Last Modified

June 6, 2022 by Umair Shahid

Chinchillas are some of the cutest rodents you can have as pets. Belonging to one of the most intelligent species, chinchillas have a very keen ability to observe and adapt to new habits and environments.

In the wild, they are crepuscular and therefore well-adapted to dawn and dusk schedules. It is fairly possible to adapt your domestic chinchilla to the routines that make him a bit more loveable.

As an exotic animal veterinarian, I’ve seen owners successfully litter trained their chinchillas. Many people ask me about the effective methods of potty training for chinchillas.

Although it is fairly common for them to defecate outside and around the cage, it is very unlikely that they get litter trained for pooping. 

However, chinchillas can be easily litter trained for urination after consistent routine training. With a little patience and effort, you can litter train your chinchillas but there is one valuable condition and suggestion to my answer. The litter training of your chinchilla must be started at a young age.

If you ask any chinchilla owner why you want to litter train this furry animal, they will tell you a common answer.

Chinchillas create a lot of waste either in the form of feces or urine. They direly need to get litter trained at an early age which is possible if you know how to do it. 

How to Litter Train a Chinchilla

Benefits of Litter Training a Chinchilla

If your chinchilla is willing to adapt to his litter training in a shorter time interval, you’re good to go. Litter training is essential as chinchillas are rodents that have frequently ‘eat and repeat, cycle. They have a very abrupt pattern and frequently defecate and urinate in the house and around cages. 

If you’re someone who loves your pet but doesn’t want him to ruin your favorite floor rugs, you must litter train him. This enables you to have a much-reduced mess and hassle-free management of your beloved chinchilla. A couple of different methods can be used and are tested by many chinchilla owners. 

Nevertheless, litter training provides you and your chinchilla the benefit of maintaining cleanliness around the house and the cage. Making your furry pet use the litter pan is an ideal way of keeping your surroundings clean and your pet healthy. However, chinchillas can only be litter trained for urination. It is very unlikely that they poop in litter boxes.

Litter Training Requirements for Chinchillas

So, you’ve decided to set your chinchilla’s litter destination to a more managing place. Now you need to understand some important requirements.

In my opinion, look for a litter pan that is ideal and fits easily in the cage with minimal effort. The size should be such that it is easily removable and doesn’t cause hindrance in the activity of your chinchilla.

As a veterinarian, I recommend you always go for soft cage bedding such as fleece liners. They are not only comfortable but can be reused and easier to clean within no time. Adding smooth and comfortable bedding to your pet’s cage provides additional benefits that you’ll see with time.

The last thing that is the core of litter training is the addition of top-notch quality litter in the litter pan. This is something you should focus on because chinchillas are quite selective in terms of urination and defecation. After completing these requirements, you are now ready to follow the steps of litter training for a chinchilla.

Essential Steps to Litter Train Your Chinchilla

As I’ve mentioned earlier, it is quite difficult for a chinchilla to get litter trained for defecation. However, you can make him do the urination in the litter box you’ve set up. The first and foremost step is to ensure the litter box is properly placed inside the cage and there is no food or water nearby.

The goal is to find a place where your chinchilla frequently urinates. Chinchillas have a habit of doing the urination at the same spot by sensing the smell of already present urine.

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The clear reason why potty training is undoable is that chinchilla’s poop has no smell. Locating the spot is fairly easy as you can find the shavings part which is soaked in urine all the time in the cage.

The second step is the most important one as the entire litter training depends on this. You need to separate the urine-soaked shavings and place them in the newly placed litter pan. Consequently, the smell creates a sense of urination place for your chinchilla as he or she starts recognizing it. 

However, chinchillas are quite routine followers and they may not urinate in the pan initially and start urinating in the remaining shavings instead.

What you need to do now is to again pick up the soaked shavings and place them in the litter pan again for some days. This will allow the chinchilla to associate the pan with his or her urination spot.

The third step is to keep cleaning the bedding of the cage, as it is also very important to maintain hygienic conditions for your chinchilla. The cleaning also includes the sides of the cage, the wood shavings, and the litter pan itself.

You must ensure your chinchilla is following his routine of going out of the cage for playing and dust bathing. Simply clean the cage and again place a small number of urine-soaked shavings in the litter pan.

One thing I recommend is to not give up. It may take weeks or even months to get your chinchilla trained enough to do urine in the litter pan.

Your efforts will start bringing fruits as your beloved chinchilla start preferring to use a litter pan as his or her urination spot. The age of the chinchilla is an important factor as younger chinchillas adapt to litter training far better and quicker.

The only factor you need to make sure of while planning to litter train your chinchilla is to start early. The consistency and discipline will get you and your chinchilla through the litter training process fairly easy with quicker results.

Keep monitoring your chinchilla’s behavior during the training process to see if your furry friend gets comfortable with the litter pan or not.


Exotic Animal Experts describe the golden key for successful litter training of a chinchilla as to start early for best results. It may take a considerable amount of time to make your pet accustomed to you and his new surroundings, but it will be a rewarding effort.

Make sure you provide your chinchilla a tasty treat every time he or she does successful urination in the litter pan. Giving treats is a great way to keep your pet motivated and encouraged. Summing everything up, I wish you the best of luck in litter training your chinchilla.


Is my chinchilla easily litter trained?

Chinchillas are intelligent rodents with a great range of adaptation to new routines. They can easily learn to urinate in the litter box if you follow litter training steps consistently.

Why does my Chinchilla keep pooping outside the cage?

In my opinion, it is fairly difficult to train a chinchilla to poop inside the litter box. They don’t follow the same pattern as they do in urination. The odorless feces pellet doesn’t allow them to create the same defecation spot as compared to urination.

Which is the best litter material for litter training my chinchilla?

There are many highly reviewed commercially available litter available at an affordable price. As a veterinarian, I suggest getting critter litter or aspen bedding as they have amazing absorptive quality.


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.

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