Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Rescue Boys

So, I've been busy this week taking in some rescue chinchillas.

Here's their story.. I'm an admin on a chinchilla forum. So we get a fair number of chinchilla rehomes and things, but then one was posted in my area. The original post was by a breeder that the woman had contacted, not the lady herself so I didn't know the details of the chinchillas until I called the lady. Turns out there was two pairs of chinchillas, so 4 total.

One pair was of two standard greys. Turns out, one has malocclusion. Now, for those who don't know what malocclusion (malo) is, it's a issue where the teeth grow too much. It's common in animals that need to wear down their teeth like rabbits and chinchillas. There's two types. One is where the incisors grow crooked or grow too long, and the other type is where the roots of the molars keep growing non-stop into the jaw and eye sockets. The first type is treatable over time, as the chinchilla can go into the vet and get the incisors trimmed periodically. However, the second type is not treatable. You can prolong the life by pain meds and hand feeding a mush food. But there's nothing to stop the growth. As you can imagine, this type is extremely painful. Normally the first sign is drooling and the chinchilla will stop eating since it hurts to chew.

Sadly, this one chinchilla has the second type. Two of his molars are growing into his jaw. Now, for whatever reason, this woman's vet did not want to put the chin down despite the fact that it has no quality of life whatsoever. I discussed this with the woman and stated my view on it. I also stated that I rehome chinchillas, I cannot keep any more as I have 5 myself. So seeing as how I could not rehome this malo chin, I did not want to take him in and stated rather blunty that he did not have much life left in him sadly. So in the end, we decided that I wouldn't take him. However, the breeder is taking him. I won't really go into this, but I don't really agree with it. That is like keeping this chinchilla in pain that he doesn't deserve. I'd be more inclined to give him a peaceful passing, but it's not my pet.

So anyways, I took the other pair. Turns out these two have had issues as well. The beige, Gus, attacked the violet, Hammie. So Hammie is missing a bunch of fur and has scabs on him from the attack. This lady did not separate the chinchillas because she didn't want to spend the money on another cage. This is just so sad as you can easily get used cages for about $20 on craigslist around here. So she left them together. When chinchillas choose to fight, normally they don't stop. And chinchillas will fight to the death, so to leave the two together was a death sentence for poor Hammie. And it isn't Gus's fault either, he just doesn't like Hammie. So, needless to say, I have now separated the two.

There were other typical owner mistakes like horrible food and other things which could have been avoided by some basic research, but I won't get into that here. Basically, PLEASE if you are going to get a pet, research first!

Onto pictures!

This is Hammie. As you can see his fur is rather messy and one of his scabs is evident.

And Hammie chowing down on hay. Seems like he must have not gotten it much at his previous home!

And then one of Gus, he's just a little scared

I believe that I've already found a new home for Hammie, the violet. Now I just need to find one for Gus! I'm sure he'll find one soon though! I will be posting more pictures of them for sure as they get used to being here. Hammie will probably be going home next weekend, but I'm not sure how long Gus will have to be with me. I'll work on figuring out his personality to place him with a loving home.


Elephunk said...

They are so cute! I'm glad you are taking good care of them and I hope you find a home for gus soon!

mattscraftywife said...

Awe, they're adorable! Glad you could take them in.

Kathleen said...

Awesome that you do this - in addition to everything else that you do! My cousin has chinchillas, too =)