View Full Version : New to owning Cavvies. Would like some advice.

06-03-15, 02:04 pm
Hello I am new to owning Guinea pigs. I have two currently and we havn't been together for very long I also have a Menagerie of other pets. Such as a cat and a bird. Now the bird and the guinea's seem to be getting along by chirping to one another. Here is a picture of everybody.

74598 This is Spike. one of the two boars.74603 ( a better veiw of spike)
74599 Ame (japanese for Rain) My Green cheek Conure

74600 Angel the other boar

74601 And Indigo my feline companion.

The boys live together as they are brothers. and their cage is barren at this moment with the Exception of shavings which i plan to change out to something more appropriate. A water bottle a bowl for pellets and a salt lick which they really do not need. I have a shopping list on Petsmart.com under wishlist. and my main questions are...

What kind of bedding should I get besides Pine and other woods? I want to look into Hemp bedding.
What hide away is the best hide away?
Should I remove the salt lick they have in the cage?
When is the best time to start handling them? I have had them for about two-three days now.
is it okay for them to nibble on me? or not.
What breed are they?

06-03-15, 02:13 pm
Yes, remove the salt lick. They shouldn't have it.

Hideys should have two doors -- nothing where a pig can get trapped by another pig.

Don't let them nibble. It can turn into a biting habit that's hard to break. Don't put your hands in front of their mouths, and make sure your hands don't smell like food.

There are tons of opinions about bedding. I use wood pellets with a thin layer of fleece over them.

You can handle them now. Do so every day, and be sure you've got yummy treats (herbs, veggies or a bit of fruit, NOT store-bought treats) every time you do.

Read http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/threads/22156-READ-ME-Cavy-Nutrition-Charts-amp-Poisonous-Plants-List for what you can feed and when.

Read http://www.guinealynx.info/healthycavy.html for general cavy care, and http://www.guinealynx.info/emergency.html for health care.

Welcome to the forum!

Amanda Marie
06-03-15, 02:20 pm
Hello, and welcome. Beautiful pets. To answer you questions, (1) Pine is not good bedding for guinea pigs as there are oils and dusts in it that can cause Respiratory issues as guinea pigs have sensitive noses. I wouldn't recommend hemp either has the effects of the oils in hemp could also cause respiratory issues. Aspen is a good bedding brand if your looking for that type. Many people use fleece as a bedding option as its fairly cheap and once you have enough all you do i wash it. You would put a layer of towels,puppy pads, or uhaul blankets as the bottom layer and then the fleece on top of that. A new option is getting safe wood stove pellets to use as the absorbent layer instead of the towels then pit the fleece on top. Others no more about that than i do. I commonly use Aspen bedding and on occasion fleece. I would also look at cage requirements, as the cage they are in is to small for two pigs. Its good that you are getting another. (2) Any hide away is ok, they love wood hide aways so that they can chew them and things. (3) Yes, remove the salt lick, it is not necessary for them to have one, they get what they need from their diet. (4) I would do it right away, hold them and feed them some veggies or talk to them and let them get use to your hands and things.its never to late or to soon, they are prey animals so they will be skittish at times but its normal, and not your fault. (5) Its up to you in my opinion, just make sure your hands are clean in case of things that could harm them. If its to hard just pull your hand away, if they just nibble then lick you its fine, most of my pigs do it. Good luck. hope you get a fun and big cage for them.... (did you name them off Buffy the vampire slayer? cool of you did)

06-03-15, 02:29 pm
The salt lick has been removed. I feed them carrots often and I plan on getting them more Veggies to make them a salad.

06-03-15, 02:33 pm
(did you name them off Buffy the vampire slayer? cool of you did) My relitive did and yes they are the vampires from buffy XD

Amanda Marie
06-03-15, 02:42 pm
I knew it!!!!! XD

06-03-15, 03:15 pm
Pine bedding is ok as long as it is kiln-dried. The petsmart great choice brand is pretty good. (That's about the only great choice product i would recommend.)

06-04-15, 07:36 am
Welcome to the forum, cute pics! You will find plenty of great advice here!

1) What kind of bedding should I get besides Pine and other woods? I want to look into Hemp bedding.

Kiln dried pine is fine, but i find it pics up odors quickly. I use Carefresh and Yesterday's News combined, great odor control!

2) What hide away is the best hide away?

I actually drape fabric over the corner of the cage as a hidey and my boys love it. I like that it gives them more room to run since my boys have slightly less space than they should.

3) Should I remove the salt lick they have in the cage?

Yes, they don't need it.

4) When is the best time to start handling them? I have had them for about two-three days now.

Talk to them frequently and get them used to your voice, that is most important! but you can start handling them as well. My tips are to always talk to them when you handle them so they can learn your voice, also hand feed them and pet them in the cage as well.

5) is it okay for them to nibble on me? or not.

I let my boys nibble me! One is very good and licks me when he is very comfortable, and will lightly nip when he wants back in his cage. The other one chomps sometimes, but he has never drawn blood.

6) What breed are they?

Somewhat hard to tell from the pictures, maybe peruvians?

06-04-15, 08:00 am
OMG are they not the cutest GPs ever!!! I love their little fluffy selves. :) Welcome to the forums! If you read through existing threads you will find TONS of helpful information, this is how I have learned majority and it has been crazy helpful.

It will all be personal preference to be totally honest with you, you have to find what works for you. Also the most important thing you need to do is get them in a big enough cage for the two boars. Majority of people here use C&C cages as do I. They really are actually cheaper than a store bought pet cage and will make for better living conditions for your furkids.

I use a fleece and wood pellets combo. I have used EVERYTHING and have found this to be the easiest and most efficient for our household. You just have to find what works best for you. Any hideway with two openings is fine, we have used anything from shoe boxes to store bought hides. There are plenty of ideas here on DIY as well as through pintrest. We handled our boys the very first night we brought them home. :) Def don't let them nibble as like bpatters said, it can lead to the nasty habit of biting. I have a rule in my house that hands always get washed prior to handling the boys so there are no tempting smells they would like to sample. Honestly though, start reading previous threads, you won't regret it and very worth your time.

06-04-15, 01:36 pm
Welcome to the forum. Your piggies are so cute! Most of your questions have already been answered, so I will just elaborate on some things.

1. Make sure that pine bedding is kiln-dried, and any kind of wood shavings you get are dust-free. Cedar has toxins that are very bad for guinea pigs. Another option is fleece. If you want to look into fleece, blizzard or anti-pill are the kinds you're looking for.

2. Some people use stools, or fleece forests. But any hidey should have at least two entrances, as already mentioned.

3. Again, as has been mentioned, salt licks are not good for guinea pigs. Neither are most pet store treats, such as nuts, seeds, and yogurt drops.

4. Don't let them nibble on you. It could get too rough.

5. When you handle them, make sure that you always support the behind, and don't hold your piggies in a position that would be awkward for them. On that note, never put a guinea pig in a ball or wheel-their backs are very delicate, and could break easily.

6. It's a bit hard to tell from the pictures, but they could be Peruvians, and possibly coronets.

06-05-15, 04:13 pm
I have decided sence their cage looks boring. I am going to invest in a C&C cage as well as an outdoor playground for them to play in. I guess i have three projects this summer. atleast i will finally get outside :3 The third being an out door Aviary for my Conure.