Did you know that March is Adopt A Rescued Guinea Pig Month? These little guys, also known as cavies, make very cute little pets! Here, an Oshawa, ON vet discusses basic Guinea pig care.
Your pet will need a big, comfortable cage. We recommend getting a mesh cage with a solid floor. For one cavy, the cage should be at least 7.5 square feet, though you’d need a bigger cage if you get more than one. Set the cage in a spot that is quiet but not too isolated. Avoid putting your Guinea pig in direct sunlight, near air vents or heaters, or in loud spots, such as too close to the TV.
Once you have the cage, you’ll need to add suitable substrate, like aspen or fleece blankets. Avoid pine and cedar substrates, as they are toxic to small animals. Your cavy will also need a hidey-hole, dishes, and a water bottle.
Guinea pigs are very sociable. Your cute pet will be much happier with a buddy or two to snuggle up with. Be sure to only keep same-sex pairs together!
Cavies are very playful little furballs. They also have open-rooted teeth, which means that your furry buddy will need to chew quite a bit to prevent painful dental problems. Offer your Guinea pig lots of safe, suitable chew toys. Many cardboard, wood, and wicker items make great playthings, as long as they don’t have small parts or sharp edges, and aren’t coated in varnish, paint, glitter, or dye.
Good nutrition is very important! Your pint-sized pal will need plenty of fresh grass hay. You can give the little guy commercial pellets for his main meals. You’ll want to supplement these things with fresh produce. Make sure your pet gets plenty of Vitamin C, which is crucial for cavies. Ask your vet for specific recommendations.
Keep a close eye out for signs of illness, such as lethargy, unkempt fur, diarrhea, fever, and reduced appetite. Contact your vet immediately if you notice anything amiss.
Handle your cavy regularly, so he stays friendly and sociable. Talk to the little guy, pet him, and play with him. You may even be able to teach your tiny furball some cute tricks!
Please contact us, your Oshawa, ON pet hospital, for your cavy’s veterinary care needs. We’re here to help!