plural noun: kinkajous
What is a Kinkajou?
Kinkajous (Potosflavus) also known as “Honey Bears” are nocturnal, arboreal and have prehensile tails.They are mammals native to the tropical rain forests of Central and South America. Although they resemble and sometimes act like monkeys they are not related to primates. They are actually related to the Raccoon, Coatimundi, Red Panda, Ringtail Cats, and other animals in the Procyonidae family. Adult Kinkajous can weigh between 3 and 8 lbs. Their life span can be up to 28 years in captivity.
Genus: Geoffroy Saint
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Common questions about Kinkajous
EIGHT WEEKS OLD TO 4 MONTHS: Mix one teaspoon baby rice cereal with a one to two inch slice of banana mashed up well and add about 30 ml. of prepared Esbilac puppy milk . Sometimes a small amount of warm water is needed if the mixture is too thick. This mixture should be slightly warm, but not hot. Test it before you burn your baby, please! Let them eat as much as they want. Some waste is normal, so don’t panic if they don’t eat all of it. If they want more as they grow you can increase the amount of each ingredient slowly. I hand feed this formula mixture in a shallow dish 3 to 4 times daily. Your baby will lick it up! I don’t use a bottle because baby kinkajous have such a powerful need to suck that it is easy for them to aspirate.
3 MONTHS TO ADULT: Early on I start adding small pieces of fruit like bananas, papaya, melons, and apple sauce in an addition bowl, or I offer it by hand. Not too much at first and try only giving one type of food at a time. Offering too many choices seems to overwhelm them or turn them off of trying them. They will take to banana pretty easily, so you might have to work a little harder to get them to try new things if you don’t start working with their diet early on. Let them get used to one type of food and then move to the next. I am sorry to say that you might have some wasted food in the beginning, but that’s normal. As time moves on I let them wean themselves off of the formula. They usually do so around four to six months. They will slowly start eating more of the fresh stuff and less formula. At this time it’s time to start adding the hard stuff! To get them used to eating their dry foods soften them with liquids. Puppy milk, baby foods, apple juice or apple sauce is what I use. They will always enjoy this, but after they are eating well only use the softened biscuits as a treat. It’s best to make sure they have a separate bowl of dry foods in their enclosure at all times. Adults eat 1 to 2 cups of the fresh stuff daily. As they are nocturnal and come out looking for food late in the day I offer the fresh stuff to them in the early evening so that is stays fresh (adults).
FRUITS: Fruits I use on a regular basis are bananas, papayas, melons, and apples, but feel free to try new things. I do it all the time. I don’t ever use strawberries. The reason for this is kinkajous are prone to have strawberry allergies. Not all do, but it’s not worth it to me to experiment with my babies.
VEGETABLES: Veggies I use on a regular basis are fresh carrots, sweet potatoes, green beans and I often buy bags of frozen mixed veggies to add a few different things to the mix.
DRY FOODS: Having tried a few different types I have settled on a mixture of Monkey Biscuits. I have more than one kinkajou so this is easy for me. You might need to choose one biscuit and some Monkey Crunch. I use a combination of Mazuri products. The Maintenance Biscuit, the banana flavored Growth and Reproduction Biscuit and Monkey Crunch. I also add a tiny handful of dry Iam’s lamb and rice dog food in the bowl (not too much) as it helps add protein to their diet.
PROTIENS: We did not talk about this much because they don’t need much. I do add a small amount of cooked egg or boiled chicken once or twice a week. They won’t eat much but it’s good to get them to eat some protein now and then.
OTHER FOODS: Kinkajous are scavengers in the wild. Older pet kinkajous can be little garbage cans when it comes to food, so don’t let your baby get fat. It’s not healthy. With that said just like any kid, if they see you eating or drinking it, they will want some. Most of the time it’s okay for them to have a bite on a separate plate. (Disclaimer: Don’t eat after any animals or let them lick you in the mouth and always wash your hands before and after handling any animals. These days you have to write disclaimers.) Other foods they enjoy are canned baby foods, baby snack biscuits and cereal treats, yogurt (I give a spoonful now and then, not too much. Kinkajous are lactose intolerant.), Fig Newtons, healthy cereals, and honey or anything sweet. Please go easy on the sweet stuff. They take to processed sugar like a junkie takes to drugs. I give mine only one Fig Newton a day and sometimes I put some honey nut cheerios in my pockets and let him search for them. Use these things as training aids and treats more than just added to the feed dish.
WHAT NOT TO FEED: I hope you’re smart enough to know this, but if you not here goes. NO ALCOHOL, CAFFEINE, TOBACCO PRODUCTS, ONIONS OR DIET SUGARFREE PRODUCTS OF ANY KIND. Remember, some Kinkajous have strawberry allergies so I don’t recommend those either.
I hope you found this helpful. I may edit and change things in the future as I try new things. There are always more things to learn, and there are always different ways to do things. This is what I do and it has worked for me.
Enclosures cost $500 on up depending on what you choose.
Water bottles or heavy bottom dishes ( most parrot cages come with locking stainless steel bowls but you can add another $10-20 for those if you buy extras or use bottles for water (they work well for lease mess and spillage in cages)
Food is priced at the grocery stores but I would budget $10 to $15 for some fresh stuff each week and most of the Muzuri feeds are priced between $20 and $40 per 25 lbs. That does last for a while.
Toys: $1plus, I use a variety of infant/toddler safe fisher prices toys for human kiddos. I buy them at garage sales and second hand stores often for pennies on the dollar. (don’t forget to sanitize and wash them before giving them to your baby) Never give rubber dog chew toys they will eat them and it will cause blockage and a huge vet bill or death.