Are Chinchillas Social Animals? {How Much Time And Attention They Really Need}}

Do you wonder if you’re spending enough time with your chinchilla? Are chinchillas social animals?

How much time should you spend with a chinchilla per day? Should you get another chinchilla to keep each other company while you are busy?

These beautiful creatures enjoy life with you and with their counterparts, but we should find out more about, “Are Chinchillas Social Animals?”

Are Chinchillas Social Animals?

Yes. Chinchillas are considered social, friendly and fairly easy to care for. They will benefit from 2-4 hours of interaction with you per day.

Otherwise, it would be best to get another chinchilla for them to keep each other company. You can groom, play, cuddle or take your chinchilla out with you, but keep in mind that this furry friend of yours grazes and poops all day!

Are Chinchillas Social With Their Owners?

Yes. Chinchillas will need some time to adjust to a new life in your home. Once bonding is done slowly over a matter of days to a few weeks, your chinchilla will be happy to see you. They will squawk, run to the edge of their cage and greet you.

Chinchillas will wish for you to make contact once trust is built. They will happily accept food from you and give you gentle little nibbles to say that they appreciate you.

If you find that 2-4 hours a day of social interaction with your chinchilla is too much, consider adding another one to keep themselves entertained and social together.

Is It Better to Have 1 or 2 Chinchillas?

We believe it’s better to have 2 chinchillas rather than one. When you are already making the effort to house, feed and care for one, why not add another?

The benefit is that they will give each other attention and keep themselves entertained. This is how chinchillas live in the wild so why not try to replicate that?

Rather than building a large colony of chinchillas that live together in your home as they do in the wild, one friend with another will suffice as two chinchillas are better than one.

Are Chinchillas Ok Alone?

Yes. Plenty of chinchillas live alone, but they receive a lot of attention, care and love from a family who accepts them into their home. Chinchillas are social and will desire contact with you once the relationship is secure and trust has been built.

They will also like to retreat or have some privacy at times as well. This is why we set up slight hiding spaces in spacious cages for them to enjoy some quiet time as well.

Every chinchilla’s personality is unique and slightly differs from one another. Enjoy the experience and do not feel pressure to add another chinchilla if you can give 2-4 hours of attention to your furry little companion.

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Do Chinchillas Like to Be Cuddled?

Yes. A chinchilla will not cuddle with you right away. They may back off and shy away for now, but in time, with patience, praise and treat rewards, your chinchillas will come to you to initiate contact and cuddles.

They are curious and will “come out of their shell” figuratively when they have warmed up to you and your household members.

Chinchillas are affectionate and desire company. They will show you by coming towards you or squawking for attention in an attempt to ask for some cuddle time.

How Do Chinchillas Show Affection?

Chinchillas can show affection by nestling or cuddling up close to you. Another popular and common method of showing their affection is by nibbling or giving little “love bites”.

Since chinchillas groom themselves constantly and their counterparts in group cages or in the wild, they are showing you the same respect, love and care by attempting to groom you as well with these little nibbles.

Can I Leave My Chinchilla Alone for a Week?

It’s best to not leave a chinchilla alone for a week. This is considered too long for a social animals who will show signs of loneliness and depression. They may give up eating and become lethargic.

This could lead to complications in their immune, nervous and digestive systems. There will be a build-up of poop and urine in a cage that is not very spacious. Please consider a friend or neighbor to visit your chinchilla for some attention and conversation.

Keeping more than one chinchilla together in a cage while you are away helps them to prevent boredom and loneliness that could be bring on other negative behaviors or health issues.

Do Chinchillas Need Constant Attention?

No. Chinchillas are great at letting you know that it’s time for them to have some alone time. They will retreat to the far end of their cage and you should not be offended by it.

They need some privacy sometimes as well. Chinchillas like to sleep many times during the day and might need some time to rest. Please supervise your chinchillas outside of the cage and give attention for at least 2-4 hours a day.

Do Chinchillas Need Human Interaction?

Chinchillas do not live alone in the wild. They are witnessed interacting and living in social colonies. In domestic settings, a chinchillas relies on you to become part of their family.

They wish for attention and interaction from you. This is done vocally, physically and through treat praises.

You can play and cuddle, but if it seems to be too much for you, getting a second chinchilla can actually make things easier by allowing them to give each other attention and entertainment while you are busy.

How Much Attention Do Chinchillas Need?

A chinchilla would be best served with as much attention and time you can possibly offer. 2-4 hours day of interaction near you or with you is recommended.

They are active creatures who will benefit with:

  • attention
  • interaction
  • playtime
  • chewing
  • exploration
  • toys
  • spacious cages
  • more chinchillas

Always supervise your chinchillas when they are out of their cage. If you feel that 2-4 hours of conversation, play time and cuddles are too much for you, add a second chinchilla.

This will relieve you of the time it takes to keep them entertained to prevent boredom, depression or health issues that can result from isolation.

How Hard Is It to Own a Chinchilla?

Every chinchilla is unique. Some will demand more attention while others will shy away for better portions of the day. The overall difficulty of owning a chinchilla is subjective, but we feel that it shouldn’t be hard.

With bonding, trust and commitment to each other, your chinchilla will make life fun and pleasurable. They will groom themselves and excrete odor-free droppings, usually in one area of their cage.

They are not usually noisy, but will squeak to let you know how happy they are to see you. Chinchillas need:

  • Suitable sized enclosure or cage
  • Bedding
  • Lots of hay
  • Chew toys
  • Dust bath at least once a week
  • Attention
  • Cuddles
  • Alone time
  • Possibly another chinchilla friend

Can Chinchillas Live Together?

Yes. Chinchillas live together in large colonies in the wild and can enjoy partnership or group interaction within your home as well.

Some of them exert dominance over others, but generally, with enough space in the cage and hiding spaces, they will find peace and comfort together.

The bigger the cage, the better it will be for everyone involved. Consider a cage larger than 3ft x 2ft x 2ft.

What to Do If Chinchillas Are Fighting

Chinchillas are fairly peaceful and social, but sometimes a few tussles may occur. Make sure they have enough space to call their own within the same cage or get separate cages side by side.

There is a chance that your chinchillas will not get along. Here are some signs that they are fighting:

  • Jumping or chasing at each other
  • Scratching, clawing
  • Biting

Usually the fights are not aggressive. The less dominant chinchilla will retreat and may give up eating and drinking until you shift things around. Add hiding spaces and give them both more of your time and attention.

Can Chinchillas Play Together?

Yes. Chinchillas will also need time to bond with each other. If they have space and hiding spots, they will slowly introduce themselves to each other and share common areas.

They will play together if you are offering toys and active play areas.

Chinchillas will:

  • wag tails
  • make noises like gentle chirps
  • chase each other
  • jump together
  • nibble
  • groom

This is how you can tell that your chinchillas are playing together or communicating with one another.

Can you sleep with your chinchilla?

No. You should not sleep at night with your chinchilla. They have varied sleep cycles that will not match yours. You might feel nibbling in the middle of the night.

They like to wake often throughout the night and groom themselves, use the bathroom or exercise. You will be disturbed and this will not be beneficial for a chinchilla who also needs some privacy at night.


Thank you for visiting for the best information to help you enjoy the life of your pocket pet companion in a fun, safe & healthy way.


My name is Anna and I work full time in my local pet shop where we sell many animals that I write about on this site. I love all animals and love writing about them.