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xSarahx17x

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Good afternoon everyone,
I have just joined this forum as I have so many questions and can't seem to find the answer 🙈
Let me start by saying that I have recently got 2 (so adorable) Guinea pigs. Both male. (Sorry I don't know all the types of the sexes of the pigs). So a month ago my mum brought me them for my birthday, so they are approximately 4 months old. As soon as I got them, research head went on and I found out everything I needed to do for them ☺ I have even started growing my own vegetable garden especially designed for the pigs.

(I'm sorry I'm on a rant)

So, I have a good size cage they go in at night and then I have actually got a wired run that goes around that cage for in the day, so they can run around whilst I'm at work. (When I go back - leisure centre)

Now, I am wondering if I'm doing everything right ! after a month I still can't stroke them... I'll explain a little bit more ... (Sorry this is a long post) the first few days I got them, I did what all the websites told me too, I left them alone and just let them get settled. By the end of the week I started to sit in the run with them whilst I fed them lettuce and vegetables. Question 1! 1 cup of lettuce and veg a day per pig! That's a lot of lettuce and veg! Is that right? (I have recently cut that down as they weren't eating it all, was a lot!)

I have two pigs, chutney and nibbles. By the end of that week it came quite clear that nibbles was the one that would probably escape as he is a confident one. He started to jump on me and eat veg and started to let me stroke his nose every now and again, only a little. Chutney is a bit more reserved, he is the lazy one. Doesn't really want to jump if he doesn't have too (yes, they are completely different from each other haha) So, we are coming up to a month of me owning them now and they still haven't really allowed me to stroke them. Nibbles doesn't mind it every now and again but chutney will not allow it. I mean, I can literally move as normal in their run and around the house without them bolting away but when it comes to stroking them, they're not having it. I googled it as I noticed they were scratching alot, so it said that they might not allow you to touch them if they have fleas etc... I brought some, but had to pick them up to weight them and flea them. I even had to resort to me putting my hand in their cage to stroke them (I know it's bad but what else can I do)

I have been trying to earn there trust and I thought I was getting it as they popcorn around, run around like headless chickens, eat off of my hands, jump on me etc etc so I have been a bit wary of picking them up as didn't want to mess the "trust" up! So I thought "right I've got this!" It's two against one here, it's Abit scary in my eyes 😂🙈 anyway so about a week ago, I started picking them up everyday (they hated being picked up!) But as soon as they were on my lap they would eat there celery happily. However it all went wrong! Chutney; went to pick him up one day and he went nuts (I didn't hurt him I promise!) But he squeaked the place down... And he was fine on my lap, then I put him down and he walked (not ran) off. Since then! Chutney has gone back in his shell and just doesn't want to be touched by me, so I'm doing the trust with him all over again, which is harder because nibbles still trusts me but I have to admit since then I haven't picked them up as it has knocked me back Abit.

I'm sorry for the long message, I'm just worried if I'm doing something wrong! Or is it because they are still young... Can someone help me... I want to be able to just stroke my pigs 🙈 am I doing it right? Do I have to pick them up? What can I do! Someone please help 😂 as I don't know what else I can do. Or will it come in time? Sorry for the panicked message 🤣 I'm a first time pig owner.

Thank you if you have read the whole of this! You are a saint!
 

Piggies&buns

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Welcome to the forum

Yes, one cup of veg per day. They need to eat hay more than anything else though, as it makes up 80% of their daily diet.

In terms of handling, piggies generally don’t like being picked up and many will never like being stroked or handled at all. My two have been with me for just over two years now and don’t like being touched or handled (I only handle them for health checks). One will let me scratch him under the chin but the other doesn’t like being touched at all. This s normal for guinea pigs

Fleas - piggies don’t get fleas and you should never use an off the shelf treatment from a pet shop as they simply aren’t strong enough to work. If they are scratching excessively then they could have mites but you need to see a vet for the correct diagnosis and correct treatment. Please don’t home treat anything and always see a vet as you can’t diagnose anything yourself and may cause more harm than good

This is a link to a collection of guides. You will see the first ones are piggy whispering techniques. Do give them a try but also accept that for a lot of piggies, taking food from your hand and the odd head scratch is as good as it gets
New Owners' Most Helpful How-To Guides and Information
 

Siikibam

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firstly welcome. Guinea pigs are prey animals and the majority will never like being picked up. However you do need to be weighing them weekly so you will have to. Try and herd them into a cuddle cup/sack or tunnel or box and pick them up in that.

Not all like being touched and that’s okay. They’re not the cuddly pets they’re made out to be and you have to respect their boundaries. I would just try hand feeding them veg while in their cage or run for now. Go at their pace and realise that gaining their trust could take you years and not months.

And all the above written by Piggies&Buns.
 

xSarahx17x

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Welcome to the forum

Yes, one cup of veg per day. They need to eat hay more than anything else though, as it makes up 80% of their daily diet.

In terms of handling, piggies generally don’t like being picked up and many will never like being stroked or handled at all. My two have been with me for just over two years now and don’t like being touched or handled (I only handle them for health checks). One will let me scratch him under the chin but the other doesn’t like being touched at all. This s normal for guinea pigs

Fleas - piggies don’t get fleas and you should never use an off the shelf treatment from a pet shop as they simply aren’t strong enough to work. If they are scratching excessively then they could have mites but you need to see a vet for the correct diagnosis and correct treatment. Please don’t home treat anything and always see a vet as you can’t diagnose anything yourself and may cause more harm than good

This is a link to a collection of guides. You will see the first ones are piggy whispering techniques. Do give them a try but also accept that for a lot of piggies, taking food from your hand and the odd head scratch is as good as it gets
New Owners' Most Helpful How-To Guides and Information
Thank you ☺ I'm glad to be here
Ok so maybe instead of giving them veg etc in the evening maybe I'll start spreading it throughout the day, thank you!

That's actually good to know! I asked the vet and he recommended the stuff so I did it 🙈 is was for all mites etc ... They seemed to have stopped scratching so much now.

So I'm not being paranoid 😂
 

Piggies&buns

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Thank you ☺ I'm glad to be here
Ok so maybe instead of giving them veg etc in the evening maybe I'll start spreading it throughout the day, thank you!

That's actually good to know! I asked the vet and he recommended the stuff so I did it 🙈 is was for all mites etc ... They seemed to have stopped scratching so much now.

So I'm not being paranoid 😂
a full mite treatment is actually a course of three treatment over the space of several weeks, this ensures that all life cycles of mites are caught. If you have only given one treatment of an off the shelf product then if if is mites, it’s highly unlikely to be effective
 

Siikibam

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Did the vet see them before saying you should use it, and did he prescribe it? And was it one treatment?

Have a look on the vet locator for recommended ones near you.
Vet Locator

Please also add your location to your profile - county/state or country. There are a lot of people from different countries and it makes it easier when you’re being given info to know whereabouts you’re located.
 

xSarahx17x

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firstly welcome. Guinea pigs are prey animals and the majority will never like being picked up. However you do need to be weighing them weekly so you will have to. Try and herd them into a cuddle cup/sack or tunnel or box and pick them up in that.

Not all like being touched and that’s okay. They’re not the cuddly pets they’re made out to be and you have to respect their boundaries. I would just try hand feeding them veg while in their cage or run for now. Go at their pace and realise that gaining their trust could take you years and not months.

And all the above written by Piggies&Buns.
Thank you ☺
See I tried the box, rookie error with nibbles as he's a jumper! He literally jumped clean out of it. But that is a good idea might do that!

Ok, so keep doing what I'm pretty much doing already ... That's a relief! Thank you. I will definitely start weighing them weekly! I was going to do it monthly so that's good to know

Thank you
 

Piggies&buns

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How you split their veg is up to you and what works for them.
For me, I find it works better to give them their pellets (strictly one tablespoon per pig per days although I actually underfeed pellets) in the morning and their veg at night. Hay constantly available 24/7 and fresh added three or so times a day. Hay is their food, think of veg (15% of their daily food intake) and pellets (5% of their daily food intake) simply as snacks
 

xSarahx17x

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a full mite treatment is actually a course of three treatment over the space of several weeks, this ensures that all life cycles of mites are caught. If you have only given one treatment of an off the shelf product then if if is mites, it’s highly unlikely to be effective
That's actually really good to know! Thank you! I will make them a vet appointment and get on that! Thank you so much ☺

Sorry Abit clueless to this. Just want them to be happy ☺
 

Wiebke

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Good afternoon everyone,
I have just joined this forum as I have so many questions and can't seem to find the answer 🙈
Let me start by saying that I have recently got 2 (so adorable) Guinea pigs. Both male. (Sorry I don't know all the types of the sexes of the pigs). So a month ago my mum brought me them for my birthday, so they are approximately 4 months old. As soon as I got them, research head went on and I found out everything I needed to do for them ☺ I have even started growing my own vegetable garden especially designed for the pigs.

(I'm sorry I'm on a rant)

So, I have a good size cage they go in at night and then I have actually got a wired run that goes around that cage for in the day, so they can run around whilst I'm at work. (When I go back - leisure centre)

Now, I am wondering if I'm doing everything right ! after a month I still can't stroke them... I'll explain a little bit more ... (Sorry this is a long post) the first few days I got them, I did what all the websites told me too, I left them alone and just let them get settled. By the end of the week I started to sit in the run with them whilst I fed them lettuce and vegetables. Question 1! 1 cup of lettuce and veg a day per pig! That's a lot of lettuce and veg! Is that right? (I have recently cut that down as they weren't eating it all, was a lot!)

I have two pigs, chutney and nibbles. By the end of that week it came quite clear that nibbles was the one that would probably escape as he is a confident one. He started to jump on me and eat veg and started to let me stroke his nose every now and again, only a little. Chutney is a bit more reserved, he is the lazy one. Doesn't really want to jump if he doesn't have too (yes, they are completely different from each other haha) So, we are coming up to a month of me owning them now and they still haven't really allowed me to stroke them. Nibbles doesn't mind it every now and again but chutney will not allow it. I mean, I can literally move as normal in their run and around the house without them bolting away but when it comes to stroking them, they're not having it. I googled it as I noticed they were scratching alot, so it said that they might not allow you to touch them if they have fleas etc... I brought some, but had to pick them up to weight them and flea them. I even had to resort to me putting my hand in their cage to stroke them (I know it's bad but what else can I do)

I have been trying to earn there trust and I thought I was getting it as they popcorn around, run around like headless chickens, eat off of my hands, jump on me etc etc so I have been a bit wary of picking them up as didn't want to mess the "trust" up! So I thought "right I've got this!" It's two against one here, it's Abit scary in my eyes 😂🙈 anyway so about a week ago, I started picking them up everyday (they hated being picked up!) But as soon as they were on my lap they would eat there celery happily. However it all went wrong! Chutney; went to pick him up one day and he went nuts (I didn't hurt him I promise!) But he squeaked the place down... And he was fine on my lap, then I put him down and he walked (not ran) off. Since then! Chutney has gone back in his shell and just doesn't want to be touched by me, so I'm doing the trust with him all over again, which is harder because nibbles still trusts me but I have to admit since then I haven't picked them up as it has knocked me back Abit.

I'm sorry for the long message, I'm just worried if I'm doing something wrong! Or is it because they are still young... Can someone help me... I want to be able to just stroke my pigs 🙈 am I doing it right? Do I have to pick them up? What can I do! Someone please help 😂 as I don't know what else I can do. Or will it come in time? Sorry for the panicked message 🤣 I'm a first time pig owner.

Thank you if you have read the whole of this! You are a saint!
Hi and welcome!

Firstly, please double check the gender of your piggies: New guinea pigs: Sexing, vet checks&customer rights, URI, ringworm and parasites

Please take the time to read the guides in the link below in order to make friends with your boys in ways that they understand and by respecting that they are prey animals and not naturally born animted cuddly toys. Keep in mind that all the 'cute' videos on social media are driven by human interest and do not reflect reality.
Most piggies don't like being picked and they don't like being petted in the cage; cherish those that do but otherwise console yourself with the fact that you have just normal piggies. The various guide contain information on the various prey animal instincts, how you can work around them (especially for pick up), use their own social interactive behaviours to make sense and interact with them. But you can interact in so many different ways with your piggies outside of frankly human centric lap time and get lots of fun. Most piggies will however come to tolerate a relatively short lap time of 5-10 minutes and will accept any necessary regular grooming and handling, especially if you use a mix of love and gentle enforcement of your authority in piggy whispering language.
The specific tips would take too much space and time to repeat them all in just one post: Settling In And Making Friends With Guinea Pigs - A Guide
Enrichment Ideas for Guinea Pigs

We strongly recommend that you weigh your piggies once weekly and give them a health check as part of life long health monitoring so you can catch any developing health problems early on when they are more easily to treat.
Weight - Monitoring and Management
Guinea pig body quirks - What is normal and what not?
Boar Care: Bits, Bums & Baths

Your two boys will be teenagers now. Please take the time to read our boar and teenage guides so you know what to look out for and what to avoid:
A Comprehensive Guide to Guinea Pig Boars
Boars: Teenage, Bullying, Fighting, Fall-outs And What Next?

You can access our full very useful new owners information via the link below. You may want to bookmark it and use it as a helpful resource. Unlike books, our guide format can be kept updated! The guides in this collection have been specifically written to address all the issues that new owners come up against most often and are as practical and 'how to' precise as we could make them.
It is worth having a look at them!
Getting Started - New Owners' Most Helpful Guides

All the best! I hope you'll enjoy learning to speak Cavy!
 

xSarahx17x

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How you split their veg is up to you and what works for them.
For me, I find it works better to give them their pellets (strictly one tablespoon per pig per days although I actually underfeed pellets) in the morning and their veg at night. Hay constantly available 24/7 and fresh added three or so times a day. Hay is their food, think of veg (15% of their daily food intake) and pellets (5% of their daily food intake) simply as snacks
Hang on, 1 tablespoon a day? Oh God... I followed the instructions on the bag 🙈 it said 35-50g per pig per day. Is that wrong then? Hay is available 24/7 for them and it's pretty much everywhere you look, they have 4 hay sacks. Oh my God! You are actually amazing, I will do that I will start reducing the pellets! Thank you, it would probably explain why they didn't eat all the veg, as they are filling up on them. The little piggies 🤣
 

Piggies&buns

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Hang on, 1 tablespoon a day? Oh God... I followed the instructions on the bag 🙈 it said 35-50g per pig per day. Is that wrong then? Hay is available 24/7 for them and it's pretty much everywhere you look, they have 4 hay sacks. Oh my God! You are actually amazing, I will do that I will start reducing the pellets! Thank you, it would probably explain why they didn't eat all the veg, as they are filling up on them. The little piggies 🤣
Don’t go by the bag, they will tell you anything! 35-50g is far too much.
One tablespoon per day, it’s only around 5-7g of pellets depending on brand. (I’ve weighed a couple of different brands out of interest)
Pellets are the junk food of the piggy diet. Overfeeding them contributes to excess calcium (which can cause health problems). Also filter their water to ensure they aren’t taking in too much calcium and don’t feed high calcium veg regularly (things like parsley, kale, spinach should be kept to once per week )

Long Term Balanced General And Special Needs Guinea Pig Diets
 

Siikibam

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Don’t reduce the pellets slowly, just cut back to one tablespoon each.
 

xSarahx17x

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Don’t go by the bag, they will tell you anything! 35-50g is far too much.
One tablespoon per day, it’s only around 5-7g of pellets depending on brand. (I’ve weighed a couple of different brands out of interest)
Pellets are the junk food of the piggy diet. Overfeeding them contributes to excess calcium (which can cause health problems). Also filter their water to ensure they aren’t taking in too much calcium and don’t feed high calcium veg regularly (things like parsley, kale, spinach should be kept to once per week )

Long Term Balanced General And Special Needs Guinea Pig Diets
That's actually amazing - thank you I'll cut it down starting right now! Yeah they normally have 80% lettuce and 20% veg I'm thinking that's wrong now too 😂 I'm the worst owner I thought I was doing right ... They get lettuce , celery everyday, nibbles likes carrot and pepper ... That's what I have introduced them to so far. They tried cucumber last night , they didn't like the middle part
 

Piggies&buns

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That's actually amazing - thank you I'll cut it down starting right now! Yeah they normally have 80% lettuce and 20% veg I'm thinking that's wrong now too 😂 I'm the worst owner I thought I was doing right ... They get lettuce , celery everyday, nibbles likes carrot and pepper ... That's what I have introduced them to so far. They tried cucumber last night , they didn't like the middle part
One cup of veg per day is fine. I focus mostly on giving leafy veg and then add in some bell pepper and cucumber for interest. Mine get lettuce, coriander, pepper and cucumber daily. Mine tend to nibble the edge of the cucumber first and then leave the middle part, only eating it after they’ve eaten everything else! Just remember the only food they should ever fill up on is hay
Don’t give carrot every day, it’s too high in sugar and should be regarded as a very occasional treat (as with fruit also)
 

Siikibam

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Try coriander as an every day veg - a sprig a day. It’s a good source of vitamin c and so is pepper. And perhaps a green bean. If they’ve not been used to veg then you have to introduce slowly.
 

xSarahx17x

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One cup of veg per day is fine. I focus mostly on giving leafy veg and then add in some bell pepper and cucumber for interest.
Don’t give carrot every day, it’s too high in sugar and should be regarded as a very occasional treat (as with fruit also)
Yeah I realised that last week about the carrot 🙈 I have decided to give it them twice a week that's it... I will get this 😂 I brought them baby corn today, so that's something new. The only fruit they've tried so far is pink lady apples.

Thank you so much; I really appreciate it
 

Siikibam

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I wouldn’t do it twice weekly either. Max once and a sliver. Herbs are also good but watch out for parsley which is high in calcium. If you have grass you could slowly introduce them to it as well.
 

xSarahx17x

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Try coriander as an every day veg - a sprig a day. It’s a good source of vitamin c and so is pepper. And perhaps a green bean. If they’ve not been used to veg then you have to introduce slowly.
Green bean!? I haven't tried that yet... That's good shout with the coriander, they do love parsley. Ok, that's the only herb I haven't got yet hahaha... I'll get some. Basil , mint and parsley are ok though right. I have lettuce, celery and cress all growing too
 

Siikibam

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Yes they’re okay. Parsley high in calcium so a small sprig maybe weekly or less often. My piggies (I have four) sometimes get it when I remember to buy some. But they finish the small pack over weeks rather than in one go.

Have a read of the feeding guide, I think it was already linked to for you.
 
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