Buying A Chinchilla – 8 Things I Learned From A Champion Breeder

Buying A Chinchilla Champion Breeder

Buying a chinchilla is something you should never rush into. You should research what their every need are, but since you’re reading this I guess you already are?! You’re onto a great start! Now that I have my chinchilla, Jasper, I get asked this question a lot “Where can I buy a Chinchilla, and is it better to buy from a breeder?” Here is what I tell my friends:

Generally, pet stores are best avoided. I don’t like to say that though, because many wonderful pets can be purchased at pet stores. If you feel your only option is to purchase your chinchilla from a pet store, know how to judge a healthy animal before buying! In most cases, you will not be able to find out anything about the Chinchillas background should you decide to go the “pet store” route. 

Pet Store Chinchillas

When buying a chinchilla from a pet store, you don’t know if the chinchilla came from healthy parents or if they were inbred or if they have a history of health defects, etc. Also, you will pay more for a basic standard grey chinchilla and get a much lower quality of the animal. BUY FROM A REPUTABLE BREEDER who cares about the health and quality of the chinchilla they will sell to you because they want to keep a good reputation as a quality breeder. At a breeder, you will get a bigger selection of colors to choose from, much better quality, health, and price. Chinchillas rarely if ever need to go to a vet. Start with a quality animal and avoid costly vet bills and heartache.

Breeders can be great, and they can be really bad! You will make that judgment as you deal with a breeder.

[highlight background=”yellow” color=”black”]TIP: If you are buying a baby ask to see the parents. This is a good indication of what the baby will grow up to look like. [/highlight]

Chinchillas From Breeders

I would buy a chinchilla from a reputable breeder. They keep track of their breeding lines and will be able to give you a pedigree. You can see the parents of the chinchilla you want to purchase. As with any pet, you are better off to spend a little more money in the beginning to get a healthy, good quality animal than to impulse buy at a pet store and end up with heartache and expensive vet bills later. Plus if you eventually decide you want to breed a pair of chinchillas you know you have a good quality animal to produce good quality offspring. Be picky when you choose an animal. Look at pictures online so you can decide which kind you want and look the animal over carefully. Check his eyes, ears, mouth, teeth, feet, etc. Make sure they are lively and alert not lethargic. Do you want a large or small chinchilla? At chinchilla shows (yes, they have shows just like dog shows) they like the animals to be on the larger size. So, if you want to breed or show eventually than you will want to keep that in mind. Also, keep in mind that really large or overweight chinchillas can be slower to reproduce. In my experience, the larger chinchillas tend to be calmer. I do have a few smaller breeding pairs, but most of my herd are large animals. So, if you are looking to buy larger chinchillas, it’s definitely a good idea to look at the parents so you can get a better idea of how large your chinchilla will grow to be.

Research

I recommend visiting several breeders before making a purchase from just one unless of course, you feel really good about the breeder you visit. It is a good idea to see what is out there in the Chinchilla world. Almost every color you can think of is now being bred! As someone making a purchase, you will want to research your options. Most people making a Chinchilla purchase for the first time would be really surprised how many breeders are right in their own area. Until a buyer does a bit of research, they have no way of knowing where the Chinchilla breeders are!

Do your homework!

 

Things to consider

Age

Chins can live anywhere between 10-15 yrs of age, and in some cases, they can exceed 20 yrs. It is a long-term commitment, which should not be taken Buying A Chinchilla Champion Breeder-1lightly.

Sleep

Chinchillas are naturally nocturnal animals. You cannot change this. Do not try to keep your chinchillas awake all day and actually expect them to sleep all night. When you’re awake, up and about during the day and ready for a play, they will be fast asleep. Usually, from my experience, they wake early evening in between 8-10 o’clock.

Handling

Most chins do not like being picked up and held. However, they do love being tickled under their chins and staying still for treats! So, if you are expecting to get an animal that will sit with you like a cat, a chinchilla is not the animal for you.

Expense

Initially buying a chinchilla (or two), it’s cage, food and accessories are expensive. But the actual cost of keeping it (them) doesn’t in my experience usually exceed more than $10-$15 per month. BUT you must understand that if your chinchilla gets sick, the vet bill can eat a hole in your pocket.

Gnawing

Chinchillas chew everything! Please be very thorough and careful in safeguarding wires and valuable furniture from chins as they chew anything they can get ahold of. Make sure plants are removed or raised out of the way. Also, their teeth and jaws should be checked regularly for any abnormalities. Chewing proper wood and such is good for them as it is a way for them to keep their teeth filed.

Exercise

Chinchillas need daily, not excess exercise. A chinchilla should be let out for a play once a day, never longer than 20 minutes as this can cause exhaustion. Catching them can be a nightmare – you have been warned!!! But often you can get them to run into their dust bath for easy capture. Make sure that all small gaps are blocked. If in the bathroom ensure the toilet lid is closed, there is nothing dangerous in the trashcan, and monitor the temperature, so it doesn’t become too warm.

Training

If your chinchilla is bought from a reputable breeder, this should not be too difficult, as they will of handled the chinchilla since birth it should be friendly and have no nasty traits bred in. Although there is no guarantee on this. I use ‘training’ in the broad sense of the word, as chinchillas are not like cats and dogs, they will not sit, fetch and play on demand, neither will they come when you call. However, they can be trained to a certain degree.
When you first bring your chinchilla home, you should allow him/her time to settle in. After a couple of days, they should be getting familiar with their new home, sounds, and the environment. A good way to help a chinchilla settle in is to play some music (quietly) but make sure the wires/cables are not within chewing distance! Begin by feeding some treats daily (1 or 2! I know it’s tempting to feed them lots, but ultimately you could make your chin very sick).

Don’t be frightened to pick your chinchilla up after it has had time to get used to you; I know it is nerve racking the first few times, but you will get used to it. With one hand under the belly and back legs to fully support your chin, your other hand should hold the base of the tail, firmly but not tightly. Hold them close to your body because many chins are afraid of being held out in mid-air.

It is a good idea at play times (once you have chinny proofed the wires and valuables etc.!) to sit in the middle of the room and let your chin sniff, play and run all over you. When the chinchilla is ready to come to you, it will.

In my experience there is no actual time in which a chinchilla will be more friendly with you (apart from treat time!), it is a very time consuming, but an enjoyable thing. You will soon get to know all of your chinchillas’ little habits and character traits, as they will yours.

Bonding with your chinchilla is one of the best things about owning them. But remember all chins are different just like us, and it will take time to get to know them. Have fun…

Choosing A Chinchilla

When choosing where to buy your chinchilla, I would advise only buying from a reputable breeder, as pet shops and independent rescue centers often do not know the history of the animal, age.

As with most reputable breeders, you should receive a full and comprehensive pedigree (basically a family tree). You should be careful to check its teeth, ears, eyes, fur, feet, and droppings for any irregularities. Healthy teeth and fur should look like this:

  • Their feet should have no infections,  sores, or limps. It’s okay if their feet look dry or tough. Sitting in their cages will cause their feet to look like this. An animal moisturizer, should clear it right up and is available from most good pet shops.
  • A chins’ ears should not be scaly. Tiny rips and blemishes do sometimes occur if the parent and kit, mating partners or kit and kit have disagreements.
  • The eyes should in no way be runny; this is either an infection or worse, malocclusion. They should instead be clear and bright.
  • Chin droppings should look firm, not sticky or runny.
  • I recommend that you pick up the chinchilla and feel along its spine to see if it is very bony, this could be a deficiency in food or a genetic defect. This type of defect most commonly occurs when small colors are breed to small colors. The influence of a standard should always be used to maintain the quality, which any reputable breeder does.

 

Things To Consider If Your Wanting A Chinchilla As A Pet

chinchilla-as-a-pet

So why choose a chinchilla as a pet?

With such a large choice of pets around why choose a chinchilla? Maybe because you perceive them as cute and think they will not take up too much space? Below are the reasons for buying, or not buying, a chinchilla

Reasons you may not want to buy a chinchilla

  • You don’t have time to dedicate to him/her
  • You want an animal you can cuddle and pet – most chinchillas are not keen on being picked up/cuddled
  • You intend to always keep them in the cage and never let them run free (indoors) – chinchillas may be small, but they can be quite energetic, they need to exercise
  • You have small children. While this doesn’t mean you can’t have a chinchilla, they are not considered suitable as pets for children under 12
  • You don’t think you’ll have the time/patience to slowly win their trust – chinchillas can be extremely timid when they do not know you.
  • They don’t come when you call them (and they can’t fetch either).
  • They can’t scare away a burglar.
  • They poop whenever and wherever.
  • They like antique furniture (to chew).

Reasons you may want to buy a chinchilla

  • You have sufficient space for a good size cage, and you have the time to spend with them and supervise their playtimes
  • They are adorable and gentle creatures.
  • They require little attention, but they appreciate attention when shown to them.
  • They keep themselves very clean. In fact, they have no odor.
  • Their fur is so thick that fleas and ticks can’t live on them.
  • They are quiet.
  • They are easy to care for and can be left alone over a weekend.
  • Their food is very inexpensive (only about $1.20 per month).
  • They are nocturnal, so they are ready to play when you get home from work.
  • Many people who are allergic to most animals are not allergic to Chinchillas.
  • They are smart, curious and extremely entertaining.
  • Both you (and any children you have) will understand a small animals nervousness and will be gentle and patient
  • You are looking for a small pet which may enjoy a long lifespan (with some luck and your loving care)
  • You want a pet which will be happy left at home alone all day while you at work
  • You want a reasonably intelligent pet which can think for itself and has its own unique character
  • You have fallen in love with their gentle and inquisitive natures
  • You enjoy watching a chinchilla’s playful antics

Chinchillas and allergies

Most allergic reactions to animals are caused by an immune reaction to a protein found in the saliva, the dander (skin flakes), or the urine of an animal. Of these three, in the case of chinchillas, the urine is most likely to cause a reaction.

It does appear that the vast majority of people will not be allergic to chinchillas. I myself am allergic to cats, dogs, horses, and probably a few other animals as well, however, chinchillas do not appear to affect me – however, I have heard of a few people who do suffer a reaction. The hay (which the chinchillas should be supplied with), or their dust baths may also cause an allergic reaction.

Points to consider if you may be allergic:

  • Before buying a chinchilla try handling one. If you suffer an allergic reaction then you know it will affect you
  • Use chinchilla bath sand instead of dust to decrease airborne dust
  • Use hay cubes rather than loose hay to reduce airborne allergens
  • When buying loose hay, look for hay that says ‘Dust Extracted.’
  • Consider using a wire-bottomed cage with a pull out litter pan rather than have a cage with a solid bottom. Instead of the dust and allergens sitting in the bottom of the cage where the chinchillas will disturb them, they will collect below the cage where they will be undisturbed
  • Use newspaper in the cage/litter tray instead of wood shavings

 

Chinchillas and other animals

Many people who own chinchillas also keep cats or dogs and experience no problems. However, chinchillas can become stressed by other animals, for example, dogs nosing around the cage and barking at them, or cats trying to reach them. You need to judge for yourself how existing pets will react.

While it may not be a good idea to have dogs or cats in the room while a chinchilla is running free, many chinchillas will enjoy the company of a guinea pig.

Having said this, it has been known for other animals, e.g., dogs rabbits, etc. to pass on a disease they are carrying to chinchillas. While the disease may not affect the other animal, it can affect the more sensitive chinchilla. One example of such a disease is Bordatella.

 

Chinchilla Q & A

What do chins eat?
What other treats could I give my chin?
What type of cage should I get?
What is in a chinnie’s cage?
How much can I expect to spend on my first chin?
What about exercise?
Can I use a ferret leash on my chin?
What do you have against those exercise balls, anyway?
Can a chinchilla really die from being too hot?
What’s this I hear about chinnies and water?
What if my chinchilla gets abnormally dirty or gets wet by accident?

What do chins eat?
In all honesty, it depends on whom you ask. Different chin owners feed their chins different diets. A better question for me to answer is what do our chins eat! Our chins are given a constant supply of Mazuri pellets to eat throughout the day. They also have alfalfa cubes to chew on, though none of our chins seem to be particularly fond of cubed hay. In the evenings, they are given 1/2 teaspoon of rolled oats, a generous helping of timothy hay, and a treat. Treats can be a variety of things. We generally have raisins, bite-sized shredded wheat squares, horse cookies, and almonds. Once a week, each chin gets a small piece of dried papaya, rosehips, and a chewable Vitamin C. These are given in place of the traditional treats. Occasionally, we give Nutri-Cal in addition to a treat. Pregnant females are given calf manna, raspberry leaves, and an extra bottle full of cranberry juice and water.

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What other treats could I give my chin?
Dried cranberries, plain Cheerios, dried apples, prunes, a half of a fresh or frozen grape, very small pieces of fresh or dehydrated banana, unsalted peanut in the shell, uncooked pasta… The list goes on! Remember, everything in moderation.

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What type of cage should I get?
We have several different styles and sizes of cages for our chins. We started off with the wrong type of cage for our first chin. Of course, this can easily happen when you buy a cage from a pet store that has no real knowledge of what a chin needs. After doing even more research on chinchillas and cages, we quickly stopped using the original cage and got a new one. As a general rule, you should use a cage with wire flooring no bigger than ½” by ½,” if you have wire flooring at all. We recommend cages be at least 16″ (width) by 16″ (depth) by 16″ (height) for one chin. However, even bigger is definitely better! Having a slide-out pan can also save a great deal of time and prevents your chins from being in direct contact with the bedding or litter. If you are using a wire cage, it is important to provide solid surfaces for your chin to rest. This can be done with pine shelves and ledges or marble tiles, which also provide an excellent means for your chin to cool down. We recommend the  Midwest Deluxe Critter Nation Many people find that they can build their own wonderful chinchilla cages from a combination of melamine, pine, and wire. We just haven’t the time nor the energy.

Our Chinchilla Cages

 

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What is in a chinnies cage?
Once again, that depends on the chin. We use and recommend Choco Nose No Drip Top-fill water bottles, and Living World Lock and Crock Dish. Each cage has a pine box for hiding and chewing. Each of our chins has pine blocks, lava rocks, pumice, and a few other toys to chew on. Chewing is very important for a chin’s health, as it helps to keep their teeth trim. Many of our chins have their own special stuffed Booda buddy. A few of the chins have cuttlebone. They all have ledges and levels to add to the fun of their cage. Chins like to jump and climb! Bedding or litter is also necessary. We use Living World Pine Shavings, which are inexpensive, softer on chin feet, and safe.

 

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How much can I expect to spend on my first chin?
These amounts are low approximations for essential chinchilla supplies for one month. The actual price will vary depending upon the amount spent for any shipping and handling charges, buying in bulk to save future expenses, electing to purchase for different places or purchase different supplies, etc. This also does NOT include the cost of the chinchilla! You should expect to spend between $75 and $500 for a chinchilla, depending on color, background, age, etc.  Please consider adopting a chinchilla from a rescue rather than a pet store!

  • Cage
  •  Bedding
  • Water bottles
  • Food dish
  •  Food
  •  Hay
  •  Treats
  •  Toys
  • Bathhouse – Kaytee Chinchilla Bath House
  • Dust – Kaytee Chinchilla Dust

Your approximate total cost would be in the area of $181 for supplies alone.

Other items you may wish to purchase right away or could need in the future are listed below.

  • Ledges
  • Exercise Wheel
  •  Cuttlebone
  •  Nutri-Cal
  • Chewable Vitamin C
  • Calf Manna Supplement
  •  Oats
  •  Brush
  • Pine house
  • Chin-Chiller

Chinchillas are not inexpensive animals to care for. A great deal of time and money must be invested to ensure chinnies have happy, healthy homes and proper care.

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What about exercise? Can I use a ferret leash on my chin?
While we would never use a leash on a chinchilla, chins do require exercise. Large cages with enough room to run around and play will certainly help, but nothing beats having playtime! Chin-proofing a room is necessary before any chinchilla is allowed to run around. Chinchillas are chewers. This goes for baseboards, electrical wires, furniture, and on and on. We’ve found that the most convenient way to get our chins to exercise is by allowing them an hour or two to run around the bathroom every evening. Chin-proofing a bathroom is fairly easy. Clean up is much more simple when the carpet isn’t involved. Urine can easily be mopped up or wiped up, or a litter pan can be placed in your chin’s “favorite spot.”

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What do you have against those exercise balls, anyway?
We do not recommend the use of small animal exercise balls, such as the Giant Kritter Krawlers. It has been our experience that the lids on these come off easily, even when they have been securely locked into position. We have had chinchillas find their way out of these exercise balls on two separate occasions. If you must use these to give your chinchillas exercise, please use masking tape to prevent the lids from moving. Also, these Giant Kritter Krawlers can cause a chin to over-heat. Remember to take your chin out of the ball at least every fifteen minutes to prevent overheating and possible death. Another disadvantage to these exercise balls is that the chinchilla is trapped inside with droppings and urine. Feces and urine and become embedded in the chin’s coat. Regular and thorough sanitizing is necessary to prevent these exercise balls from harboring bacteria.

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Can a chinchilla really die from being too hot?
Yes. Unlike humans and most other mammals, chinchillas cannot regulate their body temperature. Ideal temperatures are between 45º and 70º F with low humidity. Cages should be kept out of direct sunlight as well as direct draft. We keep our air conditioning set at 70º F during most months, as Arizona tends to have mainly hot months and short winter periods. Another way to keep your chin cool is to freeze smooth rocks and place them in the cages for your chinnies to lean against. This acts better than a frozen water bottle, as there will not be any condensation. You can also try unglazed floor tiles, smooth marble slabs, and chimineas.

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What’s this I hear about chinnies and water?
Chinchillas and water DO NOT mix! It is fine for chins to drink water, of course, but it is not a good idea to have chinnies around an open water source. Chinchilla fur can be ruined by water. This is why we recommend the water bottles with no-drip valves. Instead of taking traditional baths, chins use special dust to keep clean. You can use chinchilla bath houses to keep the particles confined while chins are rolling around and having fun in the dust. We’ve found that these narrow entrances make a few of our chins a bit nervous. Instead, we use a clear, deep, plastic container with a lid that can be placed on top when the chinchillas are done bathing. This can be very messy, so we don’t recommend allowing chins to bathe around electrical equipment, such as televisions, computers, stereos, etc. Chins should be given access to dust baths approximately three or four times a week. You might consider placing the dust bath in the cage for a 15-minute period. We like to give them access to the dust bath during play time, as this takes place in the bathroom and, again, allows for easy clean-up. Having constant access to the dust bath can cause dry skin.

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What if my chinchilla gets abnormally dirty or gets wet by accident?
Generally, anything in chinchilla fur will come out with the help of numerous dust baths. If, for example, your chin’s fur gets sticky from Nutri-Cal or takes on the color from a dyed toy, you can use unscented baby wipes to help clean them up. Take the dirty fur between a folded baby wipe and rub. Afterward, either give the chin access to a dust bath or rub dust on the wet spots by rubbing the dust into the fur.

If your chin has gotten wet and the water has soaked through to the skin, you will need to help dry the fur to prevent fungus. Since chinchilla fur is so dense, the fur will not dry completely on its own. Use towels and a drying set on cool to prevent overheating.


My Chinchilla Schedule

Chinchillas are very much creatures of habit. Chinchillas like routines and tend to be a little more happy and relaxed in an environment where a routine has been established. Routines also help chin owners to ensure that all of their duties have been performed in regards to chinnie care. We have set up a list of our daily, weekly, and monthly schedules in regards to our chinchillas. Generally, there are one or two days a week that the chinnies do not get external exercise (playtime), but these days are determined by our plans for the week and can change from week to week.

I no longer have rescued chins. I am down to just one. This is the schedule a friend of mine gave me and has been adopted by many breeders. So if you’re going to have multiple chinchillas, this schedule may help you.

NOTE: Before putting two Chinchilla’s together, please thoroughly read Introducing Chinchillas!


DAILY


Monday

Check water levels (Morning and evening)
Playtime for Clyde, Z, and Zeus (6:30-7:30)
Playtime for Koontz (7:30-8:00)
Fresh timothy hay in every cage (8:00)
Playtime for Avra (8:00-8:30)
Playtime for Henna upstairs (8:00-8:30)
One treat per chin (8:30)
Playtime for Krishna and Radha (8:30-9:00)
Change out pellets and give 1/2 teaspoon of oats per chin (9:00)
Playtime for Sage (9:00-9:30)
Playtime for Bonnie, Hera, and Kalli (9:30-10:00)
Playtime for Harold (10:00-11:00)

Tuesday

Check water levels (Morning and evening)
Dust bathes during the first 15 minutes of each play time
Playtime for Clyde, Z, and Zeus (6:30-7:30)
Playtime for Koontz (7:30-8:00)
Fresh timothy hay in every cage (8:00)
Playtime for Avra (8:00-8:30)
Playtime for Henna upstairs (8:00-8:30)
One treat per chin (8:30)
Playtime for Krishna and Radha (8:30-9:00)
Change out pellets and give 1/2 teaspoon of oats per chin (9:00)
Playtime for Sage (9:00-9:30)
Playtime for Bonnie, Hera, and Kalli (9:30-10:00)
Playtime for Harold (10:00-11:00)

Wednesday

Check water levels (Morning and evening)
Clean all cages (Done during each chinnies’ play time)
Playtime for Clyde, Z, and Zeus (6:30-7:30)
Playtime for Koontz (7:30-8:00)
Fresh timothy hay in every cage (8:00)
Playtime for Avra (8:00-8:30)
Playtime for Henna upstairs (8:00-8:30)
One treat per chin (8:30)
Playtime for Krishna and Radha (8:30-9:00)
Change out pellets and give 1/2 teaspoon of oats per chin (9:00)
Playtime for Sage (9:00-9:30)
Playtime for Bonnie, Hera, and Kalli (9:30-10:00)
Playtime for Harold (10:00-11:00)

Thursday

Check water levels (Morning and evening)
Playtime for Clyde, Z, and Zeus (6:30-7:30)
Playtime for Koontz (7:30-8:00)
Fresh timothy hay in every cage (8:00)
Playtime for Avra (8:00-8:30)
Playtime for Henna upstairs (8:00-8:30)
One treat per chin (8:30)
Playtime for Krishna and Radha (8:30-9:00)
Change out pellets and give 1/2 teaspoon of oats per chin (9:00)
Playtime for Sage (9:00-9:30)
Playtime for Bonnie, Hera, and Kalli (9:30-10:00)
Playtime for Harold (10:00-11:00)

Friday

Check water levels (Morning and evening)
Playtime for Clyde, Z, and Zeus (6:30-7:30)
Playtime for Koontz (7:30-8:00)
Fresh timothy hay in every cage (8:00)
Playtime for Avra (8:00-8:30)
Playtime for Henna upstairs (8:00-8:30)
One treat per chin (8:30)
Playtime for Krishna and Radha (8:30-9:00)
Change out pellets and give 1/2 teaspoon of oats per chin (9:00)
Playtime for Sage (9:00-9:30)
Playtime for Bonnie, Hera, and Kalli (9:30-10:00)
Play time for Harold (10:00-11:00)

Saturday

Thoroughly clean water bottles and food bowls (Done during the day)
Check water levels (Morning and evening)
Clean all cages (Done during each chinnies’ play time)
Playtime for Clyde, Z, and Zeus (6:30-7:30)
Playtime for Koontz (7:30-8:00)
Fresh timothy hay in every cage (8:00)
Playtime for Avra (8:00-8:30)
Playtime for Henna upstairs (8:00-8:30)
One treat per chin (8:30)
Playtime for Krishna and Radha (8:30-9:00)
Change out pellets and give 1/2 teaspoon of oats per chin (9:00)
Playtime for Sage (9:00-9:30)
Playtime for Bonnie, Hera, and Kalli (9:30-10:00)
Playtime for Harold (10:00-11:00)

Sunday

Check water levels (Morning and evening)
Check weights (Done in the early evening)
Dust bathes during the first 15 minutes of each play time
Playtime for Clyde, Z, and Zeus (6:30-7:30)
Playtime for Koontz (7:30-8:00)
Fresh timothy hay in every cage (8:00)
Playtime for Avra (8:00-8:30)
Playtime for Henna upstairs (8:00-8:30)
One treat per chin (8:30)
Playtime for Krishna and Radha (8:30-9:00)
Change out pellets and give 1/2 teaspoon of oats per chin (9:00)
Playtime for Sage (9:00-9:30)
Playtime for Bonnie, Hera, and Kalli (9:30-10:00)
Playtime for Harold (10:00-11:00)

 


WEEKLY

Generally, we give our chinchillas a bit of Nutrical (about the size of a pea) once or twice a week. We also throw out alfalfa cubes and replace them with fresh cubes a few times a week, depending on temperature and humidity. Cages are cleaned at least once a week. Chew blocks are given as needed. Cuttlebone is replaced as necessary. Pine shavings are cleaned from around the cages often. Any urine on the shelves and ledges are cleaned as needed.


MONTHLY

Once a month, we take the cages outside and give them a thorough scrub down. Without the chins being inside them, of course! Once a month, stuffed toys are washed. Obviously, these toys are washed more often if they have become soiled.

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Meet My Rescued Chinchillas

 

Males

CLYDE

 


HAROLD

harold the chinchilla


Z


KRISHNA


KOONTZ


Females

Bonnie


Hera

 

hera our chinchilla as a pet


Avra

 


Radha


Kalli

Kahli our chinchilla


Background Information

Krishna & Radha

The Story:

Krishna is one of the most popular deities throughout India. Krishna’s consort, Radha, is equally loved amongst the people of India. Krishna is considered to be the eighth incarnation of the god Vishnu. According to legend, Krishna was also heroic. He is alleged to have defeated numerous dragons and monsters, and, as predicted, he killed his half-uncle, the tyrannical King Kamsa.

While Krishna is divine, Radha was human. Radha was a cowherdess who once experienced divine love with Krishna. After they were separated, Radha yearned for reunion. Her longing is a metaphor for the human soul longing for union with the divine. The final reunion symbolizes the bliss of salvation.

 

Avra

Their History:

After Avra’s initial quarantine, an attempt was made to place her with some of the other girls (Bonnie, Hera, and Kalli). Unfortunately, Bonnie and Avra just could not get along. Avra was given her own cage, just above the girls’ cage, with a lovely pink hammock. She thoroughly enjoyed the single life.

 

Z and Mabel 

Their History:

Mabel lived most of her young life helping her mother to raise her offspring. She has a very sweet temperment and loves being around other chinchillas. Unfortunately, Mabel’s first mate, Sage, passed away in December of 2015.

Z is a very docile chin, always preferring to let the other chins be dominant. He lived with Clyde and Zeus very happily for several months.

 


Having a chinchilla as a pet is a huge responsibility, but oh so rewarding!

You may also want to read our post “Chinchilla Care Sheet