Chinchillas are two species of crepuscular rodents, slightly larger and more robust than ground squirrels. They are native to the Andes mountains in South America and live in colonies called "herds" at high elevations up to 4,270 m. Historically, chinchillas lived in an area that included parts of Bolivia, Peru, Argentina, and Chile, but today colonies in the wild are known only in Chile. Along with their relatives, viscachas, they make up the family Chinchillidae
A recommended diet for chinchillas in captivity might be a mixed-food diet including wheat bran, oats, barley, millet, linseed, dietary calcium, salt, fennel, powdered milk, and hay to go with leaves and herbs
The chinchilla's natural habitat is high in the Andes of Bolivia, Peru, Chile, and Argentina. Classified as members of the order Rodentia, chinchillas are small rodents related to squirrels, guinea pigs, mice, hamsters, and gerbils. Chinchillas are the most expensive of all rodents in the world because their soft fur is the most sought-after of all skins used in making garments.
Most females mature at about 7 months of age and may be put into breeding at this time. Males should be placed into breeding when they are approximately 7 or 8 months old. Chinchillas should be placed into breeding before they turn 2 years old for optimum ability to breed
Chinchillas have and like routines. If you feed them every morning early or every afternoon then they will learn to wait you every morning or afternoon to feed them! If you introduce a routine, chinchillas do have an internal sense of timing and they will anticipate whatever it is. Some stability and predictability in their environment is good for chins, so it is best to choose a routine and be consistent
Chinchilla fur is considered the softest in the world and is thirty times softer than human hair.
Chinchillas must regularly bathe in dust or volcanic ash to remove oil and moisture that gathers in their thick fur.
Chinchillas have the highest fur density of any land animal with more than 20,000 hairs per square cm. Their fur is so dense that skin parasites (such as fleas) cannot live on one lest they suffocate. Whereas humans grow one hair from each follicle, a chinchilla has more than fifty hairs from a single follicle.
They are agile jumpers and can jump up to five feet above their head.
Martha Stewart has 15 pet chinchillas.
Chinchillas have no dander, which is the leading cause to pet related allergies