Chihchi - Life in a Cage

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Chinchi the chinchilla is a vivid example of how chinchillas that are bred for fur live, and that no living creature should live in a cage.

Instead of jumping around, living in cramped cages:

Chinchillas are very skilled jumpers and they can jump almost two meters high. At farms where they are bred for fur, they spend their lives in small, single cages where they don’t have any freedom to move.

Instead of health, illness:

When chinchillas and other animals are bred for fur, routine stereotyped behaviour patterns are very common. They include repeating the same moves and movements in the cage over and over again, refusing food, as well as harming themselves and other animals (biting fur, inflicting injuries on ears and tails or biting them off completely, gouging out eyes, etc.), which results in painful wounds. This is caused by boredom, stress, overcrowded cages, lack of supplements, poor nutrition, and noise.

Instead of cheerfulness, sorrow:

Chinchillas are very social animals; in the wilderness they live in colonies with more than 100 individuals. Their natural behaviour includes sand bathing, exploring rocks and crevices, playing and jumping. They are known as extremely sensitive animals, so that captivity, monotonous surroundings and lack of stimuli prevent them from satisfying their psychological needs. Conditions in which chinchillas are kept and bred result in abnormal stereotyped behaviour, fear, reproduction disorders and offspring mortality.

Chinchillas that live free in nature are monogamous. However, breeders put "polygamous collars" around the necks of female chinchillas, which prevent them from getting out of their cages and being with other chinchillas. This is not the case with male chinchillas; they can reach freely female chinchillas that are unable to defend themselves as they have no place to escape.

Instead of life, gas suffocation:

Chinchillas' natural life expectancy is between 10 and 20 years, but chinchillas that are bred for fur live 8 months on average. They are killed in gas chambers, with chloroform, by projectiles that penetrate the brain, they are electrocuted or their necks are snapped.

Photo shooting and video editing: Ana Vujasic

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