Guinea Pig Care

Guinea pigs are very popular children’s pets. These little furballs—also known as cavies—make very cute and charming animal companions! A Tipp City, OH vet discusses basic Guinea pig care in this article.

Cage

A comfortable cage is a cornerstone of good Guinea pig care. One cavy needs at least 7.5 square feet, though you’ll likely want more than one. The cage should be well-ventilated, with a solid floor. For substrate, you can use soft blankets or towels, or paper-based substrates. Avoid substrates made from pine or cedar: they aren’t safe for small pets. As for accessories, you’ll need to add a hidey-hole, food dishes, and a water bottle. A hayrack and litterbox are optional, but helpful.

Buddies

Cavies are very sociable, and get very lonely without friends. In fact, it’s illegal to own just one in Switzerland, as it’s considered cruel to isolate them. Therefore, we always recommend getting at least two.

Food

Guinea pigs need lots of fresh grass hay, such as Timothy hay. They can have commercial pet food for their main meals. This should be supplemented with fresh fruits and veggies. Cavies tend to get scurvy if they don’t get enough Vitamin C, so your furry pals’ diet absolutely must contain this crucial vitamin. Ask your vet for nutritional advice, including safe and unsafe foods, portion sizes, and suitable snacks.

Toys

Like many other small animals, cavies have open-rooted teeth. Your pets will need to chew quite a bit to keep those little choppers from growing too long! Therefore, you’ll have to provide lots of chew toys. Many common household items, such as the tubes from toilet paper rolls, make great cavy playthings. Look online for DIY ideas. Just be sure to always put safety first. Never give Guinea pigs anything with small parts, sharp edges, or dangling ropes. Items covered in varnish, paint, or glitter are also unsafe.

Cuddles and Love

Now for the fun part. Guinea pigs are absolutely adorable! Unlike many pocket pets, they tend to have distinct personalities. Many of them are quite cuddly, and will even sleep in their owners’ laps. Spend time with your furry buddies every day. You may even be able to teach your little buddies some simple tricks!

Please contact us, your local Tipp City, OH vet clinic, with any questions about Guinea pig care. We are dedicated to offering great veterinary care!

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