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Thread: Guinea pigs as classroom pets for college program. Opinions wanted

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    Question Guinea pigs as classroom pets for college program. Opinions wanted

    Hello,
    I am a college student and I work on campus for a STEM program. We have our own room on campus where students like to hang out, study and play board games. As STEM majors, a lot of our students experience a great deal of stress and pressure on a regular basis and many of our students are not in a position where they could own their own pet. I think a classroom pet would be a nice addition to our space, but I would love to hear any thoughts or concerns experienced guinea pig owners may have. I have created the following list of questions I would love to hear your thoughts on. I have never owned a guinea pig before.
    1. Do you think being in an environment with a lot of people on a regular basis, that is sometimes moderately loud would cause the guinea pigs too much stress?
    2. I was planning to take them home on weekends or breaks and have two cages. One at home and one at work, do you think this change in environment on a regular basis would make them unhappy or cause them harm?
    3. Do you think having guinea pigs as "classroom pets" is a good idea or a bad idea? I love animals and want to be a responsible owner.
    4. Do you have any tips for introducing them to this new environment? I was thinking about adopting them during the school quarter and keeping them at home for a bit till they get used to me and then moving them into the center over break so they can get used to the environment and have a chance to adjust before students start coming in.

    Feel free to comment on anything not on this list.

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    Administrator bpatters's Avatar
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    Re: Guinea pigs as classroom pets for college program. Opinions wanted

    There are several long threads on here about the pros and cons of having guinea pigs as pets. There's an Advanced Search button at the top of the page that might help you find them.

    Most of us come down on the side of not having guinea pigs as classroom pets. They're not really very social critters, and a friendlier animal might be better for a classroom.

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    Re: Guinea pigs as classroom pets for college program. Opinions wanted

    Hello!

    First off, just want to say I think it is wonderful that you are taking the time to research first before deciding. My personal opinion is no, I don't think it is a good idea. One, guinea pigs need hay 24/7, what if one of the students is allergic to the hay? Also, they take a long time to trust and may never be cuddly. So essentially in your classroom you will have a cute poop machine that you clean up after. Since you haven't had guinea pigs before below is a short list of things to consider
    -Guinea pigs prefer to have another friend, so you would need to adopt two
    -Space: two girls need at least a 2x4 cxc cage (28"x56") and two boys 2x5 (28"x 70") but bigger is better
    -Food: Hay 24/7, 1 cup fresh veg (leafy lettuce, bell pepper etc) daily, high quality pellets daily
    -Bedding: Fleece (have to take home and wash), paper (gets expensive, can smell, need large trash can to dispose)
    -Other: nail trims, vet visits

    If you are determined though, a couple rats might be a good option. I grew up with rats and loved them, so much easier then piggies hehe

    Something to consider with any animal is possible allergies, mess and smell. They might pee/poop on the students when being handled. Or if a student gets bit when handling the animal what happens?

    It if just my belief that animals in classrooms don't mix. I appreciate what you are trying to do for the students though

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    Re: Guinea pigs as classroom pets for college program. Opinions wanted

    Quote Originally Posted by bpatters View Post
    There are several long threads on here about the pros and cons of having guinea pigs as pets. There's an Advanced Search button at the top of the page that might help you find them.

    Most of us come down on the side of not having guinea pigs as classroom pets. They're not really very social critters, and a friendlier animal might be better for a classroom.
    Guinea pigs are friendly in my opinion. I love guinea pigs so they are the best animals for me.
    Guinea pigs can be excellent animals for the class because they are pets, and pets can distract children from work and help children with relaxation.
    Guinea pigs help children relax between lessons. Children have difficulties with the transition between the solution of mathematical tasks and reading essay examples about global warming and other essay examples from the site https://samples.edusson.com/global-warming/,when children have guinea pigs, they do not have difficulties with the transition between solving mathematical tasks and reading essay examples.
    Finally, I want to say that maybe guinea pigs may not be the best pets for the class, but nevertheless they perform their functions perfectly!

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    Re: Guinea pigs as classroom pets for college program. Opinions wanted

    I agree that Guinea pigs would not be a good choice because most are rather shy and I feel like the noise would be too much at times and if everyone crowded them it could be stressful even with tons of hiding spaces. Also the allergy situation could be bad (personally I do have allergy and have to wash hands after handling and wear gloves to clean cage and when younger i handled classroom Guinea pig babies and had bad allergic reaction) and like someone mentioned if hay allergy then I dont even know if they could go in that room.

    The cost of Guinea pigs is higher than other animals and with the multiple cages it probably would be hard to move the actual cages because so large so if you had 2 and moved them in small travel cage often that's stressful.

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