Whether you’re already a Guinea pig’s parent or thinking of becoming one, caring for your new pet is an important task. Here are some fast facts and care tips you might not know about your four legged family member:
1. Why your pet is called a pig is a mystery
We do know that some of the noises your Guinea pig makes sound like a pig, in fact, they’ll often squeak with delight when their favorite person enters the room. These little ones also love to eat, and are shaped somewhat like a pig with their big heads (in relation to the rest of their bodies) and their small tails.
2. Guinea pigs are social animals
Your little one’s home should be near household activities so your cavy can watch what’s going on and be a part of your daily life. Guinea pigs love to live with a small group of friends. We recommend that you house you Guinea pigs in pairs so they don’t become depressed. Housing males and females together, however, is NOT recommended because these small pets multiply quickly.
3. Guinea pigs are vegans
Guinea pigs eat only fruit and veggies. No meat or dairy for this small pet. They love eating hay, carrot tops, and broccoli, but you have to be careful as some types of produce are toxic to guinea pigs. Stay away from the beetroot, rhubarb leaves, and potato and its peelings, all of which could make your piggy sick. Instead, leafy greens (like romaine lettuce, spinach, kale, parsley) and pretty much all types of fruit should make up your cavy’s diet.
4. Guinea pigs love to hide
Guinea Pigs are playful pets and one of the games they enjoy most is hiding. Be sure to give your little one plenty of places to hide in. Empty paper towel rolls, cardboard boxes, plastic pipes and plastic flowerpots make great hideouts for your small pet (and your cavy will also use them as caves when its time for sleeping and resting).
5. Guinea pigs are very sensitive to temperature changes
Your cavy can easily become overheated or chilly if the temperature isn’t just right. 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal but a good rule of thumb is that if you’re comfortable, your Guinea pig will be, also.
Taking your small pet somewhere? Experts recommend covering your pet carrier with a warm blanket to keep your little one comfortable if you need go outside in the cold, and pre-cooling the car before going on a trip when the weather gets hot.
Learn more about Guinea pigs and how to keep yours happy and healthy >>
Have a question about your pet Guinea pig? Just ask!