Chinchillas often bound around their cages, making them super interesting to watch. One question that may have crossed your mind is whether chinchillas can jump or not.
In this post, we will take a deep look at if chinchillas can indeed jump and if so, how high can they actually jump and much more.
So, can Chinchillas Jump? Chinchillas can jump and they jump frequently. They are high energy creatures and will jump anywhere and everywhere. Chinchillas can jump to impressive heights for their size and their long hind limbs have been adapted for jumping and leaping which can often get them out of trouble particularly in the wild.
Can Chinchillas Jump? (More info)
Chinchillas are well adapted to jumping and as a Chin owner will you have experienced this type of behaviour a lot.
They love to bound around their cage at what seems like 100 miles an hour and jump onto any items that are available to them.
It doesn’t matter whether a chin has been domesticated or is living in the wild they spend a lot of their time when awake jumping.
Sometimes this means jumping onto the side of the cage, other times you will see them jumping to and from perches.
Jumping is innate behaviour for Chinchillas, meaning they are genetically hardwired this way.
If you don’t notice your Chinchilla jumping particularly at night then this may be a warning sign that something is not quite right and it is advisable to seek professional advice as soon as possible.
How High Can Chinchillas Jump?
Surprisingly, Chinchillas can jump to quite a height considering their size.
They are not the smallest rodents around and looking at their physical features you would assume they are not structured well to jump to heights, however, looks can be deceiving and the rounded bodies we see are mostly fur. Underneath this fur is a very agile being.
Chinchillas on average can jump to a height of around 6 feet. When we think about this logically this is pretty amazing!
As well as researching how high chinchillas can jump we have also researched how fast chinchillas can run compared to other animals and we have put the results here…(and the results just might surprise you)
They are very agile and are used to jumping and landing at different and sometimes very awkward angles. Chins tend to jump quickly and accurately.
They have amazing balance and coordination which gives them the ability to jump to and from such heights.
Although Chinchillas can jump and climb to over 6 feet if they want to, you will rarely see them jumping this high.
Partly due to them being in their cage most of the time. You will most likely see them jumping to such heights when you let them out for playtime where they have a much bigger area to cover.
Do not rule out Chin’s climbing to the top of tall display units, up on the back of the sofa, and occasionally on your head if they feel inclined.
Often they will not jump onto physical items but you will see them jump into the empty air for no reason.
Let’s look at some comparisons of how high Chinchillas can jump compared to other animals.
Chinchillas Vs Common Animals | Who Can Jump The Highest?
|Dog (Av Size)||6 ft|
|Grass Hopper||1 ft|
Why Do Chinchillas Jump?
Chinchillas are very playful animals and will jump just because they are in a happy mood. A bit like an overactive toddler when they are happy and playing. They jump and literally hop around.
This is exactly the same as Chinchillas. When they are feeling full of life, happy, and want to play they will jump around on anything and everything.
Chinchillas are highly excitable and full of energy. Often energy that they don’t know what to do with.
As they try to let this energy out you will find they bound and jump around the cage which can regularly result in rebounding off their cage walls.
This is completely normal behaviour for your Chinchillas and the best idea is to embrace it. It isn’t going to change.
This is why it is so important to let your Chinchillas out for playtime as much as possible. The recommended amount of playtime outside of their cage is 2 hours a day (early morning and late evening).
This will allow your Chinchilla to jump much higher than they would in their cage.
There are some pros and cons to this, however. The pros being your Chin gets to climb and jump to and from heights, they wouldn’t normally be able to in their cage.
The cons being that Chins can be quite destructive when they want to and you may find they damage items and surfaces in your home.
Always make sure they are well supervised by you at all times when you let them out to play.
When are Chinchillas Most Likely to Jump?
Chinchillas are most likely to jump during the night. This is completely normal Chin behaviour.
They are crepuscular and nocturnal creatures which mean they are at their most active between dawn and dusk and sleep for the bulk of the day.
During the daytime, Chinchillas love to chill out and sleep. You will find they are not very active during this time.
Check out this new post that shares if chinchillas are noisy at night or nice and quiet?
It is always a wise idea to leave your Chinchilla alone and at peace during the day. After all, you wouldn’t be very happy if you had been up all night and you had someone disturbing you during the day when you wanted to sleep now would you?
Chinchillas are very active at night and this when you are most likely to experience them jumping around.
This is the time when they are full of life and need to let out the pent up energy inside.
They can also be pretty noisy when exhibiting this type of boisterous behaviour which some owners find keeps them up at night.
This is completely normal behaviour and something you should be fully aware of before deciding to take on a Chinchilla as a pet.
Chinchillas are generally happy souls and they express this by jumping, leaping, bounding, and climbing.
You could say this type of behaviour is their version of the ‘happy dance’. It is always nice to see when an animal is content and joyful.
As owners, we should embrace and encourage this behaviour for the benefit of our Chins wellbeing.
Do all Chinchillas Like to Jump?
Yes, yes, and yes! Chinchillas absolutely love to jump. It’s in their blood. If your chin isn’t jumping around with joy during playtime or in their cage at night this is usually a sign that something isn’t quite right and we always advise you to seek professional help.
A Chinchilla that does not jump around is generally not a happy Chin and therefore it is important as a responsible owner you figure out why.
Chinchillas that are happy and healthy love to jump, climb, and rebound off walls. They are full of energy and even more importantly full of life. It’s very easy to tell whether a Chinchilla is happy or not which makes life much easier for you.
It is fair to say that some Chinchillas are far more chilled out than others. You will find some Chinchillas have temperaments that are so excitable they look like they are going to burst!
Then you have Chinchillas that are a bit more reserved. Maybe they get more exercise and therefore have successfully let out that energy sufficiently.
Even though they are generally not as excitable you will still notice they jump and climb, but to a lesser degree than the more highly strung Chinchillas we all are familiar with.
Do Chinchillas Jump In the Wild?
Chinchillas in the wild do a lot of climbing which means they also do a considerable amount of jumping too.
Chins in the wild can be mostly found in South America and are native to the Andes Mountains in Chile.
Chinchillas have evolved to adapt to their environment and living in such a mountainous climate has taught them to climb and jump with ease.
Chinchillas have long hind legs that act like springs which helps get them the height when jumping and also helps to cushion their body when they land.
Chins are very social creatures and are known to live in large colonies of more than 100 Chinchillas. Although they live in such big groups this doesn’t mean they are always safe.
They are most definitely prey animals in which danger is always around the corner. Chins use their agile bodies and long hind legs to jump, climb, and evade any threats. They are quick on their feet which helps to get them out of trouble.
Chinchillas are certainly clever animals and they have even evolved to take baths where there is no water, head over to this post where we show you exactly how they do this…
How Often Do Chinchillas Jump?
Chinchillas climb pretty frequently. As mentioned previously you will not find much of this activity taking place during the daytime however at night you will find this type of behaviour is exhibited a lot.
This usually presents itself as rebounding around the cage. When a Chin is in their cage they can only jump to a certain height and therefore they tend to bounce off the walls and ceiling to the cage known as rebounding.
When you let a Chinchilla out of their cage for playtime, this is when jumping gets serious!
They have much more room to manoeuvre and are much more excited to be out of their cage. You will notice your Chin jumping frequently in this scenario.
If you let your Chin out for an hour they are likely to be trying to jump and climb for a full hour.
You will not find your Chinchilla jumping much at all during the day time as they will mostly spend this time sleeping and chilling out.
If they sleep on a perch you may find that they only jump down for food and water. Sometimes Chinchillas display a small amount of exercise during the daytime, but this is quite rare and they will save this for the night.
Can Jumping Result In Injury for My Chinchilla?
It is inevitable that at some point or another your Chinchilla may injure themselves whilst jumping.
They are indeed very agile and well-coordinated, but this doesn’t mean that they always land on their feet or land well. They don’t necessarily have to be jumping that either to injure themselves.
Chinchillas are quite boisterous at times and can often land in the wrong way through recklessness.
One way they often hurt themselves is by getting their tiny feet caught in items that are in the cage.
This can result in hurting their toes, feet, and ankles. In bad circumstances, they can even break their toes. Bone fractures in Chinchillas are common.
There are a few common ways a Chinchilla can hurt themselves by falling:
- Broken Ribs – Chinchillas rib cages can break easily as they are mostly made of cartilage. This is one of the key reasons we must not hold onto Chinchillas too tightly when picking them up.
- Damaged Organs – this is usually a result of broken ribs. The ribs can stick out and poke organs in the surrounding area causing further damage.
- Broken Bones – this is pretty common from landing incorrectly. Chinchillas have tiny bones that can break very easily. This can most commonly occur in the legs, feet, and skull.
- Concussion – this will occur if your Chinchilla has accidentally hit their head during a fall. It can cause dizziness and headaches but in severe cases brain damage.
What Can I Do If My Chinchilla Hurts Themselves During a Fall?
Unfortunately, as an owner there is very little you can do yourself to help treat your chinchilla if they have hurt themselves during a fall.
You must, however, ensure if you suspect an injury that you seek medical attention as soon as possible by taking your Chinchilla to the vets ASAP.
Fractures are pretty common since Chinchillas have a very delicate bone structure and therefore these types of injuries are pretty common.
The good news is that fractures tend to heal pretty quickly for Chinchillas and they are likely to be back in action sooner rather than later.
Do not try to take care of these injuries at home. You Chin will need to see the vet where they can be properly treated and the healing process monitored closely.
They may even need a small operation that you will not be aware of unless you pay a visit to your vet. It is always better to be safe than sorry in instances like this.
How Can I Provide My Chinchilla With Safe Places to Jump?
There are many ways in which you can provide a safe place for your Chinchilla to jump and play.
It is important to use items in your Chin’s cage that will not cause harm to them when they are at their most boisterous.
They sometimes have little regard for their own safety and as responsible owners, we should be providing them with the safest environment possible. Here are some ways below that can help keep your Chin out of harm’s way.
Chin Proof Your Cage
Making sure that your Chinchillas cage is safe for them is very important. You must provide a suitable environment for Chin’s.
Always ensure that there are no sharp edges showing anywhere that could cause serious injuries such as cuts and puncture wounds.
Try to place items in the cage that do not move around easily and stay in place. This can prevent items flying around the cage as your Chin bounds around, jumps and climbs.
You can see the 2 cages we strongly recommend you house your chinchilla in here…
Never overcrowd your Chinchillas cage with unnecessary items. The more items that are present in the cage the more likelihood there will be of an injury.
Branches & Twigs
Branches and twigs are a great addition to your Chinchillas cage. They are a safe solution for your Chin to use to climb and perch.
They are also a fantastic chewing toy since Chin’s love to have a little nibble on just about anything made of wood. It also helps them naturally wear down their teeth.
Wooden Or Cardboard Boxes
Wooden and cardboard boxes are very safe items to place in your Chinchillas cage. They not only act as an ideal jumping platform but are a great little getaway for your Chin to hide and relax in. These are considered generally quite safe for your Chinchillas cage.
Wooden Perches & Platforms
Chinchillas love wooden perches and platforms. They are the most ideal item for Chin’s to leap from and you will often find them asleep on wooden platforms as they love being at a height.
One thing to note about wooden perches is that they don’t tend to last very long on the grand scale of things. Chin’s love to chew wooden objects so you may find the perch or platforms needs replacing periodically.
Head over and check out our list of great perches and platforms that we have put together on our recommended cage accessories page.
In conclusion, Chinchillas love to jump. You will not often find a Chin that doesn’t jump and if they don’t this is a little bit of cause for concern, particularly if they are not active at night.
Chinchillas are generally happy souls for the most part and like to jump to show how excited and content they are. This isn’t anything to worry about and you should expect this type of behaviour from your Chin.
Always make sure you provide plenty of climbing and jumping items in your Chin’s cage to keep them fully entertained. Be careful when you take them out for playtime though, they will literally climb and jump anything in sight!