If you own a pet chinchilla or you want to adopt a chinchilla soon, it’s perfectly normal to ask yourself if traveling with a chinchilla is permitted and even safe.
I’m glad you are asking this question. It goes to show you plan to provide the best care possible to your chinchilla and that you are willing to do a little homework in advance.
Hats off to you.
I’ve owned a chinchilla for several years now, and here is what I can tell you on this topic.
So, can you travel with chinchillas? Yes, you can travel with chinchillas. To travel with chinchillas, you need to have a breathable travel crate or use their current habitat. The travel crate and environment need to remain at proper temperatures to avoid overheating or your chinchilla becoming too cold. Stress for your chinchilla needs to be minimal during travel.
The answer listed above is not the only considerations that you need to keep in mind.
I’m also aware that the answer likely sparked several follow up questions that you may have.
Luckily, I plan to dive just a tad bit deeper and cover everything I think you need to know on this topic.
In fact, I’ve created easy to navigate links directly below that will allow you to skip to any specific section of this post that you desire or need to learn more about.
Here is what is on the lesson plan for today’s quick 2-minute post:
- Can You Travel with Chinchillas?
- Consider A Few Options Before Travel
- Ensuring the Environment Is Safe
- Using Ideal Travel Carriers and Cages
- Can Chinchillas Travel on Airplanes?
- Other Considerations
- Final Thoughts
- Share Your Thoughts and Concerns on Chinchilla Travel
As stated previously, if you need to jump around in this post quickly or have limited time to read, feel free to use the links directly above to skip to any specific section of this post.
Otherwise, grab a cup of coffee, and I’ll break down what you need to know about traveling with a chinchilla.
Here are the details to understand.
Can You Travel with Chinchillas?
We started off this post, stating that yes, you can travel with chinchillas.
However, it shouldn’t be taken lightly, and you should do at least some prep work in advance.
It’s important to understand that traveling and a chinchilla being removed from their environment can be stressful.
Like most of us, chinchilla owners understand, stress can cause a chinchilla to overheat and potentially cause other issues as well.
Your best bet when traveling with your chinchilla is to attempt to make it as comfortable as possible for your chinchilla.
This means that you ensure to do the little things that will make the experience as calm as possible for your chinchilla.
For starters, I always recommend using the cage that your chinchilla uses on a daily bases depending if it will make logical sense or fit in your vehicle.
Several chinchilla cages can break down into smaller sections, which could make this possible.
An example would be the Critter Nation 2 Dual Level Cage (Link to Amazon) that I’ve used for my chinchilla for the last 2 years.
This cage easily breaks down into 2 sections that stack on top of each other.
If you can disconnect just one level and own even a small SUV or can fold down seats, 1 section will likely fit just fine.
You see my review on the Critter Nation Cage if you need further information here.
This helps to ensure that your chinchilla still somewhat feels at home.
The good news is that in most situations, your chinchilla will become more relaxed as the vibration and movement of the vehicle kicks in, and they may start to doze off into a nice nap.
You also need to ensure that you are still providing an adequate amount of water or keeping a water bottle attached for your chinchilla during your travels.
Lastly, make sure that you are keeping the vehicle at proper temperatures and avoid the vehicle from getting too hot or too cold.
Clearly, this means using a completely breathable cage.
If you are using the cage or a portion of the chinchilla cage you always use, this won’t be difficult.
If you need to use a travel type carrier cage for your chinchilla, be sure to keep reading for my recommendations further into this post about which options are best.
Traveling with a Chinchilla Is Permitted but Should Be Avoided If Possible
I know that we just discussed that you can travel with a chinchilla, and it’s bound to come up at some point during a 20-year ownership period with your chinchilla.
Chinchillas live for a long time so travel is definitely something to plan ahead for.
However, I did want to be perfectly clear that you have better options, if possible, that should be considered.
First, use someone trusted that understands chinchillas and simply have them pet-sit your chinchilla while you are away.
Your chinchilla remaining at home in an environment that they trust is a much better alternative than causing stress or traveling long distances with your chinchilla.
Secondly, most areas will offer pet boarding.
If you don’t have anyone you can trust to watch your chinchilla, call around to local boarding facilities to get rates and information about what it would cost to keep your chinchilla safe and cared for the duration of your travels.
A short trip to one of these facilities and remaining in a climate-controlled and within a safe environment is still far less stressful than a long road trip.
Plain and simple.
However, I know that this isn’t always possible.
Because of this, let’s continue discussing other important information you need to be taking account of if you are going to travel with your chinchilla.
Ensuring the Environment Is Safe
This is common sense more than anything.
Clearly, you want the environment to be safe for your chinchilla during travel.
This isn’t only ensuring the proper temperatures, my friends.
This also includes ensuring that you never use any plastic or mesh carrier materials.
Chinchillas under stress may chew or get more destructive than usual.
Using these materials could cause your chinchilla to chew through the carrying case or even ingest harmful substances.
Clearly, if you are operating the vehicle, it’s going to be difficult to monitor everything your chinchilla is doing in the back.
Make sure to use recommended travel cases and avoid these materials.
Additionally, never place items such as towels or anything with string fabric inside of the travel case under the impression that it may cause more comfort.
The string can kill a chinchilla if ingested, and again, they may be more chewy than usual under the stress of the travels.
Lastly, don’t cover the carrier or the cage that your chinchilla is riding in.
This is a common mistake that chinchilla owners may make thinking it provides a better atmosphere for a chinchilla to relax or fall asleep too.
However, this is only going to cause the carrier case or cage to be less breathable and increase the chance of overheating.
Again, overheating can be fatal rather quickly with chinchillas, so be sure never to cover the carrier and keep that A/C unit in the vehicle working and turned on.
Using Ideal Travel Carriers and Cages
Alright, let’s assume that you don’t have the option to have a pet-sitter at your home, and you also have no local boarding options for your chinchilla.
Let’s also assume that your cage you use in your home simply won’t fit in your vehicle.
This leaves you with only 1 option, and that’s choosing the best carrier cage or travel cage for your chinchilla.
I personally highly recommend a travel cage for your chinchilla, such as the Prevue Travel Cage (Link to Amazon).
This is going to be about the best option for any considerable distance trip and is high quality and safe.
Not to mention, it’s the cage I currently use for travel if need be.
Again, this is a long-distance travel option.
For a cheaper option and a shorter trip where your chinchilla doesn’t need as much time or room to maneuver about, I highly recommend a smaller but durable option such as the Midwest Folding Rabbit and Rodent Cage (Link to Amazon).
For the most budget-friendly option and for trips within state lines or shorter trips, I recommend the Kaytee Travel Carrier (Link to Amazon)
The Kaytee travel carrier is best for local journeys and local travel.
More prolonged travel situations require your chinchilla to move freely still, access their food, and access their water bottle.
All these options are safe material and are completely breathable.
Simply ask yourself, how far are we going, and how often will travel take place?
Then, simply ask yourself, which cage would be most comfortable and safe for this distance of travel and time in a vehicle.
That should point you in the right direction as to which of these 3 travel chinchilla cages make the most sense for you.
Can Chinchillas Travel on Airplanes?
This question also comes up frequently, and it’s not shocking at all.
Chinchillas are sold in several countries, and it’s common to relocate in life.
So, can chinchillas travel on airplanes? Yes, chinchillas can travel on airplanes. Some airlines will allow for a certain number of pets inside of the cabin under the passenger’s seat, and some will allow your chinchilla to be placed in climate-controlled cargo cabins. Check with your airline to see which option is best for your chinchilla.
I personally have not traveled on an airplane with my chinchilla and always could have a family member pet-sit my chinchilla if need be.
However, I did have a close call for travel that required me to investigate this question in advance.
The answer provided above is as simple and easy as it gets.
Simply call the airlines, check what their pet policies are, and ask yourself which method you are more comfortable with.
If you can’t stomach the thought of your chinchilla in the cargo holding area, look for an airline that allows your chinchilla in the cabin.
And lastly, if this isn’t a permanent move or travel, still always consider just allowing a friend or a family member to look after your chinchilla while you are away.
Again, this will always be the best solution.
Outside of everything discussed thus far into this post, I simply recommend considering all options before making any drastic decisions to bring your chinchilla on an airplane or make cross-country trips.
When you do decide that it’s the only option, simply ensure you are providing the safest, most comfortable, and best atmosphere possible for your chinchilla.
The less stress the travel ultimately causes your chinchilla, the better.
At the end of the day, we all have lives that require travel.
It’s part of everyday society. Whether it’s for work, pleasure, or just to visit an old friend, it’s bound to come up.
Chinchillas make fantastic pets.
They are also extremely easy to care for.
Yes, traveling with a chinchilla is an option.
Just be sure to keep them comfortable and consider the alternatives we discussed in this post to ultimately provide the best care possible for your adorable new chinchilla.
I wish you the best of luck with your chinchillas and safe travels to everyone reading.
Share Your Thoughts on Traveling with a Chinchilla
Do you travel with your chinchilla, or have you in the past?
What other tips can you provide the readers that we haven’t already discussed in this post?
Do you recommend it in general?
Be sure to share your thoughts, stories, and concerns by dropping a comment below.
As always, Chili and I appreciate you stopping by and will catch you next time.