Educational Articles

Small Mammals

  • Chinchillas require a high fiber diet and should be offered grass hay (such as Timothy hay or other low calcium hays such as orchard grass, oat hay, or meadow hay) free choice (available 24 hours a day). Hay should be the main component of their diet.

  • The cage should allow the chinchilla to move around a lot, as they are very active, agile, and acrobatic animals. Multilevel cages, similar to those designed for ferrets, work well, as long as there are no areas where a chinchilla could get its limbs or feet caught.

  • Chinchillas can make fun, enjoyable pets. The chinchilla is a rodent closely related to the guinea pig. They originated from South America where they live in the Andes Mountains.

  • Generally speaking, chinchillas are fairly hardy animals. However, they do have several unique problems, and understanding these problems will allow you to better care for your pet and minimize future health care problems.

  • Common conditions of pet chinchillas include bite wounds, respiratory diseases, overgrown and impacted teeth, gastrointestinal stasis, bloat, diarrhea, skin problems, and heat stroke.

  • Eimeria spp and other coccidial organisms can infect rabbits with a disease called coccidia, especially young and recently weaned rabbits. These organisms live in rabbit intestines and also can infecting the liver. They’re species or host specific, meaning they only live in rabbits.

  • The Complete Blood Count, usually just called a CBC, is one of the most basic blood tests your veterinarian can request, and yet it is one of the most important tests for determining the health status of a pet. It includes a series of measurements that describe the quantity and quality of the cellular elements in the blood.

  • Cytology is the microscopic examination of cell samples. These samples may sometimes be collected from the surface of the lesion under investigation, but more often, the sample is obtained by use of a special needle.

  • Diazoxide is used to treat certain tumors (insulinomas) in ferrets and to treat low blood sugar secondary to excessive insulin secretion in dogs.

  • Encephalitozoonsis is an infection that can affect the kidneys, eyes and nervous system of rabbits. It’s caused by an organism called Encephalitozoon cuniculi or E. cuniculi, a small microsporidian parasite that’s intracellular (it has to live within another cell).