Do Chinchillas Need Shots [When to Call the Vet]

Chinchillas are unique rodents and make for entertaining and fantastic pets.

Chinchillas are, however, slightly unknown to new potential owners when it comes to how to provide the best care possible.

One of the questions that frequently arise from someone considering adopting a chinchilla is referencing the potential vet needs and vaccinations a chinchilla may require.

More specifically, do chinchillas need shots?

I’ve owned a chinchilla now for several years, and here is what I can tell you on this subject.

So, do chinchillas need shots? No chinchillas do not need shots or vaccinations. Chinchillas need minimal veterinarian visits unless they become ill or injured. Chinchillas need a proper diet and proper care to remain happy and healthy but do not need any initial or subsequent vaccinations.

If you are anything like me, you likely have a few questions that come to mind following up on the initial question we answered above.

Luckily, I’ve been in your shoes and want to answer all these questions for you in one easy to read post today.

In this post, I plan to detail what you need to know about chinchillas when it comes to vaccinations, vet costs, and when a chinchilla should see a veterinarian.

I’ve detailed what I plan to cover below.

You can use any of those links to navigate quickly through this post.


Here is what I have on the lesson plan for this brief 3-minute post.

As I stated previously if you don’t feel like listening to my ramble, feel free to use the links directly above to navigate to any specific section of this post that you desire to learn more about.

Otherwise, if you are new to owning a chinchilla and have those 3 minutes to spare, I recommend you check out the full post directly below.

Here are the details.

Do Chinchillas Need Shots and Vaccinations?

Here’s the deal with chinchilla’s when it comes to the adoption and vaccinations needed.

Chinchillas are relatively healthy pets right at the time of adoption in most situations.

Outside of their owners, breeders, and perhaps other chinchillas, they don’t have much contact with the outside world.

Primarily since they aren’t meant to be and shouldn’t be allowed outside.

Due to this, their need for vaccinations is nearly non-existent.

The shots and vaccinations your accustomed to needing for other pets such as dogs and cats are not needed at the time of adoption or after for chinchillas.

Chinchillas are easy to care for in this fashion.

However, that doesn’t mean that a vet should never be utilized for your new chinchilla.

Next, I want to cover those situations on when it makes sense and when the ideal times are to see a vet with your new chinchilla.

When Are Vets Needed with Chinchillas?

I’ve got good news when it comes to the need for vet visits with chinchillas.

In general, this is a cost you can expect to avoid, for the most part, with chinchillas.

With a proper diet, chinchillas can live long and healthy lives.

Especially when you provide the best care possible and meet their social needs as well.

In general, a balanced diet, plenty of clean water, and a clean cage can go a long way towards ensuring you never deal with needing a vet for your chinchilla.

However, don’t feel too comfortable with this information just yet.

It is still possible for a chinchilla to become ill from time to time, which, of course, would require you to see a vet certified in caring for chinchillas.

Initial Vet Visits Are A Good Idea

Initial vet visits, although not 100% necessary, are never a bad idea when first adopting any pet.

Some reputable or local breeders may provide health guarantees on their chinchillas, but it’s never a bad idea to get an initial exam to get initial weights and overall health for your chinchilla.

This gives you a good baseline of your chinchilla’s initial health status and allows you to ask additional questions about diet and care that you may not be familiar with right out of the gates.

Your initial visit with the vet can also be used to check other everyday items off the list that can include the following:

  • Ensuring Your Chinchillas Teeth Are Proper Color and Length
  • Check Your Chinchillas Heart
  • Check Your Chinchillas Ears
  • Check Your Chinchillas Eyes
  • Examine Your Chinchillas Fur

In some situations, the vet may even take initial x-rays of your chinchilla so that your vet has a good baseline of data and information to reference in the future in case your chinchilla ever has a return visit due to injury or illness.

Outside of this initial visit, I’d honestly advise against returning to the vet unless needed.

Stress can be one of the most common ways for a chinchilla to become ill and even pass away.

Visiting the vet and traveling with a chinchilla is one of the most stressful situations you can put your chinchilla in.

The chances are higher that you are being counter-productive, visiting the vet with your chinchilla as opposed to being pro-active, and helping your chinchilla to remain healthy.

However, if you do notice different behavior or believe your chinchilla may be dealing with an injury or illness, then it is important that you do see a vet as quickly as possible.

Primarily because chinchillas tend to worsen quickly so the sooner, you can find the root of the issue, the better.

Common Health Concerns and Issues with Chinchillas

I wouldn’t necessarily classify any illnesses or injuries with chinchillas as common due to how seldom they tend to occur.

However, some of the issues a chinchilla may encounter are more prevalent than others.

This can include issues such as the following:

If any of these are present and you don’t feel comfortable handling on your own, it’s imperative to see a vet as soon as possible.

Something as simple as a hair ring with a chinchilla can lead to urinary tract blockages and more severe issues if they aren’t handled promptly.

Proper Care and Diets Go A Long Way with Chins

I know we touched on this briefly at the beginning of this post, but I wanted to touch on it one more time.

Providing a great diet and great care can almost eliminate your chinchilla from ever needing to make that stressful visit to the vet.

Ensure that your chinchilla is primarily eating a balanced diet of timothy hay in addition to pellets.

Ensure your chinchilla always has plenty of clean and freshwater.

Make sure that you are keeping your chinchilla in a safe or recommended chinchilla cage.

Doing these small things can ensure you have a new family pet and a bond that can last several decades.

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, the lack of need to visit a vet regularly with a chinchilla is not only a cost-saver but a huge reason why chinchilla makes fantastic pets.

Chinchillas are not a difficult pet to meet their needs and to provide excellent care for.

Some simple methods with a little supervision and love can go a long way towards ensuring your chinchilla is happy and healthy.

Chili and I appreciate you stopping by, and we wish you the best of luck with your new chinchilla.

Share Your Thoughts

As always, Chili and I encourage the readers to share their opinions and thoughts on the subject.

When do you take your chinchilla to the vet, and what other recommendations can you provide to all the new chinchilla owners reading?

As always, we appreciate you stopping by and reading today, and we will catch you next time.

Closely Related Chinchilla Topics You May Enjoy

Sometimes, you didn’t get all the information needed when you stopped by.

Due to this, I’ve placed some related topics, and blog posts I’ve put together for you directly below that can help provide further information on the topic or closely related topics.

Use the links below to navigate to those other readings.



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"

One thought on “Do Chinchillas Need Shots [When to Call the Vet]

  1. I feel it’s great that you provide in depth information about chinchillas online because from what I have seen these pets are so often mistreated because of lack of information. In my region there are a lot of vets that promote vaccinating chinchillas just to get money when I am not even sure that kind of medicine or liquid they are pouring into the animals body. Keep up the work, you really are helping new time owners.

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