People start owning guinea pigs as domestic pets since the 16th century. Not only their silly and harmless looking’s knock people down, but also their unique personality attracts many pet lovers.
If you are new to guinea pigs, the article will give you a big picture of what you should know about this creature.
Below are frequently asked questions regarding guinea pigs’ food and living.
Read until the end to get to know more about cavies.
FAQs Forum – Guinea pigs’ food and living questions
Will guinea pigs eat too much if you give them too much food? I am watching my kids’ pets for the first time and realize I don’t know how much food to give her.
It is easy to overfeeding the guinea pigs sometimes, especially for the beginners. Guinea pigs are sociable pets with chubby looking, they might impress people with the ability to chew food the whole day.
That’s the reason why new owners are confused about how much food they should feed these fluffy creatures. Guinea pigs don’t often overeat, they know when to stop eating if they are full.
Nevertheless, it does not mean they will refuse what you offer them.
The good news is that you can feed guinea pigs an unlimited amount of hay. Hay takes 80% in their daily diet which is necessary for digestion and dental health. Guinea pigs are herbivores, so they love gnawing hay the most.
Hay feeders also available, you can check them out.
Hay contains a great number of fibers. Therefore, you don’t need to worry that they will get obese even if they overeat. And because their teeth continuously grow, they have to munch to slow down this process.
However, there are different types of hay that you should be aware of. Grass hay is the most healthy and suitable for any guinea pigs, while others might not guinea pigs’ favorite.
Apart from hay, you can give them commercial food for guinea pigs which are available in most pet shops. The pellets will supply vitamin C to piggies since they can’t produce on their own.
They also contain additional minerals needed for your pets to thrive healthily. You can refer to the instruction labeled in the package to get the idea of how much you should feed.
Veggies and fruits should be included as well, one cup per day is a suggestion. Romaine lettuce, spinach, apple or blueberry are easy to buy and friendly to guinea pigs’ stomachs. Make a good mix of food to give them a balanced diet.
Don’t forget to treat the water, the most essential nutrient in every diet. You need to have a bottle of water available in the cage so that piggies can go to it every time they need it.
Read more: Guinea Pig Water Bottles
Why do some guinea pigs eat their own babies?
Guinea pigs are vegans, the meat will be very dangerous to the digestive system. Basically, the stomach can’t digest the meat that they consume because it is an inappropriate food source.
Not to mention, guinea pigs might experience digestive shock when they eat meat that causes them to death. Therefore, there might be confusion between hamsters and guinea pigs.
Both are rodents, but hamsters are smaller in size and they are not herbivores. Hamster’s mother might eat their helpless babies, and the reasons remain unclear.
She might not be capable to take care of the whole litter, or she might eat the weak ones to ensure a healthy life for the stronger ones.
Guinea pigs are known to be good parents, they will clean and take proper care of their babies. Yet sometimes the males will step on the kids, and the females ignore their children, they will never eat their own babies in general.
If guinea pigs are involved in cannibalism, it probably happens between two adults during the starving time in the wild, but it rarely occurs.
And if you see guinea pigs eat the babies, you should be alert of the food quantity you have given them. Lack of food and poor diets can make the guinea pig mom tend to eat her babies for the nutrient supplement.
Moreover, they only do that when they have serious stress and aggressiveness.
As pet owners, you should always make sure to provide varied and balanced diets for piggies, so that they will not be hungry and bored. You should interact with them more often to make them happy and reduce stress.
Guinea pigs love to have a sense of belonging, it is frustrating for them to be left out. Give them toys or play with them when you are free, they will appreciate and feel your love.
Furthermore, a large cage will offer enough space for them to move and run around freely. If they feel comfortable with their house, they won’t be depressed and less likely to take risk of her babies’ lives.
Read more: Best Guinea Pig Cages
How long can guinea pigs live?
In short, they can live for 4-8 years, way much longer than their neighbor – hamsters, which seldom grow more than 3 years. The most guinea pig longevity breaks the norm with a record of almost 15 years.
Piggies’ longevity depends on many factors, so you should be awake to learn more about how you can increase your pets’ lifespans. If you plan to have a forever home for pets, consider these factors to raise guinea pigs effectively.
- First, your guinea pigs should be good breeds. They need to be in a perfectly healthy condition in the first place, otherwise, they will be more likely to suffer and die from sickness.
- Second, you should prepare a big room space for them to do activities and sleep comfortably.
- Next, treat your pet with a good mix of healthy food to fulfill their basic needs and make them joyful. Then, give them toys to have fun with.
It is better to own at least two guinea pigs, so they can communicate with one another. Two females are the recommendation, males might fight against each other when putting in one cage.
Do not forget to pick them up and talk to them for some time, or give those cuddles. Guinea pigs will feel deep affection for your attention and company.
Find a veterinarian to have a check-up for your pets. Monitor all the health issues or signals, so you can take action timely.
Here are the guinea pig bedding options at affordable prices.
Can guinea pigs eat cucumbers? Why or why not?
Sure, they definitely can even though cucumbers do not have high nutrient value. Cucumbers are one of the healthy veggies for guinea pigs’ digestive system.
With the large water content, cucumbers keep your pets hydrated during summertime. A few slices of cucumber in the diets will attract the piggies’ taste, yet you should feed them in limitation.
Remember not to offer them cucumbers with waxed skin, the pesticides will destroy the function of the digestion. Too much cucumber consumption can lead to diarrhea and vomit.
Guinea pigs can eat cucumbers, but it should be fed not more than 3-4 times a week. Nonetheless, cucumbers can’t be used in the replacement of hay or other main food supply. Instead, it is rather be served as a refreshment or treats.
Read more: What do Guinea Pigs Eat?
Why won’t my guinea pig stop squeaking?
Cavies can be noisy sometimes, and how they sound deliver different meanings. When you notice that they won’t stop making a squeaking sound, pick them up and have a check-up.
Observe to see whether there is any injury, hot body or heavy breathing. If you spot any of these, guinea pigs might get serious sickness and in need of a vet.
They sound loud when they are hungry. Guinea pigs will let you know when they need food, they never feel shy to ask for what they want.
Even if you have given them hay and pellets, they still squeak, how to do? They are asking for tastier food, fruits, and veggies for example. Make sure to have them in daily guinea pigs’ diets.
When they feel scared or uncomfortable, they will squeak continuously. Take a look at the surroundings to make sure there is nothing harmful to your piggies. A dirty cage also bothers them so much.
They probably want to tell you to clean their beloved house. You should at least clean all things once or twice per week, or you might do some more extra work if they have more poops.
Sometimes, cavies just feel bored and lonely.
If you are raising only one guinea pig, it is suspected to be the cause. Piggies need friends to play with or they will get depressed easily. And in some cases, cavies just want to greet you whenever you come near.
It shows that they appreciate your attendant and need your love.
Read More about how to cut guinea pig nails
Many beginners find it difficult to take care of guinea pigs. Owning piggies means you have to fully commit your time, money and energy with lots of care.
You are responsible to search the best picks for your pets, and learn to understand their behavior. Happy guinea pigs will live a longer and healthier life.
The article has provided the answer to frequently asked questions about guinea pigs’ food and living. We wish you can learn useful tips to raise your cavies rightly and effectively.