When you consider buying a new pet, a chinchilla may be in your favorite line-up. But then you ask: how much does a chinchilla cost? Of course, the price of a chinchilla itself isn’t the only cost that you need to consider. There is also food, the habitat, and all the other things that chinchillas specifically need.
Before you look any further, let’s dive into how much a chinchilla costs, from start to finish.
Finding Your Own Chinchilla
The most important cost is the pet itself! Here are some factors that come into play:
- Color: Uncommon coats, like violet and patterned chinchillas, will cost more. Common colors like grey, beige, and tan, often come cheapest.
- Age: Younger chinchillas (less than one year old) are often twice as expensive as older chins.
- Adoption or buying: Adopting will be cheaper, but you will have fewer options to choose from.
Chinchillas’ costs will vary depending on how much the breeder or seller prices them. They usually range from $150 to $300 each, but rates could be much lower or much higher – depending on where you look.
Chinchillas are also social rodents. Keeping just one will make you chinchilla lonely – to the point where their lifespan even decreases. However, if you want to keep two chinchillas of different genders and are worried about them mating, you can also have them neutered. Costs will vary depending on the veterinarian doing the operation. Neutering costs around $120, while spaying costs around $160.
Taking care of a chinchilla isn’t a walk in the park, but it’s not impossible either. When caring for your chin, you’ll have to think about their food, shelter, and other provisions. Listed below are the items you’ll need.
The cage or other enclosure in which your chinchilla lives should be no less than 3 x 2 x 2 feet. You’d need ample space for your chinchilla to move and jump around. It may roughly cost you as low as $125 to $300, depending on the size of the cage and the materials used to make it.
Chins love to eat; as a matter of fact, chinchillas eat dozens of times a day! Unlike us humans, who have three set meal times, these fluffy rodents will feast all day long. As such, you should always double check that their food bowl isn’t empty.
Since they eat very frequently, you’ll have to provide a lot of food. Each bag roughly costs around $8 to $20, depending on the brand. You may also have a chinchilla that requires a special diet, raising costs.
Chinchillas make a great deal of mess. For this reason, you’ll need beddings to soak up the urine and gather all the droppings your chinchilla makes. Beddings cost around $8 to $15, depending on the brand, variety, and materials used. Beddings with special functions, like scented and hypoallergenic beddings, will also raise the price.
Ceramic or Metal Food Dish
Food dishes made out of metal or ceramic for chinchillas are highly recommended. As a responsible pet owner, avoid plastic food dishes at all costs. These fluffy rodents will chew on everything they can; plastic is toxic and can lead to illness or death. Ceramic or metal food dishes range from $4 to $10.
Glass Water Bottle
Since chinchillas are very active, they need to stay hydrated. Again, plastic is a huge no-no, as it can be a choking or poisoning hazard. Using glass will reduce bacteria, lessening your chin’s risk of getting sick. Purchasing one may cost anywhere from $5 to $25, depending on the specific bottle you choose.
Rodents are known for their impressive ability to chew, and chinchillas are no exception. Chewing is essential, too; their large front teeth need to be regularly sharpened. Otherwise, they can develop problems with their teeth, leading to problems with eating.
Chew toys are sold at around $5 to $10, and come in a variety of shapes and materials. Before buying a toy, check to see if it is safe for chinchillas.
Dust and Dust Bathhouse
Chinchillas keep themselves clean by taking dust baths. These baths aren’t made from just any dust, but with special dust that can absorb moisture, oils, and dirt. Often, this dust is made from pumice rock. The dust itself can cost you around $10 to $15.
You can use pretty much anything for a bathhouse. There are specific products on the market, however, which are great to ensure that dust doesn’t get everywhere in the cage. Some of them have adorable designs, too. Nonetheless, if you do not care much for appearances – a big, cheap, ceramic or metal bowl is enough. These range from $4 to $10. Branded bathhouses can be bought at around $20.
Chinchillas love to burrow and hide. They do this to de-stress or just to play. Like bathhouses, these can be made of any small items, as long as they’re coated in non-toxic materials and aren’t made of plastic. You can easily find a suitable hide house for $10 to $15.
So, go ahead and add these things to your shopping list. For a few hundred dollars, you could have an exotic, adorable, and lovable pet.