The guinea pig is a very popular rodent. Its correct name is guinea pig and it comes from South America. On that continent it is grown not for company, but for consumption and laboratory purposes. What do breeds like: texel, rex, merino, baldwin, coronet, rosette, sheltie and himalayan pigs look like? What is the feeding of domestic guinea pig beans? What should the price of a guinea pig be? Read on.
For more advice and information, also check out the guinea pig breeds articles here.
Varieties of domestic guinea pig – what does the Himalayan pig look like?
Domestic guinea pig breeds differ in hair length and the structure of the hair itself. The varieties of guinea pig can be divided into:
- short-haired – Abyssinian guinea pig (rosette), teddy, rex, smoothhaired (American), amercian crested, english crested.
- hairless – skinny guinea pig, baldwin.
- long hair (straight hair) – Peruvian (Peruvian) guinea pig, angora, coronet, sheltie.
- long hair (curly hair) – texel guinea pig, merino, alpaca, lunkarya.
There are different colors of the guinea pig. This rodent can have one-color, two-color and tricolor hair. Acceptable colors are: black, beige, cream, red, white, saffron, gold, stale blue, sable, buff. The Himalayan pig is one of the possible meanings that got its name – the guinea pig beans have white fur, and the area around the nose, ears, paws and mouth are darkened. Other meanings are e.g. agouti, dalmatian, roan, dutch.
Domestic Peruvian guinea pig has a thick coat that surrounds it completely. She has a characteristic part, a rosette on her head, and her fringe falls over her eyes. Smooth-haired guinea pig can take care of its fur by itself, and sheltie is its long-haired counterpart, but it needs systematic care. Each long-haired guinea pig with straight hair should be combed with a soft brush, and with curly hair, gently combed with the fingers.
Abyssinian guinea pig has rosettes (at least 8) on its body that make it look disheveled. Angora is its long-haired counterpart, but its rosettes are inconspicuous. The varieties rex (stiff fur) and texel (soft hair) are devoid of rosettes. The short-haired guinea pig does not need brushing, but its coat should be checked for parasites and skin allergies. Hairless domestic guinea pig beans need to be bathed once a week and rubbed with an olive on the skin. Or maybe you will also be interested this article about guinea pig rosette?
Recommended products for guinea pigs
Guinea pig nutrition and diseases
The guinea pig is herbivorous. Every day she should get dry food for guinea pigs (the one for rabbits is not suitable for them) and fresh hay. The diet should be varied with vegetables, e.g. carrots, peppers, spinach, parsley, radish, broccoli, beets. It is advisable to serve guinea pig with fruit, e.g. apples or bananas, from time to time. The guinea pig also eats grass and herbs (including dill, basil).
Beans are poisonous to the guinea pig, but onions, milk, cabbage and potatoes are also harmful. When choosing food for guinea pig, pay attention to the description and composition. Vitamin C should be there. The guinea pig’s body does not produce it, and its deficiency can lead to various diseases. It is also important that the guinea pig has something to rub your teeth on. Otherwise, the teeth will grow to such an extent that the guinea pig will be unable to eat. Any infections and bacteria can cause your teeth to fall out.
This rodent usually lives 6-8 years, but around 5-6 years of age health problems begin. In addition to the teeth, the guinea pig can have skin problems. The reasons may be various: nutritional mistakes, too many herds, stress. Sometimes it is loneliness too. The guinea pig is a herd animal, so it’s best to buy two pigs from the same place at once. These rodents become attached to each other and tolerate new individuals poorly. Home cavia is also at risk of: pasteurellosis, tuberculosis, salmonellosis, lichen and scabies.
Himalayan pig – what is the price of a guinea pig?
The price for a house guinea pig varies. In a pet store, you can find an offer ranging from PLN 20-80, sometimes PLN 100. In breeding, the amount is slightly higher, around PLN 100-300. While this is a more expensive option, it’s worth considering. When you buy a guinea pig from a farm, you can be sure that it is not accidentally reproduced by closely related individuals, as is often the case in a pet store. You also get a pedigree of a rodent and can go with it to the exhibition.
You can find offers from breeding on Facebook (fanpage) or advertising portals (e.g. olx.pl, zoomia.pl). The description of the advertisement should include information, for example, whether it is a domestic animal, what is the date of birth of the rodent and what is its nature. The photos are eye catching, but don’t buy a pet from them. Before making your final decision, visit a farm and take a close look at the animals’ living conditions. Are they clean? Are there too many of them in one cage? Do they have water? Do they look healthy? Are they aggressive? Pictures may not show this.
Remember to take care of your little friend. If you notice symptoms of the disease (e.g. diarrhea, lethargy, vomiting, severe itching, weight loss, shortness of breath, avoiding contact with humans), do not hesitate and go to the veterinary clinic with the rodent.