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Bedding Piggy newbie, need advice please


Well-known Member
Cavy Slave
Jan 11, 2012
Hello to everyone,

I am the happy mummy of my first Guinea Pig today, she is an Abbsynian (wrong spelling?!) Her eyes are a light ruby red. I research and learnt a lot before going to get her but I am a little confused with what was recommended to me (and I purchased everything!)
Ok so I got:
A litter for rodents, rabbits and small mammals as the pack says, its like little balls and says 100% natural with no chemical additives.

A hay rolling rack with mixed things inside.

A gnawing stone with seaweed in it along with minerals etc.

2 nibble sticks with fruit on them for treats.

I have fleece blankets, many various bowls safe to be chewed on. A brush for brushing, water bottle and litter tray. Tube and soft fluffy cotton looking stuff.

Ok here's where I need the help, I live in a country where there is no carefresh etc and I cant order them because they wont arrive, they'll just get lost.

How do I put this all together in her home for her? any tips or advice? I was thinking of putting the litter in the tray obviously and I want to trim one side away to make it easily accessible. I am syill trying to find fresh hay but the best they have now is dry hay and wood chippings?

Any help much appreciated, also she lets me hold her on my neck and stroke her but she suddenly bolts and stays in the same spot for hours, she doesnt move around at all like she is frozen is this normal?:?:
hello! as for setting up your cage- below is a link to the cage i recently revamped. set up your cage base, lay towels down, lay your fleece down, and you're done!(broken link removed)(broken link removed)
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above is the finished cage. once your fleece is placed, you can put her huts, bowls, etc. into the cage.

i wouldn't worry about carefresh bedding if you are using fleece and towels. it'll save you a lot of money in the long run, plus it's useless if you have another bedding technique being used.

as for litter training, here is a thread regarding the issue: https://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/bedding/39474-litter-training.html
some pigs can be trained to use a litter box, but it isn't something he or she will use 100% of the time like a cat.

try to find fresh hay for your pigs, preferably timothy hay, but i know there are other alternatives out there! your piggy will greatly appreciate an unlimited amount of fresh hay 24/7.

don't worry about her coming off as fearful. new pigs always need time to adjust to their surroundings and you. try sitting near her cage as much as possible, talking to her in a soft and friendly voice. reach in every so often and leave your hand there. she may not come up to it, or she may run, but it'll help her learn that your hand is not going to harm her.

over time you will learn if your pig enjoys laying in your lap all the time, or if she prefers to be touched on her own time. each pig has his or her own personality. one of my pigs enjoys laying in my lap, the other one is still skittish and only likes to be held for a little bit.

some piggies take a few days to warm up, some take weeks or months. just patiently work with her and you'll notice a friendlier, more social piggy. :)

have you considered getting a piggy buddy for her? having a friend may help her come out of her shell and she'll enjoy the company as guinea pigs are social animals. Guinea Pigs Social Life

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Hi and thanks your post was really helpful, so towels and fleece, how often do you wash them? also I was looking into making a cage, we dont have the cubes out here but we have the coroplast sheets, does anyone know any other alternatives? are chip wood boards usable? other materials? She will be living indoors as I live in an apartment. I want to get her a friend but there wasnt one available so I am waiting for one at the moment and they will let me know. I read somewhere that very large storage containers can be converted into homes obviously with modifications. Also they sold me some really hard pellets and a pellet/seed/other things mix, are these all ok? I found out that she likes cilantro and carrots too :O) she ate those with no problems! :O)
I use fleece bedding. I clean poops off of the surface of the fleece daily, and wash all bedding once a week.

Wood boards would need to be finished in a manner that makes them waterproof, which may in turn be dangerous for the pig if they chew/eat finished wood. If you can't find grids, you could look through the picture galleries on this site at the non-C&C cages for ideas, such as plexiglass.

Is the "pellet/seed/other things mix" their food pellets, or are you talking pellets for bedding? If that is food, I wouldn't feed it. If you can get Oxbow in your country, that is a great pellet to feed. Oxbow Cavy Performance (alfalfa pellet) for pigs under 6 months old, and Cavy Cuisine (timothy pellet) for older pigs.

Cilantro is a great choice! You might want to try green and red leaf lettuce and green bell peppers next.

Also, I would throw away the gnawing stone. They don't need the minerals they will get from that, especially since I have a suspicion that calcium will be high on the ingredient list. Basically any commercially produced "treats" are garbage meant to make money off of unsuspecting owners. There is no better treat than hay provided in a unique way (in a paper bag, for instance) and some fresh veggies!
Thanks for your post, I will check the gnawing bone for the calcium mount, very interesting to know that. I gave her yellow sweet pepper but she hasnt eaten that yet, also some cucumber to try. The pellet mix is food rather than bedding, is it safe for her to eat the seeds etc in that? I am planning to give her a mostly fresh veg and fruit diet and I would rather she get the vit C fresh instead of supplements, I wont be buying the treats again but thought they may be nice to settle her in with. I am not sure of the pellet brand as the guy had it in a clear bag maybe from bulk? I cant get the grids but I was just thinking about other possible options of grid type material, I did see some other types like large grid sheets you can buy by the meter are they safe? I know they make fences and such from that so its sturdy. I had a look at the C&C alternative posts but couldnt find anything I can work with unfortunately. I was also considering converting a large metal dog pen as a project too?!
Pellets with seeds are not safe to feed. Please look for plain pellets.

Recommended pellets brands are KMS, Oxbow and Sweet Meadow.
(broken link removed)
Oxbow Animal Health | Essentials - Adult Guinea Pig Food
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Since you can find coroplast, you can make a cage from coroplast. The sides will need to be higher so they will not jump out.
This cage was made from coroplast without grids.
Piggy newbie, need advice please

Edit to add: you can use metal dog pen if the space between the bars are not larger than 1.5 inch (3.8cm.). If your pigs are babies, the bars should be .75 inch (1.9cm.)
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