If you own a chinchilla or just recently adopted a chinchilla, you may have some questions about the best diets and foods they can consume and a common question that arises is if a chinchilla can eat rabbit food or rabbit pellets.
Can chinchillas eat rabbit food?
I have now been raising my chinchilla for the past 5 years and here is what I can tell you on this topic:
No definitive answer has been reached about a chinchilla consuming rabbit food or rabbit pellets. However, when possible, rabbit pellets and rabbit food should be avoided for chinchillas. Chinchillas and rabbits have different dietary needs and providing rabbit pellets to a chinchilla may result in a lack of specific nutrients for your chinchilla.
Put simply, a chinchilla needs a diet designed and intended for a chinchilla.
How much different can rabbit food possibly be?
Why is feeding your chinchilla rabbit food or rabbit pellets such a big deal and something that should be avoided for your chinchilla?
Luckily, I plan to answer those common questions in today’s post.
Here’s what is on the lesson plan for today’s brief 2-min post.
- Can Chinchillas Eat Rabbit Food and Rabbit Pellets And Why Your Chinchilla Should Not Eat Rabbit Food
- Chinchilla Pellets Are Designed for Chinchillas Which Makes Them Safe For Chinchillas To Consume
- Are Any Rabbits Foods Safe for Chinchillas?
- Chinchillas Should Never Eat Rabbit Food or Rabbit Pellets
As stated previously, if you are in a hurry or only need the information in one specific area of this post, feel free to skip ahead using the links provided above.
The rest of this post will explain why rabbit food and rabbit pellets are not your best option for ensuring the proper diet and long, healthy lives for your chinchilla.
Can Chinchillas Eat Rabbit Food and Rabbit Pellets And Why Your Chinchilla Should Not Eat Rabbit Food
Here’s the thing.
Will a chinchilla eat rabbit food or rabbit pellets?
I’m also aware that rabbits are a more popular pet and that the common issue maybe that new chinchilla parents have easier access to rabbit pellets as opposed to chinchilla pellets.
I have even run into this issue at certain pet stores in my local area.
Rabbit accessories including food are easier to come by because a rabbit is not considered an exotic pet and is more popular to raise and own in general.
Unfortunately, the answer is still no.
Rabbit food and rabbit pellets should still be avoided and should not be fed to your chinchilla.
Chinchillas should be consuming nearly 80-90% of their diets in the form of hay.
The best chinchilla hays can include timothy hay, orchard grass, among others.
I have a full guide about the best chinchilla hay that you can see here.
When you struggle to find chinchilla pellets or food designed for your chinchilla specifically, you should lean towards other options such as ordering online.
Plenty of food options designed for chinchillas are available online such as Amazon.
Chinchilla Pellets are Designed for Chinchillas Which Makes Them Safe For Chinchillas To Consume
This is about as straightforward as it gets.
Chinchilla pellets are designed for chinchillas for a specific reason.
Chinchillas, like other rodents, have a small sensitive stomach, digestive tracts and can react poorly to specific food combinations.
Too much sugar can be a disaster.
Too much of anything can turn into an issue in all honesty.
Chinchillas need a blend of protein, fiber and need the ability to file down their teeth to remain healthy and to avoid issues.
Treats that are made for rabbits and pellets or other food mixes for rabbits should be avoided when feeding your chinchilla.
If you can’t find the pellets needed for your chinchilla at a local store, simply order them online instead.
The same goes for Timothy hay, but in most circumstances, you won’t run into this issue of not being able to pick up the hay locally.
Nonetheless, here’s the specific pellets I feed my chinchilla (Link to Amazon)
Additionally, I use this timothy hay for my chinchilla (Link to Amazon)
The links above are the exact same options I provide my chinchilla, and I can tell you that this far into being a chinchilla parent, I’ve never experienced any issues.
I’m not claiming that other options don’t exist, I just haven’t tried them all and can assure you that the two options above are 100% safe and my chinchilla does excellent with them.
Are Any Rabbits Foods Safe for Chinchillas?
Now, when it comes to a few other items that individuals feed their chinchillas or rabbits, you may have a few more options.
For the most part, chinchillas shouldn’t eat a vast majority of fruits, but some are okay.
Fresh fruits and fresh vegetables are never okay for a chinchilla and cause issues such as diarrhea and other serious illness.
The same would apply to a rabbit owner.
Chinchillas, if they do eat some fruits, it should be very minimal amounts and not on a frequent basis.
This also applies to vegetables.
Others Do’s and Don’ts with Chinchilla Diet’s
Outside of understanding that your chinchilla should not eat rabbit food or rabbit pellets, it’s essential to understand a few other basics.
In general, your chinchilla should be sticking to almost purely hay and chinchilla pellets.
Any form of treats should be minimal and not frequent.
Don’t try fruits or vegetables that you are unsure of with your chinchilla.
Don’t try any food that you are unsure of with a chinchilla.
Chinchilla can develop stomach issues very quickly and stick to the correct diet is always imperative for a chinchilla to live long, healthy, and balanced lives.
This leads me directly into my final tips you can implement when it comes to feeding your chinchilla the right foods, treats, and misc. Items.
Don’t Always Trust The Pet Store For Pellet Recommendations For Your Chinchilla
This may be the most important tip I can provide you.
Never trust the pet store or pictures that are placed on treats, foods, and other items.
Take the time to read the nutrition labels and ingredients.
Even speak to a vet if you are unsure.
If you haven’t noticed, it’s part of the evil marketing plan that these companies use to entice more purchases.
Many treats and foods in the pet stores that are safe for some rodents, still contain images of chinchillas on the bag.
This means absolutely nothing and using these for your chinchilla could be reckless and cause issues.
Stick to the high concentration of fiber and protein and keep sugar at minimum levels.
Once again, DO NOT trust the pictures or wording on treats or other foods you see online or at the pet store.
Ensure you read and understand what you are feeding your chinchilla before doing so.
Chinchillas Should Never Eat Rabbit Food or Rabbit Pellets
To recap, avoid rabbit pellets for your chinchilla.
Simply purchase chinchilla formulated pellets with the right ingredients and use online resources if you can’t locate or find chinchilla formulated pellets and hay at your local pet stores.
I use online stores all the time and never have issues.
It’s that easy and shouldn’t cause any additional budget or trouble for you.
Doing so increases your chinchilla’s health, happiness, and longevity.
It’s that easy, and I wish you luck with your upcoming adoption and new journey at becoming a chinchilla parent.
Chili and I wish you the best of luck with your new chinchilla and the journey you have ahead of you.
Do You Offer Rabbit Pellets and Rabbit Food To Your Chinchilla?
Have you used rabbit pellets or rabbit food for your chinchilla in the past?
Do you feel that anything was left out of this post that chinchilla owners need to be aware of when offering rabbit food or rabbit pellets to their chinchillas?
Do you have any other insider tips and tricks you can share with the readers?
Be sure to share your thoughts, concerns, and suggestions by dropping a comment below.
As always, Chili and I appreciate you stopping by and reading today and we will see you again next time.