Chinchillas have a number of impressive physical capabilities that serve them well in the wild, including the ability to jump great distances.
The more you know about what your pet is capable of, the easier it will be to keep them safe on a daily basis.
How High Can Chinchillas Jump?
The average chinchilla can jump almost six feet vertically. They are also extremely skilled at coordinating their movements, allowing them to land safely just about anywhere. This amazing ability is the result of many years of evolution, and it helps them evade predators in their natural environment.
Even baby chinchillas can jump up to three feet. If you are going to breed these animals, you will still have to provide the offspring with a good size cage. It’s also recommended that you establish a playpen for them to roam around and jump when taken out of their usual enclosure.
Origin of the Chinchilla’s Jumping Abilities
We already mentioned that chinchillas can jump high as a way of escaping predators, but it’s also a result of where they come from. These animals are naturally found in the Andes Mountains throughout South America. Their ability to jump very high is very useful in this rocky environment.
Wild chinchillas jump around as a way of obtaining shelter as well, hiding between rocks and in burrows. They are capable of jumping from rock to rock without stumbling at all. These animals carefully calculate each jump so as to avoid getting injured. Even a small leg injury can cost them their life in the unforgiving wilderness.
The long back legs that chinchillas have are ultimately what enable them to jump so high. This is a result of an evolutionary need to stay one step ahead of predators. They also have elongated legs and toes, which allow them to spring forward and jump impressive distances.
Choosing a Cage that Allows for Jumping
It is very important that the cage you get for your chinchilla allows them to jump around and climb freely. These animals need a big cage so they don’t feel too restricted. If your pet’s cage is too small, their mental and physical health will be negatively affected.
Your chinchilla’s cage should measure at least 3 by 2 feet. It should offer your pet at least two square feet of total space. This will allow them to move around uninhibited.
Taking Your Chinchilla Out of its Cage
You will also need to set aside a little bit of time each day to let your chinchilla out of its cage to play. This will give your pet the opportunity to jump, climb, and run around. It is a good idea to let them do this for thirty minutes to an hour every single day.
Make sure that you keep a close eye on your chinchilla when it is outside of its cage. While these animals are very friendly and calm, you’ll want to pay close attention to them during this time. You can reduce the chances of them running away or getting into trouble by keeping them confined to one room during out-of-the-cage play sessions.
The room that you let your chinchilla play in should not contain any items that you don’t want to get broken or damaged. There is no telling what they will bump into or knock over when they are jumping around. This will help keep both your pet and possessions safe.
You also need to make certain that the temperature of the room is set to around 65 degrees Fahrenheit. This will help keep your pet comfortable while they are playing.
Why Do Chinchillas Jump?
While a chinchillas developed the ability to jump so they could avoid predators, they sometimes do this for a number of other reasons. For example, your chinchilla might jump up to a few feet if they are startled or frightened. This is a natural fear response that is perfectly normal.
These animals even sometimes jump when they are excited. This is just their way of burning energy and expressing how they feel. It is also a natural thing they do when playing.
You might notice that your chinchilla jumps up into the air when you come near their cage. This is basically just your pet’s way of expressing happiness and excitement, which you should take as a compliment. This means that you have a truly strong and special bond with them.
Why isn’t my Chinchilla Jumping?
If you’ve noticed that your chinchilla isn’t jumping around at all in their cage or when you let it out to play, something is probably wrong. Lethargy is a common sign of illness with these animals, and it’s not something you should simply ignore. If this continues for more than a day or two, you should take them to the vet.
There are many different reasons that your chinchilla might not be jumping around like usual. It is possible that they sustained sort of injury that makes jumping uncomfortable or even impossible. You should check their legs for any signs of injury or trauma.
- Chinchillas can jump almost six feet vertically as fully mature adults.
- Even baby chinchillas can jump up to three feet.
- These animals developed extraordinary jumping capabilities over many years as a means of escaping predators and maneuvering their natural environment.
- A chinchilla is capable of accurately calculating distance when jumping from one spot to the next.
- It is important that you get a large cage for your chinchilla so that it has plenty of space to jump and climb.
- You should let your pet out of its cage to play freely for at least half an hour each day.
- You will find that chinchillas sometimes jump because they are frightened or startled. It can also be a sign that they are happy or excited.
- If you notice that your chinchilla is not jumping around at all or less than normal, there could be something wrong with it.