Introducing Two Chinchillas
Chinchillas that didn’t grow up together may not get along upon first being introduced. This might surprise some people since chinchillas are sociable in the wild.
However, all is not lost. It is possible to get two chinchillas used to each other’s company. When we were introducing two chinchillas from different breeders we used a tried and proven technique. We put the newer chinchilla in a spare cage we had. We kept our older chinchilla in her original cage. We kept the two cages side-by-side so that chinchillas could see and smell each other at all times.
Then, every night we would let each chinchilla out of her cage for a period of time, but never both at the same time. We left it up to each chinchilla to approach the other. Of course, with the cage bars in between them, there was no fear that they would hurt each other.
After a week or two, we allowed both chinchillas to leave their cages at the same time. The first few times we did this, the chinchillas would chase each other which we stopped as quickly as possible.
Again, a week or so after releasing both from their cages we noticed that there was less chasing and less fighting. The number of “incidents” continued to decrease over time. About 3 to 4 weeks into the process, we moved the newer chinchilla into the older chinchilla’s cage. They slept in the same box, shared the same water bottle, and ate from the same dishes.
And as further proof that this system works, we repeated everything again with a third chinchilla with same results.
We believe in providing as complete information as possible, so we want to also make you aware of the neutral zone technique. Those that use the neutral zone technique actually disagree with the approach we described. We leave it up to you decide which approach to take.