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Thread: Misc. Guinea Pig Questions!

  1. #1
    Cavy Newbie chrysanthemum's Avatar
    Oct 09, 2019
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    Misc. Guinea Pig Questions!

    Hello! I have some misc. guinea pig questions regarding their care. Thank you to anyone who responds!

    1. I will be able to make a 2x4 or 2x5 C&C cage with a 1x2 or 2x2 loft. Would it be better if I get boars or sows? 2 or 3?

    2. Is the whole calcium to phosphorus (C:Ph) thing outdated? Do I need to pay that close attention to it?

    3. What are some of your favorite veggies for feeding to your piggies?

    4. How much would you recommend feeding your piggies of pellets per day? What is your favorite type of pellet to use?

    5. Are there any toys / hideys that you really love using?

    6. How long can piggies go in a car ride? I would really love to adopt from a rescue that is about 1hr and 15 minutes away from me. They would be provided with hay and water or high water content veggies.

    7. Do piggies need baths? How often should their nails be clipped?

    8. Do they need out of cage playtime?

    9. Are there any general care tips that you have when it comes to owning piggies?

    Thank you all!

  2. #2
    Cavy Slave Soecara's Avatar
    Aug 18, 2012
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    Re: Misc. Guinea Pig Questions!

    1. If you want boars you would be better off going for the 2x5 and 2x2 loft, and sticking strictly to a pair, boars don't do well in trios. If you want sows you can go for either a pair in the 2x4 or a trio in a 2x5. I would generally recommend sticking to a 2x2 loft even with sows as it simply gives them more room to maneuver around each other.

    2. Personally I would say only worry about C:Ph ratios if you have a stone/sludge prone guinea pig. Still try not to feed too many high calcium items to adult guinea pigs in general but don't get super concerned about C:Ph unless you have a medical reason to.

    3. Mine love their capsicum/bell pepper, they get it daily because it is a good source of vitamin C that isn't high in calcium. Mine almost always snatch their capsicum pieces off their veggie piles first, I have to make sure there is 1 piece for each guinea pig in the cage or it can cause a chase and veggie snatching situation.

    4. For adult guinea pigs 1/8 cup of high quality pellets per guinea pig per day is the right amount. I like to feed mine Oxbow Garden Select, however this particular line is reportedly very hit and miss with whether or not the guinea pigs like/will eat them, a much more popular and more universally liked by guinea pigs line is the Oxbow Essentials line.

    5. My guinea pigs haven't ever interacted with toys, but mine do love hammocks they love laying both in and under them. The only thing I don't love about the hammocks are they need to be hooked in and out for cleaning and I had to make sure there was a top over the area I put my hammocks to stop any climbing (putting them under a loft overhang would work but I don't have lofts on my cages).

    6. I have gotten guinea pigs from well over 3 hours away from me, and while the car ride was stressful for them they were okay. Depending on your water bottle type it may be best to leave it off while on the road as the vibrations of the car could make it leak. If you aren't sure about how well they will get along in the car ride take 1 carrier per guinea pig just to play it safe.

    7. Guinea pigs should be bathed as they need it, trust me you will know when they need it. I have some guinea pigs under my care that I honestly have not bathed and they are 2-3 years old, as they simply haven't needed one. I have one girl who has a habit of laying in her urine and she is a long hair so she gets a butt bath followed by a fur trim around her butt every 2 weeks and every 2 or 3 months that butt bath turns into a full bath. I don't follow a strict nail clipping schedule, rather I check their nails at weekly weight in time and if they need to be trimmed I do it then. It is a good idea to weight your guinea pigs every week as often the first sign of illness is weight changes, this is sudden large weight changes or small but consistent weight changes showing it trending either downwards or upwards.

    8. Some guinea pigs enjoy it, others don't. I do have a collapsible play pen I can set up and give them some out of cage time in a play area, some of my guinea pigs would just freeze if I put them in there, others love it and will run around. If they hate it I generally don't persist in putting them in. I do however take them all out for lap time, but this is more lounging around than playtime for them.

    9. Stay on top of daily poop sweeping and it will make full cage clean day much easier. Weekly weight ins. Make a routine out of when they get their daily veggie portions (1 cup per pig per day) and fresh pellets so you don't have them weeking at you every time you move. The way to a guinea pigs heart is through food.

  3. "Thank you, Soecara, for this useful post," say these 3 members:

  4. #3
    Cavy Slave MerryFriarTuck's Avatar
    Jun 23, 2019
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    Re: Misc. Guinea Pig Questions!

    Soecara has told you everything you need to know, and given you tons of fantastic info and tips!! Here is also some of my own experience with some of your questions:

    2. The C:Ph ratio isn't at all outdated, but like Soecara said not a huge deal. Of my two piggies, one never has issues with it, but the other will get calcium powder in his urine if he gets too much. It's just something to pay attention to and knowing your piggy, and not feeding them a lot of anything like romaine, kale, parsley, etc. Here on guinea pig cages, under Diet and Nutrition right at the top, is an awesome sticky thread that's a list of all guinea pig veggies with how often to feed them along with their calcium content!

    3. My and my piggies #1 favorite veggie to feed them is yellow bell pepper. They love it and it's packed with vitamin c which is very important for them. Other favorites are green bell pepper, cucumber, green or red leaf lettuce, oranges, cilantro, and carrots

    4. My piggies eat the Oxbow essentials which is great quality and they love it!

    5. Some piggies won't touch toys, others do... Like mine! They love toys. Their favorites are seagrass or wicker balls, tea or apple sticks, and Oxbow timothy twists.

    7. Mine have never needed a bath, which is how it is for most short haired guinea pigs. Those that are long-haired take a lot more care. I trim my piggies nails probably roughly once a month; or whenever they get long.

    Guinea pigs are wonderful pets, and it's great you're doing so much research

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

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