Sick chinchilla. Could really use some advice.

sc300ttev

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Jun 24, 2020
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I got my chinchilla from a breeder back on April 17th. He was born on February 13th. Everything was great at first except for he has never drank much water. A couple weeks ago I noticed that he stopped drinking almost entirely and his poop started to get small and then he stopped pooping almost entirely. He went to the vet that day and they gave me critical care and said they didn't really know what was going on. Vet said to give him 10 ml a day I've been giving him about 12. 6 in the morning 6 at night. He seemed to be back to normal 36 hours later. We kept giving him critical care for a few more days until he just stopped willingly eating it. I didn't want to stress him out and he seemed back to normal so I stopped critical care altogether. He was fine for a couple days and then stopped pooping once again. That day I stopped and got him some simethicone. I have been force feeding him that and the critical care for the past four days. He's been pooping normal. Eating a ton of hay and pellets on his own. Playing like normal but he still doesn't drink a ton of water. While I was giving him his medicine this morning I noticed be pooped twice and they are rather large and airy. Other than that he has been pooping a lot and they have been mostly normal. Just wondering what I really need to do or be looking for. I want my little buddy to have a long happy life and I'd really appreciate any help and info.
 

Amethyst

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If you are giving critical care he may not drink much or any water depending on how much you are mixing into the critical care. Chins only drink 1-2 oz of water a day so if they are already getting in the critical care they are getting enough water. It sounds like he had gas bubbles in his gut, chins can fart like most animals, they can expel gas as they poop but can't pass it on it's own so if the bubbles get too big they can cause a blockage. You did the right thing with the gas drops
(simethicone), it sounds like it worked to break up the gas bubble(s) into smaller ones that could be passed in the poop.

You may want to look at what may have causes the gas in the first place though, most often it's diet related. A chins diet should be primarily a good quality pellet only food and unlimited timothy hay. The treats they can safely have should not have any things like fruits or veggies in them that can cause gas and other digestive issues. Also just to be clear, no seeds, nuts, sugars (like honey or cane sugar), or animal products (like meat, milk, eggs, bone, hide, etc) either, I mention that since most petstore treats contain some or all of those things.
 

sc300ttev

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Thank you for the reply. He really only drinks about 2 ounces of water a week. As far as diet goes he's only been on mazuri pellets and timothy hay. With the occasional rose hip for a treat. Any idea how long I should continue with the critical care and gas drops?
 

Amethyst

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Hm, not sure about the low amount of water if he only drinks that little in a week, or do you mean with critical care? I guess if he seems fine, the vet didn't seem concerned, and he is peeing their might not be a problem. I somehow over looked the "born in February" part, sorry, that might explain the less drinking, smaller young chin may need less water. Also chins under 6 months should be also given alfalfa hay. The alfalfa is good for growth because it's higher in calcium and protein. Also no treats at all until over 6 months.

I would try stopping the critical care again now, and see how it goes. If you didn't see big airy poops before when he got better you may have solved the problem and he pooped out the gas, so you may be good now. If he stops pooping again though I would give the vet a call because something is not right.
 

sc300ttev

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Jun 24, 2020
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I meant just water. I've tried a few different bottles and found one that he will use but he still just doesn't drink much. I also tried to give him some alfalfa hay but he doesn't like it. He loves timothy hay though.
Thank you again for the advice. I think I'm going to give him one more dose of critical care tonight and then see what happens tomorrow. I don't have much confidence in the vet I took him to but I don't have any other options in the area. The vet told me to try pesto, spinach and mango. All of which I've heard would be terrible for him. Anyway thanks again.
 

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