View Full Version : Hi from Weeki Wachee Florida

01-24-09, 12:59 am
Okay, after reading in this forum...maybe I did some things wrong. My kids wanted to get a hamster...no a bunny...no a guinea pig...Ahh Yes. The Guinea Pig. I had two as a child, Ginior and Genorita. Of course, in that day and time, there was no Internet and not much in the way of research in how to take care of them. We did the best we knew how and managed to do quite well with them. Now, 30 years later, I am...or my children are...owners of two guinea pigs. Both are male...we purchased from Pet Supermarket:eek: ..but is that so bad?

I will say that the young girl who was helping us....was not so much help. She tried to talk us out of getting two, but after all I read here, I felt two was best....Was I wrong? She asked the size of the cage and we told her we built our own...she seemed puzzled. We have a 2 x 4 size and am glad to say that the Target grids were are on sale and do have the 9 square size. I got the regular chrome/stainless, as I felt it was better than the colored ones.

Okay, back to the original thought....As I said, the girl (young) wanted to talk us out of two. I questioned her and said, "I thought they were social." "Yeah", she replied, "but two males may get territorial and you made need to separate." Oh....that does not sound good... We have made the above-mentioned cage, and I do not think we would have room for another...but would if we had to...I then asked..is it not better to get two now?..since they have been living together...versus introducing a new piggie unknown to the other. She agreed that would be best.

After some careful consideration and protest from my son (so serious and cautious) and begging from my daughter (flies by the seat of her pants)...I purchased two. They are 3 months...according to our salesgirl...and both male. We then started purchasing our supplies. I was not sure about food, so took her advice and bought a combination of pellets, corn, and other pieces....Wrong again???? We got them an ingloo, a tunnel, some Timothy Hay and that is about it..for now.

If you have any advice for me....I will gladly accept. I want to give these guys any and all advantages to having long and healthy lives.



01-24-09, 10:14 am

Yes 2 was the right decision. Did the boys appear to get along at the store? That will help. I also found that when adopting my 2 cats, the fact they came home together bonded them.

Please have a knowledgeable GP vet check them over for health and to be sure of their sex.... you may end up with more GPs than expected if you don't. There maybe health issues you're unaware of as well.

They don't need the corn. Check the 'stickie threads' (the upper threads listed) in diet and nutrition. There is an awesome graph created by a GP nutritional expert that will help you make the best food choices and ensure a healthy variety.

Given that this an adoption based forum, you'll not get a lot of support as to how you got the GPs. Pet stores are strongly discouraged for many reasons that you'll see as you're around longer.

A vet visit will go along way to make sure those concerns aren't problems for your new pets.

Keep reading all the stickies at the top of each section and you'll learn a ton!

Enjoy your new babies. I got the GPs for my son... but I'm having extreme difficulties not taking over.... OKay I Have!... But I'm having a ball :)

01-24-09, 10:38 am
:cheerful: Welcome...new piggy mommy:D !! My first bit of advice is any advice from petstores though well intentioned is not worth getting. They say what they are told to sell guinea pigs.

So on to better news and this is a wonderful forum to find about you new little guys. Try reading http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/diet-nutrition/22156-everything-you-need-know-about-cavys-diet-read-me-nutrition-charts-info.html (http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/diet-nutrition/22156-everything-you-need-know-about-cavys-diet-read-me-nutrition-charts-info.html). This will tell you all about the veggies they need daily because their bodies do not store vitamin c on its own. In addtion they need unlimited hay(alfalfa hay until 6 months) and a good pellet(also unlimited until 6 months). Brands popular for hay are oxbow, kleenmama's and I personally buy from a local stable.(I get an grass hay that has some alfalfa due to the cutting..and my piggies are 4 months). Popluar pellet brands are the same as above and mazuri 5664 is okay also. Only the 5664 is good. And it is sold only in 25 lb bags-you can get it at local farm feed stores. By way of note kleenmama's is only online.

Okay so we covered food and you have a cage. Good. Here is a really good thread on fleece bedding. It can save you money in the long run. THis thread will cover the pros and http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/bedding/21568-fleece-project-study.html (http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/bedding/21568-fleece-project-study.html)cons.http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/bedding/21568-fleece-project-study.html (http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/bedding/21568-fleece-project-study.html)
You can find decent fleece a Walmart for $3.99/yrd.
Well I hope these links help. Keep reading. I read practically everyday about some little things and people here are very knowledgeable and ready to help.

01-24-09, 10:59 am
Welcome to the forum! I pretty much see 2 big mistakes. For starters I would have not go to the petstore to get my GPs. There is a huge overpopulation problem and I am sure that you could have give a great house for any 2 in a shelter (waiting to get euthanized for lack of adoptive parents)or a rescue (fill with beautiful faces hoping for a forever home).
Secondly, I would have definetlly not bought their things since they don't have the best products. Then again I did the second one...

This was said already, but please, double check their sex. Petshops often missexed the pups and you could end up with an acciental litter.

You'll find great information here troughout the forum. Pictures are always welcome...

01-24-09, 11:10 am
Hello and welcome! We love pigtures!

Buying from a petstore really was quite bad. Go to PetSmarts dirty little Secret online (**beware graphic**) andyou'll see what you support. Or this: PetSmart Cruelty // Campaign Updates // PetSmart Store Investigation in Manchester, Connecticut, 2006-2007 (http://www.petsmartcruelty.com/investigation_manchester.asp)

And you did the right thing by adopting two. Pet Store Employies don't know squat. It's an old myth that males don't get along. You might want to double check they're boys though. Pet stores often missex them. Sexing Guinea Pigs: How to Sex a Guinea Pig (http://cavyspirit.com/sexing.htm)

A 2x4 cage is minimum, for two males. But they should be fine if they get along.

For pellets, Oxbow is a pretty great brand. KleenMama's is the best. Sweet Meadows are comparable, while Mazuri 5664 is an alright brand. Chuck the pellet mix. It has to much fat and is a choking hazard. They should have unlimited pellets up to six months of age. If you choose to feed alfalfa pellets, only feed up to six months of age.

Grass hay (timothy is most commonly fed but bermuda,orchard,brome,alfalfa and more can be fed) should be alllowed at all times. If you choose to feed alfalfa hay instead of pellets, you should only use alfalfa as a supplement. 1 part alfalfa, 3 parts other.

I agree with tiggerinha.... fleece tends to be the way to go. Read her link.

Lastly, pet store pigs are often sick so be sure to check out Guinea Lynx :: A Medical and Care Guide for Your Guinea Pig (http://www.guinealynx.com) and all the symptoms to a URI and mites. Those tend to be the most common in pet store pigs.

01-24-09, 12:38 pm
Hello there I am in Weeki Wachee too!

01-24-09, 01:47 pm
TRY TO IGNORE PEOPLE'S PASSIONATE COMMENTS THAT COME OUT AS JUDGEMENTAL! People here are pro-adoption and we have all made mistakes. I have to agree that stores who sell animals are best not bought from because this supports animal breeding...

01-24-09, 07:22 pm
Hello & welcome to GPC.

If your pigs are purchased from a petstore, please please verify them with a vet just to be sure of the sex. GPs multiply like crazy so for a breeding pair, you can end up with 50 - 100 pigs within a year (the dad will breed with his daughter even when the mom is pregnant etc..) easily!

Verifying with a vet also gets your GP's info pre-booked into the vet's systems so they can get emergency care easier than having to wait & fill out forms when you first visit (saves paperwork time). When they are there, you can have the vet do a check-up for any hidden illments like URI or treat them for mites & such.

P.S. look for a cavy savy vet.

Good luck with your boys.

01-25-09, 06:05 pm
"Weeki Wachee" sounds like the sound a guinea-pig makes when it's sneezing. lol

Good luck with your new cavies! I'm from Florida too!

01-26-09, 08:12 am
Thanks for all the words of wisdom. I have located a vet locally, but they cannot be seen until next Monday. They seem to be adjusting pretty well. Snickers seems to be the dominant one over Brownie, as everytime Brownie is getting a drink Snickers decides he needs one too.

Snickers is more active, out roaming more than Brownie, which concerns me a little, but maybe that is just his temperment. I will know more next week.

BTW, valeriern, where do you take your pigs for vet visits?

tiggerinha, I appreciate you trying to make sure I did not feel condemned by this group due to their passionate nature. Fortunately, I have a pretty thick skin and can understand where everyone is coming from. Woulda, shoulda, coulda....you know, hindsight is 20/20.

Regardless of how it got started, this is where we are at, and I am learning a lot on their diet and such, as to give them a great life.

Thanks again everyone!

01-26-09, 11:16 am
Welcome to GPC! Glad to see that you are enjoying the site and learning a lot!

01-26-09, 01:19 pm
In addtion they need unlimited hay(alfalfa hay until 6 months)That would be unlimited grass hay such as timothy, bermuda, brome, bluegrass, meadow, orchard, etc.

Alfalfa is just a supplemental hay. They need grass hay all the time.

You will also want to get a high quality plain pellet.

I'd take the pigs to the vet for a good checkup and have them treated for mites since they came from a petstore.