New Chinchilla - Help

luvuni

New member
Joined
Apr 21, 2020
Messages
2
Hi there,

This if my first post, so bear with me and be kind. ♥ I bought a chinchilla from another lady, who had him from a ten week old kit, to the age of 10 months old. I bought him from her about two months ago.

He is unbelievably skittish... He'll come sit on my knee, and then all of a sudden (for no reason) scurry under the cage like the devil is chasing him. And he does this often. All his play times are full of this panic, and at no apparent thing. He'll freak out, bolt under the cage, then come back out and go back to exploring, before randomly bolting back under the cage. The frequency it happens picks up the longer he's out of the cage.

I can touch him (can't pick him up), and he happily takes treats. But if anybody has any idea what might be bothering him outside the cage, please let me know.

There are no sudden noises, movement or anything. So I'm at a loss.

Thanks guys.
 

Val

Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2020
Messages
22
Hi, there's maybe nothing bothering him! My chinchilla often darts about like a mad thing but is perfectly happy. Can you block off any access to under his cage and see how he behaves then?
 

luvuni

New member
Joined
Apr 21, 2020
Messages
2
Hi, there's maybe nothing bothering him! My chinchilla often darts about like a mad thing but is perfectly happy. Can you block off any access to under his cage and see how he behaves then?
I've tried. He manages to work his way through everything I've set up so far. I've just gotta buy more cardboard I guess. XD
 

Val

Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2020
Messages
22
I use builders bricks,(thoroughly cleaned an/or covered with material) to block off anywhere I don't want him to go. Have you tried putting cardboard boxes with access holes for him elsewhere for him to run in and out of?
 

Madip

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 7, 2020
Messages
61
Hi there,

This if my first post, so bear with me and be kind. ♥ I bought a chinchilla from another lady, who had him from a ten week old kit, to the age of 10 months old. I bought him from her about two months ago.

He is unbelievably skittish... He'll come sit on my knee, and then all of a sudden (for no reason) scurry under the cage like the devil is chasing him. And he does this often. All his play times are full of this panic, and at no apparent thing. He'll freak out, bolt under the cage, then come back out and go back to exploring, before randomly bolting back under the cage. The frequency it happens picks up the longer he's out of the cage.

I can touch him (can't pick him up), and he happily takes treats. But if anybody has any idea what might be bothering him outside the cage, please let me know.

There are no sudden noises, movement or anything. So I'm at a loss.

Thanks guys.
Both my chinchillas are super nice and happy as clams. They often get the zoomies and run under anything they can get under. Like you said it’s out of nowhere and boom zooms under something.

I put decoration pillows along the edge of my bed because when they go under there it’s hard to get them out. For my dresser I lay my full body mirror down. I would definitely try to give your chinchilla alittle more to do while out of its cage. Some toys and things to jump on that it normally doesn’t have in its cage just so it can curiously look around and play around. Give it something to look forward to doing out of its cage.

the only difference I would say is that the longer they are out of their cage the less they try to zoom back into it. However I keep the cages open and have ramps for them to be able to enter and exit as they please.At first it’s a lot of out and in then it moves to the under things so I’m not sure if it’s your chinchilla being scared or just like mine where they just like small spaces and are kinda always trying to get in places they think they shouldn’t be in since they are so curious. Even in their cages they prefer to lay down or hang in areas they feel Voluntarily confined.

Neither one of my chinchillas like being picked up and never have but they will jump all over me, hold my hand, play with my hair, try bite on mY glasses (while on my face), sit on me ect.
 

Gus_4

Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2020
Messages
9
Hi there,

This if my first post, so bear with me and be kind. ♥ I bought a chinchilla from another lady, who had him from a ten week old kit, to the age of 10 months old. I bought him from her about two months ago.

He is unbelievably skittish... He'll come sit on my knee, and then all of a sudden (for no reason) scurry under the cage like the devil is chasing him. And he does this often. All his play times are full of this panic, and at no apparent thing. He'll freak out, bolt under the cage, then come back out and go back to exploring, before randomly bolting back under the cage. The frequency it happens picks up the longer he's out of the cage.

I can touch him (can't pick him up), and he happily takes treats. But if anybody has any idea what might be bothering him outside the cage, please let me know.

There are no sudden noises, movement or anything. So I'm at a loss.

Thanks guys.
I’m not sure if you did but it’s really good to give them alone time when you first get them, so they adapt to their new environment. My guy was terrified when we first brought him home, and barked the whole first night. It took about two weeks to let me touch him. And another two to be able to pick him up. Then for about a month I took him into the empty bathtub with me and let him run around me. The bathtub works great since they have no escape route, and they get used to you. But through about two weeks of doing that everyday in 30 minutes session, he got pretty used to me, and he is super sweet and attention-seeking now. Patience is key with chins.

It sounds like your chin is either naturally skittish, or isn’t comfortable yet. It sounds like he is still a very new chin for you, so you may have just not let him have enough time to adapt. My first chin was immediately after a couple of days super comfortable, but my current chin took months to become comfortable (and is still not ready to be in front of a louder TV or in a room with more than 3 people). All chins are different, so your little one might just not be ready/comfortable to be out and about, especially if you introduced him quickly/suddenly. You just have to make sure you ease them into things!
 
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