Guinea pig care

So what does caring for a guinea pig include?

  • Feeding – 2-3 times a day.
  • Feeder cleaning, airing – once a day.
  • Litter change – once every 3-4 days.
  • General cleaning of the cage – once a week.
  • Preventive examination – once a week.
  • Brushing the coat – once every 2-3 days (only for long-haired guinea pigs).
  • Cutting nails – 1-2 times a year.

According to the observations of our breeders from the MMS Club, it takes about two hours to service 2-3 guinea pigs a week.

Also note that the pig should be allowed to move a little. Every day, you definitely need to let her out for a walk around the apartment. At the same time, it is worth vigilantly watching this small animal, so as not to accidentally step on it or pinch it with doors. A pig that no one pays attention to can test its teeth on furniture. Naturally, if you have other animals that may be unsafe for the rodent, they should be locked in another room during the walk.

If you want to lift the pig, then catch and pick it up with a quick and decisive movement. We clasp the back and chest with one hand, put the other under the butt. Do not carry newborn pigs and pregnant females.

Preventive examination

Once a week, you need to observe the mumps a little and carefully examine it.

A healthy animal is mobile, eats willingly, its coat is shiny, without bald spots.

It is also important to check for wounds on the skin, for diarrhea, runny nose, wheezing when breathing, and if the eyes are festering.

Regular examination of the gilts will allow you to take timely action if necessary.


Short-haired and rosette pigs do their own toilet on their own.

Using claws and teeth, they clean and comb their fur coat. The animal, however, will certainly not hurt if from time to time we will comb it with a brush and wipe it with a dry cloth.

Frequent brushing is necessary for long-haired pigs. This is necessary not only so that it does not fall into tangles, but also to massage the skin. If the wool in some area is tangled in a ball, then it is simply carefully cut with scissors. For combing wool, you should use special combs and brushes. Many breeders cut their long-haired handsome men for the summer so that they are not so hot. For long-haired females, it is also recommended to shorten the hair around the nipples to make it easier for babies to find milk.

Caring for short-haired guinea pigs

Guinea pigs with short fur do not need to be combed at all, so pigs – extremely clean animals should be combed twice a week only during molting, usually in spring and autumn.

Care for long-haired guinea pigs

Pigs with long hair should be brushed (with a soft brush) at least once a week – preferably two or three times a week – to prevent tangling. Brushing gives hair a silky shine, but only when combined with an appropriate diet. If you feed your pig inappropriately, the coat will remain dull despite your best efforts. A very beneficial effect on wool will be provided if sunflower seeds and flaxseeds are given to it, taking into account certain ingredients contained in these seeds. (Care must be taken, however, as these are oilseeds and too much of them in the feed can cause obesity.)

Train your guinea pig to brush from an early age. Take the animal to your lap by laying out a towel beforehand. Detangle your hair with a long-toothed comb. The hair of animals can be slightly moistened with water from a spray bottle – the comb will brush and pull less hair. Comb the fur with a soft brush until shiny. Any stuck or matted areas, especially in the back of the body, should be trimmed with scissors or washed with a special anti-hairball shampoo for cats (available at pet stores). Then blow dry the fur if it’s cool at home.


Bathe your guinea pig only if absolutely necessary. For example, in the event that, due to diarrhea, the wool around the anus becomes contaminated with feces, or if the animal is heavily soiled with soil and the only way out is to swim.

If there is a need to redeem a guinea pig, you need to act as follows.

  1. Fill a plastic bowl or shallow bowl with water at room temperature to a height of 2.5-3 cm from the bottom.
  2. Place the guinea pig in water, soaking it only as much as necessary.
  3. Gently wash the pig, making sure that its head is always above the surface of the water.
  4. If necessary, you can use a special shampoo for rodents (sold at the pet store), without affecting, however, the head of the animal; the shampoo should then be thoroughly washed off.
  5. After bathing, remove the pig from the water and dry it gently with a towel. If the room maintains a temperature above 18 ° C, it is enough to wipe the animal, but if it is cooler in the room, you need to dry it with a hair dryer.

Long-haired pigs should always be dried with a hair dryer, but only set to the lowest temperature. A completely dry animal is placed in a clean and dry cage lined with hay. It must be remembered that a redeemed guinea pig is especially sensitive to drafts and cold, susceptible to colds, the consequences of which can be detrimental.

Dental care

Lack of adequate solid food can lead to overgrowth of teeth. In the guinea pig, like all rodents, the front teeth (incisors) grow continuously, even if they use them intensively. This is a great danger, since too long teeth make it difficult to eat, and their sharp ends can pierce the tongue or gums. As a result, the animal stops eating altogether, and the intervention of a veterinarian is required. In addition to solid food, it is recommended to give the pig to gnaw on various (safe for her) objects.

Sometimes there is such a problem as congenital malposition of the teeth in a guinea pig. In such cases, they must be shortened by the veterinarian every two to three months.

Claw clipping

In addition to caring for the teeth, an important element of caring for a guinea pig is keeping its claws in proper condition. The point is that they do not grow too long, because this would impede the movement of the animal. In bred guinea pigs, claws do not wear off by themselves sufficiently, so the owner is obliged to help them with this. However, this should be done very carefully and only when absolutely necessary. In this case, one more person is needed to take care of the animal. The most suitable tools are sharp special scissors or clipper.

Too long claws are shortened with special scissors or claw tongs, taking care not to damage living tissue. A slight excess in the length of the incisors is eliminated with a nail file, and very long teeth are trimmed with sharp special scissors. However, if you have never performed this kind of operation before, leave it to an experienced person.

Pay attention to the blood vessels Do not cut the claws too short, because nerves and blood vessels pass in their upper parts. Damage to this living tissue causes excruciating pain to the animal, the wound heals for a long time, and as a complication, chronic infection can occur. In a situation where living tissue is damaged, it is necessary, first of all, to stop the bleeding with a constricting agent (for example, a lapis stick), and then take care of the hygiene of the cell as much as possible in order to prevent infection.

Clipping of nails in rodents is carried out at about the age of 1 year, then 1-2 times a year. In nature, they grind naturally on sand and stones, and at home they grow excessively, which brings inconvenience and pain to pigs.

List of guinea pig breeds - Wikipedia

The cut must match the profile of the claw To prevent the claws from crumbling, you should use special tweezers (available at the pet store).

The nails must be carefully trimmed. It is better to do this near the lamp “in the light” so as not to make a mistake and not to damage the blood vessels. It is easy to recognize the place to which the claw can be trimmed in animals with a light color. Looking at the claw in the light, you will see translucent blood vessels; cropping is allowed only within the transparent area. This requires special scissors or nail clippers. During this procedure, the pig must be held carefully, but firmly – it will strive to pull the paw out of your fingers. And one more thing: try to keep the cutting edge across the claw. If trimmed obliquely, it may crack.

If the claws are dark, it is very difficult to determine the location of the blood vessels. In this case, this procedure should be carried out together: one holds the guinea pig and highlights the claws from below with a spotlight, the other cuts.

Ear cleaning

The ears should also be checked regularly. If necessary, gently clean the ears from dust and dirt with a paper tissue. In no case should you use cotton swabs! Dirty ears that emit an unpleasant odor can be affected by an ear mite: usually the animal tilts its head towards the sore ear. If you notice these symptoms, you should immediately contact your veterinarian.

Guinea pig care

Eye cleaning

Small formations, crusts in the corners of the eyes are best removed with a damp, soft tissue paper. Unexpected profuse lacrimation indicates inflammation or soreness. In this case, you need to seek help from your veterinarian.

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