Chipmunks are pretty cute and are thought to be one of the most innocent-looking and amusing creatures. It’s only normal to want to snuggle or pet them. Chipmunks are the shortest members of the squirrel family and nesting rodents. They can be discovered in temperate, subtropical, and tropical climates all around the world. They have dark and light streaks running down their back. They are highly active but adapt very much to captivity. They can become very pleasant pets if they are given a great deal of attention while they are young. Chipmunks’ adorable appearance and behavior entice all animal lovers to keep them as pets. Even so, there are a few things you should be aware of before proceeding to bring them home as pets.
BEHAVIOR PATTERNS OF CHIPMUNKS
Chipmunks are active during the day. So they get up at the break of dawn and go to bed as soon as the sun starts going down. Because they have the natural inclination to hibernate, they require a peaceful regimen during the cold season. As a pet, the chipmunk will take some time to socialize because it is a jittery and hesitant animal by nature. This rodent can also quickly frighten and bite if threatened, so it is not suitable for children. But even so, the species likes to play and socializing with other chipmunks.
Chipmunks are natural grazers who consume a wide range of foods. Chipmunks can be fed oats, wheat, barley, corn, and unsalted nuts (such as pine nuts), as well as small quantities of cleaned, sliced fresh fruits and vegetables. Differ your pet chipmunk’s food intake to make sure that all of its nutritional needs are being met. You should also provide clean drinking water to your chipmunk in the form of a gravity bottle affixed to the enclosure.
HOUSING FOR CHIPMUNKS
Chipmunks must be provided with a lot of space as they are very active and busy. A typical hamster or gerbil cage is not suitable for a pet chipmunk. This animal’s enclosure should be at least 4 feet by 3 feet by 4 feet in size, with plenty of branches to climb on, greenery to hide in, tubes, stones, and racks to provide mental and physical activation. The cage must have at least two stable sides and a powerful mesh front. Chipmunks are very jovial creatures who dislike being restricted in a narrow area for extended periods of time. They are excitable, inquisitive animals who enjoy running, jumping, and exploring.
HOW TO HANDLE CHIPMUNKS
Your chipmunk can react to its name and become familiar with gentle managing if bought at an early age. NEVER attempt to handle chipmunks from their natural environment. Move very slowly and avoid making loud sounds while interacting with your pet chipmunk. This will frighten your new pet, and it will try to flee. Chipmunks aren’t much of cuddle lovers, but they may grow to enjoy sitting on your lap or riding on your shoulder.
TIPS FOR KEEPING A PET CHIPMUNK
• Chipmunks will use one spot as a bathroom, cleaning it every day and replacing the medium is advisable. Every week, clean the whole enclosure.
• The nesting box should only be cleaned twice a year. From September to March. Leave the nesting box alone because it will store food in order to prepare for hibernation.
• Adult males must not be housed together as they see each other as competition and fights might occur.
• You must make sure that the enclosure of your pet Chipmunk is well ventilated and resistant to rats to avoid any kind of infection to your pet.
DO CHIPMUNKS MAKE GOOD PETS?
Chipmunks have not been in the pet range for a long time that is why there has not been a perfect way to care for them. Even researchers are still going on with their studies to find out more about these creatures. It is also very important to consider the legalities of owning a chipmunk in your state as they are still illegal to own in many countries.
These creatures are not very familiar with human interaction so it might get tricky for you to form a connection with them. However, when raised in captivity from birth, chipmunks can learn to get adaptive to certain things. You just need to make sure that you are getting your pet chipmunk from a private breeder if you want to have one.
Your pet should be healthy and active, with a shiny coat. It must also be between six and eight weeks of age so that it can be accustomed to you and your way of life. If you believe a chipmunk is a suitable pet for you, look for a reputable breeder. Don’t ever consider taking a chipmunk out of its natural habitat; it will not make a good pet. You could also get a chipmunk from an animal rescue organization.