Can Chinchillas Play With Dogs?

beagle and chinchilla e1591970772185

If you are hesitant about getting a chinchilla because you have a dog, there are some things you’ll need to know. 

While it might not seem like these animals could possibly get along, you’d be surprised. We will explore this subject in depth so you get all of the information necessary to make a good final decision.

Is It Ever Safe for a Chinchilla to Play With Dogs?

The fact is that allowing your chinchilla to play with a dog is very risky to say the least. That being said, it depends on the overall temperament of both animals. If you have a small dog that is very docile and gentle, the risk to your chinchilla could be minimal. This is just one of those things that you’ll have to use your best judgment with.

Risks of Letting Your Chinchilla Play with Dogs

Before you let your chinchilla play with any dog, it is crucial that you recognize the risks you are taking.

1. Accidental Injury

It is possible that your chinchilla gets injured by your dog accidentally. This is especially common with larger dogs that often harm small animals without even meaning to. They can easily hurt these animals by playing too rough. If your little furry friend gets hurt bad enough, it could die.

  What Do Chinchillas Like to Play With?
chinchilla and pomeranian e1591970799558

2. It Could Traumatize Your Chinchilla

While it might sound a little melodramatic, allowing your chinchilla to play with your dog in the same space could traumatize it. These tiny creatures are capable of suffering physical and emotional traumas. The last thing you want is to do any lasting damage to either of your pet’s mental health and well being.

This could have a last impact on the bond you share with your chinchilla, as it might not treat you the same way ever again. It could cause your pet to stop trusting you.

3. Overheating

Allowing your chinchilla to play with your dog could cause it to overheat, which is very serious. These fluffy critters tend to overheat fairly easily, and it can be fatal. The more stressed and scared it gets, the more likely they are to overheat.

Alternate Playtime Activities

There are lots of alternate ways to stimulate your chinchilla and provide it with fun playtime without direct interaction with your dog. These animals absolutely need a good amount of this time on a regular basis to stay healthy, both mentally and physically.

1. Dust Baths

Believe it or not, most chinchillas actually love taking dust baths. Just fill a shallow bowl up with some dust that is made for cleaning these animals. You can get this dust at pretty much any of your local pet supply stores.

Let your chinchilla move around in the bowl filled with dust and watch it squeal with delight. This serves two purposes—stimulating your pet and keeping it clean. The occasional dust bath is necessary for maintaining proper hygiene with these animals.

  Do Chinchillas Need to Be Neutered or Spayed?

2. Toys

There are all sorts of toys that you can buy for your chinchilla to play with. These toys allow your pet to get both mental and physical stimulation, which is vital to their overall health.

You can even use items from around the house as toys for your furry friend. An empty wooden thread spool or even an empty cardboard box can work well. You’d be surprised at just how entertained these animals can be by the simplest of things. Some of these toys will even allow you to get in on the fun with your pet.

puppy and chinchilla e1591970819887

3. Let Them Play With Kittens

If you have any small kittens at home, you might want to try letting your chinchilla play with them. Kittens don’t pose much of a threat to a fully grown chinchilla, so you will have nothing to worry about. It is not a good idea to let them play or directly interact with adult cats though. 

You might find that your pets will establish a strong bond that lasts for years to come. If your kitten gets used to playing with your chinchilla, it might not be a threat to them when they become an adult.

Tips for Letting Your Chinchilla Play With a Dog

If you decide to let your chinchilla play a dog in your home, there are some tips that you will need to follow.

1. Introduce Them to Each Other Slowly

You shouldn’t simply throw your dog and chinchilla together into the same space. It is important to start out by gradually exposing them to each other. Hold the chinchilla in your hands firmly, showing it to your dog. Let your dog sniff the chinchilla and get used to its scent. This will decrease the chances of something bad happening when they do start to play together.

  How Big Should a Chinchilla Cage Be?

2. Keep a Close Eye on Them

It is imperative that you closely watch as your chinchilla and dog play together. Be ready to step in and scoop up your chinchilla or hold your dog back by the collar if necessary.

3. Limit Play Sessions

You’ll want to limit the amount of time that your pets spend playing together. It is a good idea to only allow 10 minutes or so of playtime on any given day. This will help to keep your chinchilla from getting overwhelmed.


  • In general, it is not recommended that you allow your chinchilla to play with a dog.
  • Your dog could accidentally injure your chinchilla, especially if it is a larger breed.
  • There is always the chance that your chinchilla could become traumatized by this experience.
  • Consider alternative ways to let your furry friend play, such as a dust bath.
  • You should also have lots of different types of toys for your chinchilla to play with.
  • If you have any small kittens at home, you can try letting them play together.
  • Before you let your chinchilla play with a dog in your home, you’ll need to slowly introduce them to each other.
  • Allow your dog to sniff and get used to your chinchilla for at least a couple of weeks.
  • When they do play together, keep a close eye on both of them.
  • Limit playtime between your dog and chinchilla to 10 minutes per session.
Was this article helpful?