Common Chinchilla Illnesses

Chinchillas make great pets, but just like any animal they can become ill. It is important to ensure your chinchilla is healthy, so this article give your information and advice on some common chinchilla illnesses.

This article only gives you an overview, so if you have any reason for concern, contact your vet immediately.


If your chinchilla has constipation, it may have been caused by a lack of water, stress, a change in diet or excessive fur chewing. If your chinchilla looks bloated and/or lethargic, or you notice less droppings that normal, your chinchilla may have constipation. It may help to provide more water, add additional hay or provide them with their dust bath more regularly. Increasing exercise may also be useful.

If you are concerned, unhappy or notice excessive swelling, take your chinchilla to the vet immediately.

A Runny Nose!

Just like the rest of us, your chinchilla can suffer from a cold! This is likely to be the case if you notice that your chinchillas has a runny nose. Ensure you keep your chinchilla warm and encourage them to drink more fresh water. If their condition seems to get worse, contact your vet.


Chinchilla diarrhoea is fairly common, especially in younger chinchillas. It can normally be because the chinchilla has eaten too much, or what they have eaten has been bad. It can also be caused by a change in diet, a lack of fibre, or because the chinchilla is stressed. Contact your vet if your chinchilla is suffering from diarrhoea.


If a chinchilla is frightened or stressed, it can shed patches of it's fur. Once a patch has gone, a smooth area of skin remains. It can often take up to 2 months for the fur to grow back, and even longer for it to be the same length as the rest of the chinchilla's coat.


If your chinchilla is having difficulty breathing, has a runny nose or is making wheezy noises this could either be pneumonia or a chest infection. Pneumonia is a very danger chinchilla illness, and you should contact your vet immediately.

These are just a selection of some common chinchilla illnesses. If you notice anything out of the ordinary with your chinchilla you should contact your vet immediately.

Chinchillas are fantastic creatures and it is part of being a responsible pet owner to make sure they are fit and healthy!

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