistant animal which, hopefully, won’t require too many visits to the vet.
- Due to their coat thickness, chinchillas can easily overheat. They are originally from the Andes mountains in South America and used to be found in various parts of Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, and Peru.
Because their mountainous origins, chinchillas are extremely sensitive to heat and humidity. They prefer cool and dry places and live best at temperatures between 59 and 77 degrees Fahrenheit. They are also sensitive to bright light and direct heat so never place your pet’s cage under direct sunlight or in easily heated rooms and environments.
- Chinchillas are social creatures. They live in groups of about 100 individuals and they suffer terribly if they live alone. This is why you should consider adopting a fellow partner for your chinchilla if you want it to live a long and happy life. However, make sure that individuals of opposite sex live apart in the first eight weeks of life.
- They are compassionate animals. Chinchilla females are one of the few animals that can adopt and feed other babies if their own mother doesn’t have milk or rejects them at birth. Moreover, contrary to most rodent species, male chinchillas do not harm or kill their babies, which makes them great babysitters.