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Want a Guinea Pig(s) Am I ready to be a cavy mom?

madelineelaine

Well-known Member
Cavy Slave
Joined
Apr 29, 2012
Messages
2,597
I'm just looking for opinions here :) So to start off I'm 15 years old, I'm a girl, and I have a passion for animals. I like to think i'm responsible, I took good care of my hamster for 2.5 years before he passed on. I'm smart, I always research anything I'm skepticle of. I have a paper route that doesn't pay much, but my parent's have agreed to buy a majority of the things for the guinea pigs. I don't have much of a social life, I rarely go out on week days, and I sometimes sleepover at friends houses on weekends but never for long. I'm never out of the house for more then 18 hours, and when I'm not home my younger brother or mom would have no problem checking on the pigs, giving them veggies, pellets, hay, water etc. I've built them a 2x4 C&C cage and it's in my bedroom. I am always in my bedroom so they won't be secluded. I spend most of my time in my room. I'm looking to get two male guinea pigs, and I'm prepaired to give them everything they need. Over the past few weeks I've slowly been stock piling things for them. I hope to get them in 9 days. I'm using fleece bedding, I've already created a menu for them, and I'm already spoiling them, even though I haven't gotten them yet! I know this was probably a jumble of information, but based on this do you think I'm prepaired?
I've already bought them a bunch of fleece for there cage, made a hay rack, made beds, made a fleece forrest, I'm making water proof blankets for lap time etc. I've read a lot online about them, and I think I'm rather knowledgable.
So yeah, do you think I would be well suited for this? Any beginner tips?
 
You sound very responsible, and it sounds like your family is on board as well. :)

I do have a question though. You are 15, and in a few years you will be graduating. Do you plan on going to college? And if so, do you plan on taking your Guinea Pigs with you or will they be staying at your house?
 
I think you are ready. :) Just make sure your family also knows how hard it will be financially, and how much they may have to help you, as you want to make sure that everyone in the household is ready for this 5-8 year commitment. I would also advise you to keep reading everything you can about guinea pigs even after you have adopted them. I read so much for a month before getting my guinea pigs, and thought I knew everything there was to know about guinea pigs, but I was very much wrong, and kept making mistakes that I later corrected after learning more. (Buying from a breeder, giving them salt licks, not baby proofing, not weighing, etc) Even now after about a year I still make mistakes, but it's good to have websites like this where I can post to double check if things are ok for my guinea pigs, instead of just guessing, and there are also always people around to help if you have a question. :)
 
Great stuff! You sound very prepared, I'm sure you'll make an amazing guinea pig mum!

Are you likely to be moving out to university or college in the few years though? Often people move away if they've got a place in a uni that is far away, and you would not normally be allowed to keep pets in the flats you may stay in.

Have you thought about adopting from a rescue? If you are likely to move out in a few years, an older pair would suit you perfectly. You can give them the time they need to get more confident around you and tame, older guinea pigs will normally be overlooked and if you're possibly moving away in the future, it will not be up to your family to care for them.
 
I plan on going to uni in a few years yes, and I'm dead set against living in residence. I either want to stay at home or rent. Either way, I will be keeping the pigs. I refuse to surrender them. Ideally I'd like to stay at home, but where I want to go is a little far. It all comes down to where I get excepted! But I do plan to keep them, no matter what.
 
In terms of supplies and research, you seem very prepared.

But...Given the fact you don't have a very large income, would your parents be willing to pay for medical bills if there is a need for a vet? Do you know if there is a good exotics vet in your area?

Just something to think about...
 
thanks everyone :) yeah, I do plan to keep reading. I double check absolutely everything. Nothing is too good for my pigs!
 
In terms of supplies and research, you seem very prepared.

But...Given the fact you don't have a very large income, would your parents be willing to pay for medical bills if there is a need for a vet? Do you know if there is a good exotics vet in your area?

Just something to think about...

I plan to get a part time job, I'm already looking around. When I turn 16 in october it will be a lot easier to find a job, and then I can pay for medical bills myself. If the need arise, my parents would be able to pay for it, and i'd eventually pay them back. We would make it work.
 
I think you are ready.... but as stated above you can never stop learning and this is an excellent website to continue to study and read. I would say with the cage and accessories you already have you are prepared.
 
Oh My! You are on your way to being a very good parent to piggies. Just keep reading and staying up to date on the latest GP news.
Keep everything really clean. Happy your going to be a parent of boys!
 
If the need arise, my parents would be able to pay for it, and i'd eventually pay them back. We would make it work.

Just make sure you discuss this ahead of time with your parents. There's a big difference between "being able" to pay and "being willing" to pay.

Just saying this to caution you, because I don't know how many times young folks on here have said "Please help...can I fix this at home...mom and dad say it's just a pet...they won't drive me to the vet." The sad stories go on and on.
 
You do sound like you've thought things through. I'm glad your parents have agreed to pay for most of the supplies and vet visits. Have you talked to them about the potentially more exensive vet bills that might come up? Surgeries and other procedures, emergency situations? Have you called around to get an idea of what those might cost?

One of my pigs needed a tumor removed. It ended up costing $500. When it grew back, because it had grown deeper, it cost $750. Are you (or your parents) prepared for situations like that? I know you said you would never rehome but if your parents don't know about the possibility of those more expensive situations and they aren't willing to fund them at the time, you may not have any other option.

Typically first and second year students at a university are required to live on campus in the dorms. And typically dorms do not allow pets - even caged ones. Have you made plans for that when the time comes?

Guinea pigs typically live 5-7 years. Are you prepared to take on the care of these critters for the long haul?

You asked us if you are ready to be a cavy mom. These are questions you need to consider before you decide if you are ready or not.
 
Once my mom gets attached to them, she will bring them to the vet, and even then, if one of my pigs got sick my mom would definitely take them to the vet because they will be part of our family. I would definitely be able to work something out with them. And around here the universities don't require you live on residence, they recommend it, but they can't force you to pay the extra 12 000$.
I do intend to keep up with everything on this site :) It has helped me so much already.
Thanks for all the input !
 
I know it's already been mentioned, but I would just emphasize that the vet costs can be really high. You can easily spend over $1000 on diagnostics alone, and it goes up from there.

Good luck :)
 
In that case... I think your definitely ready:D

Good luck with your future piggies and we'd love to see some pigtures!
 
LOLOLOLOL Pigtures. That just made my night. You're all wonderful. Thanks :) I'm super excited to get them. It's funny, I'm already spoiling them. My mom finds it funny. It's expensive in the beginning because you need to get EVERYTHING. But for me the cage and fleece was the most expensive part. After that it would be any potential vet visits. I think I can handle this :)
 
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