Bonded chins won't stop fighting

Char_ma

New member
Joined
Nov 28, 2019
Messages
2
I have two male chinchillas, Radish and Peanut. We have had them for roughly 3 years and they were a year and a half when we got them. They have always been housed together and they're well bonded (they love playing together and snuggling together etc)
Peanut has always been the most boisterous of the pair, he loved to madly hop around, play on his wheel and generally be a mad-dashing ball of fluff.
Radish is more relaxed, never far from the food bowl, always ready to nap.
As you can expect, peanut is the more dominant of the two, quite regularly mounting radish with no issues until recently.
Radish will not allow peanut near him, regularly crying out and hissing when he's nearby.
He also won't come near us, he seems to be in a really bad mood.
We did notice that whenever radish is alone he seems to fall asleep instantly.
Everytime we house them separately, they either continue to hiss at each other from seperate cages, or get depressed when they can't see each other.
Plus I don't have enough room to house the two separately and I'd hate to have to give one away.

Any ideas to how I can stop them arguing?
 

Amethyst

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
May 7, 2012
Messages
1,693
Location
Alberta
Have you taken Radish into the vet to make sure nothing is wrong with him? Chins are not normally lazy sleepy animals, maybe something is wrong with him. If the health check comes back normal, unfortunately it does happen sometimes that bonded pairs for one reason or another decide they don't want to be friends anymore.
You don't mention how long you separated them but assuming no blood has been drawn I think the best thing to try is keeping them separate for about a week. That gives them both time to cool off and hopefully forget whatever caused the argument in the first place. Then put the cages near each other to make sure they aren't still arguing through the cages, then you can try putting them together again for playtime, if that goes well then try back in the cage together. It is possible though that Radish has simply had enough of being mounted and doesn't want to put up with it anymore. I have also had chins that enjoyed having a playmate, but not a cage mate, though I realize that doesn't help if you don't have room to house them separately.
 

Char_ma

New member
Joined
Nov 28, 2019
Messages
2
Thank you for your reply.
We booked radish into the vet for this afternoon but sadly we found him passed away this morning.
There's no blood so we don't know if he was killed in another fight or if it was some kind sickness.
 

Amethyst

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
May 7, 2012
Messages
1,693
Location
Alberta
Sorry for your loss. 😢
I do think based on your description of him being sleepy and lazy, and the fact that you didn't notice any injuries (a fight you would have noticed blood, and at least slipped fur), something was wrong with Radish. Sick animals will often either get picked on/run off, or try to distance themselves from others. Unfortunately they do hide illness well, sometime the only thing you notice is a behavioral change. 🙁 The only way you might know for sure what happened is with a necropsy.

I know it's too soon to think about, but the fact that it doesn't sound like it was a fight can be a good thing if you do plan to get another chin to pair with Peanut later. For now try to give Peanut some extra attention, chins grieve too.
 

draagonfly

Member
Joined
Sep 2, 2011
Messages
8
Location
San Diego
My condolences for your loss. I hope you can find peace with his passing.

I had a similar situation with Zeus and Odin - the first two chinchillas I ever had. They were adopted as babies, both about 6 months old, and got along just fine for a few years. One day Zeus started acting strange and lethargic, and he was angry at Odin anytime Odin would try to play. I thought he must not feel well, so I took Zeus to a vet, but he died in my arms in the exam room. They did a necropsy, but couldn't find anything out of the ordinary. At the time, there wasn't a lot of knowledge out there about chinchillas except through breeders, but nowadays exotic vets should know more so a necropsy might yield results. At three years though, it might be a tough time getting Peanut to accept another cagemate. I never had any luck doing that with Odin.
 

yspm10

Member
Joined
Feb 28, 2018
Messages
12
Sorry for your loss. Kind of sounds like a chinchilla I used to have that I believe died of a blockage from chewing plastic. He acted the same way just calm and always sleepy. At the time we didn’t know much about chinchillas and the plastic wheel he came with was not safe. The wheel was all chewed up. He wouldn’t eat much as well. You should check your other chinchillas poops as well. Make sure they’re a healthy size not really small and narrow. If you have anything plastic in your cage you should remove it. If you can share what you feed them as well I could give more advice for them. Hopefully your other chinchilla is well
 

Latest posts



Top