Small Mammals

GUINEA PIGS, CHINCHILLAS, GERBILS, HAMSTERS, SQUIRRELS, HEDGEHOGS, PETAURS, RATS AND MICE.
Rodents belong to the order of placental mammals. They have sharp incisors that they use to gnaw on wood, pierce food and bite predators. Many feed on seeds and plants, although some have more varied diets.
They practice coprophagy as normal, and cecotrophy in some species, such as guinea pigs and chinchillas.
Small mammals are prey animals, so they tend to hide signs of illness until they can no longer do so (which is why they often arrive at the practice in a precarious situation) as the natural response to potential predators will be stress and flight.
As these animals spend most of their time in cages or other enclosures, it is very important to monitor the characteristics of their housing to avoid the development of pathologies and to enhance their welfare.
The environment can be enriched by using shavings or strips of paper as a substrate for them to dig or to hide food or to build a nest, depending on the species. Exercise wheels and wooden or edible materials can also be added to encourage them to gnaw and wear down the teeth. Trunks, platforms and branches are important in arboreal species (petaurs) or those that can climb (Korean squirrels, rats), and those that inhabit rocky areas (chinchilla, degu).
As far as nutritional enrichment is concerned, you can offer food at different points in the cage and hide it on the floor as this stimulates foraging, as well as offering a varied diet (not only feed) with hay and vegetables.