Why Do Chinchillas Bathe In Dust? Do They Need To Do It, Or Is It Optional?
In this article we will let you know what chinchilla dust baths are, and how you can help your little pet stay clean and healthy.
Including sharing a super cute chinchilla dust bath video!
Welcome to the world of chinchillas!
Not only does it keep your chinchilla clean, dust baths for chinchillas do the double duty of keeping your pet happy too.
Ideally, your pet chinchilla should take a dust bath a few times a week. But as you will see, chinchillas absolutely love dust baths!
Let’s find out more about what these chinchilla dust baths are. And what you can do to keep your pet happy and healthy.
What is a chinchilla dust bath?
As you have probably noticed, chinchillas have extremely dense fur coats. Back in the wild, chinchillas have access to volcanic dust and keep themselves clean by rolling around in this fine dust.
So the answer to the question of why do chinchillas take dust baths is this: the dust bath helps remove dirt and oil without ever getting their coat wet.
If you have ever seen a chinchilla take a dust bath, you will notice how they rapidly flop around back and forth.
This helps the chinchilla bath dust get into its coat and remove unwanted substances.
Why do chinchillas bathe in dust not water?
Chinchillas have a highly dense coat. Approximately 80 hairs per follicle instead of just one!
That is why giving your chinchilla a dust bath is necessary to keep his coat clean and luxurious.
Why not simply bathe your chinchilla like a cat or dog? Since a chinchilla’s coat is so dense, it is never a good idea to get their coat wet.
If you were to try and wash your chinchilla in regular water, it would be incredibly difficult to dry the coat completely.
So why do chinchillas bathe in dust not water? Well, not to labor a point too far but basically because this would spell disaster for your pet’s health and skin!
A wet coat could lead to a bacterial or fungal infection, not to mention how it could make your chinchilla lose body temperature quickly.
What if your pet chinchilla gets something sticky in his coat?
It is recommended that you use a slightly damp hand towel to wipe the sticky substance clean. Be sure to just clean his surface coat.
What is chinchilla dust?
Chinchilla dust is a special kind of dust that your pet needs to stay clean. It is specifically made for chinchillas and cannot be substituted with similar looking dust or sand.
This special blue cloud dust penetrates all the way down to your chinchilla’s skin and helps remove excess oils.
Kaytee Chinchilla Dust is a popular choice.
As is Oxbow Poof! Chinchilla Dust.
You’ve got to love that little face on the bottle!
Chinchilla dust bath ingredients
Chinchilla dust is meant to resemble volcanic ash, which is the kind of dust chinchillas use in the wild. It is usually composed of ground pumice.
The special chinchilla dust penetrates all the way down to the skin and removes oil, dirt, and excess moisture without stripping away anything vital to your chinchilla’s health.
Best chinchilla dust baths
The best chinchilla dust bath consists of about a half inch to an inch of special chinchilla dust, placed in a sturdy container.
A semi-enclosed or enclosed dust house will help minimize the amount of dust that is kicked around in your home.
You can get a range of different containers specially designed to help your chinchilla have a lovely dust bath.
This plastic chinchilla dust bath by Kaytee is easy to wash and keeps all of the dust inside.
This wooden chinchilla dust bath is in a similar shape with a different look. It’s also fun for them to chew if you leave it in their cage!
Chinchilla dust bath video
Are you are curious to see what a chinchilla taking a dust bath looks like? Then check out this fun chinchilla dust bath video here:
Notice how happy the chinchilla appears when rolling and tussling around in the chinchilla bath dust.
Not only is the dust bath good for your chinchilla’s coat, it’s also good for his mental health.
The dust bath gives your chinchilla a chance to play and actively engage in its own grooming, just like it would in the wild.
How to give a chinchilla a dust bath
Why do chinchillas bathe in dust? To get clean!
So now we know he needs to do it, how can you help him?
To get started, you will need to get the items we looked at above.
First you will need a chinchilla dust house.
Second, you will need to purchase special chinchilla dust.
Place about half an inch of chinchilla dust in the chinchilla dust house, put your chinchilla in there and watch him go! The bath usually takes about 5-10 minutes.
Now we have answered the question as to why do chinchillas bathe in dust.
We have learned that chinchillas need a dust bath and not a wet one.
We have also seen what kind of special chinchilla dust bath to use. And hopefully you enjoyed watching that fun little chinchilla bathe in dust!
What about you?
Do you have a pet chinchilla that loves dust bathing? How often do you give your chinchilla a dust bath? We would love to hear your experiences in the comments section below!