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New member
May 3, 2023

Long time lurker here. Recently decided to join in the hopes of getting some support.
A couple of weeks ago, I had to get one of my gorgeous boys put to sleep. He had teeth issues and ended up with and ear infection. The first time he had his teeth shaved, he recovered very quickly however, after the second operation, he stopped eating altogether and his health quickly deteriorated before I could get a follow up operation for his ear. Having him put to sleep is the hardest thing I've ever had to do.

Now I'm left with one half of a bonded pair and my heart breaks for him. His name is Stan and he's about 6 years old (Stan and Ernie were both rescues) and they've been part of my little family for 5 years and Ernie is very sorely missed by us all. Stan is very notably depressed and I'm doing my best to entertain him and keep him company without over doing it and stressing him out. I did get hime one of those fleece chin mates but safe to say, Stan is not a fan. If placed in his spot he'll throw a temper tantrum, beat it up, then fling it across the cage.

Does anyone have any advice how to best comfort a grieving chin?

Here's a cute vid of Stan enjoying an apple stick. I have more pictures of Stan and Ern on their insta account stan_and_ernie

View attachment VID_20230423_195458.mp4
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I personally have never had to care for a grieving chin but I have heard that purchasing/making a "chinnie buddie" for them can help. @Amethyst may be able to offer more tips. Welcome to ChinsnHedgies!
The biggest thing is making sure they are eating, drinking, and moving around. Some can get depressed and not move or eat, which can cause issues and make them sick, and in extreme cases even die. You can try rearranging the cage some, if he is ok with that, some chins like the cage rearranged others don't, but that way he isn't looking for his friend in the same spots. Also try changing out the toys so he has new toys to focus on (if the old toys are still good just set them aside for now).

I made my boy a fleece cuddle buddy when his brother died, it took awhile, like months, for him to come around to accepting it and stop trying to toss it in the litter box. His brother passed almost 2 years ago, and he does sometimes sleep on it now, but only within the past few months he has stopped tossing it out of the hideout. He also seems to accept it more if I don't throw it through the wash too often so it has his scent on it. I would just leave it in the cage, but maybe not in his way so he can get use to it.

If you want to, another option that can help is, since he is still young enough you can even try getting him a new friend. Chins don't always get along, but if you have the room and money for a second setup even having another chin around can be beneficial, kind of like have a neighbor vs living alone in isolation.
How is Stan doing? I have been wondering whether he got over his grieving as a singleton or whether he got a companion. I have a boy that was surrendered to rescue because he was attacked by the chin was was supposed to bond with, so I am interested in chins that may be living on their own.