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How to Feed a Chipmunk

| Updated September 26, 2017

Things You'll Need

  • Nuts

  • Seeds

  • Grains

  • Fruits

  • Pedialyte

  • Esbilac

  • 1cc oral syringe

Feeding a chipmunk is a rewarding experience whether it is a pet chipmunk or a wild one that frequently visits the areas around your home. Chipmunks have diets similar to that of hamsters. They eat a variety of dry foods, including fruits and vegetables. Chipmunks are natural hoarders, which is why they store food in their cheeks during mealtimes, but overfeeding them can be potentially dangerous to their health.

Choose the right foods to feed the chipmunk. They enjoy a variety of foods such as nuts, seeds, grains, fruits and vegetables. Although chipmunks like sunflower seeds and peanuts, you want to limit the amount you feed them because they are high in calories and the chipmunk may overindulge and become ill. Choose healthy foods like grapes, cut-up apples, pieces of avocado, pine nuts, walnuts, almonds, oats and dry raisins.

Put pieces of your chipmunk's food in a small dish in a cage if you have a pet chipmunk at home. The chipmunk will eat straight from the dish when hungry and possibly save food for later in its cheeks. Chipmunks like to bury their food, so layer stuffing in the bottom of the cage so the chipmunk has a place to keep the food. Alternate between different types of food such as fruit, nuts and seeds to give a variety.

Slowly leave food out and approach a wild chipmunk to get it to eat from your hands. The chipmunk will most likely run from you if you approach too quickly. Start by placing a handful of seeds or nuts near where you see it frequent and go a good distance away until it sees the food, but close enough for it to see you. When the food is gone, wait a few hours and do the same thing, only stand a few feet closer than before. Keep doing this for a few days until you are close enough to hold out your hand. The chipmunk will slowly begin to trust you as you feed it, and it will begin to eat out for your hand.

Feed a baby orphaned chipmunk nutrients that will keep it hydrated and healthy until it grows big enough to be put back in the wild or to keep as a family pet. For the first day, you want to hydrate it by giving Pedialyte every two hours. After that first day, you can give it Esbilac, which is a puppy milk replacer. Both of these types of nutrients may be fed to the chipmunk by holding it in a towel, covering its eyes and letting it suck the food from a 1cc oral syringe. The amount you feed the chipmunk will depend on the age. For instance, at 1 to 2 weeks old, the chipmunk will need 1 to 2ml every three hours, while a chipmunk that is 3 to 4 weeks old will need 3 to 4ml and small pieces of fruit every four hours.


  • When feeding a baby chipmunk, watch for signs of overfeeding formula. If the chipmunk begins to sneeze, stop feeding it and lightly pat his back until he relaxes.