Gluten in chinchilla food making me ill

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Aug 4, 2010
Brighton, MA
I have Celiacs Disease and recently discovered that I am reacting to all the food dust in the air from the pellets I feed my chins. I’ve fed them the same brand for years (Nutrina) and they do well on it. They also get Timothy Hay and occasional oats or rosebuds. I’m going to stop with the oats since they are typically heavily cross contaminated with wheat.

Can anyone give me recommendations for what to switch my chinchillas over to? I was searching through old posts and saw one person write that you can find 100% Timothy hay pellets and then feed some alfalfa hay? I’ve never seen that in stores or online, however, so don’t know where to look. I would transition slowly of course but I don’t want their food quality to go down. In the meantime I can wear a mask around them, but it’s impacting my health enough that I can’t really interact with them without wearing the mask. This whole thing is making being a chinchilla owner not very fun/rewarding at the moment, and I want to fix it!
Feeding Timothy only pellets is not really ideal, it's more common to feed timothy pellets if there is a reason your chin can't have alfalfa, like prone to bladder stones. Timothy has a fraction of the calcium as alfalfa (about .3% vs 1-2%), so you need to be watching the chin more closely if feeding alfalfa hay, they may end up with too much calcium.

I don't think I've ever seen 100% timothy pellets though, most at least have some alfalfa mixed in. One newer food I've heard about that someone with celiacs disease actually recommended is Sherwood Pet. I can't vouch for it myself, but it's one option to look into, though it's not timothy only, it has alfalfa and timothy.