Lonely Luscious looking for a friend

ALL Luscious, the lonely chinchilla, wants is a friend.The furry rodent has been staying at the RSPCA's animal centre in Martlesham since March but has gradually become withdrawn as she has no playmate.

ALL Luscious, the lonely chinchilla, wants is a friend.

The furry rodent has been staying at the RSPCA's animal centre in Martlesham since March but has gradually become withdrawn as she has no playmate.

Chinchillas are known to be social creatures, which thrive on companionship. Staff at the centre are now appealing for anyone with a chinchilla to take on Luscious so she can make a friend. The friend can be male or female and has to be neutered.

Luscious was originally from a home in Stowmarket but her owners did not have enough time to look after her and so she was taken to the Martlesham centre.

Becky Fox, deputy manager of the RSCPA centre, said: “Luscious would like to have a friend. She is very stressed and has become withdrawn.

“When she is on her own, she is not bothered about anything and sits there looking lonely.

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“She would need to go to suitable accommodation. A home with young children would not be suitable.

“She needs a good diet and a lot of care. Chinchillas should not be placed near a radio or television, and should have a lot of room to run around.

“They need to socialise because they have a long life span.”

Although staff at the RSPCA know Luscious is an adult, they are not sure of her exact age.

The charity recommends that chinchillas should have a large cage with different levels as they like to climb and remain active.

It needs to be in a quiet area so the sleeping chinchilla is not disturbed in the day and it should not be in direct sunlight or near radiators.

The RSPCA at Martlesham is also appealing for anyone who can give any of their cats and kittens a home.

There are currently around 50 cats at the centre, with several more on the waiting list.

Miss Fox added: “It is really slow to re-home cats and kittens at the moment. The dogs are going fine but no one seems to be wanting cats.

“It might be because people don't have the extra funds to get a cat at the moment. We really need people to help us find them a home.”

Do you have a special story about your pet? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

Chinchillas generally live until they are ten years old but have been known to live up to 18 years old.

Wild chinchillas are found up in the Andes of northern Chile

They need to get regular health checks, particularly for any dental problems

Chinchillas cannot sweat and are vulnerable to heatstroke

They are nocturnal animals and eat hay