Tag Archives: guinea pig care

Guinea Pig Care Tips

Have you decided to adopt a Guinea pig? These little furballs make very cute pets! Although Guinea pigs—or cavies, as they are sometimes called—are fairly easy to keep, they do have some specific care needs. Here, a Fort Collins, CO vet offers some tips on Guinea pig care.

Comfy Cage

Making sure your furry friend is comfortable in his cage is very important! For one Guinea pig, we recommend getting a cage that is about 7.5 square feet. If you have more than one cavy, you’ll need a bigger cage. Add a suitable substrate, such as aspen. Avoid pine and cedar substrates, as they are toxic to small animals. Your pet will also need a hidey-hole, as well as some dishes and a water bottle.

Offer Proper Food

You can feed your Guinea pig commercial food for his main meals. Your pint-sized pal will also need plenty of fresh water, as well as good grass hay, such as Timothy hay. You can supplement these things with fresh produce. Always research a new food before giving it to your pet, as not all fruits and veggies are safe for cavies. Ask your vet for specific advice.

Chew Toys

Cavies must chew quite a bit to keep their choppers healthy. Offer your adorable pet lots of suitable chew toys. Many cardboard, wood, and wicker items are fine, as long as they don’t have small parts or sharp edges, and are not coated in varnish, paint, or glitter. (Tip: the cardboard tubes from toilet-paper rolls can make great cavy playthings.) Ask your vet for recommendations.

Buddies

Guinea pigs are very sociable, and are often happier with a buddy or two to play with. Just be sure to only keep same-sex cavies together!

Veterinary Care

Keep a close eye on your cavy, and watch for any potential signs of illness. Some common ones are lethargy, reduced appetite, weight loss, and unusual posture, behavior, or vocalizations. Contact your vet immediately if you notice anything amiss.

Love

Last but not least, make sure your pint-sized buddy feels loved, safe, and comfortable. Pay attention to your little pet, and take time to pet and play with him. You may be surprised how charming and lovable these cute furballs can be!

Do you have questions about Guinea pig care? We can help! Contact us, your Fort Collins, CO pet hospital, today!

Cute Tricks You Can Teach a Guinea Pig

Do you have a Guinea pig? Did you know that these little furballs can learn some super cute tricks? You probably won’t be able to teach your pet to fetch or bring your slippers, but you may be able to show him some really adorable tricks. Read on as a local Fort Collins, CO veterinarian lists some cute and simple tricks you can teach your Guinea pig.

Turn In Circles

You can teach your Guinea pig, or cavy, as they are sometimes called, to turn in circles. Start by holding a treat up, just in front of his nose. When your adorable pet moves towards the treat, move your hand in a circle, and tell him to go in circles. The little guy probably follow your hand. Give him the treat after he’s gone in a circle.

Come When Called

To teach your cavy to come when called, simply hold out a treat, and call his name. It probably won’t take long for your cute pet to pick this one up!

Jump Through A Hoop

Cavies can learn to jump through hoops. Hold the hoop and a treat, positioning your hands so that your little furball needs to go through the hoop to get his snack. Then tell him to go through the hoop. When he does, give him the treat.

Go Home

Guinea pigs need some time out of their cages each day. Why not teach your little buddy to return to his cage on command? To start, you’ll want to lay out some yummy treats, going from the cage door into your pet’s habitat. When your tiny pal goes for the treats, say ‘Go Home’ or something similar.

Tips

Before training your Guinea pig, give him plenty of time to get to know you and to trust you. When training your cavy, say the vocal command after your pet performs the desired behavior. It will take a lot of repetition, but eventually your furry buddy will associate the spoken command with both the action you want him to perform and the snack. Even after your cavy has mastered a trick, give him treats sometimes for doing it correctly, so he’ll still expect those tasty tidbits.

Do you have any questions or concerns about caring for a Guinea pig? We can help! Call us, your Fort Collins, CO animal clinic, anytime!

Tips for a Great Guinea Pig Cage

Have you recently decided to add a tiny furball to your household? Guinea pigs make great pets. These little ones are completely adorable, inexpensive, quite easy to care for, and very fun to watch. In order to keep your pet happy, the first thing you’ll need to provide is a comfortable habitat. In this article, a Fort Collins vet discusses elements of a great Guinea pig cage.

Size

Guinea pigs, also known as cavies, are very active little furballs! Make sure your pet’s cage offers plenty of room to run and play. As a rule of thumb, one cavy will need at least 7.5 square feet of space, as a minimum, but bigger is always better. One way to make the cage bigger without taking up more floor space is to add a second story, with an enclosed ramp for access.

Material

Make sure the cage is properly ventilated. Wire cages are a popular choice. You can also get a cage with plastic walls, but leave the top uncovered to ensure the little one gets plenty of fresh air. Your cavy’s home does need a solid bottom, though. Wire floors can hurt your pet’s feet, and won’t keep substrate contained.

Substrate

There are many options to choose from when it comes to substrate, and they all have their own pros and cons. Aspen shaving, wood pellets, and paper-based products are all acceptable choices. You can also use fleece bedding, or even soft towels, though you’ll need to wash them frequently. Avoid bedding made from cedar or pine, as these are harmful to small animals.

Toys

Guinea pigs love to play! Make sure to provide your tiny furball with plenty of entertainment options. Since cavies have open-rooted teeth, they need to chew constantly, so make sure to give your little one plenty of chewable toys. Pet-safe wood, straw, paper, wicker, and cardboard toys are all good choices.

Furniture

Your little buddy will also need food dishes, a water bottle, a litter box, and at least one hidey-hole to retreat to when he wants privacy. Guinea pigs also love cozies, which are basically little beds for cavies. You can buy your furball an adorable cozy at a store or online, or make one yourself.

Do you have questions about Guinea pig care? Contact us! As your Fort Collins veterinary hospital, we are happy to help!