June 6, 2022 by Umair Shahid
Nobody can deny the fact that chinchillas are the cutest and friendliest animals to keep as pets. They are full of fluffiness and beauty with a very docile nature. Getting a chinchilla to your home brings the joy of playing with a furry and sensitive angle. Chinchillas are native to the Andes Mountains and have a very simple lifestyle in the wild.
If you’re someone who is amazed by the cuteness of a chinchilla and wants to adopt him or her, you’re doing the right decision. Chinchillas are a great alternative to a pet rodent due to their affectionate and socially positive behavior. The domestic and wild chinchillas are a little different in nature, so you must not get confused while choosing one for adoption.
Chinchillas are quiet, and small animals in my opinion, but they are highly adaptive and intelligent. These natural characteristics help them to survive in the wild and sustain their population. Domestic chinchillas are more friendly and have a very calm nature with the same intelligence and adaptability.
What’s Special About Chinchillas?
Living at a height of 15,00 to 3,000 meters above sea level, chinchillas can withstand harsh and cold temperatures. These furry animals have a very low-quality diet requirement, including hay and chinchilla pellets. Chinchillas have the densest fur in animals having 80 to 90 hairs per follicle.
Besides, chinchillas are crepuscular animals, meaning they are most active during the time of dawn and dusk. If you work throughout the day and have time in the evening, this is the pet you need. These sociable animals have a very trustworthy and curious nature. The long hind limbs help them to jump up to 6 feet and they love to wander around the house and home.
The dense fur with a very soft shiny coat of chinchilla is the reason for their illegal hunting in the past times. Now, the wild chinchillas are protected and their poaching is illegal in almost all the countries of the world.
Domestic Vs. Wild Chinchillas
Let’s talk about a common ambiguity in choosing your chinchilla for adoption. It is worth noting that there is a major difference between wild and domestic chinchillas. In terms of size and color variation, domestic chinchillas are much larger and with a more colorful appearance than wild chinchillas.
You must pay special attention, as domestic chinchillas are the only type you can legally keep as pets. The female chinchillas are considerably bigger in size than males and weigh around 800 grams. Existing in the original grey color, now they are in a hair coat of a vast color spectrum. However, if you’re planning to adopt one, be sure it is domestic and is of good temperament.
Pre-requisites Before Adopting a Chinchilla
Well, now that you’ve finally decided to adopt a pet chinchilla, there are certain things that need to be cleared and checked. Be sure to look for shelters and adoption services that are authentic so you don’t have to face any troublesome charges. Make sure you have ample space at your home for your chinchilla to roam around and play.
It is always ideal to look for a healthy chinchilla when you’re going to adopt one. Some of the signs that portray the healthy nature of your pet include healthy skin, ideal weight, and normal droppings. Besides, look for a chinchilla with clear shiny eyes, docile temperament, and correctly aligned teeth.
Experts recommend going through the detailed information regarding the feeding and lifestyle of chinchillas. They are easy to keep, but you need to follow a regular routine of maintaining the health of your pet. Get a cage for your chinchilla with a comfortable, commercially available bedding material.
Chinchillas are quite sensitive and fragile animals, and they need as much less disturbance as possible. You must take ample care if you have other pets in your homes such as dogs and cats. These animals can harm your furry friend, leading to a serious injury and discomfort for your chinchilla.
Chinchilla’s Feeding Needs
Feeding management is the domain you must focus on while planning and after adopting a chinchilla. The digestive system of chinchillas is very sensitive to dietary changes and can easily get disturbed by irregular feeding habits. As a veterinarian, I suggest you let your chinchilla stay on a high-fiber diet such as hay.
There are many top-notch quality pellets available for your chinchilla that are formulated on the basis of his or her dietary needs. They cannot eat and digest high moisture and sugar foods such as fruits, as it will lead to an upset stomach. Make sure the ad-libitum availability of water is maintained.
Don’t offer them high carbohydrate diets as this may consequently lead to obesity and health issues. Many foods such as nuts, cereals, potatoes, and other starchy foods are harmful to the gut health of chinchilla and should be avoided at all costs. However, fruits such as apples can be given as occasional treats with great precautions.
Housing Requirements for Chinchilla
Chinchillas are active and playful animals who need a lot of space to run, jump and hide. Taking these factors into consideration can save you a lot of trouble in choosing the best cage for your furry pet. Exotic animal experts recommend getting a multi-level cage that offers a lot of room for jumping and climbing.
The bedding of the chinchilla’s cage is also of utmost importance, as it will provide a comfortable cushion for his or her feet. I suggest you get wood shavings or anything similar, as these materials are inert, absorbent, and don’t cause any harmful effects on chinchilla’s health. The cage must be placed at a place with a temperature below 80-degree Fahrenheit, as chinchillas are very prone to heat stress.
Other cage and space requirements you must look after are the provision of toys and something for your chinchilla’s exercise. A rotating wheel is an ideal option, as it provides a healthy and playful activity. Provide some chewable materials and toys to maintain the oral hygiene of the chinchilla.
Adopting a pet chinchilla is an important and blissful decision you can make in your life. Acknowledging the basic adoption and petting requirements helps you in providing the best care for your chinchilla. If you’re confused about where to get this friendly rodent for adoption, look for the exotic animal shelters and rescue services in your area.
With that being said, I wish you the best of luck with letting a beautiful and friendly pet in your life. Make sure you take great care of your chinchilla by taking all the important management points into consideration. Provide your chinchilla the love and compassion he or she deserves and get ready to give your pet the relaxing belly cuddles.
Is a chinchilla good for adoption as a pet?
Chinchillas are by far the most docile and friendly pets you can adopt. They have an excellent ability to adapt to new environments. You’ll definitely feel blessed to have a chinchilla as your family member because of its friendly and cute nature.
Can I adopt a chinchilla from a breeder?
In contrast to the pet stores and shelters, chinchilla breeders show special attention to the overall health of chinchillas. You can contact a well-respected breeder in your area or visit their place for buying and adoption.
Should I adopt a baby or an adult chinchilla?
There are a variety of breeders and shelters that can also offer baby chinchillas for adoption. It is worth mentioning that you should adopt a chinchilla at a young age if you want to litter train him or her.
Should I adopt a single chinchilla or a pair?
It is an ideal option to adopt a pair of chinchillas if you don’t have much time to interact with your pet in the evening. However, chinchillas don’t really need a partner and can live happily alone. Having another chinchilla is totally your personal preference and also depends on the temperament of your existing chinchilla.
I am a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and have a keen interest in animal health care. Working as a veterinary content writer, I intend to stay with professional approach in producing quality content. I like research-based reading and currently seeking my veterinary profession. My hobbies are travelling to exotic places and observing nature to the fullest.