Chinchillas need sand baths to care for their fur. Under natural conditions, chinchillas bathe in volcanic ash, and for pets you should buy special sand made from raw materials of volcanic origin. Quartz (river) sand is in no way suitable and cannot be used – it clogs the coat and breaks thin delicate hairs.
Sand baths help chinchillas clean their fur, get rid of parasites, and also give a lot of fun to chinchillas. Bathing chinchillas should be done at least once every three days or more often. However, you can not put a bathing suit with sand in the cage of the just-born female. The female’s vagina closes completely only a few days after giving birth and sand in this case can become a source of infection. You can bathe females with newborn babies two weeks after giving birth, making sure that the female’s vagina is closed.
In no case should you bathe a chinchilla in water – due to the lack of sebaceous glands, the chinchilla instantly gets wet through and through.
The quality of the fur and the condition of the animal’s hair is almost the most basic thing that judges pay attention to, so that your pet appears before them in the best possible way, the following should be done:
- Wash the cage where the animal is contained, as well as everything in the cage: house, shelves, feeder, sennitsa, etc.
- Remove from the cage all objects that could damage your pet’s fur (for which he can catch or, God forbid, tear out a shred)
- Daily bathe the animal in the dust (we will return to dust later);
- Comb the animal regularly;
- Provide your pet with a full-fledged balanced food, paying special attention to the presence of high-quality hay, the content of vitamins and minerals in the diet, and maintain a constant cleanliness in the cage.
For those owners who prefer to exhibit their pets, I would like to note: during the preparation of your pet for the exhibition, it is advisable to change the sand (which you constantly use) to zeolite dust. Due to its extremely fine fraction and light airy texture, it cleans the animal’s coat much better, making it airy and stuffed. After such baths, the chinchilla looks very well-groomed, and the fur shines and plays with every movement of the animal.
Unfortunately, zeolite dust has one significant drawback, which makes it difficult for owners of chinchillas living in the apartment to use it constantly – when bathing an animal, it rises into the air and then slowly settles on objects around it Dust is a substance like powder – it will rise just from a sigh whole cloud. But in preparation for the exhibition, you should make these sacrifices and put up with temporary inconveniences in the name of your pet.
In the last week before the exhibition, especially careful preparation begins:
6 days before the exhibition: pour fresh dust into the bathing room and leave the animal in the cage so that it has the opportunity to bathe as much as it wants;
5 days before the exhibition: comb out your pet and again replace the dust in the bathrobe with a new one;
4 days before the exhibition: new dust and bathing again;
3 days before the exhibition: we stop bathing the future exhibitor and remove the bathing suit from the cage. It is necessary that for the remaining few days the chinchilla’s wool is completely cleared of small dust particles and sparkled;
On the eve of the exhibition: combing the pet and trimming the tail. Combing should be done carefully, trying not to grab the fur with your hands (and if possible avoiding contact with it at all) and holding the chinchilla by the base of the tail;
On Show Day: last combing out. Enjoy the show and amazing well-groomed view of your animal! Even if you do not take a prize – at least appear in the best light with your pet, demonstrate all its beauty and grooming.
Chinchillas are combed not only when preparing the animal for the exhibition, during the molting period it helps the animal to quickly get rid of the old wool. Chinchilla should be accustomed to combing gradually, the first days only familiar animal with a comb. Comb should be from tail to head, holding with one hand at the base of the tail. Choose a comb carefully – the teeth should not be sharp (serrated) at the end, so as not to injure the skin of the chinchilla when combing, choose combs with rounded teeth.
For the first time, choose a comb with a rare row of teeth, since at this stage our task is only to familiarize the chinchilla with the combing procedure and to accustom it to it. Such a comb will practically not comb out the fluff – but this is what we need. The animal will not feel pain or inconvenience – because it will be like stroking. As you get used to it, the comb should be replaced with a comb with more frequent teeth, which can comb through the thick undercoat of the chinchilla.
When combing for the first time, the chinchilla will resist, grumble, and try to bite the comb or your hand. Do not be zealous, for the first time it is enough just to draw a comb along the back of the chinchilla a couple of times. Accompany the procedure with persuasion and lacquerly talk with the pet to calm him down – like everything new, first, this procedure will frighten the animal. It is important to let him know that he is not in danger and you are not going to hurt him.
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