Chinchilla Facts

Wondering about chinchillas? Here are some of the basic facts. Dazzle your friends!

  • Chinchillas live 10 to 20 years.
  • Chinchillas have no dander, which is the leading cause to pet related allergies.
  • Chinchilla fur is considered the softest in the world - thirty times softer than human hair.
  • Chinchillas are originally from the Andes Mountains in South America.
  • It takes about 250 chinchillas to make one fur coat.
  • Chinchillas can jump up to five feet above their head

A Brief History...curious chinchilla

M.F. Chapman was working in a mining camp Chile in 1918 where he saw his first chinchilla. Someone had come into camp to try and sell one. Chapman purchased the chinchilla and was interested to learn more .

Chapman persuaded the Chilean government to allow him to go into the Andes Mountains to capture more chinchillas, so he formed a trapping party to go out and find some. But Chapman and his men found it hard to find chinchillas - they had already been hunted almost to extinction for their fur.

In three years they were only able to catch 11 chinchilllas, 3 of which were female.
Chapman was exremely careful in bringing them out of the mountains as well, not wanting to lose any. He took a year to travel, using ice to keep the chinchillas cool.

He then brought them all the chinchillas to California via a steam ship, arriving February 21, 1923.

Supposedly all the chinchillas in North America have come from those original 11 chinchillas!

Chinchillas of course, have a much longer history internationally, being trapped for their pelts for over 500 years.

Some of the most important chinchilla facts come from learning more about them. But share all you want in our forum.

Head here if you need more information on training your chinchilla.

Don't have one yet? Here's what to look for in a pet chinchilla.

Here's some general information about chinchillas.

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