Are Chinchillas Friendly?[More Than You May Believe]


Chinchillas make for one of the best-domesticated pets a family can have.

They can be great for most kids and most chinchilla owners will tell you how much they love their chinchilla.

Chinchillas also have many unique characteristics and behavior patterns that set them apart from other pets we may be familiar with.

If you are considering purchasing a chinchilla, it鈥檚 important to know all the facts before deciding.

One of the questions that I had, in the beginning, was extremely simple.

Are chinchillas friendly?

After owning my chinchilla for quite some time now, here is what I can tell you on this subject.

So, are chinchillas friendly? Yes, most chinchillas are friendly. Chinchillas take time to adapt to new owners and environments before becoming friendly. Chinchillas if raised from birth to interact with humans, can be friendly and loving family pets.

Chinchillas love social interaction and want attention.

That’s for sure.

They grow to love their owner and love time interacting not only with you but other chinchillas.

Overall, chinchillas are friendly and affectionate pets but do need time to adjust.

I鈥檓 sure you have more questions than that and want to know some more about how friendly chinchillas really can be or how loving they can be towards their owners.

If you stick around for 1-2 minutes, I鈥檓 going to break down some more facts about chinchillas and their friendly nature and friendly behaviors to ensure we cover everything.

I’ve also created easy to navigate links directly below that will allow you to skip to any specific section of this post that you desire to learn more about.

Here’s what is on our agenda for today’s post:

Let’s get started.

Most Chinchillas Are Friendly

Let’s start with a brief video on the topic.

Just be sure to continue reading the post for additional details on how to get your chinchilla into a friendlier state.

Here’s that quick video for you directly below馃憞

Alright, now that we have that out of the way, let’s get back to the subject at hand.

Although chinchillas are very friendly, they are also unique with several characteristics and behaviors they display.

All angles need to be covered and discussed before taking the leap of faith to purchase and care for a chinchilla.

They do live for a long time.

Up to 15-20 years with proper care, so it is a big commitment and responsibility.

Chinchillas can make a perfect pet under the right circumstances and can be extremely friendly.

On the other end of the spectrum, they can also be very shy and not enjoy being touched, poked or prodded by strangers.

This goes for holding the chinchilla as well.

Not all chinchillas enjoy being held but many do.

Non-proper holding techniques can certainly spark a chinchilla to not be as friendly as you would desire to see.

I would also read my post about how to get your chinchilla to enjoy being held that you can see here.

We talk about this a lot in other blog posts.

Chinchillas are heavily preyed upon in the wild.

They are naturally prone to run away from danger and can often even try to elude you.

It’s nothing personal and doesn’t mean they are not friendly and that they do not love you.

It’s easy for a chinchilla to become severely frightened by unwanted noise or unwelcomed touches.

In my video above, I referenced and discussed how much an enclosed close space can help your chinchilla warm up to you.

I also show you how I used a specific pop-animal play tent to do this.

Here is the link to that specific play-tent that I used (Link to Amazon)

If you are a new chinchilla owner or struggling getting your chinchilla to warm up to you, I highly recommend giving this a try.

It made a world of a difference for me and I’m sure it can help you dramatically as well.

Especially during the first weeks of having them in your new home and away from what they have grown accustomed to.

Don’t worry however, chinchillas adapt to their new environment very quickly.

My Chinchilla Is Extremely Friendly. This is Her Sitting on My Leg Relaxing and Allowing Me To Pet Her For Several Minutes.

Chinchillas Attach and Bond With Owners

Building a bond with your chinchilla is a slow process in the beginning.

However, taking things easy and slow is one sure-fire way to have a very loving, friendly and attached chinchilla.

Especially towards the聽primary caregiver and owner as they begin to recognize you.

Chinchillas in the first few weeks of being acclimated to a new home aren鈥檛 designed to do a whole lot of anything.

All they do during this time is hide and sleep within their nest box and get used to sounds, smells, and visuals around the house in the room where you decide to keep them.

Allow them to sit in their cage.

Let them get used to sounds and sights and temperatures in the room where they will live before trying to build that friendship that will last forever.

Your chinchilla will thank you for this later.

Just remember, patience is key when adopting or caring for a chinchilla.

If you can show patience, the bond between you and your chinchilla will grow and prosper.

Common Chinchilla Behavior and Temperament

If you take our advice and exercise patience you will be on the right path towards building the bond and your chinchilla will grow into a very tame, controlled and loving pet with a deep affection toward their owners.

Chinchillas can do just fine with other chinchillas in their habitat or in most circumstances.

Simply meaning, most chinchillas are also friendly with other chinchillas.

Some chinchillas will even interact with other animals in the home as long it鈥檚 under calm and tame conditions.

Are Chinchillas Mean?

Most Chinchillas are not mean and don鈥檛 use any intimidating behavior to display that they may be ready to bite or hurt an individual or another animal.

You can read my post about if chinchillas are mean here.

Additionally, you can read my post about if chinchillas bite here.

Remember, chinchillas are the hunted, not the hunters in their natural habitat so a chinchilla is programmed to flee and run for safety.

Once they are comfortable and don’t feel threatened, they are naturally friendly and loving pets.


Chinchillas naturally do not want to fight or display non-friendly characteristics although it could be possible if provoked in the wrong manner.

This could include attempting to hold a chinchilla when they don’t like being held.

A Few Non-Intentional, Non-Friendly Behaviors

The most un-friendly and unwelcomed behavior a chinchilla may display is the act of waking you at odd hours due to being crepuscular.

I’m kidding.

Obviously the chinchilla is not doing this intentionally.

This only means that they are the most active at dusk and dawn.

For those of you who don鈥檛 like an early morning wake up call, it鈥檚 best to have a separate sleeping room for your chinchilla.

In some situations, a female chinchilla may also spray urine if they are extremely scared or attempting to tell you to back off.

Additionally, chinchillas are known to slip their fur when they are terrified as well.

This is another defense mechanism chinchillas use in the wild to escape predators.

It’s a form of chinchilla shedding and it’s where an entire clump of hair will release from your chinchilla.

Don’t worry your chinchilla’s hair will grow back quickly and it’s completely normal for this to happen.

Don’t rush to brush your chinchilla or try to remedy the situation.

It will happen often over the course of your chinchilla’s life.

Outside of that, your chinchilla won鈥檛 do much to annoy you or display any violent or non-friendly behaviors.

Again, chinchillas make great pets and most people who own one couldn鈥檛 imagine life without one.

They are a one of kind animal to care for and raise.

Chinchillas are also extremely intelligent and will often surprise you.

Don’t Irritate Your Chinchilla

Chinchillas are very structured.

They like routines to remain the same.

No, your chinchilla won鈥檛 go on a violent rampage if you miss feeding time, a scheduled cage cleaning or even the common dust bath day.

However, it is best for building trust and a strong bond with your chinchilla for them to know they can count on these routines and behaviors.

It goes a long way for you and your chinchilla and your chinchilla becoming even more happy and friendly as time passes.

Include activities that are routine to help build the bond and relationship.

These could include the following activities:

路聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Play Time, Out of the Cage/ Bonding Time

路聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Feeding Time

路聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Dust Bath Time

路聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Cage Bedding Change Time

And of course, the occasional treat from time to time such as chinchilla safe fruit or other foods that are deemed to be chinchilla safe and healthy can be a great way for you to interact with your chinchilla in a friendly manner.

If you aren’t 100% sure of all the foods chinchilla can and will eat, be sure to see my guide on the link a few words back.

They are very alert animals and get used to these time blocks and structures quickly.

Abnormal timing or unwanted loud sounds or activity can startle your chinchilla easily if they aren鈥檛 used to it.

They may even display some sounds such as barking or chirping back to you in these situations which are ways and signs that your chinchilla is specifically trying to be “non-friendly” or let you know to give them a little space.

Again, this doesn鈥檛 cause your chinchilla not to be friendly with you in the future.

It鈥檚 best practice for you to pay attention to these warning signals and provide the space for your chinchilla that they are asking for.


Do Chinchillas Make Great Pets?

Yes, chinchillas make good family pets.

Chinchillas are a top 10 small pet if you ask me for kids of all ages and adults.

It鈥檚 important your young kids don鈥檛 mishandle or chase a chinchilla around due to overheating.

Outside of that precaution, chinchillas have long life spans and require minimal money and effort needed outside of love and affection, chinchillas make for a fantastic house pet if you ask me.

Are Chinchillas Aggressive?

No, Chinchillas are not aggressive.

Chinchillas may be timid, reserved or even scared but when threatened, it’s rare for a chinchilla to show aggression.

Typically, they will hide instead or at the very worst, spray urine or make different sounds.

Chinchillas may strike at your finger if you have leftover food on them or they may bite an un-welcomed hand that startles them.

Typically, this will not be the owner鈥檚 hand but it could be if you are extremely loud or handle your chinchilla in a non-friendly manner.

In all honesty, I’m shocked this ever happens to anyone.

I have friends and family that have never met my 1-year-old female chinchilla and she has never been anything but sweet and inviting towards them.

However, I would be lying to state it’s not possible.

I’ve read enough forums and online communities from other chinchilla owners to understand that it is possible and things do happen.

However, if it makes you feel any better, I have never once had a problem with my chinchilla.

No problems with biting or showing any aggressive behavior towards anyone even if they are not a part of the family.

My chinchilla even acts friendly towards my 100-pound yellow lab.

It鈥檚 important to learn how to handle your chinchilla and care for them correctly to avoid this ever being an issue.

Outside of that, no chinchillas are not aggressive and are more of a scared, timid animal just looking to relax and love their owners.

A quick tip for making this transition quickly is learning how to pick your chinchilla up correctly and safely using the base of the tail technique.

Often, chinchilla owners state this is the only problem area they have ever had with irritating their chinchilla.

Picking them up incorrectly.

Final Thoughts

Most chinchillas are friendly in most circumstances.


Does it take time to grow a bond with the owner?

Yes, of course.

This is true of any animal.

The chinchilla needs to warm up the environment and warm up the owner鈥檚 voice, smell and touch.

It won鈥檛 be long until you have a strong bond and relationship with your chinchilla and the two of you are enjoying dust baths and playtime on the regular.

Share Your Thoughts On This Topic

Do you have any stories about your chinchilla and how friendly chinchillas can be?

Any stories where your chinchilla may have displayed some anger or aggression?

Be sure to share your stories and leave a comment below.

As always thanks for reading.

I appreciate you.


Josh Martin

My Name is Josh and this is my 4 year-old female chinchilla "Chili". We created Planet Chinchilla to share all the stories about owning a chinchilla that you need to know. I'm the Author of the eBook "The Ultimate Chinchilla Care Guide, From Adoption and On"

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