Chinchillas are amazing pets. They have made it to the top 10 best small pets, which means people love chinchillas. I love small pets too. However, before you proceed to get one, you must take some time to learn about them. Are chinchillas friendly? Are they noisy or expensive to maintain?
Well, once you bring a pet home, you are responsible for them. You must ensure that they are well fed and taken care of. This article will guide you to understand the behavior and character of chinchillas. If you are considering getting one, keep reading on.
Below, I am going to outline some of the facts about chinchillas that you should consider before bringing one home.
Chinchillas are friendly
These small pets are friendly and eager to socialize with humans. However, do not take it personally when your chinchilla acts numb for the first few days. Unlike most pets, it can take some time before your little furball starts playing and socializing with you.
Well, it is because changing homes or ownership can be pretty scary for them. The key is to provide comfort and care for your chinchilla during this time.
Once he gets used to you, and members in your family, they become friendly. They will need your attention by playing with you among other social interactions.
Chinchillas can live for long
If you are going to get a chinchilla, you must know that they have a long lifespan. A healthy and happy chinchilla can live up to 20 years.
Well, as you can see, chinchillas are not pets you can easily get rid of. You must be prepared to commit to taking care of your small pet for a number of years.
However, I can promise you that you will not regret this decision. Chinchillas are quiet, sociable and pretty much perfect for apartments.
Chinchillas can get nippy when scared
Chinchillas are probably the most fearful pets. They are always prepared to respond to danger and unexpected situations. This can be explained given that chinchillas are small animals in the wild. And because they are prey in the jungle, they have defense mechanisms against predators.
Female chinchillas are in the habit of spraying urine when scared. It is often a sign that you should keep away from her. You can observe this for the first few days in your home. Your chinchillas are probably scared that she does not know you and everything is strange for a while.
If you are holding your chinchilla inappropriately, he can nip at your hands. It happens mostly with children who might not know how to properly handle a chinchilla.
If a chinchilla feels scared when you are holding him, he could also shed fur to slip out of your hands. Well, this can be pretty concerning if you have never experienced it. It is a defense mechanism for your chinchilla.
Note that the hair will grow back as fast, and naturally. You should not attempt any first aid or remedies as he is not in pain. To avoid such instances, I will outline how to handle a chinchilla later in this article.
Chinchillas are crepuscular
Now, this is something every chinchilla owner must be aware of this fact. Chinchillas will sleep through the day but be most active in early mornings and evenings. Well, if you are easily distracted when asleep, getting a chinchilla might be too much.
However, it all depends on where you place his cage. They are not exactly vocal but they can make a lot of commotion when running up and down their cage. For chinchillas with a flying wheel, understand that your adorable chinchilla might play with it all night.
While chinchillas are not exactly noisy, they are mostly active at night. This can also be explained by their life in the wild. As I mentioned earlier, these pets are prey in the wild. They would wake up to hunt in the evenings and early morning, avoiding predators.
Note that it is extremely difficult to change their biological schedule.
Chinchillas dislike cuddling
When getting a pet, I often think about how amazing it would be to cuddle up with them. Well, in the case you are looking for a pet you can cuddle, chinchillas might not be your perfect choice. Well, as I mentioned above, chinchillas are sensitive to touch.
Well, I am not saying that it is completely impossible to cuddle with your chinchilla. Once you have established strong trust and bond with your chinchilla, you could try holding him. However, he has to want to be held as chinchillas do not like unwelcome touch.
You can try bonding with your chinchilla through play, feeding time and generally taking care of him.
Chinchillas dislike change
Chinchillas are great pets and as with most pets, they dislike change. It takes some time before a chinchilla adapts to change. While they might not act up when there is a slight change, you can observe a change in behavior. He might stop eating or socializing as before which explains why they are reluctant to accept new owners and homes.
Keep the routines the same throughout and you will keep your chinchilla happy.
Given the above factors, are you still with the idea of getting a chinchilla? Well, I would advise you to go right ahead and adopt one. I am sure you are wondering how good of pets chinchillas are. Well, apart from being friendly and sociable, chinchillas make great companions.
Can I train my chinchilla?
You would be surprised at your chinchilla’s intelligence. They are curious and very easy to train. In fact, your chinchilla will memorize his name several times. If you keep saying it when playing or feeding him, he will respond to it the next time.
Not only can he memorize his name but you can teach him a number of tricks. For instance, if he trusts you enough to come to you, he can rest on your shoulder and you can now pet him. However, it is important to observe your chinchilla’s behavior. If anything seems too uncomfortable, give him some time.
I suggest you play or set training sessions at the same time every day. They are very good at adapting to a routine.
And also, you can let your chinchilla out of his cage. You must get rid of all the small items that he can chew or swallow.
Are chinchillas good pets?
This is a question I have heard from most people considering to adopt chinchillas as pets. I have outlined most of what to expect from a chinchilla. It all goes back to the kind of relationship you develop with him.
Chinchillas are great pets, even for children. However, I must say that you should always supervise your child playing with your chinchilla. I mean, children can be very rough when handling pets. As I have discussed above, chinchillas can nip when mishandled.
At the same time, teach children how to play with chinchillas. Because these pets are rarely aggressive, they can make great friends with your kid.
Are chinchillas expensive to keep?
One of the other great qualities of chinchillas is that they are inexpensive to keep. Well, when talking about the costs to care for a pet, we mostly speak of the cost of feeds. However, chinchillas eat grass hay supplemented with pellets.
Well, this is not only inexpensive but very easy to feed to your chinchilla. You will only have to place the hay in his food bowl on the side of his cage.
You can always order chinchilla pellets and hay online if you are worried about how to access chinchilla food.
Besides, chinchillas are extremely clean animals. A chinchilla will not need to be immersed in water as they take dust baths. Also, chinchillas do not have even the slightest odor which makes it easy to maintain. Well, guess, what you do not have to buy pet shampoos and other bathing products.
The only thing you will need is getting good quality dust for your chinchilla to the bath. Besides, they will bath themselves and you get to watch them. I can tell you for a fact that it is fun to watch.
Are chinchillas aggressive?
Chinchillas are friendly pets and will rarely exhibit signs of aggression. However, due to different circumstances, chinchillas can bite, nip, and even use angry vocalizations such as hissing. If you have two chinchillas, one could act aggressively to the other. It could be that they do not have enough space to play.
However, sometimes your chinchilla might start getting aggressive when they are under-exercised. They can be small pets but they are incredibly energetic. Failure to provide enough exercise could result in an overly energetic chinchilla that can result in aggressive behavior.
Well, if your chinchilla has been aggressive lately, consider getting a larger cage. You can always order a larger and more comfortable cage online.
Do chinchillas do well in hot weather?
No, chinchillas do better in cold temperatures than in hot weather. This means that during summer, you must be aware that hot temperatures will lead to overheating. Well, ensure that you control temperatures in your chinchilla’s room during summer.
If it is too hot, consider installing air conditioning in the room. However, during winter, he can comfortably withstand the low temperatures.
What are some of the chinchilla care necessities?
Earlier in this article, I mentioned that once we adopt our pets, we have to care for them. We take over the needs of our pets to ensure that they are happy. Well, below is a list of some of the things you are going to need when adopting a chinchilla;
What I have done for you to save time I have hand-picked all items from Amazon. Every item is recommended with price and quality in mind. (Just click on the Images)
Well, assuming you have a pet carrier to bring your chinchilla home, you need a cage for him. Purchase wire cage as opposed to a plastic cage as chinchillas can chew through plastic items.
The cage must be spacious enough to leave room for play after installing his beddings. You will need to change his beddings quite often to keep the cage clean.
You can use wood shavings as litter on the floor of the cage. Wires can be quite harsh on your chinchilla’s feet.
You should choose a quiet, darker place to keep your chinchilla’s cage. You must avoid all the areas with direct sunlight. Remember that high temperatures could lead to overheating. Besides, your chinchilla will spend most of his day asleep.
Your chinchilla will need access to drinking water to remain hydrated. However, when purchasing a chinchilla water bottle, choose the glass bottles. As I have mentioned multiple times above, chinchillas can chew through plastic and rubber item.
Keep the water bottles clean and with water at all times.
You must also purchase a food bowl for your chinchilla. Purchase one that you can attach to the side of his cage. This way, you will keep your chinchilla from urinating, sleeping or tipping over the bowl.
Purchase chinchilla toys
As we have already established, chinchillas are playful and friendly. Once your chinchilla gets used and trusts you, he will constantly seek to play. However, because of his crepuscular cycle, you might not be able to provide play all the time.
Well, there are many types of chinchilla toys in pet stores. Be careful to avoid purchasing rubber or plastic toys. Smaller toys might put your chinchilla in the danger of an intestinal blockage. Thus, go for bigger and sturdy toys instead.
Purchase chew toys as chinchillas love chewing. He will need something to distract him from trying to chew on wires and items that could hurt him.
Some of the toys that may suit a chinchilla might include a flying saucer wheel, and sturdy balls. The key is to keep your chinchilla as occupied and exercised as possible.
Chinchillas will need to bath in dust every two weeks. It leaves their skin and coats healthy. Therefore, purchase high-quality dust and box for your chinchilla. Well, you can always place your order and get your preferred chinchilla dust online.
Abstain from giving your chinchilla a bath by dipping him in water. These pets are not prone to pest infestations. Thus, the dust bath will solve all the grooming issues. The best thing about owning a chinchilla is that these pets are that they do not have any odor.
And cleaning after a chinchilla is not such a difficult task.
Chinchillas are among the best pets for both adults and children. They get along well with both people and other chinchillas. Chinchillas are friendly and always up for social interaction with others. However, it depends on how well you take care of your chinchilla.
During the first few days, it can be difficult to socialize with your chinchilla. He can seem a little isolated but that is because he has recently changed homes. It can take a few days before he adapts to the changes and then you will have a happy pet.
The purpose of this article is to not only analyze chinchilla temperament but to also help you decide if getting one is a good idea. Well, you must take all these factors into consideration before you bring your chinchilla home.
Does your chinchilla socialize with you and others?