Chinchilla's come from the home land of the high Andes in South America. Their dense fur, with up to 80 hairs per follicle provides them with a warm coat to protect against the cold. When first discovered for domesticity in 1923, chinchilla's were on the edge of extinction. Since then with care and breeding they have grown in population. Due to this, chinchilla's were very expensive to own in the 1960's. So, while chinchilla's have grown in popularity as pets, they are considerably more expensive to buy than most other small mammals. In addition to being very cute, they are also clean and friendly.