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General The truth

guineapigs2468

Well-known Member
Cavy Slave
Joined
Dec 7, 2011
Messages
465
Ok, I haven't been the most truthful with you all but I am now. Please read all of the post before replying, thanks in advance. I got my guinea pigs before I found this website, and over here I assumed guinea pigs had always been kept outside. Again before I found this website I made a huge shed for my piggies, and a wooden cage that was put inside. I kept it open all day so they could roam 24/7. When I read about c&c cages and realised that I had no space to build one, I didn't want to get rid of them just because I wasn't able to build a cage indoors. If it was going to be a really cold night I do bring them indoors and keep them in a temporary cage (not big enough for a full time thing).
I put extra hay and fleece down to keep them warm of a night, and they have been ok so far. I also bought these heat pads that you heat up and last for a good few hours (I make sure there not to hot and I wrap them up in blankets to, so they don't get to hot) I also give them loads of attention as expected anyway, and I bring them inside the house for lap time. I follow all the advice on this forum and think its a great place, I just didn't want to tell you all my guinea pigs cage as I was ashamed that I didn't find this website before I built the shed etc. I wish I had space in the house to keep them but I don't think it is possible. I love my piggies, when I got them I made the commitment to look after them for their whole life.
I'm posting this to hear what you all have to say, I'm sorry for not telling you all sooner.
 
Where do you live and what does this shed look like? Some places are dangerous than others with wild animals and climate. I suppose some sheds could also be safer than others,too.

I'm always quite confused when people say they have no room for pigs inside the house. How many pigs do you have? Do you live with your family/roommates?

This is a table one of my 2x4's is on. Tons of room under it to keep their hay and pellets under.
[GuineaPigCages.com] The truth


I could put tons of stuff under there if I put their hay boxes elsewhere! The table is also collapsible. I don't know how many pigs you'd need to accommodate indoors, though.

I like having the pigs out in the living room. That's where I spend most of my time at home and if there is any behavioral changes, coughing, sneezing, etc I want to be sure I'm picking up on it.
 
I'm in the uk, so not much of a problem with wild animals outdoors. I'm not able to keep them indoors due to lack of space and allergies. I could keep them in my bedroom, but it gets hot up there and my allergies. I do want to do anything I can for them, their shed they live in is fairly strong and again don't think we would have any problems with wild animals, it is a 6ft by 5ft shed, and I have 6 piggies. I give them lots of attention to make sure I can pick up on anything such as the coughing sneezing etc. thanks for replying.
 
I understand what you have to say guineapigs2468. Me and my partner are currently living in the basement of her Aunt's house. The basement is very nice and carpeted and it's like an apartment. Although, we don't have room for C&C cages. We love our piggies and they are completely spoiled. I have become sort of an expert on guinea pigs and have researched everything I could about them once I started owning them. But, like I said we don't have a lot of room for the C&C cages. They are nice and roomy and I am sure my piggies would love it. But until we get our own place, we cannot get the C&C cages.

At the current moment, my male is in a smaller store bought cage and my two females are in a large store bought cage that is supposed to be for a rabbit. The cages are stacked on top of each other because we don't have a lot of room. They all get plenty of floor time and are completely content and happy. Recently we found out that our Vet sells C&C cages already assembled and so we are trying to get our females one and then put our male in the rabbit cage. We are trying to get rid of one of our couches in order to do that. (To any questions as to why the male is not with the females, is because he is not fixed and we don't have the money to get that done. We are trying but we are low on money)


From my point of veiw, you can only do what you can and it seems like you are doing just that. I can tell you love your piggies and you are doing all in your power to take care of them. That is great! I also understand the allergies part, I am allergic to hay and I have to take medicine in order for me to keep my piggies. A lot of people keep their guinea pigs outside and take the appropriate measures to take care of them. So I think you should keep up the good work and I bid you the best of luck with your piggies!

PS I understand what you mean by not wanting to tell people on here about your cages. I am the same. But you and I both know our piggies are fine and we are taking the best care of them. Don't let people discourage you or make you feel like you aren't taking good care of your piggies, because you are.

: )
 
At the current moment, my male is in a smaller store bought cage and my two females are in a large store bought cage that is supposed to be for a rabbit. The cages are stacked on top of each other because we don't have a lot of room. They all get plenty of floor time and are completely content and happy. Recently we found out that our Vet sells C&C cages already assembled and so we are trying to get our females one and then put our male in the rabbit cage. We are trying to get rid of one of our couches in order to do that. (To any questions as to why the male is not with the females, is because he is not fixed and we don't have the money to get that done. We are trying but we are low on money)
: )
Mine always seem content and happy wheeking for veggies, and like you said about floor time, I try to give my guinea pigs lots of floor time to and lap time to on a daily basis.
 
There's also the issue of bugs and temperature fluctuations outside. Guinea pigs were domesticated around 2000 BC for food. They're not very resilient animals from what I've experienced. They are the most demanding, fragile pets I've ever owned so far.

You have to think very deeply on your current set-up, and whether or not you can do better. Sometimes sacrifices and dramatic changes have to be made in order to give your pet the best life you can give.

If you can fit the guinea pigs into your room, I'd work on the heat and allergy issue. Are you allergic to the hay or bedding? A lot of folks allergic to the timothy hay do better with another type such as orchard grass. Can you invest in a window AC unit or find a way to make your room not collect all the heat? It might be pain to find solutions to these issues, but I'd honestly rather you have your pigs indoors since you said they can fit in your room.

If there's no way to fix these issues, you'll have to really examine that shed they're in. Sturdiness, keeping the temperature more constant, can bugs get in it? I'd also still like to see a picture so other people experienced with sheds can offer advice on how to improve it.



@Vbs_babygirl

I live in an actual apartment and my living room is completely void of a couch, TV, etc so my piggies can have plenty of floor time space. Honestly, I just bought a large screen computer monitor to satisfy all my entertainment needs. It's actually quite nice being minimalist. You can also build a C&C for around 30 bucks, but I don't know how much your vet is charging. Have you also tried different types of hay for the allergies?
 
There's also the issue of bugs and temperature fluctuations outside. Guinea pigs were domesticated around 2000 BC for food. They're not very resilient animals from what I've experienced. They are the most demanding, fragile pets I've ever owned so far.

You have to think very deeply on your current set-up, and whether or not you can do better. Sometimes sacrifices and dramatic changes have to be made in order to give your pet the best life you can give.

If you can fit the guinea pigs into your room, I'd work on the heat and allergy issue. Are you allergic to the hay or bedding? A lot of folks allergic to the timothy hay do better with another type such as orchard grass. Can you invest in a window AC unit or find a way to make your room not collect all the heat? It might be pain to find solutions to these issues, but I'd honestly rather you have your pigs indoors since you said they can fit in your room.

If there's no way to fix these issues, you'll have to really examine that shed they're in. Sturdiness, keeping the temperature more constant, can bugs get in it? I'd also still like to see a picture so other people experienced with sheds can offer advice on how to improve it.
To answer as many questions as I can, allergies I think it's the hay. I think I could try a different type of hay like you said and see if it's better, if it works then all I would need is air conditioner fitted into my room. Can't post a picture right now as it is night time here, and I haven't got a picture of the shed.
I have been trying to make the shed the best I can, it seems very sturdy, and I make sure give them things like heat pads wrapped in blankets etc of a night if it's cold. In the summer they have access to an outdoor area, which is protected from any wild animals that may be around. In the hot weather I also put ice cubes in and sometimes freeze a water bottle ( nice and cool for them).
 
...and the truth shall set you free.

You seem to really love and care for your cavy's. When I first got my girls I felt I did alot of research. I then found this site and learned about C&C's.

Even tho I have since built a C&C your guinea pigs still have way more room than my three. I don't live in the UK so I have no clue what the winter and summer months are like.

I think as long as your herd is happy and healthy you are a good parent. I think I would network with UK owners and see what they do and say.
 
I see it this way: your piggies are in a place where they are happy and healthy. You don't expose them to extreme weather and predators don't seem to be a problem. Yes, indoors is ideal, but don't let anyone give you grief over well-cared-for pigs when you're doing the best you can. You need to be extra vigilant because it's not as stable an environment, but no need to rehome them.

Two of mine have their cage in my garage... I don't like to say that because of the image that it creates in people's minds. Still, they're happy, healthy, and safe. It has AC and heat and nothing dangerous for them to get into or breathe in.
 
They are the most demanding, fragile pets I've ever owned so far.
There is so much truth in that statement. I've had everything from cats to horses to fish to birds, and guinea pigs are by far the most difficult pets to keep healthy.

I sympathize about the cages because my two piggies are still in pet store cages, albeit huge ones (Living World Deluxe Extra Large, which I think meets the square footage or is very close). I want to eventually get C&C, but we wanted to get Borat neutered first, then make a C&C where he and Amy can live together. Now, with his health issues, I don't know when that will happen.

But I also believe in making sacrifices when you choose to get an animal. Originally I didn't know about this site and only planned to have one piggy, so Mufasa fit just fine in one cage in the family room. By the time he died, I learned about having two. When we got Borat and Amy, the only place with enough room was my living room, which used to be my pride and joy as it's where I have my comedy/tragedy mask collection. Now the masks are overshadowed by two enormous cages and a variety of piggy supplies, and the family room floor is often nearly unwalkable because of the swimming pool playpen for floor time.

It sounds like you are trying to make the best of your situation. I know in the UK it's a lot more common to keep cavies outdoors. At least you have a sturdy place for them, although don't forget about domestic pets like cats or dogs as possible predators. Other than that, cold would be my big worry, although I've heard that piggies do better with cold than heat.
 
It sounds like you are trying to make the best of your situation. I know in the UK it's a lot more common to keep cavies outdoors. At least you have a sturdy place for them, although don't forget about domestic pets like cats or dogs as possible predators. Other than that, cold would be my big worry, although I've heard that piggies do better with cold than heat.
There is an extra fence put up around the shed incase of cats, but I haven't seen any cats for awhile around here and I think it would be impossible for them to get to my guinea pigs. If its a cold night like I said earlier, I would give them extra hay and fleece, and the heat pads to put around the cage. If it was hot, I freeze a water bottle for them, and put ice cubes in for them. I manage to keep where they're living at a stable temperature, but if the weather is planned to be a really bad day/ night, then I do bring them indoors with the temporary cage I mentioned earlier ( not big enough to be a regular home for my piggies).
 
If you ever have a problem with cats...even a tiny fence with a 45 degree angle will keep them out. They look up and can't jump over it. Something to do with their vision. Anyway, You shouldn't feel you need to explain yourself about their cages. I can see how being open about it makes it easier to ask questions and solve issues you may have, but if it works for you and your pigs, then it works. When I was younger, I had to have my pigs (all long ago deceased since it was like 15 years ago) in my parents spa room. It was a screened in porch with a fan and was built for a hot tub or spa. They were loved and taken care of, and if the situation works for you, then don't worry!
 
@Vbs_babygirl

I live in an actual apartment and my living room is completely void of a couch, TV, etc so my piggies can have plenty of floor time space. Honestly, I just bought a large screen computer monitor to satisfy all my entertainment needs. It's actually quite nice being minimalist. You can also build a C&C for around 30 bucks, but I don't know how much your vet is charging. Have you also tried different types of hay for the allergies?

Our basement is smaller than an actual apartment. We still have to go upstairs to use the kitchen and things. We just have a TV, a couch, a bed, a dresser, a couple book shelves and a laptop. I mean it's roomy and stuff for us, but it's not roomy enough for 2 C&C cages. Which is why I am only getting one for my 2 girls when we get the money. The vet said it would be 120 or something for one so we are saving up. Currently we are having money issues and so we are trying the best we can. We currently were in a really bad storm here in DC and didn't have power for a few days. So neither of us could go into work so it's gonna take a toll on our paychecks. But the good thing about the storm was that we are all in the basement and it's the last place to get hot. So my piggies were fine. : )

And for the hay, I am allergic to all kinds of hay. I have hay fever lol So I take medicine to calm the symptoms but I still get an itchy and runny nose, and my sinuses are always messing with me. But I love my piggies so much! <3
 
And for the hay, I am allergic to all kinds of hay. I have hay fever lol So I take medicine to calm the symptoms but I still get an itchy and runny nose, and my sinuses are always messing with me. But I love my piggies so much! <3
I have hay fever to, but I'm going to try a different type of hay to see if it helps, I don't think it's the bedding.
 
I have hay fever to, but I'm going to try a different type of hay to see if it helps, I don't think it's the bedding.

Well I hope it does! I know I have had different kinds of hay over the past months and it hasn't helped at all. And of course i am allergic to the hay you would find in barns. But good luck! I hope it works for you. : )
 
Thanks and hopefully it does, I'm not 100% sure it will though.
 
I have hay fever to, but I'm going to try a different type of hay to see if it helps, I don't think it's the bedding.

My allergies were not due to the hay, I went though several diff kinds before finding that out. Thought it was the bedding so switched to fleece which helped some, after allergy test found out its the pig pee. I had been able to manage it with the girls by lots of baths and cage cleaning till I got my boys. Since getting them I have broke out in hives and everything that comes with a bad allergy reaction. I can hold them but can't be in the same room with their cage or change it. Hubby has to. So just keep in mind that changing the hay may not change anything.

Good Luck though
 
@(broken link removed) Yikes. If you're low on money, I'd look into making them yourself. You could cut the cost in half. It's actually quite easy to build. The main guineapigcages website has nice instructions and help on where to find materials. If your vet sells them, that means there is someplace in your area that sells the coroplast. You can get a sheet for as low as 12 bucks. grids are around 20 at your local Bed, Bath, and Beyond. Then you can get zip ties, tape, and a box cutter at Wal-Mart or something. Ta da!
 
My allergies were not due to the hay, I went though several diff kinds before finding that out. Thought it was the bedding so switched to fleece which helped some, after allergy test found out its the pig pee. I had been able to manage it with the girls by lots of baths and cage cleaning till I got my boys. Since getting them I have broke out in hives and everything that comes with a bad allergy reaction. I can hold them but can't be in the same room with their cage or change it. Hubby has to. So just keep in mind that changing the hay may not change anything.

Good Luck though

I do think it is the hay as when i touch it, it makes me sneeze. However I will keep what you said in mind as you never know when it comes down to things like this and thanks for your help.
 
I know, me and my partner were looking at the cages on here and were talking about it. The cage at the vet is a bit bigger than the ones on here, and is for the same price. So we figured we could save money up and buy the one from the vet. And it's already assembled so we don't have to fool with setting it up. I don't know though, we might change our minds and settle on buying it from here.


The hay used to give me hives, like on my neck from where they snuggled up to me. (That's there spot <3) But now it just itches a little since I take my medicine. Although it kills me when I clean their cages. Even the wood chips makes my nose run. Which is why we thought fleece would be better for all of us, but it turns out that it gave my guinea pig a UTI. We wicked it and everything, but since the piggies butts are so close to the ground and they drag them against it, I noticed that that their butts were absorbing the urine. Plus I would have to spot clean three times a day because they poop so much and they step on it and it cakes onto the fleece. I am sure it works for other people, it's just not a preference for me or my piggies. I felt that it was unhygenic. Although, it did cost less than bedding. But we can get our woodchips in a super large bag at petco, and we get a discount because my partner is a dog trainer there.
 
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