Calcium Surplus Question - Help

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Jul 1, 2021
(I also posted this in diet and nutrition but am copying it here as well!)

Hi everyone,

Just recently I had one of my babies (2 y/o, male) put to sleep due to a bladder stone that became stuck in his urethra - he went downhill very quickly over the course of 3 days and there was nothing that could be done.

Over the last few months I had noticed a chalky residue in his dried pee that I found out was calcium excess when I researched it.

When I first noticed this I spoke to my exotic vet for her advice and she suggested cutting down the calcium in his diet - I didn't know how to do this because he was being fed Supreme Science Selective kibble and Burgess Excel Timothy Hay with Marigold and Dandelion (I'm in the UK). While I know Science Selective kibble is alfalfa based almost all chinchilla kibbles are and it is a high quality balanced food - I was giving him the recommended amount of 2-ish tablespoons but I still cut it down slightly to be safe.
The only snacks he had was raw oats occasionally, so nothing there that would have created a surplus.

I really don't understand how this could have happened, however he was very fussy about hay and would tend to eat more kibble than hay no matter how much I tried to encourage him otherwise (I believe this was due to his start in life as he was fed bad quality hay and guinea pig food with lots of treats mixed in with his previous owner).

I have another chinchilla (older 6 y/o, male - lives in a separate cage) who has started having some calcium residue in his pee as well and I don't know how much is normal and when to worry now - he has always eaten lots of timothy hay and a small amount of kibble so they are different in that aspect.

I am aware that some is normal because its the only way they can get rid of extra but how often do you all see calcium in your chinchillas pee?

I'm just completely devastated and confused and want to make sure this doesn't happen to my 6 y/o as well.

Sorry for the long post
- L