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OT--anybody have a guinea pig?

Posted by on Jan. 15, 2012 at 12:15 PM
  • 9 Replies

We just rescued 2 girls yesterday.  DH and I have handled them just enough to clean their nasty cage.  I'm kinda nervous to hold them any more though.  They didn't seem to like it at all.  I've heard they're just like that, and will get used to being handled?  So do I handle them more or just let them be?  I really don't want to get bit, or peed or pooped on. lol  But the kids are nagging me to hold and pet them.

ANY other advice, tips, or stories you have will help too.  I've never had piggies before.



by on Jan. 15, 2012 at 12:15 PM
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usmclife58
by Nikki on Jan. 15, 2012 at 12:22 PM
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I LOVED my piggies!! I would hold them all the time. I have only been bitten once, and that was with a new pig- and she got scared when my brother came crashing in the room.
Give them things for entertainment. I got mine a bird toy. It attaches to the side of the cage, and it had a small rope, a piece of wood and a bell. They always loved it. One of the pigs liked the ball, the other one hated it. They all enjoyed the little treats and the wooden sticks.

My favorite pig would sit on the bed with me and watch TV. I swear. And he would squeal every time the "audience" would laugh. His favorite show was I Love Lucy. He loved to be held, and would talk to us when we came home. He knew what time we got in every day, and he would welcome us in the door with the squeak, squeak. He was just awesome.

chrlstoncharmed
by Melissa on Jan. 15, 2012 at 12:28 PM
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We lost our piggie of 5 years this past summer. By piggie standards, she was an old girl!

They need quite a bit of space, so I would recommend a big rabbit hutch. They also love to run around. We would take peanut out and just let her run around the house. You can section off an area or they sell big corral type thingies to keep them contained.

If you want really happy piggies, feed them plenty of salad, fruit and greens. Carrots are special treats but don't offer too many. Peanut's favorite meal was the Dole broccoli slaw (it comes in a bag in the produce section.)

Keep handling them and petting them. If they chatter their teeth at you, that means they are annoyed. Guinea pigs actually have an easy "language". If you google it, there are some websites that give soundbytes with interpretations.
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ilovemyjoes
by on Jan. 15, 2012 at 1:04 PM

So they don't do theor business all over the place?  We had them in a box yesterday while I cleaned the cage and it was filthy by the time I was done.  I really don't want to get peed on.  Maybe I'll put a towel in my lap...

Quoting usmclife58:

I LOVED my piggies!! I would hold them all the time. I have only been bitten once, and that was with a new pig- and she got scared when my brother came crashing in the room.
Give them things for entertainment. I got mine a bird toy. It attaches to the side of the cage, and it had a small rope, a piece of wood and a bell. They always loved it. One of the pigs liked the ball, the other one hated it. They all enjoyed the little treats and the wooden sticks.

My favorite pig would sit on the bed with me and watch TV. I swear. And he would squeal every time the "audience" would laugh. His favorite show was I Love Lucy. He loved to be held, and would talk to us when we came home. He knew what time we got in every day, and he would welcome us in the door with the squeak, squeak. He was just awesome.




ilovemyjoes
by on Jan. 15, 2012 at 1:06 PM

Thanks for that!  I've been meaning to see if I could figure out what their sounds mean.  I love listening to them but I don't know what they mean.  Off to google now. :)

Quoting chrlstoncharmed:

We lost our piggie of 5 years this past summer. By piggie standards, she was an old girl!

They need quite a bit of space, so I would recommend a big rabbit hutch. They also love to run around. We would take peanut out and just let her run around the house. You can section off an area or they sell big corral type thingies to keep them contained.

If you want really happy piggies, feed them plenty of salad, fruit and greens. Carrots are special treats but don't offer too many. Peanut's favorite meal was the Dole broccoli slaw (it comes in a bag in the produce section.)

Keep handling them and petting them. If they chatter their teeth at you, that means they are annoyed. Guinea pigs actually have an easy "language". If you google it, there are some websites that give soundbytes with interpretations.




Apollos82
by on Jan. 15, 2012 at 1:31 PM
This is all really great advice. I had a piggie named Harry, but I had to get rid of him when I moved. He is know known as "fireball" and lives with a sweet family. :)

Piggies LOVE treats. It's the way to their hearts! But be mindful--they do have food sensitivities. Google good treats for them. Don't feed them thing with seeds like strawberries...they either get stuck in their teeth (Harry had a gap he got food in all the time, the dork.) or they can choke. Also, don't feed them too many treats or they get FAT. Piggies will ALWAYS eat.

Have Timothy hay available 24/7 so that they can keep their teeth down. Not alfalfa hay, though, or any other high calorie hay. It's too rich and they'll pudge up.

Clean their cadge often...piggies like to be clean!

As long as they aren't kept out too long, most piggies will house break themselves. Harry peed in me once, an after it happened, I realized he was giving me plenty of signs that he wanted back in his cage, I just didn't pick up on it. He pooped a few times, but stopped when he was done growing. Besides...piggie poops are such an easy clean up!

Don't use cedar bedding. It gives them respiratory issues. Also, don't use air freshoners or heavy cleaning products around the cage. Avoid drafts around the cage as well. Oh--and Harry HATED the vacuum. I had to put him in another room whenever I cleaned.

What else...oh, keep their nails trimmed! I would put Harry on top of his mesh cage so his little toes poked through and used pet clippers. Be VERY careful not to cut the quick. If you do, dip the toe in flour. It helps stop the bleeding--and piggies don't clot well.

Handle them a lot! If you are worried, wrap them in a towel at first. It will protect little fingers as you ease in to things.

As someone said, google the sounds. They are quite expressive little guys and you will always know how they are feeling.

Oh, one more thing. Piggies respond well to routine. :) They will start to sync up with your family! It's so cute! Harry used to sound the alarm when h heard one of us pull up in the car! And if he heard us in the kitchen, he BEGGED (translate: whistled!) for treats. They really are a lot of fun. You're in for a good time!

Sorry this is so long...I just miss my piggie! I love them so much...! PM if you have any ?'s.
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Apollos82
by on Jan. 15, 2012 at 1:33 PM
Oh, and about those balls--some love them some hate them, but either way, they can be dangerous for the piggies. They can strain their backs because of being hyperextended or get their little toes in the gaps and sprain their feet. :( I tried one anyway with Harry. He HATED it--could NOt figure out how to use it. Lol
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hillary819
by on Jan. 15, 2012 at 7:56 PM

I miss my piggies :(   They take a lot of time to properly care for, but they are great pets.  they will be skiddish at first, that's just the way guinea pigs are. Time and comfort will help them be less skiddish around you.

bramamber
by Amber on Jan. 15, 2012 at 8:06 PM
I want to see some pics:)
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ilovemyjoes
by on Jan. 15, 2012 at 11:01 PM

We've held them a few times today.  DH is being awesome and helping me with them even though before we got them he said he'd have nothing to do with them. :)  They're still pretty skittish and nervous, but I'm not scared of them anymore so that helps.  I've had hamsters before so I'm traumatized from them biting me so much. lol  We just had them both out of the cage for a bit and they just kind of sat there.  One peed and pooped on the floor, but lesson learned...they start acting weird, put them back in the cage.

Anyway, thanks for all the help ladies!  I think I've mostly got this down now, and I love these girls.  SO glad we were able to save them from their previous situation.  They came with the names Natalie and Izzy but DS and I renamed them Miss Pig (brown and white short haired) and Miss Guinea (brown, white, and black long haired).  Not too original I'm sure but it's cute and better than Green Lantern or Ming-Ming. :)  Here's a pic I got last night of them enjoying their carrots!




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