Healthy Chinchilla Treats and Foods

a close up of a chinchilla

Feeding your chinchilla treats is a great way to bond with your furry friend. When feeding your chinchilla treats you need to make sure that they are safe and nutritional.

This article should give you a clear picture of what treats you can give your chinchilla and how much they are allowed.

Healthy Household Foods You Can Feed Your Chinchilla

Most people who buy a chinchilla for the first time, and even some long-time owners, don’t do enough research to find out the right snacks for their chinchillas.

Here are some of the most healthy foods that you can find in your household to feed your chinchilla.

Cheerios

This is one of the best chinchilla treats that you can get (just make sure they’re plain whole grain Cheerios).

Not only are they jam-packed full of nutrients that your chinchilla needs, but they’re also some of the tastiest treats that chinchillas love to nibble on.

Any natural whole grains should be good for your chinchilla, just make sure not to overindulge them, and with all treats, feed them small amounts.

Oatmeal

Here’s another treat that your chinchilla should absolutely love, uncooked, old fashioned oatmeal.

Just add a smidge or two of the oatmeal to their pellet bowl and if it’s something they like, you’ll know immediately.

Make sure you stay away from any flavored, or quick cook oatmeal. These can have a lot of refined sugars that are very unhealthy for your chinchilla.

Shredded Wheat Cereal

As you can probably tell, chinchillas love to eat cereal.

Just make sure it’s the plain type with no added flavors or sugars.

It’s important to note that if you do get shredded wheat cereal to make sure it’s the spoon size.

If you want to give them the normal size shredded wheat, then break it off into quarter size (bite size) and feed it to them one quarter at a time.

Dried Rose Hips

These might be one of the best treats for your chinchilla. They are packed full of vitamin C and it’s something that you can feed your chinchilla that’s a lot healthier than dried fruits or raisins.

You can either break it up and crush it down for them or you can go ahead and feed it to them whole.

Many chinchilla owners, as well as breeders, say that this is the best treat you can give to your chinchilla.

What Fruits and Vegetables Can I Feed My Chinchilla?

Feeding your chinchilla the right fruits and vegetables can be tricky if you’re not 100% sure about what to give them. Just like humans, they will eat things that taste good, that aren’t necessarily healthy for them.

A lot of people make the mistake of feeding their chinchilla fruits and vegetables that are full of sugars that are no good for them.

Common mistakes that a lot of people make are feeding them things such as:

• Raisins (high in sugar, phosphorus, and acidic content)

• Apples (ok but high in sugars, not in their natural diet)

• Blueberries (has a little phosphorus, acidic, and sugary)

• Grapes (water-based and will give them diarrhea)

• Cabbage (poisonous to chinchillas)

• Corn (starchy and indigestible for chinchillas)

• Lettuce (can be high in moisture)

• Asparagus (phosphorus, acidic acid, sugar, and fat content)

• Broccoli (contains a lot of calcium, phosphorus, and acidic content)

• Sultanas (high sugar count)

There are many other fruits and vegetables that are not the most advantageous (and sometimes dangerous) foods that they shouldn’t be eating.

Let’s take a look at some of the healthier, more suitable fruits and vegetables, that you might not know about, which will not only taste good to your chinchilla, but it will also be a healthier alternative to anything else you could feed them.

All these foods can be found in their natural habitat and help promote a healthy digestive system:

• Chamomile Flower (soothes muscles, digestive problems, and indigestion, helps relieve stress)

• Oat Straw (supports the nervous system, builds healthy skin, bones, nails, helps with stress)

• Fenugreek (reduces fever, high in iron, treats cough, bronchitis, sinus conditions, and respiratory problems)

• Tarragon (treats insomnia and hyperactivity, stimulates appetite and helps aid in digestion)

• Hyssop (treats lung ailments, *don’t feed if pregnant*)

• Hawthorn Leaf (for heart conditions)

• Peppermint (strengthens and cleans the body, sedative on the stomach, strengthens the bowls, can improve appetite)

• Thyme (strong antiseptic, helps with anemia, aids in bronchial and intestinal problems)

• Lemon Balm (reduces fever, treats colds, calms the digestive tract)

These are much safer and healthier treats that will be a better choice to feed to your chinchilla.

How Often Should I Feed My Chinchilla Treats?

You should give your chinchilla treats once a day, no more than that. Although it may be tempting to sneak them in another snack throughout the day because they beg and plead with you, don’t do it.

Overfeeding them can cause many side effects such as obesity, tooth decay, stomach issues, as well as other health problems later on.

They should be fed treats in tiny proportions.

If you’ve already fed your chinchilla their tasty little treat for the day and they’re begging you to give them some more mouthwatering morsels to chew on, then there are some safe alternatives that you can give them on a more consistent basis.

Wood chews are something you can regularly give to them, not only will it taste good, it will help their teeth as well.

Just make sure you find a grower that uses an organic, pesticide-free orchard, if you don’t, you could be feeding them all sorts of unknown, harmful chemicals.

Two of the best wood chews that you can give to your chinchilla is going to be apple sticks and cholla wood.

Apple Sticks

Apple sticks are good for chinchillas of any age.

They can be a healthy part of your chinchillas daily diet and also something you can feed them to reward them with as a treat.

They will keep their teeth from becoming overgrown and they can be used as a dental treat.

Cholla Wood

The best thing about cholla wood is that it helps with teeth trimming.

The other best thing about it is you can use them to store other snacks in, such as marigold, hibiscus, or chamomile flowers.

How to Train Your Chinchilla Using Treats

You’re not going to be able to train your chinchilla the same way you can train a dog, but you can definitely get them to respond to you and come into your hand, and stop any unwanted bad behaviors.

First thing you should do is present the treat to your chinchilla with your palm open and the treat showing.

Then have your other hand placed beneath the hand with the treat in it (also palm opened), that way they can use your hand to boost themselves up to the treat.

Make sure to be patient, calm, and quiet. Sometimes a good way to do this is to open the cage door and have the treat waiting for them in your hand as soon as they come out.

Once you teach them to come to you with treats, try getting them to come to your hand without using any treats.

If they feel comfortable enough, they should hop right up.

When you pet your chinchilla and first start getting acquainted together, it’s best to pet the underside of their chinchilla and not the top of their head.

When it comes to stopping unwarranted behavior, no treat is needed.

You can usually just clap your hands or make a loud (not too loud) noise that will distract them and have them stopping their bad behavior.

Continue doing this every time they’re doing something that you don’t want them to and they should do it less often. You can also reward them with a treat after they stop if you so wish.

Great Chinchilla Treats You Can Buy on Amazon

Here are some of the top chinchilla treats you can find on Amazon that will keep your chinchilla happy and healthy for the years to come.

Biscuit Baked Apple Treats

These nutritious treats are going to provide an ample amount of fiber that’s often found in Timothy grass hay, and it’s also going to work wonders for their dental protection.

It’s something that chinchillas love to chew on and it provides them with the nutrients that they need to live a healthy life.

Veggie Stix Gourmet Treats

These are common treats that can be eaten by guinea pigs, rabbits, and chinchillas. Healthy cooked vegetable sticks could be exactly what your chinchilla is craving. They’re high in fiber and they also encourage foraging. Pick up a pack of veggie mix treats here.

Chinchilla Calcium Sticks

These calcium sticks have been triple baked for both taste and crunchiness. Packed with all sorts of vitamins and minerals they have a natural wood stick center that will have your chinchilla craving more and more.

These ingredients have almost everything your chinchilla needs to live a long and healthy life. As with all chinchilla treats, make sure to feed them moderately.

Chinchilla Mixed Fruit Cocktail Treat

This all natural treat comes with a mixture of dried appetizing flowers, berries, and fresh fruits.

They have a blend of foods that simulate your chinchilla’s natural habitat and are easy to digest for any chinchilla that finds them enticing enough to try (most chinchillas will find this mix irresistible).

Hay Sticks Made From Timothy Hay

Here’s a pesticide-free, organic treat that you can give your chinchilla that’s sweet in taste, rich in fiber, and helps the growth of small pet teeth, as well as no added preservatives.

They have a natural, rich grass taste that your chinchilla will find delightful. Customers who bought these for their chinchillas had positively raving reviews about them.

One customer’s chinchilla didn’t even like timothy hay (which should be a large portion of their diet), but when they tried these for the first time, they absolutely loved them.

Natural Apple Sticks

Here’s a treat that’s great for your chinchilla to play with and nibble on. They are healthy for chinchilla’s teeth and they’re 100% all natural, organically grown, with no pesticides (everything you give your chinchilla should be like this).

Large Size Apple Slice Treats

These treats are only made from high-quality premium ingredients. This could be exactly what your chinchilla needs, it can help them deal with boredom, stress, and anxiety by satisfying their inherent chewing behavior patterns.

Apple Wood and Crispy Puzzle

These fun shaped loofah treats will keep your chinchilla entertained for days and keep their teeth healthy as can be. It’s the perfect combination of toy and chews all in one. Helps with boredom for small animals and will provide your pet with hours of playtime.

Naturally Woven Timothy Grass Ball Pet Chew Toy

This toy is great for rabbits, guinea pigs, gerbils, hamsters, chinchillas, and other small rodents. They can help entertain your chinchilla while you’re gone and keep their teeth healthy at the same time.

As you can see, there’s a lot of different treats that you can get for your chinchilla.

We can’t guarantee that your chinchilla will love everything they get their little paws onto, but these are a good start.

With a little trial and error, you should be able to find exactly what your chinchilla loves the most.

Don’t be afraid to give them a variety of snacks to try, just be careful not to switch up their food too often.

If you’re feeding them treats, you can try giving them a half teaspoon at a time per day to see how they react.

Once you get a good feeling of what gets them excited and what they won’t even touch, then you can use it as the main treat that you feed them once a day.

Make sure not to give your chinchilla treats too often as it can upset their stomachs and can be unhealthy. 

We hope this article has given you a better idea on what snacks to feed your chinchilla and what snacks to avoid.

Related Questions:

What fruits can chinchillas eat? Some of the healthiest options include pears, strawberries, apples, and bananas. Cut fruits and veggies into tiny bites to make it easy consumption. Make sure not to overfeed them.

How many treats can a chinchilla have? Only give your chinchilla 1 treat per day, any more can increase the likeliness of your chinchilla from becoming over weight or ill.

Can chinchilla eat nuts and seeds? You should avoid all nuts and seeds as these are high in fat.

Charlotte Silcock

Charlotte lives in the United Kingdom and has worked in animal shelters looking after small animals. She owns a hamster as well as a dog and a cat and hopes to spread her knowledge about rodents to help other pet owners.

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