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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-21-2007, 05:04 PM Thread Starter
 
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Question Mating?

I was wondering what the youngest age for a male to mate was? And how do you tell if the female is pregnant? Or do you just wait and find out? Just wondering. Thanks!
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-22-2007, 11:20 PM
 
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I'm not sure whether you're asking how old he has to be to physically mate or how old are males when they are put into breeding. A male can mate extremely young. I'm not sure of the exact age but I think they only have to be a few months old. As for when a male is usually put into breeding, most people wait until they are done growing to see what quality they are. That's usually somewhere between 8 to 12 months.

To determine a female's due date, you can do a couple of different things. You can find a mating plug, which is pretty rare, or see mating take place. Then you mark down the date. I personally also try to keep track of when my females are in heat, since some of my males are shy about doing anything while I'm in the room. Once you get a date from any of those methods, you then count 111 days later and mark it on the calendar. This is the due date for your chinchilla, but it doesn't mean that she's actually pregnant.

To figure out if she's pregnant, you need to keep track of her weight to see if she is gaining. Some other signs are laying on her side alot and drinking more water. My females bellies also start to look bigger when they are pregnant. About a month before your female is due, you should be able to feel or see baby kicks, then you know she's pregnant for sure.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-23-2007, 09:03 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks. I guess I wanted to know the youngest they could breed. My male is about 6 months and my female is 2.5 years and they are caged together and they are the best of friends. I used to see him "hump" her a lot and just was curious if this was a mating process or just them playing. Lately, she backs her butt into him and sort of forces him on top of her. I don't if my chins are just weird or if this is a mating process. Just curious. I will read up on it. Thanks though. Is there a website to find out about them being in heat?
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-23-2007, 09:51 PM
 
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They may be mating, but they could also be showing dominance or playing. After they are done romping around and have calmed down, you could always check to see if your female is in heat.

Females have a hole between their cone and anus. If they are in heat, it's open. If they aren't then it's closed. If they are open they may also have a small bit of white liquid coming out which is normal. They will release a heat plug when they go into heat. This looks like a mating plug only smaller.

Here's a picture of a mating plug that I was lucky enough to find.


Here is a picture of one of my girls in heat. It's kind of blurry.


Here's a clearer picture of a different female in heat.


And here is a picture of a female that is closed (not in heat).
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-23-2007, 09:56 PM
 
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wow so much info that was graphic. interesting though. that plug thing ew. im speechless lol
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 12:08 AM
 
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That can be either, humping at least, but when the females BACKING herself into the male and he's humping she is in heat and they are mating. Often they mate many times within an hour if you happen to catch them and watch. Was this a planned breeding, I assume, since they are together? And yes, generally with males you wait until they are alot older to accurately determine their quality. Even if you male is out of two Grand Show Champions, he may not necessarily end up being great quality.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 12:54 AM
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I was wondering also if it is your plan to breed.

I got a female that was pregnant from the petstore. She didn't really gain any weight and she didn't lay on her side a lot (I read up on it). One day I was out watching TV and heard a BANG. I had a 5ft tall cage with branches instead of shelves. It was kind of like an obstacle course. It had branches and ropes and hidey tubes, then at the top it had a wooden house bolted to the side.

I heard this bang and ran in and there was a little baby that was so cute.....I didn't even know.

Just watch her I guess, and I hope you know that if you are putting a male with a female there will be babies and they will try to mate. Chins and other small animals don't believe in headaches.

*Missy*
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 08:58 AM Thread Starter
 
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I am planning to breed. At least it is my intent. I always wanted another chinchilla after I had Hailey, so I looked into buying one from a breeder and no one was in the area. Then I went to the petstore, and found Henry (6 months). We know Hailey is a breeder because she has had babies before. In the end having two chins is what I wanted and I wanted a boy and girl...and I wanted to breed.

What do you mean by "their quality?" I have read a lot about chin's and breeding and some things I could not find and I am not sure I understand the quality concept. Please let me know thanks!

You guys are super helpful!
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 11:18 AM
 
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Breeding

Quality would refer to having good build,dense coat, good color,and free of health issues to start. Two Grand Show Champions may not produce another, but you still want to breed the best you can in hopes of bettering the species as much as possible. Even though she's had babies before doesnt' mean she won't have complications. Breeding is very risky for chins. Sometimes males kill females, or females kill males.They can die during pregnancy, during labor, after labor, or while nursing. The kits can also die during labor/after or later. You need to be prepared to hand raise the kits for 8 weeks or so, round the clock, in the even mom doesn't produce milk/they fight/or mom dies. That's alot to fit into a schedule let me tell you. I had a litter of quads I was feeding years ago, first rotating because they faught THEN completely raising becaues mom died, at first it's every two hours. I took them with me for Christmas and work every day (lucky enough to have somewhere then that allowed that).Other than quality though, and my main reason for getting the healthiest chins (after quality) from ethical breeder is health issues. Malocclusion is a big one. It can transform in various ways, but is issues with the teeth that will end up keeping the chinchilla from being able to eat and it will slowly starve to death if not treated or euthanized (often there is no treatment, but sometimes regular dental work can be done by a vet to prolong the animals life). In chins from some of the better breeders, it's not as common..but in the chins bred by those not careful about backgrounds it can be seen fairly often and in rescue/petstore chins. It's a very sad thing to go through, let me tell you from experience, after having a rescue malocclude years ago. He had to be euthanized at just a few years old because his was not treatable. Also, heart defects can occur in chins, causing young chins to simply drop dead from a heart attack or stroke. Seizures are also a problem in chins. Fur chewing is another thing ethical breeders look out for and pull animals that do this from breeding because it can be genetic. Not saying that buying from one of the best breeders in the US makes you completely safe from having these issues in chins, but buying from people that are very careful what they breed, helps. I also worry when I see those with their dear pet chins, breeding them to get another chin for themselves. You risk losing your only pets this way, it's hard enough to deal with losing one and I have over 50, it's worse when it's your only chin or 2. Just things to keep in mind. If you don't have one already, you need a VERY experienced chin vet on hand in case of emergencies, anyways, but especially with a pregnant chin. Good luck.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 11:37 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HaileyS
What do you mean by "their quality?" I have read a lot about chin's and breeding and some things I could not find and I am not sure I understand the quality concept. Please let me know thanks!
Here are some websites that should help you get a better idea of what quality is.
EMPRESS CHINCHILLA QUALITY STANDARD EVALUATION PROGRAM
A Glossary of Terms
Taken from the 1990 Canadian National Show Book
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 12:52 PM
 
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You can also go to Cross Creek Chinchillas! and click on Breeding 101. It'll give you a lot of good information on what to look for and how to be a responsible breeder.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 07:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HaileyS
I am planning to breed. At least it is my intent. I always wanted another chinchilla after I had Hailey, so I looked into buying one from a breeder and no one was in the area. Then I went to the petstore, and found Henry (6 months). We know Hailey is a breeder because she has had babies before. In the end having two chins is what I wanted and I wanted a boy and girl...and I wanted to breed.
Where did Hailey come from? With Henry being from a petstore, there is absolutely no way you can figure out his history nor can you find any of his relatives or their history of health and genetic lineage. Meaning by breeding him, you'll have no idea what could come out. You could possibly get a baby with genetic problems that would arise down the road, in turn causing plenty of medical bills to pay.

Also, breeding chinchillas is a crap load of (very fun and rewarding) work. You'll need to know about when she is due so you can remove the male from the cage. Some breeders will leave them in to let them help "father" the new little one but I've always taken them out a few days before any of my females were due. I had one male that fathered kits and loved to be with them but he couldn't stay in with the mother because in their frolicing, they could trample the baby(ies). Also the female will go back into heat after birth and she could become pregnant again.

Also you have to be prepared for how many she could possibly have. If more than one, you're not only going to have to seperate them at sexual maturity but with any more than two you may have to suplement the kits with forumla. They aspirate VERY easily (which means the formula drowns them). If you have a job, this will really be hard on you.

You'll also have to be prepared for in case she decides she doesn't want to be a mom at all. You'll have to have all supplies at hand and ready to doctor them if she faught them, keep them warm, feed them, and weigh them regularly to make sure they're growing.

There is loads of information to learn before jumping into breeding them. You'll always need to be on the alert for the worst case scenario. Ask Jade, my gosh she has been through it all. It's very fun and I'm not meaning to sound like I'm doubting you-- just letting you know all of what could happen and what to be ready for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HaileyS
What do you mean by "their quality?" I have read a lot about chin's and breeding and some things I could not find and I am not sure I understand the quality concept. Please let me know thanks!

You guys are super helpful!
The quality of their fur (if this is what you mean) isn't really going to matter if you plan on keeping the kits as pets but remember you could have multiple kits and would have to find homes for the ones you didn't want to keep. Reputable breeders always strive to improve the species quality, temperment, and health. The quality of their health is what is most important and there is no way to figure out Henry's with him being from a petstore.


What kind of food are you feeding them? That will definitly matter if you decide on breeding them-- you'll want your female in top quality health!


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Last edited by Rocheal; 01-24-2007 at 07:38 PM.
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