Guinea Pig Sounds
What is your guinea pig trying to tell you?
Learn the language of your guinea pig!
First of all, we are talking here about guinea pigs as pets, rodents, animals - human guinea pigs as test subjects probably have somewhat different and more emphatic vocabulary, and are not part of the subject of this article.
Yeah, it's a joke.
Anyway. Wheeking, rumbling, purring, teeth chattering, squealing - what do all those sounds mean? Is you pet enjoying your company or is it hates your guts and wants you to be gone? Is it in some sort of a danger or is it lying on the beach enjoying the view of some nude sows?
One of the basic things a guinea pig owner must learn is the meaning of these sounds. Although common sense will eventually start to kick in in most of the "normal" human caretakers, we do have a reference sounds to shorten the learning curve and help your pet to survive longer. So, lets start.
When you pet is generally excited, anticipating food, or you are just walking by and it is calling to your attention, then wheeking (also called squealing or whistling) will be heard. It is one of the most common sounds. The interesting part of this sound is that it could frequently be heard when you are rustling with plastic bags (food source) or opening the refrigerator. Smart little buggers.
Rumbling sounds like purring, but it is deeper and the animal is vibrating at the same time. Rumbling could mean that you are touching your pet at the wrong spots (usually the bum or the belly), or that it is trying to dominate the group.
When you are finally doing it right, you might hear bubbling and purring. When given food, crawling around, grooming or being petted, or when the guinea pig is enjoying life in general, it will purrrrrr.
When you are doing it wrong again, your pet could whine as it is not happy at all. This sound could also be heard in pursuit situations.
By the means of teeth chattering your pet is strongly suggesting you that you should back of and stay away :), as your pet is currently agitated and angry. Don't worry, it will cool off eventually.
There is one peculiar sound which we named fight-or-flight. I won't go into details describing it, but if you ever got bitten by a guinea pig, you probably heard it :) You should check the link to our page where you can actually hear all these sounds without the fear that some big, mean guinea pig is going to harm you.
SOS. When you hear something like squealing or shrieking, you should check you pet immediately as it could be in immediate danger and is calling for help.
Chirping is probably least common and understood guinea pig sound. There are some guesses, but it seems nobody has a definite clue what this sound should mean to someone. As it sounds like a bird song, it probably simply means that your guinea pig is messing with you.
You can actually hear all these sounds at the Guinea Pig Manual.