• Dying, terminal illness and euthanasia: New sensitive support guide for guinea pig owners Please Click Here
  • Discussions taking place within this forum are intended for the purpose of assisting you in discussing options with your vet. Any other use of advice given here is done so at your risk, is solely your responsibility and not that of this forum or its owner. Before posting it is your responsibility you abide by this Statement

too small and maybe not growing fast enough

trinidy

New Born Pup
Joined
Apr 24, 2019
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
Points
35
Our guinea pig Kookie is around 5 months old and I’ve seen pictures and videos of 3 month old guinea pigs who were bigger than him. When we first got him we were concerned because his previous owner told us he’d never had any vegetables or fruits before, just hay and his food. We could tell because his hip bones and spine were protruding and you could feel them when you pet and held him. He’s at a good weight now but I’m worried the lack of nutrition could’ve caused him to grow weirdly or not enough.
 

Claire W

Forum Donator 2019/20
Joined
Mar 23, 2008
Messages
24,292
Reaction score
12,215
Points
2,415
Location
Lancashire (Originally from Nottingham)
Is he eating and drinking ok? If so, please try not to worry. He should start gaining weight and growing as he settles in to his new feeding routine. And remember that some guinea pigs are bigger than others. But if you are concerned, may be have him vet checked
 

Cavy Kung-Fu

Forum Donator 2019/20
Joined
Nov 9, 2015
Messages
4,895
Reaction score
5,244
Points
1,475
Location
Brighton, UK
I agree with the above, if you’re worried a vet check would be an idea!

Pig weights vary so much, Bella was the runt of her litter and she’s always been tiny. Even now as a 3 and a half year old adult she tops the scales at 900 grams whilst her birth sister was 200 odd grams bigger than her! Try not to worry too much if you’re not seeing illness :)
 

Lady Kelly

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jan 11, 2011
Messages
13,133
Reaction score
16,138
Points
2,115
Location
Leicester
Weights in adult piggies can vary by quite a lot so don't worry about him in terms of other pigs. If he is steadily gaining weight and is otherwise healthy is what counts. I have had piggies vary from 800g to 1200g as adults, my current heaviest sow is 1240g 😱
 

rhymer

Forum Donator 2019/20
Joined
Mar 1, 2018
Messages
1,388
Reaction score
1,342
Points
775
Location
Wallasey, Wirral, uk
I agree some piggies are just smaller. I had two smaller boys, one was the tiny of the litter and the second was very sick shortly after we got him. He recovered but was always on the small side.xx
 

Wiebke

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Mar 10, 2009
Messages
69,436
Reaction score
38,433
Points
3,466
Location
Coventry UK
Our guinea pig Kookie is around 5 months old and I’ve seen pictures and videos of 3 month old guinea pigs who were bigger than him. When we first got him we were concerned because his previous owner told us he’d never had any vegetables or fruits before, just hay and his food. We could tell because his hip bones and spine were protruding and you could feel them when you pet and held him. He’s at a good weight now but I’m worried the lack of nutrition could’ve caused him to grow weirdly or not enough.
Hi!

Please do not be tempted to overfeed on veg. Key is a healthy hay based diet with few, but carefully balanced and non-fattening veg as well as 1 tablespoon of good quality pellets as a daily treat rather than the mainstay of the diet. You are aiming at long term health and as long a life as possible, not at having your piggy fit an average that with the wide variety of body sizes and weights doesn't work in the first place.

I have adopted many piggies originating from really bad places. With a good normal diet, they have made the best of their available options and in many cases have lived a normal life span. I currently have a pair of sisters coming up to 8 years from a free roaming indiscriminately multiplying stiuation. They have always been dinky, but one of them has been (and still is) leader of their group.

Others of mine have lived as some of the longest lived ones of their respective rescue bunch. A few have sadly died early when things beyond my control went wrong in their body but I know that I have given them a happy and good life while they had it - and that is the crucial point. Guinea pigs don't live with our human expectations; they live in the here and now, and so should you.

Size doesn't matter because you cannot change that; what matters is that you allow your piggy to be as healthy within its determined size as possible and don't push for overweight in a futile attempt of making your piggy 'fit in'.
Don't fixate on your piggy having to fit a certain frame of 'normality'; allow your piggy live its own life to the max as it is with you making sure that what you feed is quality and not quantity (i.e. life shortening fat around the organs).

You can't change the past; your piggy will always carry it with it. Accept that there is no magic wand that can make undone what has happened and what genes you little one has been born with. It is part of your piggy and what makes it special and unique.
What you CAN give your pet is as happy, healthy and fulfilled life for as long as they are given. We can never choose when and what from our piggies die. Guinea pigs don't have a concept for longevity, but they have a concept for a happy 'today'. They don't have a concept for how life should be, just for how life is - if it is 'good', then you are doing right.

Please take the time to read these links. Our long term experience has gone into them.
Long Term Balanced General And Special Needs Guinea Pig Diets
Weight - Monitoring and Management

Is your little rescued piggy a single? If yes, please consider that the best and most loving gift you can ever make it is same sex company of its own kind. Guinea pigs are group animals with a very complex social life and interaction, and not wired to be on their own. Company is not a luxury; it is by far the biggest long term health and mental health booster you can ever provide, every bit or even more so in some respects than a good diet. It really does prolong a life, too. I have adopted several bereaved oldies that would never have lived as long as they did without renewed companionship and stimulation to really learn just how vital this aspect is.
Companionship
Enrichment Ideas for Guinea Pigs
 
Top