This week I met up with my fiend Hope who has a pet chinchilla named Sonic. He is gray male with black ears and tail and white paws. He is fairly small, around one pound and is roughly a foot in length. His coat is amazing; it is super soft, especially after his dust bath. She keeps him in a very large case with multi-layers. The cage is in her bedroom, which is perfect for when she wants to take him out; she just closed her bedroom door. She said he is very active, but not really personable.
When I sat next to the cage he was a little timid and started to go down to his little house on the first layer. She said he had an abusive owner before she got him, which explains his shyness. She opened the cage’s door but he wouldn’t come out to great her since there was a male presence in the room, which he did not like. She offered him a peanut, bribing him to come out. It worked but not enough for her to hold him. He got the peanut and ran back to his house. As she reached for him, he began to bark. Yup that is the correct term, though it sounded more of a squeal. He eventually was submissive and allowed Hope to hold him.
She showed me how she trained him to do some tricks like stand on his hind legs and clean his face, which was adorable by the way. Hope also explained to me that chinchillas do not like to get wet because fungus forms easily within their thick coat. That is why he does not like being held, since we have oily hands. She told me about his diet and how she sometimes treats him with a mini marshmallow or a small piece of licorice.
I knew he would be difficult to collaborate with, if he already has preconceived notions about men. She said maybe I should warm up to him. She allowed me to hold him. His simply would not stop looking at me. Hope told me that he feels comfortable if I hold him next to my heart. Sonic reads my heart pattern and if I’m relaxed he’ll relax. I found that very interesting and thought I might look into it and maybe come up with an art idea.
I simply tried to connect to him when I was holding him. I thought maybe If I meditated with him he would relax and warm up to me. He simply looked at me, questioning what was I going to do to him. I felt bad; he must have been really scared. I returned him to Hope. I didn’t know what else to do with him since he was very shy and wouldn’t want to interact much.
She thought maybe she should give him a dust bath now since we have been touching him. He knew exactly what was going on when she reached for the jar of the volcanic ash. She put a little into this house and he jumped in. He twisted and turned in it, having a ball. He would occasionally peak his head out and looked at me. When he got out, his coat was so fluffy and thick. It was such an amazing thing to see.
I left in hopes that maybe if I came back often he would open up to me and actually collaborate with me.