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My new Guinea pig!

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I welcomed Snickers, a 4 month old male, into our home over the weekend. I did have a couple questions about overall health of our guinea pig:

1. How often do guinea pigs drink? He doesn't seem to drink a lot of water from the bottle and so I have put down a small bowl which he seems to like more.
2. Can i feed him veggies daily or every other day? Whats the best hay to get him?
3. What types of stimulating things can I provide him? Music? More toys?
4. I am worried that he will miss out on companionship without another guinea pig. But, for right now, my husband and I want to adjust to one and perhaps introduce another male later on.
5. how often should he see a vet? get a bath?
 

piglet_and_rogers_mama

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hello and welcome!
1. Guinea pigs differ in the amount of water they consume. Your boy might not know that water comes from the bottle, maybe show him how it works? Pigs tend to not drink a lot of water if they eat lots of veggies and fruits because there is natural moisture in them.
2. You can and should give vegetables daily, especially ones with vitamin C in them because guinea pigs cant produce or store there own vit c. I feed my pigs timothy hay. young pigs and pregnant females should eat alfalfa, because there is more calcium in them. please give them unlimited hay; it helps with their digestion and teeth.
3. you can buy toys for them, but my pigs love the simple things: news paper, brown paper bags, empty kleenex boxes etc. please make sure he has a hideaway to sleep in-it makes them feel comfortable and safe.
4. definitely consider getting him a friend. they are herd animals naturally, so they thrive with at least one guinea pig companion. if you really cant, make sure you pay him lots of attention! even then, that wont make up for another pig.
5. baths can be stressful for pigs. unless he is dirty or sticky (the grease gland can get sticky-its where his tail would be if had one) it's really not necessary. take him to a vet for an initial checkup. and if you suspect he is ill definitely take him! pigs hide pain well, and it can be difficult to tell they're ill...watch out for subtle changes in behavior.

hope this helps! :)
 

piglet_and_rogers_mama

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also...as ive recently learned from the other lovely members: give fruit once a week, its acidic and can cause mouth sores and diabetes, but is still a nice treat for them. weigh weekly! a good indication of health deterioration is with weight loss.
 
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hello and welcome!
1. Guinea pigs differ in the amount of water they consume. Your boy might not know that water comes from the bottle, maybe show him how it works? Pigs tend to not drink a lot of water if they eat lots of veggies and fruits because there is natural moisture in them.
2. You can and should give vegetables daily, especially ones with vitamin C in them because guinea pigs cant produce or store there own vit c. I feed my pigs timothy hay. young pigs and pregnant females should eat alfalfa, because there is more calcium in them. please give them unlimited hay; it helps with their digestion and teeth.
3. you can buy toys for them, but my pigs love the simple things: news paper, brown paper bags, empty kleenex boxes etc. please make sure he has a hideaway to sleep in-it makes them feel comfortable and safe.
4. definitely consider getting him a friend. they are herd animals naturally, so they thrive with at least one guinea pig companion. if you really cant, make sure you pay him lots of attention! even then, that wont make up for another pig.
5. baths can be stressful for pigs. unless he is dirty or sticky (the grease gland can get sticky-its where his tail would be if had one) it's really not necessary. take him to a vet for an initial checkup. and if you suspect he is ill definitely take him! pigs hide pain well, and it can be difficult to tell they're ill...watch out for subtle changes in behavior.

hope this helps! :)
Thank you for your feedback! I will pick up some orange slices and hay. He really likes carrots, spinach, parsley and pineapple (only a small piece). The only thing is that the cage is a great size and having two pigs would be too cramped. Do you have a picture of your cage? How many pigs do you have?

Another thing: I want to put down towels instead of paper bedding to save money and time with cleaning. What are your thoughts on that?
 

piglet_and_rogers_mama

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i have 2 boys, the same age as your little guy! i had a commercial cage, but i soon realized it was too small. so i made a make shift pen which is on the floor and surrounded by boxes to keep them in. when i have more space and money, I'm gonna make them a C and C cage (theres more info in the housing section). I actually use towels; i line the floor with newspaper and put old towels on top...the only problem with that is is they need washed frequently, and shaken out. still saves money on bedding. a lot of people have luck with fleece. it absorbs urine and is very soft; when i have more money I'm gonna upgrade to that too!
 
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i have 2 boys, the same age as your little guy! i had a commercial cage, but i soon realized it was too small. so i made a make shift pen which is on the floor and surrounded by boxes to keep them in. when i have more space and money, I'm gonna make them a C and C cage (theres more info in the housing section). I actually use towels; i line the floor with newspaper and put old towels on top...the only problem with that is is they need washed frequently, and shaken out. still saves money on bedding. a lot of people have luck with fleece. it absorbs urine and is very soft; when i have more money I'm gonna upgrade to that too!
Thanks! My husband wants to make a cage although we live in a 700square foot apartment. But, I want the best for my little guy! How often do you wash the towels? How long do you play with your pigs?
 

piglet_and_rogers_mama

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haha i live in a really small apartment too! it's sllightly bigger than a dorm room lol, because of that we pretty my hangout with the pigs in the same room all day, but i take one and cuddle for a few minutes several times throughout the day. sometimes we let them out (after we piggy proof) and let them have run around time, which is adorable lol. i shake out the towels every day, do poop maintence lol, and wash them out every 2-3 days. i try to do it before it gets smelly :)
 
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Update:

Snickers is doing very well. The first two days he was depressed and didn't move around much. Almost 2 weeks later, he is full of energy and joy. He usually wakes up when we wake up and eats. He popcorns frequently and enjoys peppers and spinach (along with lettuce and cucumbers).

And I don't think we will get another pig, at least for now. While I know they are very social, he hangs out with us alot and we allow him to run around the apartment 2-4 hours daily.

One thing I have noticed is that he doesnt like to cuddle and that is disappointing. I hope he outgrows it and slows down!

He is going to the vet tonight and hopefully he has a clean bill of health.
 
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