For the month of June we had a record breaking month. Eight (8) chinchillas were surrendered and a head-spinning twenty four (24!!) chinchillas were adopted. It was also a very good month for matchmaking. Nine of the chinnies adopted went as singles or pairs to be new friends for lonely single chinchillas of the same gender.
We did have some failed matchmaking sessions, however. Pair bonding is no sure thing. Even though chinchillas live in herds in the wild, they can, and do, kill each other if they are not compatible. The difference being, in the wild they can run far away from an attacker to escape. In the confines of a cage, non compatible animals lead to a deadly combination.
Because the mating instinct can lead to aggression and fighting for breeding rights, it is not advisable that people keep different genders of chins in the same home. Chinchillas can smell a female in heat up to a mile away. So you're fooling yourself if you think you can keep them safely in separate rooms. As evidenced by the high number of single boys for adoption, even our rescue has trouble keeping bonded males together. Only the most beta males can safely live together in a home where females also live.
Chinchilla matchmaking is a service we offer. The process is a tricky one and relies heavily on knowing and being able to recognize subtle chinchilla behavior cues. For this reason, as a general rule, we do not provide instructions on how to introduce chinchillas. Not to mention those dimwits who ask us for introduction help to allow for breeding. Seriously? Yes, there is such as thing as a stupid question. Asking an animal shelter for advice on how to introduce non-sterilized, opposite gendered animals will result in a scathing reply.