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Thread: A bit new but ready to learn!

  1. #1

    A bit new but ready to learn!

    Hello, my name is Jamie, I am a bit new to having pets, let alone guinea pigs (I have had 2 fish and 1 turtle). Anyway, I guess I have a few questions that I am hoping someone can answer.

    I got my first guinea pig on Friday, his name is Hampton, Friday night I was up reading blogs all night and seeing all the things I had done wrong, his cage was too small (I got one from PetSmart), I bought dry shampoo (although I haven't used it, but I read that they can have water baths, the lady at PetSmart said that they can not get wet because it's bad for their skin?), and he didn't have a friend. So Saturday I bought everything I needed to make him a new cage (it's about 11 square feet) and I went and got his friend, Carlos (they were together when I first got Hampton).

    I didn't know that I was supposed to introduce them separate first, so I put them in their new cage together the first night. They get along very well, they are always cuddling, but Carlos has been sneezing alot and Hampton has started sneezing alittle, I thought this was cute at first, but I googled it (like I do everything when it comes to them) and I saw that it could be a URI, this scared me alot, so I am taking them to the vet today (a exotic pet vet).

    I didn't even think to quarantine them! I feel so bad that they are both sick now, although they have been eating and playing quite a bit.

    So the reason I made a post on diet and nutrition is because I am wondering whether I should leave there pellets and fruit in their with them all the time or only a few hours a day? I do have hay in there all the time and water with vitamin C.

    Any advice or tips are welcome. I am ready to learn, I want to be able to love and take care of them like they deserve.

    Thanks for reading and replying!!

  2. #2

    Re: A bit new but ready to learn!

    Welcome to the forum!

    This forum's website (guineapigcages.com), cavyspirit, and guinealynx are all excellent resources for beginners and those with more experience. Guinealynx also has an extremely useful medical reference page.

    One thing you ought to check RIGHT AWAY is whether or not you really do have a same-sex pair. Guinea pigs from pet stores are frequently mis-sexed and sows can become pregnant as early as 4 weeks of age. I would separate them IMMEDIATELY until you know for sure.

    You can leave pellets out all day for them to much on. Fruits and veggies I would take up after an hour or so. Most pigs don't let those veggies sit around for too long, but very young pigs who have never had veggies before won't recognize them as food.

    Also, don't put vitamin drops in the water. Vitamin C degrades very quickly when exposed to sunlight, so in an hour, all you have is funny-tasting water that the pigs won't want to drink. As long as they are getting adequate vitamin C from veggies, they shouldn't need the drops.

    I hope this helps! Everyone on this form is very friendly, so don't hesitate to ask any questions!

  3. #3

    Re: A bit new but ready to learn!

    Firstly welcome and congrats on the new piggies!
    Don't fret to much! All new owners make mistakes! I am also a new owner, just got my girls yesterday and I'm still learning stuff too

    I do know they need pellets and hay 24/7 (at least I'm pretty sure on this, I'm sure others will correct this if I am wrong)
    Each piggy needs 1 cup of fresh veggies a day, can give it to them all at once. Or split it up and do half in the morning and half in the evening.

    Change the water though! Don't add the drops! It will change the taste of the water and from what I've read, piggies wont drink it, and therefore won't get enough hydration. FOr vitamin C you can give them bell peppers, dark leafy greens, cauliflower and a few others I can't remember right now.

  4. #4
    Moderator CavyMama's Avatar
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    Re: A bit new but ready to learn!

    Quote Originally Posted by LightSeeker View Post
    I do know they need pellets and hay 24/7 (at least I'm pretty sure on this, I'm sure others will correct this if I am wrong)
    Pellets : They definitely don't need them 24/7. They really don't need pellets at all if they have a vitamin rich diet. If fed at all, 1/8 cup is plenty.

    Hay: Definitely yes. They should have unlimited access to good quality hay.

  5. #5

    Re: A bit new but ready to learn!

    Oh great! Thank you so much for replying, I am going to go change their water right away! So I can gave them some bell pepper everyday for vitamin C? Also what about apples, orange, or bananas? I think I would rather give them fresh stuff rather than dried. Although Hampton has been loving dried bananas! Also someone told me that they can have watermelon, is that true? I know watermelon gives humans gas in there stomach, wouldn't it do the same thing to a guinea pig? Just want to make sure I don't do anything wrong!

  6. #6
    Moderator CavyMama's Avatar
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    Re: A bit new but ready to learn!

    Here is a nutrition chart to help you get started: https://www.guineapigcages.com/forum...us-Plants-List

  7. #7
    Administrator lissie's Avatar
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    Re: A bit new but ready to learn!


  8. #8

    Re: A bit new but ready to learn!

    Quote Originally Posted by CavyMama View Post
    Pellets : They definitely don't need them 24/7. They really don't need pellets at all if they have a vitamin rich diet. If fed at all, 1/8 cup is plenty.

    Hay: Definitely yes. They should have unlimited access to good quality hay.
    Thanks! Wasn't completely sure, but now I know as well

  9. #9

    Re: A bit new but ready to learn!

    Quote Originally Posted by CavyMama View Post
    Pellets : They definitely don't need them 24/7. They really don't need pellets at all if they have a vitamin rich diet. If fed at all, 1/8 cup is plenty.

    Hay: Definitely yes. They should have unlimited access to good quality hay.
    Yes yes yes!!! On all counts!

    We had a new piggie client last week that was feeding a cup of pellets once a week - on the weekend - because that was easier for them to manage and remember ... and I had to explain that it could be catastrophic if they ate those pellets all at once and they couldn't drastically change their diet like that. SO I explained that the max each piggy would need is 1/8 cup per day and she seemed shocked that's all they should be getting!

    As much hay as they can eat free choice and supplement with the veggies and pellets. if you are feeding a good 95% good quality hay in their daily diet you just cant go wrong with those percentages ...

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