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Thread: Big cage vs access to people

  1. #1
    Cavy Slave
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    Big cage vs access to people

    Right now i have a large cage with no access to people (excluding myself for the night times) and a pet store size cage (which are inadequate size wise) with access to people that pass by (and sometimes kids come over and can interact ).

    Ques: in the interim before adopting guinea pig friends, should I move my single guinea pig to the larger cage or keep her in the smaller cage (to me neither is ideal but I'd rather choose the better of the two).

    What do you think?

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    Cavy Star Fay's Avatar
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    Re: Big cage vs access to people

    What do you mean by, no access to people? The pigs would definitely need adequate space when you adopt another one and have completed the quarantine/introductions or they might fight with the lack of space. Lack of space also has long term health consequences such as lack of mental stimulation and space to exercise so it's best to keep them in a large enough cage as much as you can unless there's a good reason, such as illness or quarantine.

    That said, it's also important to have the cage somewhere where a lot of people can keep an eye on them such as in the living room or another high traffic area because guinea pigs are prey animals and hide illness well. If they are out of sight most of the time you may not notice if they're sick in time to get them help but you could make it a habit to check on them several times a day and sit with them for a while each time. You do also need to protect them from young children and other pets so make sure the cage is sturdy, with a cover a child can't unlock.

    I'm not sure how much this helps but it might help weigh your options or think of other solutions? Is there a reason you can't have the larger cage in a more crowded area?

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: Big cage vs access to people

    I'll have access to her but she won't be around in public.

    Correct. The only available space for a large enough cage to hold 3 pigs would be in my room (I had to get rid of a home gym to make room).

    Yes, your reply was helpful. Made it more clear what each aspect (room and attention)does. Thank you.

    P.s I was under the impression that high traffic areas are good for guinea pigs because they like the ...company I guess.

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    Re: Big cage vs access to people

    Yeah pigs love high traffic area and of course as the owner you get to enjoy your pigs more if you're around them more, both these are really good reasons to keep them in an active area but the biggest reason is that you'd be able to catch if something is wrong with them early on so you can take them to the vet. Pigs can go downhill very quickly from a URI or similar if it's not caught quickly enough and you might not notice unless you're observing them for a long time, since they can hide it so well right up until it gets really bad as you can read here:

    http://www.guinealynx.info/emergency.html

    That said, adequate space is also very important long term. I would say keep them in a larger cage but just put more effort into spending several hours a day in the same room with them. You said they are in your room? I assume it's your bedroom? If so you'd be able to check them in the morning and at night (which you'd probably have to do anyway to feed them) but just plan to spend a bit more time with them than you would otherwise spend in that room to make sure they look healthy to you, then I'd also check on them midday. You could schedule your visits to them around feeding times, play time, and their weekly weigh-ins etc. It's not bad for them to be in a less active room per say as long as you make more of an effort to be in that room and know what to look for in regards to health issues.

    I wouldn't sacrifice the bigger cage area for having them in a more active area if at all possible, provided you give them enough time, the size of the cage and the stimulation/exercise it can provide far outweighs being in an active area.

  5. "Thank you, Fay, for this useful post," says:


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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: Big cage vs access to people

    I recently had to figure out where to put our cage and had a similar size versus location debate. I was able to make a large enough cage in our living room just not as big as if I put it in another room.

    What if you had them in a larger cage in your room but then brought them out to the main part of the house for floor time? You could use a piggie play pen or extra grids to contain them.

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