Chinchillas are pretty cute

Pretty cute indeed.  My father’s attempt to ease the pain of the loss of our dog, Josie, was to get a chinchilla for my mother for Christmas.  Though unarguably adorable, the animal is not so cuddly as a puppy.  Still, we are hoping it will help.  My mother named it Yoda.

These members of the order Rodentia are not closely related to rabbits at all, though they have some rabbit like features.

These members of the order Rodentia are not closely related to rabbits at all, though they have some rabbit like features.

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They come from alpine deserts in the Andes, and require little food and water, though they become overheated above 80F (25C).

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They can jump up to 6 ft (1.8 m)!

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In the wild, they are critically endangered because they have been overhunted for their (admittedly incredibly soft) fur.  This species Chinchilla lanigera, is slightly less endangered than the only other Chinchilla species (C. brevicaudata), which is on the brink of extinction.

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