Origin:Ranging across northern Asia from central Russia to China, Korea and northern Japan.
Description:Chipmunks are a member of the rodent family. Chipmunks are diurnal. An adult chipmunk is approximately 5 to 6 inches in length and weighs from 1 to 3 ounces. Chipmunks may live up to 10 years in captivity.
Feeding:Chipmunks are omnivores. A good diet consists of a combination of nuts, fresh fruits and vegetables and rodent diet. Nuts may include peanuts, pecans or walnuts. Fresh fruits may include apples, grapes, oranges, peaches, pears or plums. Vegetables may include carrots, sweet potatoes or broccoli. Try to offer a variety of fruits and vegetables since all chipmunks don’t have the same preferences. Provide plenty of fresh water daily. A vitamin supplement may also be added to their diet.
Housing:Chipmunks should be housed in a wire cage. A wire cage with shelves allows them to climb and provides better air circulation. A wooden house or pieces of PVC pipe may be used to create a suitable environment for them to hide in. Chipmunks can exercise inside the cage and branches can be spread around so they can climb from one to the other. They really enjoy a wheel to run in. Chipmunks like to chew. It is recommended that they have lots of chew toys such as wooden blocks, bird toys, pumice stone, mineral stones and branches. In the cage tray bottom, wood shavings or aspen bedding provide a suitable material to help absorb moisture. Chipmunks will also use a dust bath like a chinchilla. Place the dust bath in the cage for a few hours and then remove it so they don’t use it as a bathroom.
Bonding:Chipmunks are very shy and have long memories. If you frighten them, they will remember and reject you until you regain their trust. Begin your bonding experience by feeding them treats through the cage bars and then later feeding treats from the palm of your hand inside the cage. Let the chipmunk come to you and slowly begin holding it. Do not squeeze it. Try to repeat these methods daily. Bonding pouches are also a great way to bond with your chipmunk. You can also place pieces of an old T-shirt in the cage, bonding pouch or sleeping area so that it will get used to your scent.
S & S Exotic Animals, Inc., 1711 Connorvale, Houston, TX 77039 (281) 590-0426