Chipmunk health and welfare

Regularly observing your chipmunks and how they normally behave will help you notice when they are behaving differently, which can be an early indication that something is wrong. 

How to check your chipmunk’s health

Checking your chipmunks everyday means you can be confident that they are protected from pain, suffering, injury and disease and you can quickly get them the help they need if they're not well. 

Healthy chipmunks should be lively with a shiny coat, bright eyes and with no signs of diarrhoea around the tail.

Signs your chipmunk may be unwell

Signs your chipmunk may be unwell may include discharge around the nose and difficulties breathing (a sign of a possible respiratory infection), and also wetness around the mouth (a possible sign of overgrown teeth).

Watch for the developing of stereotypical behaviour and seek veterinary advice if your chipmunks do show signs. This may be caused by barren environments, stress, frustration or lack of mental stimulation. Learn more about your chipmunk's behaviour.

We strongly advise you to consult your vet if your chipmunk shows any signs of illness. 

Keeping your chipmunks healthy

  • Your pets should only be treated with the medicines recommended by for them by a vet. Human and other animal medicines can be dangerous to chipmunks so should never be used. Keeping them away from poisonous materials such as poisonous food, plants, and chemicals will keep your chipmunks safe and, as always, contact your vet should you be concerned.
  • Familiarise yourself with the signs and symptoms associated with common illnesses in chipmunks, such as aspergillosis, ringworm, parasites, stress, dental disorders and respiratory infections. Ask your vet for advice about recognising the symptoms of ill health if you're ever concerned about your chipmunks’ health.
  • Suitable gnawing material, such as a cuttlefish bone, should be provided to help wear down their continuously growing teeth. Teeth should be checked weekly for any signs of overgrowth or misalignment. Only vets should correct overgrown or misaligned teeth. 
  • When you’re away, ensure that your pets are cared for by a responsible person to meet all their welfare needs while you’re not around. It’s best to keep your pets in their familiar enclosure and leave them their usual food on these occasions.
  • Always supervise all your pets when they are in the company of another animal or person who could deliberately or accidentally harm or frighten them.

Taking your chipmunk to the vet

If your chipmunk shows any signs of being unwell, including changes to their behaviour, ensure you seek the advice of your vet. Should your vet ask you to bring them into the surgery, you can take a look at our advice for transporting your chipmunk.

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