Some people have only one pet. For these kinds of people, feeding and taking care of one pet is enough work. However, others have more than one pet. Some of these people can’t even get enough pets.
They just want more and more and more. For this sort of person, it’s important to figure out if your pets will get along.
For example, if you own a chinchilla, would it be smart to get a dog?
So, do chinchillas get along with dogs?
The answer is no, no, and no. Dogs are predators and chinchillas are prey, so they don’t get along at all.
Summary of today’s article:
- Do chinchillas and dogs get along well
- Can you keep a dog with a chinchilla
- Is there any way I can introduce a chinchilla to my dog?
- A dog around your chinchilla may lead to stress
- Are puppies more suitable than adult dogs?
If you have a chinchilla and are planning on getting a dog, or if you have a dog and are planning on getting a chinchilla, you may have wondered if it’s smart to keep both animals together. And the answer is this; it’s not smart. It’s not smart at all.
It’s a terrifyingly bad decision.
Reason 1: Dogs Are Predators And Chinchillas Are Prey
It’s a bad idea to keep a predator and prey together, and that’s exactly what you’d be doing by keeping your dog and Chinchilla in the same house. Now, this doesn’t mean that your dog would immediately lunge at your chin and try to devour it.
It just means that it might. And this applies to all kinds of dogs.
No matter how well behaved you think your canine is, it is still a predator at heart. And all it takes for a canine to go after prey is not much.
You may have trained your dog to be the best little boy, but you cannot train instincts away. You can suppress a dog’s instinct, but there’s always the chance of it rearing its head.
A good example of what can trigger your dog’s predator instinct is seeing your chinchilla running away from it. That single action could cause it to chase your chin, and by the time it catches up with it, years of training may have already eroded.
So to be safe, you have to keep your chin as far away from any dog as possible.
Reason 2: Dogs Can Scare Chinchillas
We’ve said a lot about the reaction dogs may have to chinchilla— but what of the reaction a chinchilla may have to a dog? Well, it appears that chinchillas have even stronger emotions towards dogs than dogs have towards them.
Since chinchillas are prey animals, they’ve evolved a striking reaction to predators like dogs. They have even learnt to avoid these sorts of animals entirely.
So when your chin sets your eye on a dog, don’t be surprised if it immediately finds somewhere safe to hide. Hanging around predators greatly increases the stress levels of chins, so don’t be surprised if your chin starts acting erratically because a dog is around.
Reason 3: Dogs Are Naturally Curious
What if the chinchilla and dog get along? It’s certainly not impossible, you may think.
After all, we’ve all seen videos of cats and dogs getting along. Maybe that’ll be the same with your chin, you imagine.
Well, even if that happens, it’s still very dangerous. First off, dogs are naturally curious animals and are way bigger than chinchillas.
Dogs are rather inquisitive and will put their big wet snouts in everything— and don’t assume they won’t do this with your chinchilla. This can be bad news for your chin because of their small size and relatively brittle bones.
Since most dogs are just big clumsy animals (yes, even the smallest dogs), such a relationship doesn’t bode well for the future of your chin. Even if your dog doesn’t try to bite your chin’s head off, it may try to play rough with it, and injure it in the process.
That’s surely something you wouldn’t want.
It’s not advisable, so you shouldn’t. However, if you absolutely must, there are ways you could go about it that would make it a tad safe for your chinchilla.
If you have to keep them together, you need to make sure that they are away from one another at all times.
When your dog first sees your chin, it’ll likely regard it with interest. So it’s not like your dog would immediately dash at your chin (however some more aggressive types could do this).
There are even some dogs who may initially be scared of your chinchilla. If your dog is a small breed, then this is rather likely.
Some dogs would even ignore your chin completely.
But do not be fooled by any of these behaviors. The fact remains that dogs have predatory instincts, and those instincts could be activated at a moment’s notice.
If you have no other choice and must own a chin and a dog in the same home, then there are some ways you could go about it that would minimize the damage this could have on your chin.
The first thing to note is that you must keep them as far away from each other as possible. While your chin is usually more active at night, it’s not nocturnal, so do not try to keep your dog around your chin during the day. It’s not a smart strategy.
The best thing to do is to keep both animals at polar ends of the house. This is because even a dog’s barking could lead your chinchilla to get stressed out. Of course, you may say being stressed out is nothing. But it could have intense consequences on the health of your chin.
Let’s say you’ve been extraordinarily careful, and that you’ve managed to keep your dog away from your chin— this doesn’t mean that your chin is completely safe. Even if your dog cannot physically harm your chin, we’ve seen that it is possible for it to harm your chin mentally— or even emotionally.
Chinchillas are very easy to frighten, and when they get frightened, they tend to get stressed. The presence of a dog, even if it’s locked away, can get your chinchilla extremely stressed.
When this happens, your chin may start to overheat. This means it could start to run an extremely high temperature.
This could lead to your chinchilla getting a heat stroke. It could also lead to other health issues that you would be better served avoiding.
Different Breeds May Have Different Reactions To Chinchillas
Now, you should note that some dogs are genetically predisposed to be less dangerous to chinchillas than others. Again, this isn’t to say that dogs aren’t generally dangerous to chins— but some are more dangerous than others.
For example, Pit Bulls, Jack Russells and Terriers are especially dangerous for chinchillas. This is because they are highly active and have the instinct to hunt small animals like chins.
Regardless of how you train this breed of dogs, they would always have that instinct. It’s quite literally written in their genetic code.
Other dog breeds are better suited to cohabitating with chinchillas. Collies, Retrievers and Labradors, for example, may have a better reaction towards your chin.
They may even be protective of it. Now, this isn’t to say that your Collie or your Lab would protect your chin.
It just means that you’re dealing with a lower level of risk than with a Pit Bull or a Terrier.
If your dog isn’t on this list, you should first try to gauge its reaction to the chin. First off, is it a super active dog?
If it is, its sudden movement will stress your chin. If it’s a barker, it would make a heck of a noise and end up stressing your chin in unimaginable ways.
Besides that, is your dog a hunting dog? If it’s one, you should keep it as far away from your chin as possible.
It’s not entirely inconceivable that your dog may try to hunt your chinchilla.
Puppies are generally gentler and more amenable to instruction than adult dogs, so yes, puppies are better than adult dogs in this regard. If you must have a chinchilla and a dog in one house, it’s better to get a puppy.
That way, you would be able to train it and let it learn the proper way to behave around your chinchilla.
Always remember, though, your chinchilla should be in a cage at all times when a dog is in the room. On no account should you let your chin roam outside its cage while your dog is up and about
If you can manage it, make sure your chinchilla and your dog don’t live in the same area. It’s a bad idea and it could end badly for your chin and your dog.
However, if you must keep them both in the same place, make sure your chin is locked up in its cage and that you discourage any aggressive behavior your dog may have towards your chin.