Chinchilla Death from Stress?
A visitor to Chinchilla Planet wrote:
Hi, my name is Chloe. About a year ago my chinchilla (Teddi) died. She was only 8. I took her to the vet once because I saw that she was gnawing at her sides and pulling out her fur. My vet said everything was okay but she was probably chewing because we just brought a new puppy home. However, Teddi had been molting about 2 years prior and she never grew the fur back. Did i do something wrong? Was she deathly ill and I didn’t see it and neither did my vet? Was there something wrong with her health? Can stress kill chinchillas?
Sorry about the number of questions but I want to be sure I don’t make the same mistake the second time around if I happen to get another chinchilla.
Our answer to Chloe:
Hi Chloe. We’re sorry to hear about the death of your chinchilla. We’re not vets, but it does sound like something was wrong with your chinchilla. As far as we know, chinchillas don’t molt. They release patches of fur as an escape mechanism and they are also continuously shedding. Large patches of missing fur are not normal.
As for stress, chinchillas are certainly prone to it. However, a typical reaction to new noises and smells in the house would be hiding, not fur chewing.
It sounds to us like your vet may have missed something. Does your vet have experience with chinchillas? We’ve found that many vets don’t know how to care for anything other than dogs and cats.