Hedgehog vs. Chinchilla

Hedgehog vs. chinchilla, two of the smallest species in the animal kingdom, demand more attention than your ordinary cat, despite their diminutive stature. Cages, food, grooming, and temperatures are all critical to the wellbeing of both species.

Being able to love and care for an unusual pet is a wonderful experience. It is possible to domesticate chinchillas and hedgehogs, two of the most exotic creatures we have managed. However, they are distinct in their behavior, and the decision of acquiring one should not be made carelessly.

Take a look at the list below to help you narrow down your options. There are no similarities between hedgehogs and chinchillas. Even at first sight, it’s clear that these two are unrelated. To begin with, hedgehogs resemble little porcupines. They feature long, pointed snouts, short legs, and hard spikes growing out of their backs.

The chinchilla is softer and smaller than the hedgehog. It is one of the world’s softest mammals because of its silky, thick coat. The Andes Mountains’ bitter cold is no match for their thick winter coats.

Below we will compare bot the animals as pets:

Chinchilla :

  • South American continent of origin
  • Size ranges from 9 to 14 inches.
  • Ten to twenty years Life span
  • Domesticated? The answer is yes.

A chinchilla’s cuteness is undeniable. However, just because something has a nice face doesn’t automatically imply it would make a wonderful pet. It’s hard to know what you’re getting yourself into when you get a chinchilla.


Chinchillas prefer the company of other chinchillas over that of people since they are gregarious creatures. It’s not a good idea to have one of these animals in a household with young children.

They might be injured at any time. Chinchillas may lash out and attack with their teeth or claws when they feel threatened. Like many other rodents, Chinchillas are active at night and make a lot of noise in their cages.


The most difficult component of caring for a chinchilla is establishing a routine for cleaning and maintaining its surroundings. This is a low-maintenance breed. They don’t stink, and their pellet-shaped feces are simple to pick up if you keep up with the cleaning.

However, they may be picky when it comes to food and drink. You’ll need to supply them with plenty of chewable toys to keep them occupied if you want them to be happy. You also have to take care of what you feed them. Kaytee Forti Diet Pro Health Small Animal Food For Chinchillas by Kaytee store might be the best option.


Don’t be fooled by their coats of fur into believing that they are slender creatures. To meet their high requirements for physical activity, chinchillas must spend one or two hours each night roaming outside of their cage.

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  • Africa, Europe, Asia, and New Zealand have distinct origins.
  • Size ranges from 4 to 12 inches.
  • The average lifespan is between four and six years.
  • Domesticated: The answer is yes.

Although hedgehogs lack chinchillas’ fluffy coats, they manage to be just as endearing. There are times when these little rats don’t make the ideal pets for humans. Before committing, you must know their requirements and check that they fit into your lifestyle.


In the wild, hedgehogs are solitary creatures, and even as household pets, they prefer to remain to themselves. They tend to be hesitant and apprehensive around new individuals. Developing trust with a hedgehog is a lengthy and delicate process.

When they come to know you, these little creatures begin to frolic about and grow used to being handled more easily. Some of their quills may pinch you, and their nighttime movements might keep you awake.


Despite their little stature, Hedgehogs require balanced food, like the option of Suncoast Sugar Gliders Spike’s Delite Hedgehog Premium Diet Food is one of the best there is and frequent veterinarian care. Set up a huge cage with a lot of toys and an exercise wheel to prevent them from becoming bored, as well. Hedgehogs may spread salmonella. Thus they’re not suggested as pets for families with young children under five.


Chinchillas and hedgehogs are similar in the sense that they both need to be let out of their cages for at least an hour every night to run about. They’ll get the remainder of their exercise when you put them to bed in the cat carrier. So that they may keep both their brains and bodies active, it’s best to have some substrate where they can dig or burrow.

Differences & Similarities Between Hedgehog and Chinchilla:

At first glance, the physical characteristics of hedgehogs and chinchillas seem to be the most significant distinction. In contrast to hedgehogs, chinchillas are coated in thick and longer fur. On the other hand, both animals spend the majority of their time awake at night.

They both require a lot of time to work out and explore at the moment. The chinchilla isn’t a wonderful cuddler, no matter how enticing it may be to touch it all the time.

The lifespan is one of the most important differences to keep in mind. Chinchillas may live anywhere from ten to twenty years as a pet. Even as pets, hedgehogs only survive for six years on average. If you can’t commit to a long-term relationship with a chinchilla, you may want to think again before purchasing one.

Hedgehog vs. Chinchilla: Which One Is Easy To Handle?

You may think of a variety of ways to answer this question.

Hedgehog vs. chinchilla: Which is more comfortable to handle? Hedgehogs aren’t all that spiky and spiny. It’s not like attempting to pick up a cactus to get one. Pet pygmy hedgehogs may be handled without fear of being spiked, and they can even grow to accept being held in their owners’ hands.

On the other hand, Chinchillas are far more comfortable to hold because of their very soft fur. However, even though you shouldn’t hug or squeeze them, it’s still a lot of pleasure to brush and massage their ribs. This question might also be interpreted as which pet is more tolerant to being handled and prefers spending time with humans.

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When it comes to this particular trait, the hedgehog and the chinchilla are equal. Skeptical pets like rabbits and guinea pigs are not as well-behaved as cats and dogs. As a result, you’ll need to gradually encourage them to get comfortable with you, starting by sitting near their cages, allowing them to smell your hand, and eventually feeding them from your hand.

Notes on the Lawfulness of Getting One As A Pet:

When contemplating whether to have a hedgehog or a chinchilla as a pet, you should also consider this. Hedgehogs may be restricted or prohibited in several places in the United States and other countries. In the past, some people thought they were doing this to protect cattle and farms from illness, but this has now been shown to be unfounded.

As non-native creatures, they are considered a possible environmental concern and may damage the local ecology if they escape. As a result, they are still outlawed in many locations worldwide. As long as they are purchased lawfully from a registered breeder or pet shop, Chinchillas are likely to be legal in most regions. In addition, they represent a threat to the environment if they escape, munching on plants, leaves, and insects, which may disrupt an ecosystem’s delicate balance if they become invasive.

You should keep them in a “chinchilla-proof” area to prevent them from chewing on things like plastic, electrical cables, and other household items.

In Which Breed Should You Invest?

Your decision should be based on your lifestyle and how much time you have available to devote to the animal. After a few years, it would be unfair to any of these creatures if you chose to give up caring for them.

Fortunately, the demands of the two creatures are somewhat similar. It would be best to focus on the minimal distinctions between the two to help you decide which pet is ideal for you.

Side Note: Can a Chinchilla and a Hedgehog live peacefully together?

Even in the wild, chinchillas like to live in groups, and there is some indication that they may even be able to share tunnels with degus. So, can hedgehogs and chinchillas coexist in captivity?

The answer is “no.” In the end, one of them is likely to kill the other if they are forced to co-habitat

 Why Can’t Hedgehogs and Chinchillas Coexist?

Hedgehogs and chinchillas can’t coexist because chinchillas have evolved to avoid other animals taking advantage of their food sources. This is a trait that can be found in almost every species. Chinchillas have been known to battle over resources like food, water, and available living space, so it’s easy to understand why they wouldn’t want to coexist with a hedgehog

So in the debate of hedgehog vs. chinchilla; you can only choose one.