• You can find lots of information on how to settle in, understand your new guinea pigs in our New Owners Guide Collection but please ask any questions you have in Wannabe and New Owners' section.

New guinea pig owner!

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#1
Hi all

Just wondered if you may be able to help.

We are the new owners of 2 lovely piggies and have been reading and doing loads to learn all about the new members of our family.

Our piggies, however, seem to be doing something which i cant quite work out what it is. I think this maybe something to do with the double digestion thing.

One of our guinea pigs keeps, curling in a ball, head towards back pasage and then comes up chewing. is this to do with the double digestion thing, i.e is she eating her own poop? She seems to be doing it every few minutes, whereas the other one does it hardly at all.

Any help would be great.
Many thanks
 
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#2
Hello.

Yes, they are coprophagists, which means they eat their own poo. This tops up good bacteria levels and helps them to digest certain nutrients fully. They may well eat each others poo as well. In fact, an unwell piggy with tummy trouble can benefit greatly from eating other piggie's poo. This sounds yukky but it does them good!

I'm glad you are watching them so closely, it's ace fun getting to know your piggies and if you become good at reading their body language then you will be a good piggy mum!

All the best, Sarah
 

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#3
Guinea pigs cannot produce vitamin C in their own bodies (unlike rabbits, for example) and need to do their best not to lose any.

They have two sorts of poo - the normal ones and the vitamin C containing ones, which are the ones they eat; they are usually lighter in colour. That is what you have been seeing. Piggies tend to get rather upset if they drop one and can't find it!

That is the reason why it is important to make sure that guinea pigs have enough vitamin C in their diet (pellets, veg). Please do not be tempted to add anything to the water. It just goes off very quickly and makes a wonderful fertilizer for green algae growing in the water bottle!

 
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Thanks so much everybody. I think our piggies are great and am really enjoying getting to know them and your help really helps me to understand thme to. many thanks. nicki
 
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Thanks so much everybody. I think our piggies are great and am really enjoying getting to know them and your help really helps me to understand thme to. many thanks. nicki
 
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