When you hold your chinchilla and s/he tries to escape by jumping away, you may wind up with clumps of fur in your hand. The chinchilla fur is not simply falling out due to age. It’s called fur slip and it usually occurs when the chinchilla is trying to escape from an unwanted situation.
Chinchillas have the ability to release tufts of fur to get away from stressful/frightening situations.
To try to prevent fur slip while holding your chinchilla, grasp at the point where the base of the tail meets the body. This will allow your pet to sit on your arm or hand without hurting him/her by squeezing the body.
Keeping your chinchilla’s fur healthy is easy – provide dust baths daily or several times weekly. Use fresh dust regularly. This will help keep the fur intact. A chinchilla’s fine fur often traps moisture. Dust baths also keep fur dry, avoiding skin or fungal infections.
There are times when stressful situations can’t be avoided such as a visit to the vet. If fur slip occurs, don’t worry. Just speak softly to your pet, use favorite treats and petting to reassure him/her.
A high quality, species appropriate diet, dust baths which they love, learning your pet’s body language and proper environment should help your chinchilla remain happy and healthy.