There are several good brands of Chinchilla pellets that you can purchase. Mazuri, Oxbow and Tradition
are just a few. Whichever brand you choose, it should be fresh, good quality pellets. Try to stear away from the feed package
that has alot of seeds, dried fruit and other "extras" with the pellets. These often look pretty but they are not the best
choice for you chin.
You can give them a small bowl of treat a couple times a week. About 1 teaspoon per chinchilla. The treat I give consists of
Bob's 5 grain rolled cereal and red wheat berries. Sometimes rose hips or calcium sticks are a nice treat. I believe in free
range feeding, so the pellets are available at all times. Dried cherries, raisins or papaya bits are nice treats too. But
only 1 every few days.
Alfalfa and timothy hay cubes are provided daily. Water should be changed at least every other
day. Make sure to check the water bottles for leaks as the like to nibble on them.
Toys are very important as these
little fluff balls tend to get bored easily. Make sure the toys are chinchilla friendly. Only kiln dried pine wood toys should
be given. A good exercise wheel or saucer wheel will give hours of running fun. Toilet paper rolls are great and cheap.
ONE or TWO?
Chinchillas can live by themselves just fine. Or you can put two females or two males together but make sure they get along.
In this case, it's usually better and easier if they are two sisters or two brothers. And of course, if you want babies, a
non related male and female can be put together.
Male Chinchillas can reproduce as young as 8-10 weeks old. But females are not ready, and shouldn't be breed until they
are at least 8 months. But waiting until one year of age is best.
Gestation is approx 111 days. Chinchillas can have up to 6 kits but the average is 1 or 2
Chinchillas love to jump and climb. So tall, large cages are better than short and wide cages. A wood nest box to sleep in
and chew on. A couple of crockery bowls for their food and treat. A dust bath, given once or twice a week, is all they need
I use Critter Country cage litter for the litter trays. But Carefresh litter is also good. Cage litter should be cleaned
at least once or twice a week. If you have a slide out tray and your chin is off the cage litter floor, you can go the inexpensive
way and use paper bags from the grocery store as long as they are clean. Just cut to fit. But remember, if you choose to go
this route, you will need to clean the cage more often. And you should never use paper bag for the cage liner if the chin
is going to have to walk on it. You will become dirty very fast.
Chinchilla's comfort zone is 65-80 degrees with humidity between 30-40%. The combination of the two must not exceed 150
or they can get heat stroke.