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General Is Floor Time Necessary?

Noah123

New Member
Cavy Gazer
Joined
Jan 8, 2021
Messages
1
Hi,

I recently adopted two pigs from the shelter. They're both in good health and have adjusted well.
I'm wondering if regular floor time is necessary and if so how often I should be taking them out.
Their cage is pretty large (6' x 4'), and I switch up the layout of their "furniture" daily.
I also rotate in a bunch of different toys and hideouts, in addition to picking them up frequently. thanks
 

TheGuineaPigGal

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Sep 23, 2020
Messages
271
Yes, Guinea Pigs Need Floor Time!
Ideally guinea pigs should have floor time a couple of hours a day. Floor time helps give your guinea pigs additional exercise and mental stimulation, keeping them healthier and happier.
 

bpatters

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Sep 23, 2009
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28,852
It depends on your guinea pigs. Some pigs love floor time, and will happily roam around investigating things, or will play with the toys you put down for them. Others are scared stiff and will hide under the closest thing they can get under. If floor time works for your pigs, so much the better. Let them have it. If yours are frightened and frozen, don't put them through it, especially as you've got a good large cage.
 

ItsaZoo

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Sep 8, 2018
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629
I have grids connected together for a large portable fence that I use for floor time. Lacey enjoys exploring for a while, then eats her fill and takes a nap. One thing that I’ve done in the past is to make a maze by cutting up large cardboard boxes. She likes to figure out all the ways to get to safety and to the food.
 

LittleSqueakers

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Sep 30, 2014
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398
As I understand it, the purpose of floor time is essentially two-fold: 1.) you are providing extra enrichment by providing a change of environment for mental stimulation and 2.) you are providing an area that is large enough to encourage physical exercise. As long as you can find a way to meet both these needs adequately, you don't necessarily have to do it through floor time. From what it sounds like, your cage is probably large enough and you rotate the enrichment frequently enough that floor time is probably not critical.

My boys are not yet at the point that I trust them to handle free-range floor time. Rather, they have an large "floorpen" (basically, grids zip-tied together to form a ring and set on top of a large vinyl tablecloth to keep the carpet clean). I have this set up in the living room, and the "pigpen" (their proper cage) is in my bedroom. I basically rotate the boys out between the two cages depending on my work schedule and the cleaning schedule for these 2 cages. The pigpen is about 17 square-feet and my most recent estimate of the floorpen is that it's probably close to 24-ish square-feet. Since they have plenty of room and regular changes of environment to keep them stimulated, I feel like their needs are being very well met.
 

namida

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Jan 13, 2021
Messages
7
I have a pair of boys I got from an animal shelter and we don't do floor time. I attempted to numerous times but as mentioned above some pigs are just too scared. I would highly recommend attempting to give them floor time and see how they do. My guys hate being picked up and are afraid to leave their cage. They don't get floor time and are just fine. They live in a 2x5 c and c cage.
You can try motivating your piggies with their favourite food (say, veggies). When I started introducing floor time to my babies, they barely came out of the hideaways. Later on I started placing food around the room and they fell in love with floor time! Floor time is also the veggie time for my pigs. In fact, because of the lockdown in my country, I am now almost 24/7 with them these days. As long as I am present, I keep the cage door open so that they can come out of the cage for exercise whenever they feel like to.
 
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