Chinchillas are a great pet with a perky personality. Some of the qualities that make these rodents a desirable pet are their long life span, lack of unpleasant odor, lush soft fur, and low maintenance factor. Chinchillas are high strung and very quick, so they have to be handled with care. Their fragile bones can cause discomfort if squeezed too tightly, and thus their defense would be to start biting and not wanting to be handled. They do not tolerate heat or high humidity well, either.
Originating in mountains of South America, they are used to dry and cooler temperatures, even though they are now bred in captivity. Our chinchillas are farm raised by local breeders and therefore very healthy and friendly. We do not recommend buying them from large box stores.
Their colors range from the normal grey to the more exotic, such as beige, ebony, white, and white mosaic, all of which we carry. We can special order by gender and color if we donít have what you want in stock at that time. Females usually get a bit larger than males. Females have a long pregnancy, over 100 days. The babies are born with hair. Their life span is generally between 10 and 15 years.
Chinchillas are very personable and should be handled daily to keep them friendly. They like to chew, so they have to be monitored when out of the cage. We carry lava blocks and other chew toys made specifically for them. We carry a variety of cages for them; preferably double tiered ones, with no bottom grate because their feet are so small. They also need to have a dust bath, which they love, and instinctively take when offered. Chinchillas need exercise, and we have solid wheels and run-a-bout balls for this purpose. They have a very sensitive digestive track, so make sure to feed them only chinchilla food and treats. Raisins are one of their favorite snacks. They will learn to take them right out of your hand, but give very sparingly. We also suggest offering them oats and hay daily in addition to their packaged chinchilla food.
Always be aware if their stool ever becomes loose. They will dehydrate very quickly. The hay and oats help prevent this. Their teeth continually grow, so make sure you always have the mineral blocks and chew toys in the cage for them to gnaw on to keep their teeth filed down. If you choose a water bottle instead of a bowl for them to drink out of, it should be glass not plastic as they will chew the plastic.
Because of this insatiable desire to chew, make sure to watch their surroundings when they are out of their cage. They will chew wires, wood, plastic, etc. We also carry other small animals: hamsters, gerbils, rabbits, and guinea pigs, as well as supplies for all. We have a variety of odor control beddings, and Sun Seed, Higgins, and Ox Bow foods and treats, all made in USA. To provide a healthy environment for our small furry friends, our staff feeds, cleans, and maintains our housing units daily. Our staff also provides a service for nail clippings for rabbits and guinea pigs, we just recommend calling in advance.