Adopt a Guinea Pig Month

Jerry WalchStarred Page By Jerry Walch, 14th Mar 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/2ieref0w/
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Pets>Rodents

Have you ever considered adopting a Guinea Pig as a pet? Well, if you haven’t, now’s the perfect time to consider adopting one because March is Adopt a Guinea Pig month. I haven’t had Guinea Pigs for more than half a century, but I raised them as pets when I was just knee-high to a grasshopper and I can testify to their affectionate nature.

An Ideal First Pet

If you are an apartment dweller where your lease forbids a dog or cat as a companion for you, a guinea pig may be the ideal pet for you, they are affectionate, easy to care for, and won’t get you in trouble with your landlord or neighbors. They also make ideal first pets for young children because they teach the child, with the help of an adult, what it means to care for a pet. They make ideal pets for young children because, as a rule, they aren’t biters or scratchers. A word of caution is in order here, don’t rush out to the shelter, and adopt a guinea pig on a whim because March is Adopt a Guinea Pig Month because you will be entering a long-term commitment to caring for your adopted companion, the average guinea pig lives for 6 years or more.

What you need for your New Guinea pig

  • The first thing that you need to get before bringing your adopted companion home is a roomy cage. Guinea Pigs are messy creatures in that they have a propensity to kick their food and bedding out of their cage and onto your beautiful carpeting or shiny, hardwood floors; so many people opt for enclosures with solid glass side. The problem with such enclosures is that they restrict airflow through them and ammonia and other odors will build up in them unless you keep them impeccably clean.
  • The second thing that you will need is bedding to put in his or her cage or enclosure, both pine wood chips and shredded newspaper works well as bedding. The thing you must keep in mind when choosing between pine wood chips and newspaper is that Guinea Pigs use these materials as a bathroom as well as a soft place to sleep and, wood chips seem to work more efficiently as both.
  • The third thing is that you must have a block of untreated wood to place in the enclosure along with the bedding; the wood block serves two purposes, first it satisfies a Guinea pig’s natural desire to gnaw on wood, and, second, it helps wear down a Guinea pig’s teeth which continue to grow throughout its lifetime.
  • In order to keep the bedding materials from becoming soaked, you need to invest in a no drip water bottle made for Guinea Pigs.
  • You need to be able to provide a safe way for your pet to have some time outside its enclosure for both exercise and a change of scenery, large, well-ventilated plastic rolling balls serve well, as long as you keep them away from descending stairs or steps. Another great way to give them needed exercise is to get them a Guinea pig harness and leash, so they can go outdoors for walks with you, Guinea Pigs take to harness and leash like any puppy. Some people create a safe room, an extra room in their house or apartment, for their Guinea Pig, a room where he or she can run freely. Pig proofing a safe room is much like kitty proofing a room, and I will discuss that it detail in a forthcoming article.

Veterinarian Care

Guinea Pigs, unlike cats or dogs don’t require vaccines, but regular health checkups, at least once a year, are still essential for your pet’s wellbeing. Not all veterinarians are comfortable working with Guinea Pigs, so make sure you select one that is knowledgeable about and comfortable with Guinea Pigs.

Guinea Pigs are Social Creatures

Guinea Pigs are very social animals and will need a lot of quality time with their humans, and, if spending a lot of quality time with your pig may be a problem for you, then, perhaps you should adopt two Guinea Pigs so they can keep each other’s company. On the other hand, if you can’t or don’t want to spend a lot of time with your little friend, maybe it would be kinder for the Guinea Pig if you didn’t adopt him but adopted a fish, a tarantula, or some other creature that is satisfied as long as they are fed.

Tags

Adopt, Adopt A Guinea Pig Month, Companion, March, Month, Pet

Meet the author

author avatar Jerry Walch
Jerry Walch is a 71 year old freelance writer for hire living in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He has been writing since the late 1970s, and writes for both the print and online media. He specializes in

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Comments

author avatar Steve Kinsman
14th Mar 2015 (#)

Adopt a Guinea Pig Month? Really? You're kidding. You're not kidding? As my grandmother used to say - what will they think of next?

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author avatar Jerry Walch
15th Mar 2015 (#)

I have no idea of what they will think of next, Steve. It seems like everything and almost everyone is getting their own day, week, or month nowadays. A friend of mine, a vet at one of the local animal rescues, tipped me off to this one.

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author avatar Retired
14th Mar 2015 (#)

I had no idea it was Adopt A Guinea Pig month. They are very sweet animals.

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author avatar Jerry Walch
15th Mar 2015 (#)

Thanks for reading and commenting CoffeeQueen.

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author avatar Carol Roach
15th Mar 2015 (#)

I doubt they would live with me, I had a rabbit and it died, and fish and they died so I am really only good with dogs and cats

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author avatar Jerry Walch
15th Mar 2015 (#)

When I was just knee-high to a grasshopper growing up down on the family farms, I had so many different critters for pets that people might have said I was Ellie May's male counterpart, if you remember Ellie May from The Beverly Hillbillies.

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author avatar M G Singh
15th Mar 2015 (#)

The only pets I like are dogs, but nice post

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author avatar Jerry Walch
15th Mar 2015 (#)

Thanks Madan,

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