I realised when I wrote my post yesterday that Seb my 17 year old chichilla hasn't had a mention before on my blog (I don't think). He really is 17 human years old! I was only 10 years old when my Dad's work colleague, Phil, gave him to me. The story is that I wanted a chinchilla for a long time and was finally allowed to get one for my birthday. We went to a chinchilla breeder with lots of them all in a shed and I picked one and called him Jake. He was £60 and we had to buy a big cage for him. It was all very exciting. Sadly, poor Jake only lasted 6 months as he choked on his food. We rushed him to the vet but he didn't come home with us. That is where Phil came in. His pet chinchillas had just had a little 'chilla and they donated him to me. That was in 1991 and Seb is still going strong!
I was warned back then that chinchillas had a long life expectancy of 8-10 years. Seb has doubled the lower estimate! He is still running around the house and causing chaos. He chews anything including wires, newly-papered wallpaper, the buttons from the television remote control in my old flat, the plastic nose protector things from Dave's glasses. The list goes on. He can be annoying (like the new wallpaper incident) but he is also very cute.
I am a quite aware that he probably doesn't have long left now (I'm always relived when he's still jumping around his cage in the morning for his raisin) and he has definitely got grumpier in his old age but he is fab. My favourite ever thing that he does is his whisker-washing routine. His whiskers are really long so he cleans his face with his paws but then pulls both paws right down both sides of his whiskers and has to stretch his head right back to reach the ends of the whiskers with his little paws. I'll have to try and film it one day.
This may be up there with my longest ever blog posts but I suppose Seb does have quite a history. He has lived in 2 houses in Sussex, 1 house in Bath, 2 flats in London and now our little pad in Northumberland!