Guinea Pig Facts

guinea-pig-factsMany people believe that guinea pigs are one of the easiest pets to look after owing to their size and statue in the world. They are insignificant, they don’t do anything except eat, sleep and poop so how hard could it be to own one? Thats why hundreds of parents consider them for their children without doing the research first. Did you know that there’s much more to these little pigs then meets the eye?

Here are 30 fun facts about guinea pigs!

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⭐️Guinea pigs love to climb! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again- pigloos, boxes, hammocks, ramps, bricks, wood it doesn’t matter what it is as long as they can get on top of it! In the wild guinea pigs would need to be able to see predators coming and this brings me to my nest fact!

⭐️When piggies are really happy, they leap up into the air and do a twist, this is called a Popcorn! Rabbits do something very similar called a Binky!



⭐️They love lots of space! Too much can make them overwhelmed, but place them in a large enclosed area with lots of toys and they can go nuts running around and popcorning like crazy!

⭐️Guinea pigs have a very unusual name as they don’t come from Papua New-Guinea and they aren’t pigs.

⭐️Guinea pigs are a type of rodent.

⭐️Guinea pigs actually have a tail! It is very small and is actually the end of their spine which sticks out the back. Sometimes you can feel the sharp point of it.

⭐️You can find wild guinea pigs in South America

⭐️Wild guinea pigs have pointier noses and brown or grey agouti colored coats. They look a bit like miniature versions of the capybara.

guinea-pig-facts-2⭐️They are quite vulnerable to sudden temperature changes and can overheat or chill very quickly.

⭐️Some do enjoy playing with toys and have been known to drag a favorite soft teddy around the cage!

⭐️What even I didn’t know is that guinea pigs have a grease gland at the base of their tail which can be seen if you clip the hair away from around it. It is a bare patch of fur and is often quite mucky with yellow grease buildup. This needs to be cleaned: see grease gland cleaning

⭐️There are so many different breeds and more being recognized all the time!

⭐️Not such a nice one! Guinea pigs eat their own poop 💩 because all the nutrients goes out with the first lot and needs to be re-digested. 💩

⭐️Guineas can make five different types of sounds: guineapigsforever.com/guinea-pig-noises

⭐️Also known as cavies, affectionately called pigs, piggies and guineas by loving owners.  ♥️

⭐️Guinea pigs are one of the most popular pets in the US

⭐️Babies are called pups

⭐️They need to eat 1 cup of fresh veggies each per day. One cup per pig.

⭐️Guinea pigs need to live in pairs of herds because they thrive in each others company.

⭐️They can be toilet trained to some extent because they prefer going in a dark, safe place!

⭐️They have four toes on their front feet and three toes on their back feet

⭐️Lethal pigs are born with (often serious) birth defects from the roan gene or inbreeding

⭐️Babies are born with fur, eyes/ears open and are running around within an hour!

⭐️Females are called sows and males are called boars

⭐️Their eyes secrete a milky white liquid which keeps them moist and means that they don’t need to blink!

⭐️A cavies teeth grows all the time, so it needs to be worn down by gnawing on wood or carrots everyday. In fact, Sparkles knocked both his front teeth one day and three days later they had grown back!

guinea-pig-facts-3⭐️They love exploring new items in their cage! Sniffing new objects and working out what they do is stimulating for them.

⭐️Did you know that guinea pigs shouldn’t live outside? 🌦 Hundreds die from dog, cat and ferret attacks every year, not to mention heat stroke and hypothermia.

⭐️They are very curious animals and can become quite fascinated by cats sniffing behind the bars of their cage. Some will even go up to the cat and touch noses through the bars! If they are too scared to take food from your hands now, they will eventually come up to sniff your hand curiously, later!

⭐️Last but certainly not least, guinea pigs love attention!!! Even if you have shy pigs now, eventually they will grow to trust you not to hurt them and will start looking forward to your visits.

Always remember that it is important to spend time interacting with them everyday. This is the surefire way to tame them.

 

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17 thoughts on “Guinea Pig Facts

  • October 21, 2016 at 4:57 am
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    What an interesting post on guinea pig facts. I don’t see them much around here as pets as hamsters seem to be the flavor of the day. My daughter for one is begging for one.

    Interesting to find out about the grease gland and the fact that they need to eat their own poop.

    Reply
    • October 21, 2016 at 5:56 am
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      Thanks Michel

      Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 6:05 am
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    Hi Emma,
    Wow, These are a lot of facts about Guinea Pigs i didn’t know. I never had one as a pet when I was a child instead I had a rat. It was interesting to learn the Guinea Pigs are up and about within an hour of being born. That is amazing. On average, how long do Guinea Pigs live?

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    • October 21, 2016 at 6:27 am
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      On average guinea pigs live from 6-8 years. 8 If your really lucky!

      Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 6:28 am
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    I like pets generally but I haven’t got a chance to get hold of guinea pigs. They seem so small and fragile. And they are always energetic. This is definitely all you need to know about guinea pigs compiled in one short compact list. I’m more of a cat guy but do you think guinea pigs will be safe playing with cats?

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    • October 21, 2016 at 6:35 am
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      Probably not! Guinea pigs are rodents, and most cats will try to stalk and kill them when they see them moving. But lots of people keep both cats and guinea pigs without problems because you have a lid over the cage! This is very important and never leave them unsupervised.

      Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 6:56 am
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    THIS IS JUST SO CUTE. I’m imagining guinea pigs popcorning now and just aaaaaah! ;u; Very useful info too, I had no idea about the glands either! Eating their own poop sounds so gross though lol!

    Excuse me I now need to search youtube for popcorning guinea pigs. Oh, maybe you can add some cute videos on your article? I feel that special extra could make the article even more engaging!

    Reply
    • October 21, 2016 at 6:15 pm
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      Haha its gross but necessary! You’re right, that article certainly needs a video and I have just the one for you! I’ve added it now: its of my own piggies free ranging in my bedroom!

      Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 8:28 am
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    I’ve always thought that Guinea Pigs were one of the most underappreciated pets and this just confirms it! Very interesting post and really great page. How are Guinea Pigs normally with dogs as housemates? I saw that you mentioned with cats it might not be a good idea, but I’ve seen some dogs play with rabbits before. Only if the dog is very friendly with other small animals and are supervised, of course.

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    • October 21, 2016 at 6:11 pm
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      Thanks! All animals differ from each other, some dogs are simply not interested in guinea pigs, sometimes even scared, some love them and just want to be friends and play. Others want to eat them 🙁 There’s only one way to find out and that’s to have someone hold the dog and another person hold the guinea pig.

      Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 8:34 am
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    Love the guinea pigs facts! I’ve learnt more about them now. It’s interesting to read that they eat their own poop, their eyes secrete a milky white liquid and they run within an hour of being born.

    I’m not quite sure about the teeth part though. Do you mean their teeth keep growing and they need to be worn down? How long is their average lifespan?

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    • October 21, 2016 at 6:09 pm
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      Yep their teeth are always growing! They live from six to eight years 😉

      Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 8:36 am
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    I’ve always thought that Guinea Pigs were one of the most underappreciated pets and this just confirms it! Very interesting post and really great page. How are Guinea Pigs normally with dogs as housemates? Only if the dog is very friendly with other small animals, of course.

    Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 8:48 am
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    This is the cutest site! I really learned a lot from these facts. I always loved guinea pigs but I agree, there is more to caring for them than we think. Also, if I remember correctly, don’t they need vitamin C? I remember that was a big thing with mine when I had one. He was cranky when he didn’t get his vitamin, I’m pretty sure it was vitamin C.

    This makes me want to go get one. I know my daughter would love to have one too. tfs 🙂

    Reply
    • October 21, 2016 at 6:08 pm
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      OOh yes! Don’t get me started on how much vitamin c they need!!! They need 1 cup of veggies each everyday!!! Make sure to get two, they love company!

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  • January 28, 2017 at 9:41 pm
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    Greetings Emma!

    In the near future I want to buy a pet for my girlfriend. At first it was a easy decision because she likes cats very much. But seeing all those pics with guinea pigs all around your website, and observing how cute they can be, it makes my decision a lot harder. Have you heard of any cases in which bot the cat and the guinea pig get along with each other? What are the best looking breeds? I’m so glad that I stumbled across your article. You learn something new everyday!!

    Reply
    • January 29, 2017 at 1:27 am
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      Hey Andrei!
      I can understand how hard this decision is! Yes there a always cases where certain animals get along side by side- but I don’t really agree with it because it can go very badly very quickly. If the cat attacks the guinea pigs (I say guinea pigs because you need to keep them with company 😉 ) there is very little you can do. However, if you still want to get a cat and a pair of guinea pigs you can by keeping them in a secure cage. Indoors, not outdoors 😉 Hmmm, best looking breeds are very arguable! There are many different types of colors and breeds and all are lovely in their own little way. They all have such different personalities- my Sparkles is probably as plain as you can get but he is so friendly and outgoing!!!
      Good luck
      -Emma

      Reply

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