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Guinea Pig Facts

Updated on October 27, 2013
An illustration by Emily, of Critter Care, of 6 breeds of guinea pigs
An illustration by Emily, of Critter Care, of 6 breeds of guinea pigs | Source
An illustration by Emily, of Critter Care, of 6 other breeds of guinea pigs
An illustration by Emily, of Critter Care, of 6 other breeds of guinea pigs | Source

Guinea Pig Breeds

The most interesting thing I have learned while researching guinea pigs for the past few years is that there are between 9 and 12 different types of breeds. Some breeds are more often recognized than others, like the American, Peruvian, Silkie, Abyssinian and Hairless. Others like the Teddy, Coronet, Texel, and Alpaca are not always acknowledged. The images to the right show the variations in breeds.

Speaking Guinea Pig

Learning how to translate your piggy's strange noises is definitely something to adjust to. This site provides a great resource for new pig-owners who cannot tell if their guinea pig is excited or scared to death. There's a variety of noises they make, and not all guinea pigs are the same. I do think that these noises are very similar to the ones that Sonic and Tails (my guineas) make.

Living Conditions

Contrary to popular belief, guinea pigs require a lot of space to live in. Even though stores like Petco/Pet Smart/ect. sell 2 square foot cages, piggies cannot live a happy and active life in that size constraint. Since the guinea pig ancestors were foragers, they had lots of room to roam. This is why it is important to supply them with adequate room.

A lot of resources recommend to give your piggy "floor time," meaning time during the day that they can run free in a room in your house. That way you don't need to invest in a massive cage. There is a great resource for measuring the required space for your piggies at Guinea Pig Cages Store. They also provide great information on a healthier alternative to wood-based bedding. This site has really inspired me on building more effective and safe guinea pig cages.

General Health

Guinea Lynx is a very detailed medical reference guide for guinea pig owners, breeders, and rescue workers. It contains detailed information on feeding, common ailments/illnesses, and medications safe for our furry friends.

My Guinea Pigs

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Sonic posing for the camera.Sonic eating some kale.Sonic's ferocious yawn.Tails peeking through some fleece.Tails' beautiful red fur.
Sonic posing for the camera.
Sonic posing for the camera.
Sonic eating some kale.
Sonic eating some kale.
Sonic's ferocious yawn.
Sonic's ferocious yawn.
Tails peeking through some fleece.
Tails peeking through some fleece.
Tails' beautiful red fur.
Tails' beautiful red fur.

Sonic and Tails

Right now I am the proud mother of two very unique guinea pigs: Sonic and Tails.

I got Sonic in September 1st, 2010, and he was only a couple months old. He is very shy, and to this day runs away any time I try to pick him up. It was my first time having a rodent as a pet, so it was really exciting to hear him squeak when I came home from school (I was in my last year of HS then).

Throughout the years, I have spoiled him so much that now he and Tails each have 5-8 square feet to live in and "lap time" daily and "floor time" weekly. I've gotten adjusted to his habits and behavior, and since he is getting older I decided he needed a little brother.

I brought Tails home from the Humane Society August 2nd of this year. Little did I know, this would spark a never-ending competition for my attention at my home. Tails was also a couple months old when I got him, so there is a pretty big age difference in the boys. He, however, has a very different personality. For Sonic to allow us to hold him, we wrap him up in a bath towel. Any petting must be done with the towel as protection. Sonic is really nervous constantly and it takes a lot to get him to the point where he yawns or closes his eyes in your presence.

With Tails though, he is so rambunctious that I need to restrain him from jumping off of my lap or climbing on my shoulder when I'm standing with him! He is always loud and bouncing off the cage walls. He also likes to show his affection by licking me when I hold him or pet him.

The boys unfortunately did not end up getting along, as Tails was a more dominant personality and constantly acted threatening towards Sonic. I made a 3 foot tall "C&C" cage to accommodate their personal space needs. I love having two piggies that are so different from each other though!

Sonic and Tails' Favorite Foods

Any Seeds
Pumpkin Seeds
Dried Fruit
These are the foods that my guinea pigs enjoy :)

What is your favorite guinea pig breed?

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5 out of 5 stars from 4 ratings of Article

© 2013 Megan Rose


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    • profile image

      Stella Diane Kalivas 23 months ago

      I love Guinea Pigs. I like your hub too. I had two Piggies once and I loved them so much. It was so hard when they past away. Your Piggies sounds so sweet. I never knew they eat peanuts either. I will return to read and see more pictures of your Piggies. Thank you so much.

    • Suzanne Day profile image

      Suzanne Day 4 years ago from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

      I like the names of your guinea pigs! I also like the pictures you have included in this hub and your simple explanations of things. I didn't know guinea pigs could eat peanuts, I'll have to try feeding some to mine!

    • Megan R Rose profile image

      Megan Rose 4 years ago

      Thanks so much for the feedback! I like your page too. It's great to find other guinea pig lovers.

    • CampbellLena2013 profile image

      Lena Campbell 4 years ago from Maryland

      This is a cute hub I love it. I love guinea pigs. I myself have a Guinea pig page check it out sometime I;m following you and good luck with your hubs :-)