For the month of March, zero (0!) chinchillas were surrendered and two (2) chinchillas were adopted. We have put a serious damper on intakes until we can reclaim some living space. As mentioned before, priority surrenders are given to those who have adopted our rescue chins and need to re surrender them. However, all of our specifications outlined in in link regarding the surrender process applies. Those who try to withhold the cage to recoup some of the costs are frustrating in the obvious disregard for the animal.
On a more positive note, we've learned of an amazing opportunity that can only be described as a dream come true. A couple living a couple of hours north of us are offering an essay contest to essentially give away their 35 acre farm. The property consists of 10 acres of fields and the remainder consisting of mature wooded areas complete with trails! That would provide ample acreage for our little zoo to grow our own hay and plant orchards to harvest wood for the chinnies!
Would you like to join me in the rest of our dream? The house on the property has 3 levels. The ground floor/ basement would make a fantastic chinchilla shelter where we could keep the cages of boys and girls in separate rooms. Even though chins can smell a female in heat for up to a mile away, having them in different rooms would be much less provoking. Also, having the chins on their own floor would make it much easier to contain the dust and bedding apart from our living space. AND, it would provide us with enough elbow room to set up cages of the "proper" size as holding cages for the rescues. Better still, for those chinchillas who actually come with their cages, the additional space would allow us to keep the chins in their permanent cages and adopt them as "complete with cage". Which would help reduce adoption stress.
The property has an over-sized workshop complete with heat and air conditioning. That would allow the perfect year around spot for Whimsy to do her woodworking in a place other than in the dining room and kitchen. The 18th century cookhouse would make a fantastic place to process and dry the natural woods we use for our chew toys.
Since the property is relatively close, we could still continue our work with the special needs students who help assemble our toys. Could you imagine the looks on their faces when they come for the year-end field trip to Whimsy's?
Although we have our hopes set on winning the contest, it is open for everyone to try. The more people who enter, the higher the likelihood the contest will actually run. They would like to have at least 5000 contest entries. It requires an essay of no more than 1000 words (make sure to see the rubric for guidelines) and a $200 entry fee. The chances of winning are better then the lottery. ;) Get writing folks! Or at least say a little prayer for us.