10 important questions to ask yourself before buying a guinea pig
Despite its unpretentiousness, the guinea pig is a pet like a dog or a cat. And it requires some responsibility on the part of its owner.
Answer the following questions honestly and you will understand if you should get a guinea pig.
- Guinea pigs live up to six to eight years. During this period, you must take on the responsibility of keeping the animals. Are you ready for that?
- In order for the guinea pig to feel well, it needs a fairly spacious home. Do you have room for a cage measuring at least 60×60 cm? And it is better if the cage is away from sleeping places, because sometimes guinea pigs are noisy at night or early in the morning.
- Clean the cage at least once a week and feed the pigs 2-3 times a day. Do you have time to do this?
- The guinea pig is a very social animal that needs daily companionship and various activities. The ideal is to keep a pair of same-sex animals, then they will entertain each other and not get bored. Otherwise, at least 10-15 minutes will be needed daily to socialize with your guinea pig. Will you be able to make time for this?
- While walking around the apartment, the guinea pig may chew up furniture or wallpaper, leave behind puddles or balls of droppings. In these cases, you should be tolerant. Can you?
- If you give a guinea pig to your child, you will have to monitor their interaction, mainly to make sure that the child does not inadvertently harm the guinea pig.
- Also think about who will take care of the guinea pig during your vacation.
- If the guinea pig gets sick, you will have to go to the vet. Are you prepared for that?
- Do you have any pets that most likely won’t be able to get along with a guinea pig? Guinea pigs are best kept away from cats and dogs, although there are cases where they get along peacefully and even become friends.
- Before getting a guinea pig, find out if you or any of your household members are allergic to animal fur. There’s nothing worse than getting a pet and finding out that its fur is causing allergy attacks in one of your pets.
10 important questions about guinea pigs
- Should I get one or two guinea pigs? Guinea pigs are very social animals, so it’s best to have two pets for their well-being. (See “Buying a guinea pig”).
- do males get along as well as females? If males know each other from an early age and were kept separate from the females until puberty, there will be no clashes between them. (See the article “Two guinea pigs: friends or foes”).
- Do I need permission from the owner of the house to keep guinea pigs (if the house is rented)? Few animals require it, so you should find out if keeping an animal would disturb the peace and quiet of the tenants.
- Can I get a guinea pig from a kennel? It all depends on how long she has been there. Sometimes such a pet needs to be given a lot of time and attention so that it becomes tame again.
- Where can I buy purebred guinea pigs? First of all, you should turn to breeders who are engaged in professional guinea pig breeding. Pet store salespeople can also help you with this issue. To date, the preferred practice is to buy animals directly from breeders. When buying a pet from a pet store, especially a “generalist” one, you are likely to buy a sick, weakened animal or a pregnant female. As a rule, the pet store has no information about the origin and pedigree of the animal. As for breeders, they, in most cases, guinea pigs are provided with optimal care, which reduces the risk of disease and unwanted mating of young animals. If necessary, you can always get information about the parents of a young guinea pig.
- Are guinea pigs expensive? Guinea pig prices fluctuate widely. See the Shop section for current prices.
- What do I have to pay attention to first, when buying? The pet must be healthy and awake, with correct teeth placement and not too long claws. (See the article “Buying a Guinea Pig”).
- Can a guinea pig be clean? If you show enough patience, it can be taught, but it’s more up to the animal.
- Do guinea pigs bite? A frightened guinea pig begins (threateningly) growling and baring its teeth. If you do not leave her alone at this point, she may bite.
- Can I feed guinea pigs leftovers from the table? Leftovers from the human table are absolutely unsuitable for guinea pigs.
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