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Stressed out

Cooperandchad

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Jan 8, 2019
Messages
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50
#1
I recently bought 2 male 6 month old guinea pigs. My parents have never let me have a pet until now. I researched for 2 months prior to getting the two guinea pigs so I know how to care for them properly. My parents keep complaining about how smelly and noisy they are and are making me feel stressed and guilty as they are sayig they regret having them. I am also getting annoyed as to how expensive and wastful they are but I still love them. I don’t know what to do, I cannot return them and don’t want to give them up but they are disrupting my family and costing a lot of money. I knew what I was getting myself into but thought they were less work than this. I love my piggies but dont know what to do. Any advice would be wonderful. Thank you!
 

Hannah_xx

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Sep 29, 2008
Messages
380
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138
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Location
essex, uk // Australia, Victoria
#2
Hi there!
Sorry to hear that your new piggies haven’t quite worked out how you expected. People seem to think they are easy low maintenance pets which they are not.. if you care for them correctly. They do require lots of time to ensure they are not bored and have everything a piggy could need and want. Decent quality guinea food is an expense as well as hay and bedding. But they are vital to a guinea pigs well-being. It’s great that you researched a lot before getting them, but as you’ve found out having pets in real life is more work than it sounds.
I do feel you love them and could take amazing care of them but it sounds as though it’s your parents that are making you feel guilty.
What bedding do you use? How often do you clean them out? As this will all contribute to the smell. I currently live in a small 3 roomed cottage and I don’t notice smell from my 3 piggies at all.
When they are content and happy they are quite loud with their playing, chatting ‘moving furniture’ and wheeking for veggies. If they are in a bedroom that could become an issue but otherwise I find it a pleasure to hear them enjoying themselves.

Where abouts are you located?
Have a look on some threads on here as there is lots of piggy inspiration which may make you feel happier about your new boys.
However if you really feel they have become a hindrance that it would be in their best interests to find them a more suitable home
Best of luck x
 

Cooperandchad

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Jan 8, 2019
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7
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#3
I love taking care of these piggies but they certainly waste a lot of hay, are there any solutions to keep them from pulling
 

Cooperandchad

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Jan 8, 2019
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#4
Hay out of the rack? Also in your own experience do guinea pig vet bills cost a lot? Also I use aspen bedding as I have read cedar and pine isn't good for them. I clean their cage once a week and spot clean daily. Thank you so much!
 

Bill & Ted

Adult Guinea Pig
Joined
Jun 20, 2018
Messages
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Location
Cornwall
#5
Hay should be around 80% of their diet and is very important to their health and well-being, please don’t scrimp on hay. Mine are bedded on hay and a lot of it is obviously not eaten. Piggies like to pull out specific strands of hay and leave others, surely that’s one of the few choices that they have being caged. It adds to their wellbeing, keep that hay topped up for them x

I understand they can be quite expensive to keep and know that you love them, I think you are under pressure from your family. It’s a shame for you, perhaps you could offer to wash the car and do small tasks to show that you are doing your bit towards your family, that may take the pressure off you keeping your piggies x

If you really feel they have not lived up to your expectations, then perhaps you need to find a good rescue. There is a recommended rescue list in the guides here for the UK
 

dannif_piggies

Teenage Guinea Pig
Joined
Jul 17, 2018
Messages
942
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Location
Kent
#7
I'm sorry you haven't found your new piggies as much of a joy as your would've hoped. Don't loose heart. Piggies can be noisy but as mentioned above noise is usually from them enjoying themselves. There's plenty of cheap ways you can make toys for them, like cardboard boxes with entrances and exits cut out, toilet roll tubes (with a slit down one side so they can't get stuck) paper bags.

In terms of expense, I, and many others on here, find that purchasing from local farm shops, or online retailers, often works out much cheaper than places like pets at home for example. Hay will be the largest ongoing cost, but it is essential, and if you look around at options, you can get it rather cheap. I've found my pigs are more wasteful when it comes to using a hay rack, as they pull the hay out and don't eat it. But I now use a hay box, it's actually a cheap cat litter tray, and I line this with wood shavings, to then put a handful of hay in at a time. Unfortunately it's inevitable that some hay will be wasted, but in the grand scheme of a bag of hay, I find little is wasted this way, but it may be different for your pigs, it's a case trial and error.

Can I remind you that small amounts should be put by for veterinary costs every so often, this will later reduce stress if one of your piggies falls unwell.

In terms of smell, piggies generally are very clean, I have 4 in my bedroom, and don't find them smelly at all (until the day before cage clean)

What type of bedding you use and how often you clean it will affect how much your pigs smell.

The most common types of bedding are wood shavings, paper based bedding and fleece. I personally use fleece, as once you've got the fleece and towels, it's much less wasteful, bur your parents may not appreciate having to wash the pigs bedding in the washing machine, this would be something you'd have to ask them about.
Bedding like wood shavings, should be spot cleaned daily, and wet patches should be removed and replaced with clean bedding, doing this daily will to help minimise smell.
I find the hay box also helps with smell control, and the pigs use this as a toilet too so I simply empty this out more regularly than I change their whole bed.

I hope this is of some help to you, any more questions feel free to ask
 

dannif_piggies

Teenage Guinea Pig
Joined
Jul 17, 2018
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Location
Kent
#8
Hay out of the rack? Also in your own experience do guinea pig vet bills cost a lot? Also I use aspen bedding as I have read cedar and pine isn't good for them. I clean their cage once a week and spot clean daily. Thank you so much!
Vet bills throughout a piggies life can vary. Most of the time pigs don't tend to get ill until they reach senior years, however it's not uncommon for a piggy to be ill when it's younger. It would be a case of phoning around local vets and see who can provide care for piggies. Going to a regular dog and cat clinic is likely to end in disaster, as many of them do not understand guinea pigs in terms of veterinary care. I have found the cheapest and best veterinary care to be through the vets4pets/ companion care chain which is run inside of pets at home stores. Their care is resonably priced and catered towards guinea pigs very well. They are separate from pets at home but simply rent to space of the stores to reduce their running costs. It may be worth contacting your local ones to see what you think.
 

Cooperandchad

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Jan 8, 2019
Messages
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#9
Thank you, I will take our advice into consideration. I'm just worried that if they get sick and the vet bill is too much my parents will have to put them down which I reply don't want to happen ;(.
 

Cooperandchad

Junior Guinea Pig
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Jan 8, 2019
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#10
If I do decide to give them away are there any good animal shelters that will make sure they get a good home in Canada? When I was researching I made a really dumb mistake by not looking at the costs and it is a little too much for my family. Right now I am saving up my money and babysitting to try to help lower the costs. Thank you guys for your helpful advice.
 

Bill & Ted

Adult Guinea Pig
Joined
Jun 20, 2018
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Cornwall
#11
Oh, not sure about Canada, could you look online for a shelter near you perhaps, and read the reviews x
 

Cooperandchad

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Jan 8, 2019
Messages
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#12
Thank you so much for your advice. I made a stupid move by not looking into their cost. If they do get sick my family may not be able to pay the vet bills and am afraid we might have to put them down and I want them both to live happy and full lives,so I think that I will give them to the best reviewed animal shelter near me. I hope they get a great new family.
 
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