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Thread: Jumping and Agility

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    Cavy Slave
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    Jumping and Agility

    Hello! I'm from Russia, therefore I'm sorry for bad English. I was read about Guinea Pig Agility here: Guinea Pig Agility - Front Page
    I want know - Agility (and jumping) safety or danger for guinea pigs?

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    Administrator bpatters's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    Welcome to the forum.

    It's probably safe as pictured on that website. Guinea pig backs can't bend backwards, so they shouldn't jump or climb off of high objects. The site owner appears to be responsible when she says, "PLEASE NOTE!: Guinea Pigs or Cavy/Cavies, will need wide, low and stable pieces of Agility Equipment. They do not have the same mobility as a dog or pet rat."

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    Cavy Slave HannibalLecter's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    I can't imagine any pig whom would find that natural or fun at all. While it might be something very few pigs could learn, I really don't see the point in doing this only for the gain of the owner. All my pigs would do is bulldoze over all the obstacles & tip them over when exploring.

    If you want an animal to practice agility with, certain dogs or rabbits would be better. But it's never a guarantee depending on personality & breed.

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    Cavy Slave Africa's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    This is a wonderful website you shared! This lady definitely knows what she is doing. I think that if you stick to the guidelines and avoid anything that could be a danger to your piggie then it's fine. She states you should stick to very low and stable jumps. Since guinea pigs are not as flexible as dogs and cats are you should take this into consideration when doing up a course for them. Guinea pigs naturally jump (when popcorning or jumping on top of a hidey), however, only small, stable jumps should be used for these courses. I would stick to tunnels and those weaving poles myself. There are so many things you can teach your piggie, I have so far only taught one of my boys to do a circle, however I plan to teach them a lot more!

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    Cavy Slave Africa's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    Quote Originally Posted by HannibalLecter View Post
    I can't imagine any pig whom would find that natural or fun at all.
    I definitely think the pigs would enjoy it, it's stimulation for their little minds! Of course they will enjoy it if you train them properly. I know mine would :-)

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    What's fun for guinea pigs? My guinea pig like jumping up and down on mini plastic house in your cage. I think my pig will like "bar jump" or "the bridge" with food treating.

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    Cavy Slave Africa's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    It takes a lot more patience to train a guinea pig than it does a dog. A guinea pig needs lots more repititions so take that into mind when you start.
    I would not start with jumps. Maybe the best place to start is with tunnels and weaving poles. If you want to do jumps make sure he/she cannot trip over them and fall. It must be very low and stable (so it doesnt fall over). Make sure your guinea pig wont trip or get his feet stuck in the jump. Again, it must be low.

    I would say it's not so much 'fun' for them but more stimulating for their minds. It gets them thinking about how to get their treat. It keeps them from getting bored.

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    Thank you! On this photo my guinea pig jumping (follow for carrot in my hand). It's jump safety or not?
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Cavy Slave HannibalLecter's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    Fun is exploring, new environments & rearanging hideys, or a new clean cage, floortime with hidden food. Fun is also feeding time & fluffing up a fresh pile of hay. To go to the lengths of treating them like another animal with such a complicated sport as agility I find odd. Especially as they are so fragile.

    They will have a hard time understanding & learning, and as they are grazers, they might never understand the connection between their actions on an obsticle & getting the treat. Agility if fun for you to watch, probably not much for most pigs other than the food involved or walking through a tunnel.

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    Cavy Slave Africa's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    Its really hard to tell from the photo if it's safe or not. It looks ok to me from what I can tell. I would not increase the height of it as he gets better at it. Definitely keep the height the same throughout his life. Your guinea pig looks cute, nice colouring.

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    Cavy Slave blackarrow's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    It certainly didn't look like the pig on the web site had a hard time learning and understanding. I think they're a lot smarter than you're giving them credit for, HannibalLecter.

    Cavale, I would certainly keep the obstacles low and the landing surfaces soft, which is the only issue I have with the photo you're showing.

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    Africa,

    Thanks! I'm will not increase it.

    blackarrow, Thanks!

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    Cavy Slave HannibalLecter's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    I'm perfectly aware that they are clever little critters, well, when they feel like it at least. ;)
    They do however respond quite slowly to these types of training, and I dislike trying to make them do something that isn't close to some type of natural behavior or a necessity. The issue here would be that they might get hurt jumping, might fall walking on bridges, and that I simply don't understand why you would train guinea pigs or fishes to do a dog or rabbit sport where jumping and training is more natural & fun for the animal. Where the pig would respond much more to another activity.

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    Cavy Slave kathlaaron's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    Quote Originally Posted by Cavale View Post
    Hello! I'm from Russia, therefore I'm sorry for bad English. I was read about Guinea Pig Agility here: Guinea Pig Agility - Front Page
    I want know - Agility (and jumping) safety or danger for guinea pigs?
    Oh my gosh ! Thank you so much for sharing this adorable well done video with us ! I absolutely LOVED it and I think it's a wonderful way to interact and keep your piggie stimulated.

    Also just wanted to add, when one chooses to take the time to do something like this with their piggies, keeping "safety first", should always be the #1 top priority.

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    Cavy Slave kathlaaron's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    Quote Originally Posted by blackarrow View Post
    It certainly didn't look like the pig on the web site had a hard time learning and understanding." I think they're a lot smarter than you're giving them credit for".. .

    .
    I definitely agree. I think we sometimes, underestimate piggies abilities and intelligences.

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    Moderator / Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner Inle_Rabbit's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    The guinea pig is in a sweater! How adorable is that!! Now I need a skinny pig and a knit guinea pig sweater...

    I have seen videos on Youtube of people training their guinea pigs to jump short jumps. It doesn't seem like the pigs aren't enjoying themselves. Mostly they are following a treat over a jump. The only concern I would have is making sure the guinea pigs land well. Personally, I don't see either of my fat boys jumping anything, even for a treat.

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    Cavy Slave kathlaaron's Avatar
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    Quote Originally Posted by HannibalLecter View Post
    I'm perfectly aware that they are clever little critters, well, when they feel like it at least.
    They do however respond quite slowly to these types of training, and I dislike trying to make them do something that isn't close to some type of natural behavior or a necessity.
    You know, for a long time now, I use to be "on the fence" so to speak, and had mixed feelings about training and teaching guinea pigs "tricks". After giving this type of thing a lot of thought, and having had a year to get to know my own two girls, I finally came to a decision on what "I" feel and think about it. This is what I concluded:

    1. Since teaching any animal to do "tricks" or "stunts" requires some reward/treat, I think the "type" and size/amount of the "treat" for your guinea pig should be fairly small, since training will take several attempts to learn.
    The treats given to your guinea pig should not be too high in sugars or too rich in calcium, which could lead to dental or other health problems, later on in life. Also, one should include these "treats" for "tricks" as part of their daily diet "not added on top of", the 1 cup a day dietary requirement.

    2. I think it is good stimulation for them, and provides more interaction with you, which is always a good thing.

    3. I think as long as one keeps "safety first" in mind, is properly educated on a guinea pigs and what is reasonable to "expect" them to be able to do, has understanding about a guinea pig's physical abilities and limits, and it doesn't cause any harm or undue stress, then I say "why not ?!"

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: Jumping and Agility

    I certainly wouldnt do it with my piggys,, for goodness sake they are guineapigs not dogs and are happy foraging for food, playing with ping pong balls and muching hay and as for wearing a jumper thats just plain cruel,, they cant take it off when they are two hot like us,, they have fur to keep them warm,, 4 of mine live outside and dont have jumpers but plenty of hay and a cover over their hutch and they are fine,

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