Are Guinea Pigs Good Pets?

Are guinea pigs good pets? All signs point to ‘Yes!’ Before jumping on the ‘small pet’ bandwagon however, there are a few things you should know about these loveable little critters. Knowing about a pet animal’s diet and feeding habits, social behavior and life expectancy is a very important part of being a good pet owner.

The average life expectancy of a pet guinea pig is between five to seven years, although some have been known to live up to eight years or more. If you’re thinking about buying or adopting, you should be prepared a long-term commitment. One thing that’s very important to realize is that you should never get a single pet. These animals are extremely social, and if you want your pets to have a rich, rewarding life, you should keep at least two.

Your pets will bond and socialize with each other, but that does not mean they will not bond with you. They are very gentle and friendly animals, and will soon win you over. If you handle them gently, they will even show signs of approval by wheeking and grunting.

The best time to get a guinea pig is when they are babies. If you are planning on getting a pair (as you should), know that same-sex pairs work the best. That is, two females or two males will usually bond most easily. Introducing the animals as babies gives the best chances of the two forming a lasting friendship. In some cases however a pair of baby pigs may not bond right away, but that is rare.

Adult pigs can form a fast friendship as well, if they are introduced under the right circumstances. How long a pair takes to bond also depends on the breed.

Another important consideration is cage size. Although small animals, they require a large floor space because they are very active. Most pet stores only carry small cages that may cramp your pets’ style, especially if you get a pair. The good news is, you can construct a homemade cage using readily-available tools and supplies. Guinea pigs are not known to be adept escape artists, and can be safely accommodated in a homemade cage. When caring for pets, ensuring a comfortable living area for the animals is vital.

Most breeds are usually quiet, but they have the ability to make a loud, high-pitched sound known as a ‘wheek.’ This is most often heard when they want attention or food. A wheek is not as loud as a dog’s bark, but it is audible at night when you’re trying to get some sleep. A good idea may to keep the cage away from your sleeping quarters.

Guinea pigs are small and friendly animals that can bring joy to any household. They live about five to eight years, and adults can grow up to one-and-a-half pounds. If you want to keep guinea pigs as pets for your family, you should be prepared for a long-term commitment. As long as … Read More

Avoiding Pet Holiday Hazards – 5 Answers That Will Keep Your Pet Safe

For pets the holidays can be confusing, stressful, and downright dangerous. But the good news is they don’t have to be. The following 5 answers can help you make the holidays a happy, healthy time for you and your pet.

How can I keep guests from sneaking food to my pets?

Be direct and ask them not to give any human food. Explain that as tasty as it is for humans it can cause severe problems for your animal. If you feel that this request will have not effect play it safe rather than sorry, and put secure your pets away from the area where guest will be.

Which foods are most harmful?

Chocolate, caffeine, alcohol, macadamia nuts, candy, sugar, and foods with high salt content can all be deadly. Consult with your veterinarian about foods that are particularly hazardous for your animal, and then be vigilant about leaving any of these foods out even for a moment.

We learned this the hard way. Our Golden helped himself to a whole cheese ball while we were saying good night to my parents. We thought they had decided to take the cheese ball. When we called to ask, they said they didn’t have it.

Then we discovered tell-tale nuts from the outside of the cheese ball in the bottom of his water dish. We were lucky that he didn’t swipe the chocolate rum balls instead. Remember, it only takes a moment for tragedy to strike.

What kinds of plants can cause problems during the holidays?

Steer clear of poinsettias, holly, lilies, and mistletoe. Pine needles have the potential to puncture the intestines when swallowed. So as much as these plants symbolize the holidays for many of us, your pet’s safety should come first.

How should we handle all of the extra cords?

You can tape them down, run them behind furniture, or put them under a rug. Running wires through inexpensive plastic tubing that can be bought from the hardware store is also a great way to limit access to pets and young children.

How can we keep the tree from falling over?

Build a platform on which the tree can be placed. Make sure it is made of a material that can be drilled easily. And light-weight is also a good idea.. Use a tree holder that has flat feet. Put a bolt over each foot of the tree holder and screw it down on both sides of each of the feet. This will keep the tree steady just in in case Lassie pulls on it, Sassy jumps on it, or Rio perches on a branch.. Anchoring from the ceiling is also possible, but for those who are mechanically challenged this may not be an option.

Being vigilant about what kinds of products you bring into your is the best way to keep your pets safe. The holidays are stressful for people, and for pets as well.

Making time to spend with you pet will make you both … Read More