Are you planning to leave town for a few days and to leave your chinchilla home alone?
If so, it is important to know how long chinchillas can go without food.
We’ll get into that in a minute. Suffice to say: it’s a very short time.
Even if you only leave for a weekend, you will need to make absolutely certain you leave your pet sufficient food.
And if you leave longer for a weekend, please find someone to come and check on your chinchilla daily. They should refill the food bowl, hay feeder, and water bottle.
These animals can go much longer than you think without water. But the amount of time they can go without food is much shorter than you think.
Keep reading to learn exactly how long your chinchilla can survive without food. We will cover everything you need to know about the topic.
- 1 How Long Can Chinchillas Go Without Food?
- 2 How Long A Chinchilla Can Go Without Food: Final Thoughts
How Long Can Chinchillas Go Without Food?
The longest a chinchilla can go without food is 12 hours. These rodents are primarily herbivores, which means they need to eat regularly to get enough energy to survive.
I always keep the hay feeder in my chinchilla’s cage stocked with Timothy hay and I fill up her food bowl with pellets once or twice a day. She grazes on both throughout the day and I make sure neither is ever empty. That way she always has food and can eat whenever she wants.
What Will Happen If My Chinchilla Goes Without Food?
If your chinchilla goes any longer than 12 hours without food, it will most likely need veterinary attention. It would cause your chinchilla to become critically ill, even to the point where it could become fatal.
This is due to the sensitivity of its digestive system. To avoid a seriously ill chinchilla, I recommend making sure your chinchilla gets food pellets daily and that its hay feeder is constantly topped up.
How Much Should A Chinchilla Eat In A Day?
For such a small animal, you would be surprised how much a chinchilla eats in a day. They are constantly eating and usually end up consuming around 60 small meals every 24 hours! That works out at around one meal every 24 minutes.
Of course, these meals are very small, and you should only have to fill up your chinchilla’s food bowl and hay feeder once or twice a day. So even though they may graze through their food bowl throughout the day, it is still only be equivalent to two full meals.
How Much Food To Leave When You Are Out Of Town
You may have a vacation planned and are wondering if it would be possible to leave your chinchilla alone for the duration. This obviously depends on how long you are planning to be away.
If it is just the weekend, then you should be able to leave your chinchilla alone for the weekend. Just make sure you give it enough food to last through the couple of nights that you are away.
That said, I would not recommend doing this if you are a new owner of a chinchilla. You will need to know your chinchilla well so that you are able to leave it the correct amount of food. As a new chinchilla owner, you may be unsure of how much food your chinchilla goes through during the day.
If you are going away longer than a weekend, I would also advise having a family member or trusted friend go to your home to feed your chinchilla. A pet sitter is another option: someone who can come by once a day to fill up the food and water and check on your pet’s well-being.
Your chinchilla’s food bowl is only so big, and it won’t take long until your pet makes its way through all of its food. Not only this, but chinchillas are also social animals. Leaving them alone for an extended amount of time could add significant stress to their lives. It would be best to have someone come around, not only to feed your chinchilla, but also to provide some social interaction.
How Many Days A Chinchilla Can Go Without Water
Unlike us humans, a chinchilla can last much longer without water than without food. In fact, a chinchilla can go up to two weeks without a drop of water.
The main reason for this is the type of climate chinchilla have in their natural habitat. In the wild, the chinchilla lives in the Andes mountains in South America. It is an extremely dry environment.
Because it is hard to find water in this environment, the chinchilla has had to to adapt. Their bodies can function on a low amount of water. And if you look at your chinchilla’s pee, you’ll see that it is a deep orange, or almost red, color. This is due to how concentrated it is, as a result of them drinking minimal amounts of water.
However, just because a chinchilla can go a long time without water, it doesn’t mean that it should have to. You should make sure your chinchilla always has some fresh water available, so that it can be as comfortable as possible.
How Long A Chinchilla Can Go Without Food: Final Thoughts
Chinchillas can go two weeks without water, but they can’t even make it a single day without food. That is why you should always keep the hay feeder stocked and refill the food bowl daily. Maybe twice a day.
If you leave town for a weekend, be sure to leave plenty of food to keep your pet going while you are gone. And if you will be gone for longer, make sure you have someone who can come by to check on your pet and replenish the pellets, hay and water inside its cage.