Guinea pigs as pets: everything you need to know
In the market for a Guinea pig pet? Take a read of these few things to note before you choose… The post Guinea pigs as pets: everything you need to know appeared first on Mad Paws.
In the market for a Guinea pig pet? Take a read of these few things to note before you choose your pig pal. Guinea pigs as pets are perfect for those who are looking for a small, social, and docile companion. They are native to South America and are often kept as house pets due to their friendly nature. They are social creatures who thrive in the company of other Guinea pigs and humans.
Choosing a Guinea pig
When it comes to choosing a Guinea pig, there are a few things to consider. One of the first things to consider is the size of the animal. Guinea pigs can grow to be about 25-30 cm long and weigh about 1 kilo, so it is important to choose a size that is appropriate for your living space.
It is also important to choose a healthy animal from a sustainable and ethical source, as guinea pigs can be prone to certain health issues. Guinea pigs make great pets for those who can devote the time and effort to caring for them properly. They’re easy going nature and size make them a great cuddle companion for those who can’t accommodate larger pets.
How to keep a pet Guinea pig healthy
In addition to a proper diet, Guinea pigs need plenty of exercise to stay healthy. It is important to provide them with a large enough enclosure to allow them to move around and explore. The cage should also have a solid bottom to protect their feet and a wire top to allow for ventilation. It is also a good idea to provide them with a hiding place, such as a cardboard box or a small hut, to give them a sense of security.
It is also important to provide guinea pigs with a clean environment. Their cage should be cleaned regularly and their bedding should be changed at least once a week. As with any pet, it is also important to keep an eye out for any signs of illness and seek veterinary care if necessary.
Top 3 must-haves for Guinea pigs as pets:
Fresh veggies & hay: Guinea pigs only eat plant material, so it’s important to keep providing them with fresh hay and veggies.
Vitamin C: Guinea Pigs cannot produce Vitamin C so it is crucial to ensure their diet has ample to compensate.
Companionship: Guinea Pigs are extremely social creatures and rely on the company of others so they must be kept in pairs or groups.
Common health issues of Guinea pigs as pets:
Teeth: Guinea pigs’ teeth never stop growing so they need to constantly be chewing if their teeth overgrow it can cause discomfort, pain and weight loss.
Mite Infestations: Guinea pig’s hutches need to be regularly cleaned to avoid mites that can cause itchy skin and hair loss.
Bumblefoot: Bumblefeet is the common name for swollen paw pads when Guinea pigs are on hard ground for too long, which is why it is crucial to keep their hutch or space very well padded.
Signs a Guinea pig is unwell:
- Reduced appetite
- Irregular urination or toileting habits or pattern
- Excess water drinking
- Change in behaviour
- Squealing or flinching when being touched
- Abnormal breathing
If any of these signs are present it is time to consult a vet, if it is minor monitor it closely for 24 hours and if still present after 24 hours it’s time to go to the vet.
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