Purchasing a suitable, well-equipped cage is one of the most important considerations before purchasing guinea pigs. Below we will tell you what to pay attention to. We will show you what a good guinea pig cage is and what dimensions it should have. We will also tell you how much a large cavia cage costs.
For more advice and information, also check out the guinea pig articles here.
Guinea pig cage – the most important parameters
Basic requirements of guinea pigs
The guinea pig is a medium-sized rodent that has some basic breeding requirements. When choosing a cage, remember that the guinea pig likes to have good feet on the ground. He is not a tiny athlete like hamsters and will not be eager to climb the reels or climb the floor of the cage.
The guinea pig cage should be large enough, but not necessarily tall. In the case of these pets, we can opt out of multi-level products. A two-story cage is better for hamsters or other more agile rodents. The same applies to tunnels, swings or other toys that use the agility of a rodent.
Choosing a guinea pig cage is not particularly complicated. It will be best to invest in products with accessories. There must be a suitable feeding place and accessories in the cage to allow drinking of clean, fresh water. In the case of domestic coffee beans, cages with a house of a suitable size are also great. It is an essential cage accessory that allows the guinea pig to find a safe and quiet shelter.
Minimum dimensions of the guinea pig cage
Each guinea pig requires a sufficiently large space to allow it to move freely. A large cage is the basis for the successful breeding of these creatures. Not every novice breeder knows that a too cramped room for pigs can make an animal apathetic. Therefore, a suitable large cage, adapted to the size and number of rodents, is recommended.
A sufficiently large guinea pig cage must be selected according to the number of pets. The guinea pig is a herd rodent that does best in the company of at least one representative of its species. Most pigs are kept in pairs and large herds are kept in separate cages.
It is assumed that the minimum dimensions of the base of the cage for one animal are 50 x 80 cm. The more pigs we keep, the larger the cage should be. An interesting solution turns out to be a two-story cage with two litter boxes. The animals then live on two levels and cannot move between the top and the bottom. This type of multi-storey cage is suitable for breeding a larger number of individuals, without the need to use a very large space in our room. If you’re looking for more inspiration, check out too this article about accessories for the guinea pig.
When discussing the dimensions of the cage, it is also worth mentioning the more advanced converters. There are different breeds of domestic coffee, and each breed may be slightly different in size. Therefore, in experienced breedings, a pet size-to-cage conversion ratio is used. Thus, the minimum cage size for a caviar weighing 200-450 grams is estimated at 1800 cm2 (counted at the base of the cage). Larger breeds of domestic coffee require more living space. Therefore, it is assumed that rodents weighing more than 450 grams should live in a cage with a minimum size of 2,500 cm2.
Recommended products for guinea pigs
The above minimum cage dimensions are for one animal only. Each subsequent guinea Pig means an increase in the minimum dimensions. For the smallest specimens, add at least 200-250 cm2 base area of the cage. The second guinea Pig, weighing about 450 grams, increases the minimum dimensions by an additional 500 cm2. The largest breeds, on the other hand, require an increase of 900 cm2 for each additional individual.
All breeds of domestic coffee beans are reluctant to climb and therefore no need for an increased cage height. A minimum size of 23 centimeters is enough, which will allow you to comfortably remove your pet.
Types of cages for guinea pigs
A cage with metal bars, or maybe an aquarium?
The guinea pig living in the cage must be provided with proper hygienic conditions. A plastic litter box turns out to be a great help here, from which we can easily remove impurities and the used substrate. Regular aquarium maintenance is certainly more time consuming.
The superiority of the cage is also due to the very good air circulation. Most guinea pigs produce large amounts of ammonia which requires adequate ventilation. The metal bars of our cage make the air circulation inside it very efficient.
The built-up walls of the aquarium do not allow sufficient air rotation and should not be used in the breeding of guinea pigs. The aquarium also has very smooth walls, which causes problems with the equipment. Most of the accessories (e.g. drinkers or feeders) are mounted on rods, and their use in an aquarium would be very difficult.
Plastic openwork cage
Plastic cages are quite cheap, but they are not very popular after all. All thanks to dubious aesthetic values, as well as relatively low durability. A plastic guinea pig cage will do the job, but it may discolor over time. Moreover, large cages are not as resistant to mechanical damage as a bar cage.
Choosing a home plastic cage will be a good solution for people who are interested in cheap equipment. It is worth choosing the right dimensions of the cage and ensuring good ventilation. Openwork, plastic walls cannot be covered too much, as it will prevent proper air rotation.
The most popular pig bar cage
By far the most popular solution is a low guinea pig cage, equipped with one plastic litter box and rod walls. The ideal height of the pig cage should not be less than 23 cm, the size of the base should be selected according to the size and number of animals.
Metal rods turn out to be resistant to damage, and what’s more, they enable optimal air circulation. A large cage with accessories will be a solution for many years to come, and well-secured bars will make it possible to take it outside as well. Before buying, however, make sure that the bars are not seated too rarely. Good quality cages have a bar spacing of 2.5 cm.
The only downside to the metal bar cage is the slightly higher purchase price. Plastic pig cages can sometimes be up to half the price (when comparing similar dimensions). Nevertheless, it is worth noting that the bar cage is usually available with better build quality equipment.
Guinea pig cage price
You will find new and used cages in online advertisements. The second option allows you to buy good-quality products cheaply. The price for used guinea pig cages starts from several dozen zlotys. It is worth emphasizing that most of the used cages are sold complete with accessories.
Cheap, new cages will also cost from several dozen zlotys upwards. The cheapest products available in stores are made of plastic, which limits their lifetime. The cage also has some or no equipment. The cheapest frames usually get poor reviews from customers. All due to the poor quality of workmanship and susceptibility to damage.
A large, well-equipped bar cage often turns out to be the largest expense. The price in pet stores usually starts at PLN 100 and up. Larger dimensions and good equipment in the cage may increase the purchase price to over PLN 200-400. The upper limit is difficult to estimate, high-quality two-story cages can cost even more than PLN 500 with the equipment.
If you want to get to know the breed of domestic coffee or read how to make a cage for a rabbit or a pig, see other articles on our website. You will find information on nutrition, requirements, breeds and care for your domestic pigs in separate articles.