Can Chinchillas Be Trained? Do they Scratch?
I am getting a silver colored chinchilla from a breeder. I wanted to know if chinchillas run too fast when you let them out of their cage such that you can't catch them to put them easily back in to their cage. I also wanted to know if they scratch you. Can you train them to go to the bathroom in a certain place like a cat with a litter box? Will they go to the bathroom wherever when they're not in their cage or will they go back in their cage to go?
Thanks for your help.
Our response to Mary:
Chinchillas are pretty quick on their feet and evading capture. They also like to bounce off of walls to quickly change directions. Very entertaining. Back to your question. You will have trouble catching them if they are in a large room. At first, it is best to have them run around in a small room until they become comfortable with you. If you chase them every night they will probably become afraid of you all the time. It's also a good idea to let them out of the cage at the same time of day and put them back in at the same time of night. After doing this for a while our chinchillas run in to the cage on their own.
The don't scratch and rarely bite. Ours only bite when our fingers have the smell of raisins (their treat).
They can't be trained to use a litter box like a cat. They will do “number 1” in a litter box with shavings in their cage, but “number 2”, which is dry and pellet-like, will happen all over the place.