Prior to owning any pet, one should have sound knowledge of so many things. If you are planning on taking Guinea Pig ownership, then these questions might be hovering in your mind right now- What do I need for a Guinea Pig? What are the basic needs of Guinea Pigs?What do they eat? How should they be treated? And so on.
Well, Guinea Pigs make lovely pets. They are adorable, easy, and inexpensive to keep and good at vibing with humans. They are the best pets for kids and excellent pet choices for adults as well. So if you’ve decided to adopt a Guinea Pig, here are the Guinea Pig facts for new owners you should learn.
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Basic Guinea Pig facts you need to know
Neither pig nor from Guinea-
Though the name “Guinea Pig” does suggest that Guinea Pigs have a relation with Pigs, in reality, they are not really pigs. Actually, Guinea Pigs are members of the rodent family. Also, despite being called Guinea Pigs, these little creatures don’t belong to Guinea. They have their roots in South America. Then, how come Guinea became a part of its name is not confirmed. However, a hypothesis suggests that the term “Guinea” has been corrupted from Guiana- an area in South America.
Guinea Pigs are large furry rodents. They are larger than rats, hamsters. Their teeth are ever-growing; that’s why they need to chew on staff to wear it down. Their average life span in 4-5 years. Guinea Pigs are witty animals and smarter than other rodents.
Guinea Pigs are timid, friendly, and emotional creatures. Domesticated Guinea Pigs vary a lot from their wild relatives in physical appearance and survival skills. Guinea Pigs are inquisitive and affectionate to their owners and cage mates. In fact, they are so emotional that you’ll be surprised to know that Guinea Pigs die of loneliness and sorrow when they lose their
cage mate. If you want to know more about it, give his article a read- Can Guinea Pigs die of loneliness.
Guinea Pig care tips for first-time owners
If you are owning a Guinea Pig for the first time, there are several things you have to be aware of. You have to have knowledge about the Guinea Pig diet, bedding, care tips, etc. to make sure you are ready to bring this new member into the family. So here are some Guinea Pig tips and tricks for beginners.
Choosing Guinea Pig-
If you are a new owner, it’s best for you to adopt a Guinea Pig with shorter hair. Long-haired Peruvian Guinea Pigs need more attention and maintenance like you need to wash and comb carefully; there are risks of hair fall and lice attack. While adapting, it will be suitable for your Guinea Pig if you adopt two Guinea Pigs together. Since Guinea Pigs are sociable, the two Guinea Pigs will enjoy each other’s company. They’ll play together and can also take care of each other.
However, while adopting, you need to keep in mind the combination of sex. Two male Guinea Pigs act like rivals, fight, and try to impose domination over each other. Therefore, if you adopt two Guinea Pigs, you should consider these pairing- 1male-1 female or two female.
It is recommended for a new owner to check on a Guinea Pig’s health before adopting one. Taking care of a new pet isn’t an easy task. So before buying a Guinea Pig, check if the eyes,ears, noses, anus look healthy. See if there is any sore or inflammation in the skin. If everything looks sound, it is then okay to own the little furry ball.
Guinea Pigs have a sensitive digestive system. They require a complex balance of calcium, magnesium vitamins, and other nutrients for their good health and well-being. Here’s a quick guide to the Guinea pig diet for you.
Guinea Pigs are naturally herbivorous animals. So, their prime needs are grass hay. Timothy and orchard brome are highly recommended for Guinea Pigs. And the hays that are not good for Guinea Pigs are Alfalfa, legume, etc.
Like human Guinea Pigs can’t synthesize Vitamin C. Therefore, an owner has to feed his Guinea Pig green veggies and some citrus fruits to ensure the essential vitamins and nutrients .they miss from their staple food. However, it’s best to avoid high in starch veggies and fruits containing high amounts of sugar, which can cause health complications. Guinea Pig Safe Vegetables- click on this article to know more about safe vegetable options for your Guinea Pig.
Both indigestible and digestible fibers are essential for Guinea Pigs. Digestible fibers help produce vitamin-B and amino acid. And indigestible fibers are good for keeping the intestinal tract moving. Grass hay and dark veggies are good sources of digestible fiber. For indigestible fiber, Guinea Pigs can be fed cardboards, woods, etc.
Guinea Pigs have a tendency to consume their own feces. This habit is not weird for them at all. Their feces produce cecotropes, one kind of soft pellet that recycles vitamin B, bacteria, and fiber for proper digestion. So if you are new to pet a Guinea Pig, you don’t need to worry if you see them eating their feces. if you want read this article about best guinea pig hay Full Guide.
Housing & bedding-
Guinea Pig’s housing should be a cage or enclosures made of plastic, steel, wire, or glass.
Wood or other fibrous things should not be used for Guinea Pig housing as there will remain risks that Guinea Pigs would chew on it and make holes in the housing. The size of Guinea Pig’s house should be at least 7-10 square feet. The cage or enclosure must have enough space and ventilation. Know about more about Best Guinea pig cage read this article.
Guinea Pig’s house should be placed in a cold, noise-free room away from extreme sunlight. The cage should be kept away from other pets or animals who might hurt your piggie.
A solid surface is best for Guinea Pig flooring. The surface can be made of steel, glass, or plastic. The wooden surface is a little hassle to clean. You can use shredded paper, wood or cardboard shavings, newspaper, commercial pellets, etc. for the bedding in the flooring. Don’t Forget to checkout Best Bedding for guinea pigs Reviews
You will have to clean your Guinea Pig house at least once a week or better, more often. You will need to clean up the bedding and the mess and replace the bedding with fresh wood shaving, pellets, etc. learn more about how to clean Guinea Pig cage.
Guinea Pig Care-
In hot weather, consider bathing your piggie. You can use any good branded medical shampoo to clean your piggie’s fur better, keep away lice and make them smell good.
If your Cavy has long fur, trim it occasionally. It would help if you also trimmed its toenails every month. For moisturizing, you can sometimes rub coconut oil on your pet’s body.
You should take your Cavy to a vet for at least twice a year. If there are no health complications, it is still good to do an overall health checkup regularly.
These Guinea Pig facts for new owners are a must learn for every new Piggie parent. These facts will help you give your pet the comfortable, healthy life it deserves. Here go some additional fun Guinea Pig facts.
Fun facts about Guinea Pigs-
Guinea Pigs are small but fascinating creatures. They have many characteristics you never knew. These are some Guinea Pig interesting facts that will surprise you.
❏ Guinea Pigs sleep for only four hours a day.
❏ According to a law in Switzerland, it is forbidden to adopt a single Guinea Pig.
❏ Guinea Pig’s teeth grow continuously.
❏ Guinea PIGS have dichromatic vision.
❏ Guinea Pig’s eyes range from dark colors ( black, brown) to bright colors like pink, red,
❏ Guinea Pigs fall ill if they do not consume their feces. This coprophagy is essential for
Owning a pet requires a lot of carefulness, patience, and understanding of the pet’s physical- psychological functions. Guinea Pig facts for new Owners is a must-learn for every new piggie parent. This article aimed to deliver a proper guideline for knowing and handling Guinea Pigs for beginners. Hopefully, this article has made you ready to welcome the new pocket pet member in