When one chin turns on another....(graphic pics).

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I bite.
Jan 29, 2009
Indianapolis, IN
This situation was not a breeding pair but rather a same sex pair. However, this could very well happen to a breeding pair and since there are graphic pictures, I wanted to post them here to show that you can't just put two chins together and expect them to get along.

In this case, Mako (the one who was attacked) and Smudge (the attacker) were cuddling the night before and grooming. Nothing had changed, I had noticed no chasing or signs of fighting what so ever. Mako and Smudge seemed to be attached at the hip and did everything together..they never slept alone, they were always smushed with one another.

I woke up in the morning to find Mako in the bottom of his cage, blood everywhere, cold and breathing shallowly. Of course it was on a Sunday morning, so we had to go to the emergency vet.

There wasn't much the vet could do other than give Mako fluids, clean his wounds, and give him some antibiotics. Mako was already in shock when I found him, so the key was keeping him warm and keeping fluids in him.

Mako had lacerations to his head, neck, and back. He also had bite wounds through his nasal cavity, making it hard for him to breath. The whole time he had labored breathing through his mouth. I had to nebulize him in attempt to break up the dried blood in his nasal passages.

After keeping Mako on a heating pad inside my jacket for close to 8 hours, my baby passed away.

Let this be a reminder that you can not just throw two chins together, and you must keep a vigilant eye on your cage mates. Though they may seem like they are getting along, you always have a chance of waking up and finding what I found. I do not mean to scare or induce paranoia, but simply to remind people to keep this in the back of their mind.

*Warning, graphic images*
Bites through the nasal cavity


Injuries to the head


The back

*I miss you terribly, baby Mako.*
I'm so very sorry you lost your baby. I think that's what frightened me so much about the tiffs between my guys; they can be so brutal, so fast, and in such fragile creatures recovery's so difficult. You're a great chin mommy, and he knows you always loved him. *hugs*
Oh, Stacie, I can only imagine how difficult it was for you to look up and re-post these horrific pictures.

You have done a great service to ALL chin owners, be they oldtimers or newbies. You have had more than your share of bad outcomes. I have personally had only a badly beaten up/bitten Baby, who did manage to survive, but you know that I always preach having an extra cage available, because you really never know.

Bless you and little Mako for sharing your sad story. :hearts:

PLEASE, people -- take this as a warning that it CAN happen to YOU!!!
that outcome is the reason why i waited over 2 years to brave introducing another baby male (kola) to my middle (bear) male after unknowingly how even being social animals they can pick nasty fights with one another. i purchased bear to give my oldest (mr chinny) a cagemate, but mr. chinny was not having that at all. they (bear+mr chinny) had playtime twice and had one smooshing get together. still not having it so they were always kept separate. thankfully *knock on wood* pairing bear and kola together has been so much easier. i hope it lasts. :)

im sorry that happened to you and little mako :(
Stacie every time you post pictures of Mako I cry. I bred him. Every time I come to the forum the pictures of him you put in the calendar for sale under the logo brings tears to my eyes. He was my baby and was as sweet as could be.
I'm so sorry Stacie and Cathy about Mako. I couldn't even imagine waking up to that. It is really scary to know that chins can go from grooming to killing in a matter of seconds.

I really don't mind having Phoenix and Sedona in separate cages but Phoenix wants to be with Sedona but Sedona won't let her get near her but I haven't even tried introducing them together. The reason why I know that is when Phoenix was able to move her hidey house and chin chiller to get to the bottom where Sedona was but I put a stop to that immediately.

Prayers to you Stacie and Cathy.
I was heart broken when you lost Him. Such a horrible situation and scary It can happen to any pairing at any time..breeding or not
it is because of you and mako's story that i decided to keep richie & stitch separate last year and because of all the other stories i have read that i separated snickers & oreo recently.
yeah i have to clean 4 cages instead of 2 but my chins are alive & happy.
i am sorry you have lost your babies in the past, but thank you for posting your stories about them..........i am sure you have saved many others.
Oh.. I'm so sorry to hear that. It must be hard on you. Thanks for sharing and I'm so sorry for your lost. *hugs*
Thank you everyone. It's been over a year now that I lost Mako, but I still miss him very much and I can only hope his story can potentially save other chinnies & raise awareness of what they can actually do to one another.

I also lost two others to a fight, Kuma and Felix. Even thinking a mere seconds about my lost chins brings pain and "what if's", even though I have questioned myself hundreds of times and been told every time that there was nothing I could do.
I'm so sorry to read this story.
His wounds to his head and back look disturbingly like Orson's fatal wounds. :( They really can turn on one another in the blink of an eye--Mork and Orson's fight had to have taken place in an hour and a half, between 8:30pm and 10pm. My biggest consolations are that Orson was with me when he passed, and also that he can't have suffered long at all, because it was all over so quickly.
I know you loved Mako from what I've read, and after reading the bit about keeping a closer eye on them, I want to say that hopefully you don't blame yourself for not keeping 'close enough' of an eye on them--it sounds like it happened when you were sleeping, and while it is heart breaking, it is not your fault.
In my case, however, I hadn't separated Mork and Orson well enough, and Orson chewed into Mork's half of the cage. But that's a different story.
Anyway, I'm sorry if this post seems out of place or something, but it really reminded me of Orson, and I guess I just wanted to tell my story too, in case anyone else is reading this and still isn't sure about how to cage their chins.
Feel better, Stacie and Cathy.

P.S. Also, according to the SPCA, Mork and Orson were brothers.
oh I remember when this happened...it was and still is so very very sad.

Hopefully pics and stories like these will discourage inexperienced chin owners from rushing into situations. You did things the right way and they still turned out poorly...

When I got my breeding pair from my boyfriends grandma, I had already had one that she had previously given to me, even though that they had grown up together and were father and son. Dale (the son) bit the snot out of Rex's (the dad's) nose and Rex had bitten Dales behind and there were bite marks and hair loss, I knew I immediately needed to find a new home for Dale, I ended up giving him to my dad and family along with a baby I had weaned recently. I guess I never really realized what could have happened until this post and because of this I'm so glad that I did what I did, because I would have been devastated. I'm so sorry for your lost, but this post helped me out a lot on what to look for right away and to be super careful.
I have 2 chins, bug and kity, (my grandson named them). they have been cage mates for over a year and here lately they have been getting a little testy with each other, is this common? can it be looked at like 2 room mates just getting on each others nerves every now and then or this something i should be more concerned with?
Oh No Stacie, that is such a horrible thing to go through, for you and for the chins.

I have recently just put my two females (mother and daughter) back together as i separated them a few months back. I was fearing the worst (a situation just like yours) but thankfully they are okay. They did have a good few tiffs and fur flying around for a day, but now they are okay. They sleep in a cage next to our room so if they make the slightest squeak, i can hear it as i dont shut the doors at night time and i keep a close watch on them. i even wake up during the night to check on them, like a mother would to her new born baby.

But Stacie, do you have any other advice for me? id like to make sure i can eliminate as many possibilities.
Prior to them being put back into they cage, i cleaned it out from top to bottom and made sure that new bedding and hammocks where placed in the cage and set it up differently so there was no 'territorial' grounds.

Rip Mako (you were such a beautiful chinchilla)
My heart goes out to you Stacie xxx