site map/ about us, copyright/ pet chin resources (clubs, books, all star sites)/ critical points

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ChinCare is a LARGE resource site that was very rigorously maintained from 2002-9. It is now preserved for reference but not updated. See Site Map for content listing. Internal links are intact and any disconnect to an external link is resolvable by input to a search engine.

ChinCare supports the work of Piggie Poo Rescue, a guinea pig rescue (chins and guinea pigs are close relatives) in Arizona that demonstrates excellence in both rescue and education.

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There are some problems with Internet Explorer. A hyperlink may take you to the page, but not the exact spot; we apologize but can do nothing about that.


Chinchillas truly enjoy both music and TV, and TV goes a long way in helping chins cope when they're stuck in their cage for much of their nocturnal schedule. Read more...

If your chin doesn't gnaw chew toys -or- doesn't eat hay -or- has calcium deficiency (alfalfa hay is important and beneficial to a chin's diet!), then he's headed for malocclusion, which can end in a horrible death. Article

Chinchillas are territorial by nature, if you have more than one bonded group, read this.

Read: "Judging the Quality of Internet Care Information"


Also see: article by eRodent and ChinCare's adoption contract/ qualification assessment (.doc) and care sheet (.doc)

Chinchillas can be the ideal companion. Normally gentle and friendly creatures, they only bite or
spray urine in cases of abuse or when put under extreme duress. Even the most vocal chins don't
make noise often, their shedding is very minimal, their fecal droppings are small, hard and odorless
(and continually deposited!), and their urine won't smell as long as their cage
is kept clean. Basic
requirements include: a LARGE cage, a chin-proofed play area, and unlimited access (only ration
treats) to the dietary staples of fresh, high quality pellets, hay, and distilled or filtered water.

There ARE potential drawbacks to having a chin as a pet, however, so don't make the initial
investment unless you have acknowledged the following and are certain you can commit to
providing all the attention, time, energy and expense needed for an entire chinchilla lifetime:

Chinchillas themselves are NOT "HYPOALLERGENIC" nor is the hay they eat every day and the ample dust they bathe in regularly. They are not recommended for young children or as classroom pets for several reasons that directly relate to the chin's well-being and the children's expectations.

Although they appear cute and cuddly, chinchillas in general are not sedentary lap pets who will sit still and welcome lots of holding and cuddling. They are usually sociable and enjoy interacting with people, but they like to be on the move: exploring, energetic, playful. While some pets will accept being dominated and controlled by their owner, chins really do not. They prefer to have things on their terms: they have a keenly intelligent, curious and independent nature with a mind and will of their own and are best related to as companions rather than treated as mere pets. Some chins need to be socialized and can require a lot of time and patience before they're able to bond with their chinparent. It takes someone with maturity and intelligence, emotional as well as psychological, to truly appreciate them.

Chinchillas must be kept indoors in a climate-controlled environment. AIR CONDITIONING IS MANDATORY, not optional, for chins in climates where the temperature can reach 70°F. Heat plus high humidity (above 60%) can easily kill chinchillas, because they have the highest fur density of any land animal in the world.

Chinchillas think and behave a lot like small children, and their active, highly intelligent minds can easily become stressed or bored (a catalyst for various health and behavioral problems) if they are forced to sit, caged, for hours on end without sufficient environmental stimulation, exercise or interaction. Providing this, especially for a single chin who relies entirely on the chinparent for companionship, can be very TIME CONSUMING because out-of-cage activity requires constant supervision: chinchillas are rodents and they will gnaw, gouge or shred anything not sufficiently "chin-proofed." A LARGE cage to accomodate running and playing, a variety of chew toys, at least one hideaway per chin and a cage wheel will help decrease stress and boredom inside the cage while TV during waking hours will provide environmental stimulation when the chin isn't actively engaged in out-of-cage exercise and interaction.

Chinchillas are VERY LONG-LIVED! The average chinchilla life expectancy in captivity is 10-15 years, but with good genetics and good lifetime care they can live 20+ years. For that entire long term commitment they'll need knowledgeable, devoted care, regardless of whether their chinparent experiences a change in lifestyle or preferences: busier schedule, new hobby/ interest, going off to college, joining the military, relocating, starting a family, etc.

Pet stores often mis-sex chinchillas!! It's not unheard of for someone to buy a female that's already pregnant because the pet store grouped the animals by color/ price range instead of by gender. It's also not unusual for someone to buy a "same-sex" chin as company for the one they got from a pet store and end up with a litter because the pet store employee mistook the female chinchilla's urethral cone for a male chinchilla's penis. Before you buy, learn how to identify gender to prevent overpopulation and unwanted pets!

Most of the problems that chinparents eventually encounter have to do with a lack of accurate knowledge or familiarity in these areas: The Essentials, Environmental Stress Factors, conducting safe Introductions and Safety. Products marketed "for" chins may in fact harm or even kill them, for example: cedar bedding, wheels with spokes, plastic cage parts or accessories and cages with unsafe mesh width.

Chinchillas are regarded as an exotic animal. The "startup cost" for a new chinparent (see Zillah Chinchilla's basic list) is substantial and VET CARE FOR EXOTICS IS EXPENSIVE! For example, malocclusion, a relatively common and potentially lethal dental condition that chinchillas can suffer from, may be treatable if detected early by a yearly check-up head x-ray. The vet visit, with examination and x-ray, can easily cost over a hundred U.S. dollars.

When selecting a chin, health and temperament should be the foremost consideration, not strictly appearances. The colorful "mutations" (every color but the original gray is the result of recessive gene breeding and/ or inbreeding. Some colors are more established and stable than others) can be less hardy, not as long-lived and more erratically temperamented than the standard gray. Most importantly, every chin deserves "a good home"!

Note: ECBC and MCBA are not listed among our pet organizations because they are the U.S. pelter clubs. While we respect people's choices, we sincerely hope that someday the pet breeders who comprise the majority in both clubs will make progress in getting them to change direction and better represent the pet interests of their membership.

Chinchilla Breeder's Organization
CBO is a branch of The Chinchilla Club
Chinchilla Carers' Club
"UK-based club for all people interested in the care
and keeping of chinchillas as pets"
Chinchilla Club NZ
New Zealand-based, "the chinchilla's health and
welfare is of the foremost concern of the Club"
Chinchillas As Pets Association events
CAPA is a U.S.-based club
Chin Knights, Rodela Chinchilla and ChinChorro
Knights and Rodela are clubs sworn to uphold protection
for chinchillas from the fur industry, ChinChorro is a
organized to save the wild chinchilla
Save the Wild Chinchillas volunteer
A registered charity that helps educate people about
and restores habitat for the remaining wild chinchillas
The Chinchilla Club events
An international pet chinchilla organization
The National Chinchilla Society events
NCS is a UK club that publishes a bi-monthly informational
gazette, accepts overseas memberships and does not
support the fur industry

Since 2002 we have hand-reviewed nearly all the English language pet chinchilla care sites (over 700 as of 2008) on the web for the educational purposes of this site.
The following sites are, in our estimation, the most thoroughly informative (substantial coverage on most vital topics) and usually factually reliable pet chinchilla care sites on the web.
This list is subject to updates. Our Disclaimer and ChinCare's Principle applies.

Azure Chinchillas
Bettina's Fluffy Chins
Cheeky Chinchillas
Chin City
ChinBin in Oregon
Chinchilla Quest
Crystal Chinchillas, Belgium
Darren's Chinchilla Paradise, Singapore

Downsview Chinchillas
Dunja's House of Chinchillas

Ebony Dragon Chinchillas
Etc-Etc Chinchilla Page
Eyes of Texas Chinchillas

Keeping Chinchillas As Pets- A Guide
Kingdom Chinchillas

NOLA Chinchilla Rescue
Second Chance Chins

The ChinCare webmasters regretfully admit that we are linguistically challenged outside of our
native habitat, so this is not the most comprehensive list, just a sampling of what we've found:

Chinchilla Vienna
Danish Club/ Nordic Club
German, Austrian, Dutch, Swiss sites
Swedish, Danish and Norwegian sites

Asian: Forum
, Chinchilla Room, Cindy's Homepage
Dutch: Lima Chinchillas,
Vida Nueva Foundation
Finnish: Pet Chinchilla Association
French: Bernard et Bianca, Les Chinchillas de Sylvie, Chinchilla Corp
German: CHINCITTÀ, Chinchilla Post Online, ZooArt,
Chinchilla Lexicon sites: Museum, Photos, Books
Quinta Das Roedores
Spanish: Chinchiweb,,
Spanish Chinchilla Club, Forum, Latest newsletter(.pdf)
Swedish: Lavender Chinchilla

Chin Knight's Non-English Sites:
Murmel's Homepage/ Chinutopia/ Chin City
Chinchilla Paradies/ Sven's Chinchilla Homepage
Ottinger's Chinchilla Familien/ Chinchilla Villa
Petras Tierinsel/ ChinPower/ Chinchilla-Meli
Chinchilla Wunderwelt/ Silver Streak Chinchilla
Chinchilla-Villa Kunterbunt

Non-English Articles
Spanish article- Centro Veterinario Carlinda, .pdf
by Jaime E. Jiménez, PhD, et al:
Pet Guide Series (.pdf), in Japanese
"Glorious Past, Threatening Present" (.pdf), in Italian

Chinchilla Club Community Reference Library
Chinchilla Club Magazine Retail Newsletter
Chinchillas Unlimited Reference Library
Chinformative Forum Reference Library

ECO Magazine Membership required
Small Pet Club Online pet directory
UK UK news, resources, etc.

CA Chins Vet Reference Books/ Caitlin's Chinchillas CentralPets/ Cheeky Chinchilla Club/ TRO Chinchilla Lexikon/ Chinchilla Library
addall/ blackwellpublishing/
fetchbook/ GoogleBook/ usedbooksearch

Blue Moon Chinchillas/ Cheeky Chinchillas/
Chinchillaburg/ Dunja's House of Chinchillas/
Kritter Cards/
WWF (not chinchilla-specific)

JUST FOR FUN!...........
Videos, Games, Children's Page, Chin Wars and
more under "Extras"/ Chin Jump/ Jigsaw/ Haikus
Chin Dance/ Animated Photo Cube/ Retha's Puzzles
Coloring Book/ Self-Test for Chinchilla Addiction
Cartoon Gallery/ Merry's Memory Test/ Silly Images
Emily's Chinese Ink Art, Chinchilla Paintings
Puzzle and Crossword, Dusty Flips!/ Rodent Movies
Chinimations/ Chintoons by Herike Rehme
Mottos, Chin Lovers/ Animal Totems: The Chinchilla
Chin Movies, Videos/ Chinchilla Collectibles Museum
and The White Pages of Chinchilla Pictures
STAMPS: etc-etc, Chinchilla-Lexicon
LIVE WEBCAMS: Chinchilla/ Chinchilla-Lexikon
Drew's/ Lone Star/ sleepychinchilla

Chinchilla World's Pedigree Maker Freebie
Evans' Chinchilla Register
SITE HOSTING Freebie Chinchilla Club
ChinNet/ My Pets Pages
IMAGES Free, may require link back
Chinchilla City Icons/ Chinimations
Chinnie Potter/ Emma's Free Images
Paw-Talk Pocket Palz/ The Chinchillaburg

America's Teaching Zoo, Moorpark College, CA
Baltimore Zoo in MD/
Brandywine Zoo in DE
Catoctin Zoo in MD/ Lee Richardson Zoo in KS
Pueblo Zoo in CO/
San Francisco Zoo


We recommend these international forums: Chinwags, ChinsRus, Chinchillas Unlimited, and Chinformative Forum. Not only are they fur-free, their atmosphere and level of expertise are exceptional!

Be advised that there are some forums that act more as personality cults for their leadership, where bullying and misinformation are rife, and those forums are not on our list. Unlisted status does not necessarily make a forum one of those to avoid.

The following quote is from Chinwags. In our opinion this prudent and responsible approach should be adopted by all forums:

"Our first port of call if worried should always be the vets. We should try to remember the difference between our own experiences (which in themselves can vary in different situations) and information we have picked up along the way.

"Where possible would you please make clear where any details you mention came from, have you been through this or have you read it somewhere? If from a website/message board please provide a link where possible (or link and quote), so that other members may make a better judgement for themselves as to the validity of the details. We ask that you do not try to impose your views on others, just let's be here to share, comfort and help where we can."

International Chinchilla Meetup
Anti-Abuse Forum:
Rescue Forums: Farplace Forum, UK/ Pet Rescue, UK/ PetsAlive, USA/ Rodent Rescue
Web Journals and Blogs: Chinchilling, Chinchilla Life! Chinchilla Love, Chinlog, Chinchillas = Happiness Live Journal, Chinchilla Place, Interview with the Chinchilla

All Creatures Forum
Blue Moon's Chat
Chinchilla Chat Line
Chinchilla Club Forum
Chinchilla Club NZ
chinchilla_lovers email group
Chinchilla World
Chinchillas Unlimited
CHINformation Organization Forum
Chinformative Forum
Just Chinchillas
Lone Star Chinchilla Forum
Midwest Exotics
Nibbler Niche
Nick's Animal Place
Ontario Chinchilla Association
Paw-Talk: Chinchillas Chinchillas Singapore Forum Chinchillas
Small Animal Channel
Small Pet Club

Chinchilla Top 100 Homepages
Stop Animal Abuse Topsites List Sir Chin's Top
Kingsboro Chinchillas Top Top Animal Sites
Top 100 Pet Web Sites EuropeaN PeT ToP LisT
Animals of the World Ultimate Top 100 Pet Sites The Little Critter Lover's Online Directory

Cavy and Chinchilla
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Kingdom Chinchillas A Top NCS award winner
Ring Owner: Aileen  Site: Kingdom Chinchillas
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