I met Brittany and her boyfriend in 2010 at a metaphysical fair in Colorado Springs. Brittany had a chinchilla named Morgan, one of several chinchillas that she loved and cared for. Brittany said that Morgan seemed quite happy when she first brought him home, but in time he started to become very aggressive.
When I connected to Morgan, the first impression I had was that he was very grumpy. There was really no other way to describe the feeling I got from him! When I told Brittany this, she laughed and completely agreed that “grumpy” was a perfect description of Morgan.
Morgan couldn’t wait to tell me about his problems and complaints. He was angry with Brittany for not understanding what he liked and didn’t like. To Morgan, it was obvious what the problems were and he felt he was being very clear with Brittany. He couldn’t understand why she hadn’t changed things to his liking. I explained that although Morgan felt he was being clear, Brittany truly didn’t understand what was wrong — although she did know something was wrong — which was why she asked me to talk to him. Brittany wanted Morgan to be happy, not angry. Hearing this helped Morgan calm down a bit, but he still had a lot to say!
Morgan showed me that he didn’t like the location of his cage. To him, the cage was in a dark place and lacked air circulation. He didn’t want a cold area or direct sun, but he wanted his cage in a brighter place. From what Morgan showed me, it seemed like the room his cage was in was below ground level. Brittany confirmed that Morgan’s cage was in a room below ground level — her bedroom — but what Morgan said about the room being dark didn’t make sense to Brittany. I checked with Morgan again, to be sure he meant the room seemed dark to him and he confirmed this again — very clearly — the room was dark and he wanted more sunlight.
Suddenly understanding dawned on Brittany! She realized that she had purchased blackout curtains for her room, which she kept closed all the time. No wonder Morgan said the room was dark! I asked Morgan what kind of room he’d prefer. He showed me a different room that had windows that would let in sunlight. My impression was that this was a room in the house that he’d been in before. When I told Brittany about the room Morgan described, she knew exactly which room he meant — the room next to hers, which is where Morgan’s cage was when he first came to live with Brittany. Brittany said that room had windows that provided indirect sunlight and ventilation. Brittany said she would move Morgan’s cage into that room as soon as she got home, if that would make him happy.
Brittany wanted to know why Morgan wouldn’t let her pick him up. Morgan showed me that when Brittany picked him up, she would put her hands behind his front legs/shoulders and lift him up — this squeezed his ribs, which he didn’t like at all. I asked him if he could show me a better way to pick him up. Morgan showed me that he preferred to be “scooped up” — one hand under his belly and the other under his hind quarters. When I told Brittany this, her boyfriend started laughing. He said that he always picked Morgan up using the “scoop” method and Morgan never fussed with him. Brittany agreed to try to use the “scoop” method in the future when she picked up Morgan.
Morgan did say that he was happy with some things. He showed me that he liked the running wheel in his cage and the “orange things” Brittany gave him now and then. Brittany knew exactly what the “orange things” were — the special treat of papaya pieces that she gave Morgan.
We checked in with Morgan about nine months later to see how he was doing. Morgan said he was much happier because Brittany had made the changes he requested. Brittany said she had been using the “scoop” method to pick Morgan up and he was being much more cooperative about letting her pick him up.
Brittany said that she was “grateful for the help in figuring out what was going on with Morgan so I could make him happy, just as he was when I first adopted him.”
Morgan told me that Brittany takes good care of all the chinchillas. But he showed me he still watches Brittany to be sure that she doesn’t do anything he doesn’t like. Brittany confirmed that Morgan is always “right there”, keeping an eye on everything.
I’ve talked to Brittany’s chinchillas and two cats regularly since our first meeting at the fair. Some the chinchillas have crossed to Spirit, but Morgan is still going strong. A bit less grumpy, but still keeping an eye on things. Brittany is devoted to her beloved furry ones and makes sure to keep on top of any issues that arise through animal communication whenever needed.
“Sky has helped me understand all of my rescued chinchillas so that I’m able to make them feel more comfortable and happy. In return they appreciate me more and it makes caring for them a lot easier. Sky is amazing, I’m so happy to have met her. Thank you, Sky, for everything you do – you feel like family.” — Brittany M, CO.
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