Housing, Feeding and ETC.

Great Cage Info by my dear friend Brenda at Brenda's Cherished Chinchillas with information added by myself:

Your chinchilla's cage should be a wired cage, free of all plastic. If your cage comes with plastic you can cover it with non pill or blizzard fleece. Never use a glass aquarium for a chinchilla cage, they will overheat easily and that will cause death. I recommend the Ferret Nation 182 cages. These cages come with plastic pans, that you can either cover with fleece or replace with bass equipment metal pans. The fleece can be washed 2 times a week with vinegar and laundry detergent. Do an extra rinse to make sure the perfume from the detergent is fully rinsed out. Then either air dry or tumble dry low. I suggest purchasing 2 sets of fleece liners so one can be used while the other washes and also if one get torn you have something else to use until you can replace it. All of my chinchillas love fleece covered pvc tubes which I wash 1 time a week. They also love hammocks that are very thick and this makes them more sturdy. I can recommend Fleece for Furries (on facebook) for all your fleece needs. Chinnie boutique (on facebook) for custom hammocks and cubes, and Chinchillacity.com for tubes, hammocks and corner hammocks. I have purchased from all of the vendors myself and their products are top quality. You can purchase kiln dried pine ledges for your chinchillas to hop on, or make them yourself.   If you want to make them yourself you will need kiln dried pine wood, cut into lengths you want. Hanger bolts, washers and wing nuts.


Items you will need for your chinchilla cage

*I RECOMMEND KILN DRIED PINE BEDDING SUCH AS PINE RIVER (FINE SHAVINGS) OR THE BEAVER BAG (BIGGER FLAKES)


Ceramic or stainless steel bowl

Hay holder (do not purchase the wired or plastic hay racks, and do not use a hay ball or one that spins around)

Water bottle (chew proof glass is best, I use kaytee chewproof 12 oz water bottles)

Wooden or metal ledges for jumping on (different lengths) Tiffany's chinchillas sells metal and wooden ledges.

Blue cloud, chill dust or blue sparkle dust​

PVC fleece covered tubes for sleeping

Shavings/bedding (aspen or kiln dried pine) unless you are using fleece

Dust bath container. (can be plastic as long as not left in cage unsupervised)

Hiding house/large tropical fiddle sticks to hide under, sit on and chew on

Hanging toys (most sold in pet stores are not safe, check out chinchillacity.com for great toys)

Sticks (Rondaschins.com sells great sticks for your chinchillas. properly prepared and ready to chew I recommend apple and pear)​

Wheel (not necessary but if you want one, make sure it is 15 inches or larger around, I recommend the chinspin.

 Feeds and treats

Chinchillas shall not have any fruits, nuts, veggies or seeds as it can cause bloating and high sugar levels in your chinchilla. Most pet store feeds and treats are unsafe and have those little treats crammed in the bag. DO NOT FEED TREATS TO A CHINCHILLA UNDER 6 MONTHS OF AGE. Remember that 80% of a chinchillas diet is hay so always keep a hay supply in there cage. If any questions ASK A BREEDER.

Feeding new feed

Feed the feed from the previous ranch for about a week and then mix 1/2 and 1/2 with your feed to make a gradual change. 


Unsafe feeds and treats

•kaytee 

•sunburst

•oxbow garden select

•vitakraft 

•yogurt bites

•yogurt pretzels 

• fruits and veggies

•yogurt/seed sticks

•sunflower seeds

•peanuts

•oxbow reward biscuits 

Anything do do with nuts, fruit, seeds and veggies. Basically all pet store treats are bad.

Safe feeds and treats


Rabbit feeds chins can have

•Mana pro (or sho)

•blue seal rabbit hutch delux

•purina show 


Chinchilla feeds

•Hubbard life (tradition)

•Mazuri

•oxbow (red bag) 

Treats shall be given in moderation. 

Safe treats

•rose hips

•goji berries (one a week or every other week)

•rolled oats

•slow cooked old fashion oats

•plain cheerios

•shredded wheats (unfrosted) 

•bees pollen

• dried hibiscus 

You can get safe treats from TJ's chinchilla supplies listed in my Education/vendor section. 


Hay 

•Timothy 

•orchard 

•hay cubes (mainly Timothy/alfalfa mix)

•alfalfa (give in moderation as it is very high in calcium.)

•oxbow hay

*DO NOT GET THE HAY WITH THE VEGGIES AND FRUIT IN IT.*



Safe and unsafe wood chews

Anything treated shall not be given to your chinchilla. 
 

SAFE WOOD:
Apple 
Arbutus 
Ash 
Aspen 
Birch - White(Silver or Common Birch ) 
​Bamboo
Broadleaf
Blackberry
Black Currant
Cholla ( some form of cacti)
Cottonwood 
Crabapple 
Dogwood 
Elm 
Balsa
Grey
Grapevine
Hawthorn 
Hazelnut
​Kiwi
Larch 
Magnolia 
Manzanita
Mulberry
Ocotillo
Pine (Kiln Dried Only)
Pear 
Pecan
Poplar 
quince 
rose
sycamore
Sequoia (Redwood)
Willow (Not white willow)
Yucca
Sola 


UNSAFE WOOD: 
Almond
Apricot
Beech
Black Locust
Black Lotus
Blackwood
Buckthorn
Cashew
Cedar 
Cherry
Chestnut
China berry
​Chinese Snake tree 
Chokeberry
Citrus woods such as oranges, lemons, limes and etc
Eucalyptus
Holly
Honey
Locust
Hydrangea
Juniper
Mango
Plywood
Maple
Mesquite
Myrtle
Un kiln dried pine
Cherry 
Peach 
Prune 
Plum 
Nectarine ​
​White Willow


 

 Play Time

 Play time shall be given 2 weeks after your chinchilla has arrived. Those 2 weeks give your chinchilla time to settle into its new location. Chinchillas 6 months and younger shall not have play time and shall not be housed in a cage with a wheel or ledges high up. A chinchilla 6 months or younger needs its time to grow.
•When taking your chinchilla out to run around, be sure to let the animal out in a chinchilla safe room free from wires, cords, other animals and small items to chew on, on the floor. Play time shall be supervised and given for about 10 minutes. Over doing play time can be very dangerous and lead to over heating in your chinchilla. 
•Do NOT allow your chinchilla to run around inside of a ball. (Also known as a death ball) Those death balls are very dangerous and can also lead to over heating as there is not much air flow inside the ball.

Temperatures 

•When having a chinchilla you will need to keep your chinchilla cool all year around. Your chinchilla room or unit should not go above 74 degrees Fahrenheit. If your chin room goes above 74, you will need to provide a way too keep your chinchilla cool. A window A/C unit could be used. If your central A/C does go out in the summer and you do not have a generator then it's best to take your chinchilla for a ride in your car with the A/C on or leave your chinchilla at a friends or relatives house to stay cool. Please note that cooling slabs or cooling packs do not keep your chinchilla cool for long. 
• A good temperature for Chinchillas is 58-70 degrees. If you can not keep your chinchilla cool then a chinchilla isn't the best option for you.