Getting a New Guinea Pig?

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Getting a New Guinea Pig?

Indoors or outdoors? Bedding, food bowls and water bottles Grooming Toys Settling in your guinea pig We have a great guide to help you make bringing your guinea pig home stress free and smooth with some handy tips for you to help settle your guinea pig in to their new life happily.  Our check list below will ensure that you have everything for your new guinea pigs arrival. Check List Guinea pig carrier Guinea pig hutch Hutch huggers and snugglers Guinea pig run Bedding Guinea pig hygiene products Grooming brushes Water bottle Feeding bowl Food Toys View our guinea pig Products section for our wide range of guinea pig hutches, runs and accessories BackTo Top Indoors or Outdoors? Indoor Guinea Pigs Guinea pigs need to be brought indoors in cold winters and keeping in an indoor only guinea pig as a pet is becoming more and more popular.  If you are planning to keep your guinea pig indoors you will need to guinea pig proof your home! Guinea pigs like to chew so keep all trailing electrical cables out of reach Breakable ornaments should be moved well out of the way Move all house plants up a level as some of them can be poisonous if eaten Place a guard round an open fire There are indoor plastic cages available for guinea pigs that are kept inside but your guinea pig will need a box or igloo that they can hide in within the cage.   The cage should be in a quiet, draught free spot and there are different types of bedding available that are suited to indoor life.    The cage should also be away from direct sources of heat such as radiators and sunny windows. A room temperature of 17 - 20°C is ideal. Your guinea pig will still need outdoor exercise and the freedom to run about in the garden.  Make sure that your garden is secure and that your guinea pig has a safe place to hide if they become scared – a cardboard box or activity tunnel would be ideal. View our guinea pig In Winter advice to learn more View our guinea pig Products section for our range of guinea pig cages, hutches, runs, bedding, litter and hygiene products Outdoor Guinea Pigs Guinea pigs dont enjoy being cooped up all day in very small hutches and quickly become depressed and unhappy if left alone.  The bigger the guinea pig hutch the better!   The hutch should have two separate compartments - a light and spacious day area and a sleeping compartment that is enclosed and sheltered for your guinea pig to sleep in.   The hutch should be raised off the ground, be secure enough to protect against predators, water proof and well built.   You should also have a waterproof cover for your hutch to protect your guinea pig from driving wind and rain – these are called Huggers and Snugglers and fit over your hutch. View our guinea pig Products section for our range of guinea pig cages, hutches, runs, bedding, huggers, snugglers and hygiene products Visit our guinea pig In Winter section to learn more about protecting your guinea pig from the weather Guinea Pig Hygiene Always use cleansing products that are safe for guinea pigs as disinfectants for the home can be toxic and clean your guinea pigs water bottle regularly as bacteria and green algae can build up in a short space of time. View our guinea pig Products section for a large choice of guinea pig accessories and hygiene products Guinea Pig Run Your guinea pig will need lots of exercise! A large, secure run is great for letting your guinea pig roam freely in safety.   The run should have an area that is covered to provide shade on hot days.    Be careful not to place your run in an area of the garden where pesticides, weed killers or lawn treatments have been applied as your guinea pig could become fatally ill from grazing on grass or plants treated with these chemicals. View our guinea pig Products section for a large choice of guinea pig hutches and runs. BackTo Top Bedding, food bowls and water bottles Bedding Guinea pigs need lots of clean and dry bedding and there are several varieties available from wood shavings and recycled paper to hay (which guinea pigs love to eat). Bedding should be cleaned when soiled and completely replaced at least once a week.   Your guinea pig will chew their bedding so it is important that you only use safe varieties that are not toxic.   Guinea pigs like to curl up in a cosy nest so put extra bedding in their sleeping compartments – hay is ideal. Food Bowl Heavy ceramic bowls are great for your guinea pigs dry food as their high sides keep the food clean and they are solid enough not to get thrown around or knocked about. Water Bottle Most guinea pigs prefer to drink from water bowls but these can be spilt over and contaminated by food or droppings.  Water bottles are perfect for keeping your guinea pigs drinking water clean and in regular supply.  Water should be changed daily and there are water bottle covers that prevent the water from becoming frozen in cold weather. View our guinea pig Products section for our wide selection of guinea pig bedding and feeding accessories Visit our guinea pig Feeding advice to learn more BackTo Top Grooming Long haired guinea pigs such as Peruvians and Shelties need to be groomed daily but even if your guinea pig is short haired they will benefit from gentle grooming to keep their coats clean.  A small brush, finger brush or fine toothed comb is perfect for grooming. Grooming also helps you bond with your guinea pig and build a good relationship between you. View our guinea pig Products section for our range of guinea pig grooming brushes, deodorising shampoos and flystrike protectors Visit our guinea pig Health advice to learn more about flystrike BackTo Top Toys Guinea pigs are inquisitive and love to play. They can get very bored when you are not around to play with them, so it is important that your guinea pig has toys to keep them busy and full of life.  There are plenty of toys available for guinea pigs to have fun with - ranging from chew toys that help keep their teeth in good condition, wooden toys, treat balls, kongs, boredom breakers, wooden boxes and tunnels. View our guinea pig Products section for our large range of guinea pig toys and boredom breakers Visit our guinea pig Playtime advice to learn more. BackTo Top Settling in your guinea pig Once you have arrived home with your new guinea pig place them straight into their new home and leave them quietly to settle in.  Travelling is very stressful and your guinea pig will need some time to themselves to recover. Leave your guinea pig in their new home for 12 – 24 hours to give them time to become accustomed to their new living space and accept it as their own home. When you let your guinea pig out of the hutch sit or lie quietly on the floor nearby.  Guinea pigs are quite nervous and startle easily.  Staying at their level is less intimidating than standing over them!  Guinea pigs are also very talkative so talk to your new pet softly.  Your guinea pig is a curious creature and will come over to check you out.  Try to avoid touching them at first, just let your guinea pig get used to your smell and presence.   Once your guinea pig is familiar with your presence you can offer them your hand to sniff.  As your guinea pig gains confidence you can begin to stroke them. You can encourage this by stroking your guinea pig when they are eating and by offering food in your hand. Guinea pigs seem to like being stroked on the top of their heads or their hind quarters.  Once they are used to you they will enjoy being cuddled on your lap.   Guinea pigs love to be handled once they have overcome their initial nerves.  When you pick your guinea pig up use both hands, place your thumb across their shoulders with your fingers wrapped gently around the ribs; place your other hand beneath the hindquarters for support. BackTo Top