Keeping Piggies Safe during outdoor time

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Merab's Slave

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This is the time of year (in the northern hemisphere at least) when summer tempts us to let the piggies outside.

To avoid unfortunate accidents or tragedies, some tips to keep the piggies safe:
- Do not let guinea pigs free roam on the lawn. They can have a remarkable turn of speed and disappear before you realise it. They will naturally look for shelter to hide and may not be easily found.
- Remember that guinea pigs are prey animals and local neighbourhood wild life, furry and feathered, will see a snack in a free roaming guinea pig.
- Check your garden for escape points, holes in the fence, gaps in a gate - anywhere a guinea pig could squeeze through. In so far as you can, make the garden secure.
- Keep them safe in a secure run. Check the run to ensure that there is no way the guinea pigs can escape. Do this regularly, not just at the beginning of the season.
- Ensure the run has water, hay and somewhere to hide that is out of the sun.
- Not all piggies like being outside and will prefer to stay in hiding.
- Do not leave them unattended. This does not mean watching them all the time, but don’t go out for the day while the guinea pigs are in a run on the lawn.


Should the worst happen and you lose your guinea pig don’t panic immediately. There are somethings you can do to help find the missing piggy:
- Put out a shelter like a pigloo, a fleece, a bag of hay to tempt them home. Use something that smells familiar.
- The rustling of a food bag and putting out favourite vegetables may all help attract them home.
- Sit in the garden calling them, or just sit quietly and watch but do not hover close to a frightened piggy; that will only make it run away further.
- Remember not to make a rush to grab a piggy if it appears or you will spook it again.
- Sometimes playing guinea pig noises can pique their curiosity.
- If the piggy hasn’t been found by the next day you may want to consider flyers around the local houses and shops.
- Make your piggy want to come back home but NEVER hunt it down when its prey animal instincts are on full alert!

Do not forget - it is much better to take all steps to prevent an escape than to risk losing a beloved guinea pig.
 
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