Chinchillas multiplying at HAWS

 A little more than a month ago, authorities pulled 331 chinchillas from a home in Waukesha. Those animals have since been under the care of the \"Humane Animal Welfare Society.\"

The donations came pouring in when we first reported what happened, and HAWS says volunteers have really stepped up to the plate. 

But things are now getting more expensive as the animals are multiplying. 

\"This is 300 plus animals. Their bedding, their food, the things we're going to still cycle through everyday. Its not like you can buy a couple cages and we're set,\" said Jennifer Smeja, with HAWS. It will cost about $2,000 a day to take care of the whole herd, 

A whole lot of money for a whole lot of chinchillas. Smeja says some new little bundles of joy may increase that number.


\"At least twelve were born since they've been here but that number is going up,\" said Smeja. 

More chinchillas also means more room is needed so they can be separated by sex.  

\"Thankfully we've been able to house the chinchillas in rooms that haven't normally housed animals permanently. We've got this hallway, we've got animals in storerooms, that kind of thing,\" said Smeja. 

Four rooms are filled to the brim with chinchillas. The animals have been split up. One room in particular is filled with only female chinchillas, all of whom could potentially reproduce.

\"Gestation period for them is over 100 days. So the longer they're here the more babies we could have. We dont know how many were pregnant when they came in. There will be no more babies on our watch,\" said Smeja. 

And there's no end in sight right now. The owners could still be charged and the animals can't be adopted out until the owners release them to the shelter or pay the bill and take them home. 

\"If and when the chinchillas are released to us for adoption we have a waiting list here at the shelter that is somewhere between 80-100 people,\" said Smeja. 

Meanwhile, you can still help out with the expenses by donating money or supplies. You can find a link to their Amazon wish list here:

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