Fighting Chinchillas Need Help

barbackz asks

I bought two new more beautiful chinchillas: one male ebony and one female mosaic. The male is 10 weeks old and is being housed with my 9 month old Gizmo. The cage is rather large since I built it that way. My problem is Loki, the youngest, keeps attacking Gizmo. Why is it that he is so submissive? He is 2 times Loki's size and he runs away like it's the other way around. I know chinchillas sometimes don't get along at all, but I thought since Loki was young they would get along fine. I separated them after two days when I saw fur in Loki's mouth. I feel horrible and feel that no matter how I introduce Gizmo as a companion, Loki will continue to dominate over him.

Infolific answers…

We introduced two chins by first keeping each in separate cages. The cages were kept quite close to each other. We would, at first, only let one chinchilla out of her cage at a time. We also created a divider in one of the cages so we could get the two chinchillas even closer to each other as time progressed. Eventually, we let both chinchillas out of their cages together, but always supervised. As the fighting/chasing incidents decreased, the time we allowed them to be together increased. Feel free to check out a somewhat more detailed description of how we introduced our chinchillas.

There are likely variations on the above throughout this forum, but the main idea is to control the introductions and stop any stress-inducing behavior quickly.

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  1. So heres a quick background. I got Merry and Pippin April 2019. They are brothers. Fast forward to August 2018 I get Kövu. All 3 chins are boys. Now, when I have Kövus cage in the same room as Merry and Pippin; Merry will attack his brother Pippin. If I remove Kövu from the room after a while Merry and Pippin are friends again. I am now in a situation where I cant move Kövu out of the room. Why is Merry attacking Pippin when Kövu is present? What can I do to at least get the brothers back together?

  2. Hi,

    I'm adopting a chinchilla who is currently paired with his son. However, I am only able to take one chinchilla and a friend of mine will take the other. As such, each chinchilla will face separation and a change of environment at the same time.

    Can I just ask how do I go about ensuring that the transition is as smooth as possible for them? Will they be too affected by the two changes happening at the same time? It could take a toil on their health?

    Would appreciate advice!

    Thank you!

  3. Hi, I've had 2 chinchillas for about a year now, unfortunately the female, Winnie, was ill and died about 4 months ago. My male chinchilla, Roo, seemed quite lonely so about a week ago I bought a new chinchilla, a female, named Piglet. They're in seperate cages and I try to socialize them at least once a day in a small bathroom, always supervised. The new chinchilla, Piglet, is very timid, even alone in her own cage. She is definitely warming up to me though. As for my male chinchilla, I'm not sure. Their first encounter consisted of him mounting her and she was not a fan. He later lunged at her but I broke it up before there was a chance of any injury. But now she almost seems to be afraid of him, always running away. Although when they do come in contact with each other, they stand on the hind legs (not always though) and smell each other, nose to nose. Sometimes the female, Piglet, of them makes a little sound, kind of like a little whimper.He seems very interested in her, but I can't tell if these encounters stress her out or not. Any advice?

  4. Please help me to understand what happened to my daughter's chinchillas today. One male, one female, they have been in the same large cage with three levels for over a year now, with no problems. The female had one baby last spring, but it did not survive (got out of the cage and stuck under the fridge).

    This morning my daughter found the male chinchilla alive, but the female chinchilla was bare of all fur, and already cold. And, there is no sign of her fur anywhere, I would like to think that the female died of natural causes, and that the male was trying to wake her up. This was a very sad day. Thank-you for any insight you can give. I can understand the possibility of him wishing to initiate procreation, but not the all the fur, which he must have eaten. She was a violet, and his colouring is black velvet with scrolling (does that even make sense?) I do not know hold old she was.

  5. I have two chins, both brothers and born in the same liter. They have lived together since I have had them and the bigger one (snuggles) is picking on the runt of the liter ((beaker)) I have had to seperrate them to keep Beaker safe. I can tell he is being bullied by missing his fur and whiskers. Is there any way that I can get them back together without causing harm?

    • Hi,
      was wondering how old they are, and sorry to sound condescending are you sure they are both male? I was sold a chinchilla by a reputable pet shop saying I had a male, turned out he was a she which we found out after buying a male companion for "him" and when I did a weekly check on them I noticed their "bits" were slightly different. chinchillas become sexually active as young as 10 weeks, if they are definitely both male the answer Chinchilla Planet gave to Barbackz above is the best way to reintroduce them back together, lots of patience is needed, if it doesnt work in the first week or so give them a break and try again a week later, just place their cages near each other, putting them closer each day, letting them out alternately then trying them together gradually as Chinchilla Planet suggested. This is the best site so far I have come across for advice so do come back to them if you need more help, hope all works out ok ;o) x

  6. Your main problem is the female. whenever there is a female chinchilla around male chinchillas the males will fight even if the female is in a seperate cage.

    • True they can fight when females are around, , I have 3 females and 2 males.. mum and dad Marley and Ziggy, their 1st born Alvina, and 2nd lot of kits Houdini and B.B, most of the time the males (Ziggy and B.B) are absolutely fine (I have males and females in separate cages) Although every so often they do fratch and argue with each other, Im presuming now it is when the females are in season as the last twice they have argued and fought each other, when Ive given the males their weekly check up, both are noticeably swollen around the genitals and this is the only time their testicles are visible, after a week this swelling goes down, and they are back to being best of pals !! The females during that week are also noticeably moody, and can either want more attention and stroking or be the total opposite and have spat and shouted at me, Marley often sprays me too when shes in this "mood" all this happens only every so often but males and females different behaviour is always same week, so deducting this as females season week lol .

    • this isnt always the truth, my chinchillas and friends chinchillas get on so well 90% of the time play well, eat and sleep together (not at mo, cos a Im saving the funding to have the males castrated) but I let them still play together for half hour a day with strict observation, they all get on massively well, even my friends chinchillas when they come to stay, a mixture of male and females, sometimes though every so often one will throw a tantrum and either go sulk in a corner or be a little aggressive and spit and bite, but this is short lived and im putting it down to hormones/testosterone and females being in season ;o)) as all species do this lol .

  7. Hi
    I have 2 boys, both grey, 1 is 1 year and 2 months old, the other is 1 year 1 month. They were the best of friends, always together, no problems at all. About 2 weeks ago I got a new 8 week old grey boy to add to my chinchilla family. The little one didn't like being approached by the other 2, so he barked at them and chased them (funny enough, the littlest seemed to be the fiercest!)
    To solve the problem, I put all 3 in the smaller travel cage, so that they can get used to each other. This solved the problem, because after 5 hours I took them out, and they were sleeping together and playing together all the time after that.
    Then, 2 days ago, the middle boy started chasing and biting the oldest one, so much so that you could see clumps of fur coming out. I put him in the travel cage and let him spend the night in there, but so that the other 2 could still interact with him with getting hurt. Yesterday morning I let him out, it went well for about an hour, and then I hear screeching from the corner. When I ran to look, I see that he is still chasing him, actually walking around and going into the hiding places to seek him out and chase and bite him.
    I put him back in the travel cage for the night, and in another room the whole day today, but when I let him out, he immediately starts chasing the older one again. It is very strange, as he does not have a problem with the younger one, he goes to him and sniffs him and preens him and sleeps next to him, its only the older one.
    Why would a problem come now after all this time, and after almost 2 weeks after the new baby arrived? What can I do? I am so afraid they will kill or hurt each other badly, and I don't want to lose one or have to give one away, I love them so much! Please help?

    • Hi
      Just as Ive replied to someone else, are you sure they are all males? I am saying this because I bought one of mine from a well known reputable petshop as a male, and turned out to be female ;op .... anyway if youre sure they are all male I would follow Chinchilla Planets advice they have given Barbackz at the top of this page, needs lots of patience and try and try again, slowly does it, if after a few weeks of trying, you may have to settle that theyre not going to get along hun, and make your decision on wether your going to keep him or return him, make a possible swap for one that may get along .... hope all goes well xx

  8. I have two chinchillas, a male and a female and the female just had her 10th adn 11th babies. But after spending 3 days apart, they don't want to be near each other anymore. The male runs away from the female chinchilla and vice-versa. Are they getting tired of each toehr? SHould I seperate them?

    • How old is the female? Are you breeding for sellings sake? how many litters has she had to give birth to 11, ? she may be totally exhausted if shes just been pregnant time and time again ;o/ a female can get pregnant the day she has her kits, she comes into season straight after she gives birth....... they are small very sensitive animals, we should be a priveledge to have them as pets not letting them be baby the wild that happens for the survival of the species and is captivity they should be treat well and cherished, not be a commercial/financial property to us . Sorry for letting off steam, its not directly aimed at you, but there are so many owners out there who think breeding chinchillas is easy, quick money making schemes, there are hundreds and thousands of chinchillas in rescue centres that need homes because they are being over bred and have been a passing fad for people that have bought them then decided that they are too much fuss to look after........YES you should separate them until at least one of them has been to the vets to be spayed/castrated. Other than that, try the metod that Chinchilla Planets given to Barbackz problem above, see if that works x

  9. i have to males as well (father and son). we had to seperate them due to hair loss because we had tried everything else and they werent acting sickly. after about a month the sons hair started growing back but fathers was not, thought it might be due to lonliness so we decided to let them play together for the first time since the sepertion.. father attacked son and son hid in a corner of the cage. they r still seperted... wat do i do?

  10. Hello eveyone Reading your comments. Chinchillia can be territorial and also they can be aggressive becuse how they were raised when they were kits. The best thing to do is to seperate them for a little and try again. Do not let them chew each other fur thats a bad habbit and the fur can get cought in the digestive system. For the attacker Have some treats handy and let them bring the chinchilla to you.(chinchilla love treats) Give it time, lot's of time try like once or twice a day Keep note this might take months to win the chinchilla over. The chinchilla don't trust you and also scared Also be easy with the chinchilla when picking him/her up Hope this help:)

  11. I have had my female chinchilla for almost 7 weeks I believe, and I just got a male chinchilla, and we have no idea how old he is, we got him on sunday (about 3 days ago) and we let Charlie (the female chin.) out to greet the new chin., (Mouse) and of course, Mouse was in his cage. The greetin, looked as if Charlie and Mouse were kissing, and the next day, Charlie started biting the cage trying to bite Mouse. She's done that since, and she started fighting and such, and I looked up something online about introducing chins, and it said to have the cages next to eachother for a few days, than carefully, move both chinchillas in the same cage, and while getting the cage ready, let the chinchillas run around together to make sure that they like eachother. I have done this, and they were not fighting, but all of a sudden I walk out to get something and I come back in and all of a sudden, I see Charlie running in her cage, and Mouse hiding in a corner, and tufts of his fur hanging out, and right than, I knew Charlie started a fight... So now Mouse is running around and Charlie is in her cage, being punished. There are many ways that I read of introducing chins, and I want to know, which one is true?? I just want them in the same cage, so my new chinchilla doesn't have to have the small cage. :/ Somebody, please help??? :(

    • Yes I hear you Most male and females don't get a long Don't let them play together unless you want kits also the females are more dominent they will kick the males butt Also thats part of ther nature Males like to get there way and females don't like getting jump on Males can be bitting very badly or worse killed so be carefull when dealing with the two at the same time If they don't fight they can be together. Try useing treats when they start actting up or keep the apart for good.

    • Hi Nicole
      Its patience and trial and error, I have 5 chinchillas 2 male 3 female , all get on very well, but sadly I have had to separate females from males as I dont want them interbreeding or mum and dad to have any more kits, cant afford just yet to have males castrated either so for now they are in separate cages, but They do get a chance to be together in a smallish pen with my Strict supervision lol ....I do believe the best way is to introduce them slowly in separate cages moving the cages nearer each day, it just maybe the females "time of the month" and she doesnt want him near her, they may have to be kept separate unfortunately, but I reckon with lots of patience and trying again and again as has been described above, it will work in the end .....

  12. Fighting chinchilla's? Take the two fighters hold the comfort in your arms and pet them for five minutes to clam them down put them back in the cage and give the something to enjoy like lot's of timothy hay or chew sticks. This should help you. I have Three males and three females. Big Hint: Do not put treats in the feed bowl. your asking for a fight to start! Hopes this helps:)

  13. hello i have 2 males father and son, the father started to beat up on the son why i do have females which at playtime beat the two boys up as well why please help me what can i do the son has a bald patch in the back and i dont know what to do help i want them all to get along they are all around 1 and 3 yrs of age i think the little male is younger he is alot smaller than the others what should i do go back to the basics or something else

  14. hello i have 2 males father and son, the father started to beat up on the son why i do have females which at playtime beat the two boys up as well why please help me what can i do the son has a bald patch in the back and i dont know what to do help

  15. my boyfriend and i have a 3 year old male chinchilla that was very calm, loved his scratches and liked to be handled. recently we introduced a kit about 6-8 months old,also a male. they seem to get along well most of the time, they play and cuddle in the cage but when they are on the floor they can fight a bit. i have two querys, firstly im worried about the older chinchilla as his coat is getting quite patchy, is this more likely to be from the little scufs they would have while out of there cage or is it more likely to do with stress. is he not dealing too well with extra company. my other query is to why the older chinchilla attacks me, sometimes breaking the skin yet my partner can scratch him still and not suffer any bites.

    please help

  16. We are looking to get a pet chinchilla for our 11 year old son. Shane has had other pets and is very gentle and kind with them. He is also our only child and our household is a quite one. We wanted to get a baby preferable from a breeder somewhere here on Long Island NY. My question is would you recommend a male or a female chinchilla? I know females in most pets are the more docile ones and warm up to a male owner. Is this true with chinchilla's? Are there any disadvantages to owning either male or female? We had a male rabbit once that would attack my feet when I was at that time of the month and he would spray like crazy at you.....anything like that with either one?? Also do you know or would recommend a breeder from our area? Your site was very informative to me and one of the best sites that I had come across for this information. I thank you for your time and look forward to hearing from you. Laura Sacks

  17. Tommy and Shelly,

    You've got a tough situation. It's hard to know what's prompting the fighting now. Do you have a large cage with more than one place to for your chinchillas to sleep? Maybe separate food dishes too. Such things may keep them from feeling like they're competing and reduce the territorial instinct. Admitted, all of this is a guess as we haven't had to deal with your situation.

    Good luck!

  18. hi,
    my boyfriend and i have a male adult chinchilla and we decided to get another one. we went to a breeder and we picked out this cute male, baby white mosaic chinchilla about 5 months old. The breeder put my old chinchilla and the new one together and they got along really well. they never fought once. its been about 7 months later and now they are just starting to fight? i dont understand because the new chinchilla keeps attacking my old chinchilla. my old chinchilla keeps growling at him and runs away when the new chinchilla comes near. Why are they starting to fight now? Please Please help me. what can we do??

  19. Hello,
    My wife and I got a young chinchilla last year and named her Aquila. She was always really sweet and treated us immediately like family. We were so pleased, that after a while we decided to get another chinchilla to keep her company because we thought that it would be the best thing and so, a couple of months ago, we brought Nimbus home. I was foolish and I immediately put Nimbus into Aquila's cage. I hadn't done enough research and I didn't realize that chinchillas needed so much time to learn to acclimate themselves to each other. So, immediately there were spats. We removed Nimbus at once, of course, and put her in her own cage but we kept the cages close together. We've since done a lot of research and have tried lots of suggestions for helping the chinchillas learn to like each other, but it hasn't seemed like anything has helped. In fact the opposite has happened. The fighting has seemed to increase. We try to moniter them closely and we try to give them time together to get them used to each other, but to no avail.
    What can we do?
    Please please help.

  20. Avatar photo


    Mappy likely won't feel punished if put in to another cage. Rather, he may feel safer. The fighting that is going is undoubtedly causing stress for all the chinchillas and the best way to reduce this stress is to separate them. This separation will also give your injured chinchilla a chance to heal.

    Having said that, here are some other thoughts:

    1. Once separated, make sure your chinchilla is actually healing. If fur continues to come off, then there maybe additional issues.
    2. If your cage contains just one sleeping box, consider adding another one. This way the chinchillas can choose to sleep separately.
    3. If you're using a single dish and water bottle, consider adding additional ones. This will help reduce the number of reasons for the chinchillas to fight.

    You'll probably have to do a little experimentation to find a solution that works, but some separation time does seem like the best first step. We wish you luck and let us know how things work out!

  21. I actually have a question that relates to this somewhat. I recently got 2 new chinchillas that came with a very large cage. I already had a Chinchilla that had a cage of his own. I put the cages side by side for about 2 months before starting to put them together in a cage. (20 minutes at a time, slowly building to hours at a time.) At first I alternated the cage they went into, and eventually I cleaned out the big cage, rearranged everything, and put all three chinchillas together. For the first 2 weeks, they got along great, but now, Mappy (the more aggressive of the original pair) seems to be having a problem. I have not seen which chinchilla is attacking him, but I can only assume it is Kobayashi(the one I added to them.) The first time I noticed anything was wrong was 2 weeks ago, when I noticed that Mappy's fur was a bit wild and pulled looking in a couple of places (like he had been in a scuffle) about 3 days ago I noticed he had a decent sized patch of fluff missing from the center of his scalp. Yesterday I went in to see them and noticed that he had about a 2 inch wide circle of fluff that was missing completely and there was a small (less than the area of a pinkynail) area of rawness that was bleeding a little. I caught him (and was bitten twice, as he is the only one of the 3 that bites) and covered his head with triple antibiotic ointment. Today, he is bleeding a small amount from that spot and has one small scratch on one ear. I don't want to have to put them back into the two-cage system as Moka (chin #3) seems to have gotten closer to Kobe than he ever was to Mappy (they snuggle a lot) but I don't want Mappy to feel punished by being put into another cage. Is there anything I can do to stop the bullying? Would giving them a larger cage help this? Any advice would be very helpful!!!!

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