Traveling is a necessary part of life, whether you are commuting to school or work, another city or country, this is something that we humans are accustomed to, some people more than the others.
If you were to travel with your child, you would put their needs first and organize the trip in almost every way to fit those needs.
The same applies when traveling with your pet, especially if you own a chinchilla. Without proper planning and care, the trip will be far from a relaxing experience for the both of you. Here are a few tips that will help you easily organize the trip with your pet:
1. Make a list
A great way to ensure that you will not forget anything on your trip is to make a list or a pile. This goes for your chinchilla’s baggage as well. You would not like to come into a situation where you have arrived at your destination and forgot your pet’s food or water bottle.
That is why you make a list of the things you need to take with you like food, water, a temporary cage, chew toys, exercise wheel, bedding, bowls, a blanket or snuggle toys etc.
If you are not a big fan of lists, you can stack up the necessary travel equipment somewhere close to the apartment door where on your way out you will spot them easily and not forget anything.
2. Avoid hot and humid places
Although many people when traveling have a certain destination in mind and plan around it, it is actually necessary to plan the destination around your chinchilla as well.
Choosing a very humid and hot climate could leave you without a chinchilla to come back with, since they are very heat sensitive. Always go for destinations with moderate temperatures where you can still enjoy the sunlight without the risk of your chinchilla overheating.
While you are choosing the right place, it doesn’t hurt to check out whether they have any specialized pet stores and vet clinics nearby – just in case you need to pop in.
3. Should you bring a travel cage or a carrier?
Both! The chinchilla carrier is perfect for places where you will need your chinchilla close-by in order to keep an eye on it and make sure it is safe, for example a crowded train or bus platform.
Whereas the right travel cage can double as a temporary home for your chinchilla once you have arrived at your destination.
Make sure that you choose the options that are light and easy to carry, made from chinchilla-safe materials, easy to maintain and clean, so you would not have to spend your vacation scrubbing stains off the hotel furniture.
4. Don’t forget the chew toys
A busy chinchilla is a happy chinchilla. Keep your pet comforted in the carrier/travel cage by taking it’s blanket or snuggle toy with you on the trip. Your pet will feel right at home being next to the items that they use on a daily basis.
A great way to keep your chinchilla from being bored is to provide chew toys in various shapes and sizes while traveling and at the destination. In this way, not only they can be kept distracted but at the same time file some teeth.
Be sure to check out our post on chinchilla accessories and chew toy!
5. Travel at night
Traveling at night would be an ideal time to travel with your chinchilla. Not only that there is less traffic and in effect less noise pollution, but the air is much cleaner and the temperatures are lower.
If you are worried about your chinchilla being too active at night, don’t be! Chinchillas are crepuscular animals meaning they are mostly active at dusk and dawn leaving the night and day to sleep.
6. Car travel is the best option
The best transport vehicle for taking your chinchilla anywhere would be a car. Here you would be in control of the speed of the vehicle, avoiding the hard turns, gently crossing speed bumps.
You can also create a calm atmosphere by controlling the volume of the radio, setting the AC to cool down the car and being able to stop and check up on your pet to offer it food and water.
When traveling by bus or train make sure you have enough room to set your chinchilla somewhere so that both of you can have a more comfortable journey. The best way to ensure this is to buy another ticket seat, like the one next to you and lay the carrier on it.
If you were to travel by plane keep in mind that your pet will probably end up in the cargo area for the entire journey and it needs to be safe, warm and with enough hay in case it gets hungry because you will not be able to check up on your pet until you have landed.
7. Get your pet familiar with the carrier
You would not feel comfortable being dragged out of your home, put in a carrier and taken to another destination even if it was Hawaii. In the same way your chinchilla will not feel comfortable being stuffed into a carrier it is not familiar with and then taken to the car or any other transport vehicle.
This is why you will need to prepare your chinchilla by leaving it with the carrier/travel cage in the playroom to investigate it and to get familiar with. In this way, it will be a safe and cozy environment for your pet to sit and wait until you have arrived.
8. Pack food and the water bottle
Do not forget to bring food and your pet’s water bottle! This should be on the top of your list otherwise you will have a starving chinchilla and a miserable trip trying to find appropriate foods that your pet can eat.
Not to mention that changing your chinchilla’s diet in such a haste and in an unfamiliar environment could have dire consequences. So make sure that the water bottle and food supplies come first.