Guinea pig

Guinea pig is one of the most common types of pets among rodents. There are many different species of guinea pigs that don’t even look the same.

The history of the guinea pig

The first guinea pigs were domesticated by tribes in South America over five thousand years ago. In those days, however, these cute animals were not just ordinary pets. They were mainly used for breeding because of the delicious meat. Guinea pigs were often sacrificed to the gods in various rituals and religious ceremonies. In the 13th century BC, some Indian tribes began to breed different species of guinea pigs, and by the 16th century there were already many breeds of these cute rodents. In nature, they live in holes or hide between stones. How long do guinea pigs live? In some cases, longer than 8 years, even when kept as pets.

Standard guinea pig

Today, there are many breeds of guinea pigs. Among them are long-haired, short-haired, and even those with smooth skin covered with very light down. Guinea pigs, regardless of breed, have a body length of 25 to 35 centimeters. They have a large head with a wide blunt snout. The guinea pig’s neck is so short that it appears to be absent and the head just seems to enter the body. Guinea pig ears they are slightly sloping. Their body is large and quite rounded. The tail is completely absent.

Males weigh from one kilogram to one and a half kilograms, and females weigh from eight hundred grams to one kilogram and two hundred grams. In the wild, guinea pigs have a brownish-gray back, and the abdomen and insides of the paws are lighter in color. The fur of domestic guinea pigs, long or short, comes in a variety of colors.

Guinea pigs can be plain, bicolor, or tricolor, but white is often found in the coat. Longhair guinea pigs often have a long hair comb on their heads that stands up straight and gives them a playful appearance. Guinea pigs have well-developed, sharp teeth. Guinea pig teeth There are 20 of them, the most important are the upper and lower incisors, which are used to chew on food.

Little guinea pig

Guinea pig care

Guinea pigs are good-natured animals that are very trusting. They love to sit on the lap or in the hands of their owner and play with him. However, you have to be very careful when playing with the guinea pig, as a fall even from a small height can have fatal consequences for the animal. You should consult your vet how to back up a guinea pigbecause fleas may appear on its fur. It is recommended to keep guinea pigs in pairs.

Lonely guinea pigs are very sad because they are social animals. This leads to overeating, nervous behavior, and can lead to depression or refusal to eat. The guinea pig lives well in a cage or glass aquarium. But in his cage or aquarium there must be a place to hide if he gets scared. Guinea pigs are very skittish animals and in case of loud noise they may want to hide in a dark place they consider safe. It is also possible that the guinea pig is shivering if it is scared and feeling unwell.

Good if c guinea pig cage there is a bark of wood that will help keep the animal’s teeth in good condition. The guinea pig does not need all sorts of carousels as their limbs are short. The guinea pig needs it out of motion, so you’ll need to release him from time to time. However, you have to be careful because the animal may injure itself when closing a door, biting an electric cable or falling from above.

Guinea pig training

Despite popular belief that guinea pigs are rodents that do nothing all day except eating and sleeping, they are amenable to training. Therefore, they are often used for attractions and pull out tickets and happiness with their teeth. The guinea pig can be learned react when you call him by his name. This can happen by saying his name every time you feed him. The guinea pig can learn to push the ball, and when hungry, it is pulled from its cage and the animal’s favorite treat is placed under the ball. He will push the ball and it will gradually become a conditional reflex. Some guinea pigs learn to climb over their owner’s arm with ease. But in this case, the person must sit on a soft surface to avoid the risk of falling and injuring the animal. Keep in mind that the guinea pig is tame by nature and would normally not show aggression if it did not feel threatened.

Feeding guinea pigs

Guinea pigs are fed with special mixtures of grasses, cereals and juicy vegetables. Sweet guinea pigs also love fruit. Be aware that when you feed guinea pig grass mixtures, they must be kept in the animal’s cage at all times. With the help of hard grass, the guinea pig keeps its teeth in good condition and prevents their growth. Herbal mixtures contribute to the proper functioning of the guinea pig’s digestive system.

Diseases of guinea pigs

Guinea pigs often suffer from a genetic abnormal bite. This becomes clear after the guinea pig refuses to eat all or hardly at all and selects only very small pieces of food. Misaligned teeth can be corrected by veterinarians who specialize in treating rodent teeth. The operation is performed under general anesthesia. Something else guinea pig disease, is the elongated root of one of the teeth.

guinea pigs

This causes acute abscesses and makes it impossible to feed the animal. Another problem of guinea pigs is tooth decay, which leads to the inability to eat, weight loss and even death. Often, broken teeth are caused by the animal trying to bite the metal bars of the cage it is in. In such a problem, the vet has to remove the broken tooth, after which you will most likely have to manually feed the guinea pig by cutting the food very finely. Guinea pigs are generally not susceptible to serious infectious diseases.

But it’s possible to get sick, and you’ll easily find out that it happened with some symptoms. Seek veterinary help immediately if the guinea pig is lying down with its eyes closed, has difficulty breathing, coughs, drinks a lot of water, has a runny nose, discharge from the eyes, hair falls off when lightly touched, and there are small wounds on the skin. Symptoms of an infectious disease are also tremors, diarrhea, and paralysis.

Fun facts about the guinea pig

Guinea pigs are so named because they make sounds that resemble grunting. They are called sea because they were brought abroad, so they have been known since ancient times. But in addition to grunting, guinea pigs can make many other sounds. When a guinea pig is happy, it can make a noise similar to a cat purring.

Pregnant guinea pigs make sounds that resemble birds singing. Usually women do this in the absence of men. The chirping of females is heard only at night and lasts from 2 to 10 minutes. Males make growling sounds during the mating season. You need to know that they are very fertile animals, so you need to be careful what animals you put in your cage if your goal is not to raise guinea pigs.

An interesting fact is that sometimes guinea pig feed with my own excrement. This is an atavistic custom that modern guinea pigs inherited from their ancient ancestors. In this way, guinea pigs enrich their body with vitamins K and B. The reason is that these vitamins are only absorbed by the guinea pig’s body when they pass through the digestive system twice.

Guinea pigs are one of the most used animals for all kinds of laboratory experiments. An interesting fact is that if you hold the guinea pig close to your head, it may be trying to bite a few hairs.

Disadvantages of the guinea pig

Wild guinea pigs spread a range of diseases, some of which are dangerous to humans. Salmonellosis is among the most common infectious diseases transmitted by guinea pigs. It can sometimes be spread through domestic guinea pigswhich, however, is extremely rare.

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