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All About Owning a Chinchilla

If you are thinking of getting a Chinchilla as a pet, learn as much as you can about the care involved with your new Chinchilla.

Your new Chinchilla will need an appropriate cage to be housed in. You should have a cage large enough for your Chinchilla to run around in. If you have more than one Chinchilla, you may want to consider purchasing a two-story cage for it or you should consider the cost to build a home for your chinchilla on your own. 

For bedding, if you purchase a cage that has a pan on the bottom, you will want to use shavings as bedding for your Chinchilla, do not use cedar shaving for a Chinchilla. If you decide to get a cage with a wire mesh bottom, you will need to be extremely careful about the size of the mesh. It will need to be no larger than ½ inch x ½ inch. This is so that your Chinchillas foot cannot get caught in the cage. If a Chinchilla’s foot gets caught in the cage they can break their leg, or even chew it off trying to free themselves. Provide your Chinchilla with plenty of space that it can lay on which doesn’t have mesh, such as a wood bottomed tunnel, or pieces of cloth or wood. You will need to change the wood occasionally for cleanliness reasons. The Chinchilla will also appreciate a place where it can go for some privacy.

As with most rodents, Chinchillas need to wear their teeth down by gnawing on something. Provide your Chinchilla with items to chew on, such as wood blocks or sticks (the kind sold in pet stores), or pumice blocks.

Make sure that your Chinchilla has fresh water available to it at all times! You will want to do this by hanging a large rodent or rabbit water bottle in your Chinchillas cage. Periodically check the water bottle to make sure it is not clogged and change the water, washing the bottle often. Make sure your bottle doesn’t have a constant drip; if it does then you will need to replace it. A constant drip will cause your Chinchillas cage to become unlivable.

You will want to feed your Chinchilla a high quality, fresh pellet food, if you cannot find Chinchilla pellets, rabbit or guinea pig pellets will do. Also, give them hay and alfalfa. You can give your Chinchilla some raisins or cranberries, but be sure to only do this once in a while, or your Chinchilla may end up with diarrhea.

Do not have your Chinchilla in a hot environment. Your Chinchilla needs to be kept in a cooler environment that is less than 75 degrees.

David Scott is the head writer at TRI PR. He better part of his college life as a journalist for the college magazine. He still writes and he loves it.