It is quite safe to leave the male and female together in their joint cage during the full 111-day term of the pregnancy. In fact, you should not remove the female from her immediate and familiar surroundings. You should not handle the female during pregnancy even if you’re tempted to weigh her or palpate her. You may increase her feed since she’ll need a bit of extra nourishment, but do not be alarmed if she at times stops eating up to the point of losing weight. This is very normal for doe chinchillas.
The 111-day gestation period is very accurate give or take a day or two. If you plan ahead, you should know approximately which day the female will be giving birth. On that day, you must be certain not to allow the mother to take a dust bath. It is virtually impossible to assure a completely bacteria-free dust bath. Letting her take one would risk contracting womb or vaginal inflammations. Also, you might notice that on or immediately before this day, the female will begin taking in larger volumes of water and less food. Thus, the appearance of soft droppings, repeated stretching, and periods of time when the expectant mother just lies quietly are all signs of impending birth.
There is no need to aid female chinchillas during labor. Instincts take over completely. Birth usually takes place in the early hours of the morning. Initially, the female stretches and makes mournful laboring sounds. The fluid from the sac around the young will be discharged. The labor lasts only a short time and she will soon give birth. Most chinchilla births consist of twins, but triplets are not unusual. Multiple births actually take place over a period of hours.
The mother will gently birth the young with her teeth, cleaning and drying each baby with her own fur. It is highly unusual for a mother chinchilla to ignore any of its newborn. If this does happen, however, take the kit and immerse it in warm water up to its neck for a short time while massaging it gently. It should revive soon and you can wrap it in a warm towel or heating pad until it is ready to be returned to its mother.
The mother will deliver one placenta for each kit. It is normal for the female to eat the afterbirth, and when she does so, it is a sure sign that the birth has been completed. If you see blood on the mother’s nose and on her forepaws, it is a clear indication that the afterbirth has been passed and eaten.