CHINCHILLA DUST BATHS
Plastic storage containers with locking lids make an excellent dust bathing house for Chinchillas.
Since the dust material is composed of a very fine pumice powder, we recommend that people be prudent and wear face masks when being exposed to it. If inhaled, the dust can be quite irritating to the respiratory tract. And, it could pose a problem for people with prior respiratory issues such as asthma and emphysema*.
Simply place the bath dust (i.e. Blue Sparkle or Blue Cloud are examples) at a depth of 1 to 2 inches in the bottom of the container. Then, place your chinchilla in the box. Secure the lid, and let your chinchilla bathe. Because the bathing activity only takes a few minutes, it is not necessary to have ventilation holes in the container. But, if desired, holes can easily be drilled into the lid. (For safety purposes, it is always advisable to monitor your pet's activities throughout this whole process.)
Also, this makes an excellent time to clean out your pet’s habitat. Even better, just enjoy watching this fascinating behavior, and how much your pet loves their luxurious bath.
Once the bathing has stopped, return your pet to its cage. Secure the lid on the container, and it is ready for use on the next bath day. Chinchillas should take dust baths 2 to 4 times a week. The dust should be replaced, and the storage container thoroughly cleaned, once a week. Remember, Chinchillas that bathe daily (i.e. too often) can be predisposed to conjunctivitis.
As an additional precaution, always use a container that is “see through” so that you can monitor your pet at all times. And, use a container large enough to allow for your chinchilla to roll around within.
AEMV Practice Tip: Easy Chinchilla Dust Baths, Melissa Kling, DVM.
If you have any questions pertaining to this information or to any aspect of your pet’s health care, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO ASK US.