How to potty train a guinea pig ? Guinea Pigs are a great pet to have, but anyone who has any experience with taking care of guinea pigs at all will tell you that these little animals are notorious for the amount of waste that they produce. Guinea pigs produce a lot of waste, and if you are keeping your pets in cages, that’ll amount to some very dirty cages very quickly unless you clean them often.
One of the best ways for you to reduce the burden you face as a guinea pig owner is to potty train your pets so that it’s for you to clean their messes after they make them.
Can You Potty Train A Guinea Pig?
It is not possible to potty train a guinea pig in the same manner as, say, a cat or a dog for instance.
Guinea pigs cannot be trained to always make their messes only in certain designated areas, but they can be influenced to associate an area with bathroom behaviour so that they at least perform a majority of their bathroom needs in that area.
So, technically no you cannot potty train a guinea so much as you can still get them to poop in one piece of the area whenever possible. This does not mean that it’s a waste of time trying to potty train them or that it can’t help. Potty training guinea pigs is actually especially important, and it has a number of benefits.
You should note that when your guinea pig does occasionally break away from its potty-training habits, it’s very important not to get angry or scold it since that will not help.
Benefits of Guinea Pig Potty Training
The biggest benefit of potty training your guinea pigs is that, while they won’t always choose to do their business where you want them to.
They will do it where you want them too often enough that you’ll have to clean up after them a whole lot less.
As we’ve mentioned before, guinea pigs tend to leave a lot of waste behind, and if you haven’t trained your guinea pig yet then you know exactly how much work it takes to clean up after them.
By potty training your guinea pig, you’ll not only have to clean up after them a whole lot less, but you also won’t have nearly as much of a mess to deal with.
Additionally, by training your guinea pig you’ll also make their cages a lot cleaner and more hygienic which is especially beneficial for the health of your pet since urinary tract infections are especially common amongst guinea pigs.
How to Train Your Guinea Pig
Now that we’ve explained to you the limits of to what extent you can train your guinea pig, and we’ve outlined the major benefits of doing so.
We now come down to the meat of the problem which is actually explaining to you train your pet.
In order to do this, you just have to follow the five simple steps that we’ve laid out for you. All you need is your pet’s cage, a litter box tray, and treats for your cavies to help-reinforce their training.
Step 1: Locate Preferred Spot
Guinea pigs tend to have favourite spots in their cages where they prefer to go to the bathroom for. Usually, these spots will include dark corners of their cage where privacy is maximized. Have a thorough look through your guinea pig’s cage and see where it tends to leave its waste the most. That’s its preferred spot.
Step 2: Prepare Litter Tray
Next, you need to prepare a litter tray for your guinea pig.
The size of this tray should depend on the size of the area of the cage where your guinea pig tends to go to the bathroom the most. You need to add some bedding material to this tray, preferably made of paper or aspen.
The tray should be big enough that your guinea pig is able to sit in it comfortably.
It should not be too tall so as to make it difficult for the animal to crawl in or out, nor should it be so light that the guinea pig is able to tip it over.
Step 3: Place Litter Tray in Preferred Spot
Once the tray is prepared you need to place it to the preferred bathroom spot that you located in step 1.
The essential idea behind this whole exercise is to convince your guinea pig to go one single spot for going to the bathroom every time.
Place some of your guinea-pig’s faecal matter into the litter tray to help your pet associate the tray with bathroom-activities.
Step 4: Reward your Guinea Pig
Your guinea pig will eventually begin to associate the litter tray with bathroom activities.
So once it starts using the litter tray you need to provide your pet with some reward.
Giving your guinea pig a few treats after every time that it chooses to use the litter tray is an excellent way to help reinforce in the animal’s mind that it needs to only use the litter tray when it needs to go to the bathroom.
Step 5: Reinforce Behaviour
Training your guinea pig to use the litter box as much as possible when it goes to the bathroom will inevitably take some time as your pet will initially have trouble adjusting to it.
You need to be patient with your pet and help reinforce this behaviour by establishing a clear connection between bathroom activities and the litter box in addition to also rewarding your guinea pig for using the litter box.
Potty training your guinea pig has a lot of advantages. Guinea pigs can only be potty trained to a certain extent.
But it is very beneficial that they should be trained to only use a designated litter box for going to the bathroom. You have to constantly reinforce this behaviour for your animal, and that process will inevitably take time.