Did you know that July 16th is Guinea Pig Appreciation Day? These little balls of fur make adorable pets, and definitely deserve to be appreciated. Read on as a Saskatoon, Saskatchewan vet offers some tips on how to pamper your pint-sized pal on his special day.
Guinea pigs are super playful, and love toys. Offer your miniature furball some new playthings. You don’t have to spend a fortune on your pet’s things. Many household items—particularly wood, wicker, and cardboard items—can make wonderful toys. Look online for specific ideas. Just be sure to avoid items with small parts, sharp edges, or dangling threads, as well as anything painted or dyed.
Like any other pet, Guinea pigs love treats. You can give the little guy fresh veggies, such as celery and cucumber. Small amounts of fruit, such as apple, banana, melon, grapes, and kiwis are fine too. Don’t overboard with fruits, though: they are very high in sugar, and can be quite acidic. Guinea pigs can enjoy certain herbs, including basil, caraway, chamomile, and lavender. Rose hips are an excellent treat, and are rich in Vitamin C, which is essential to cavies. Certain branches, such as pear, hazelnut, and currant, are also safe, as long as they have been properly cleaned. Just be sure to always research new foods before offering them to your tiny furball. Ask your vet for specific nutritional advice, including safe and unsafe foods, suitable treats, serving sizes, and feeding frequency of specific foods.
Guinea pigs spend lots of time in their cages, and often love having free time. Take your little buddy out for a fun play session. Fill a bag with hay, and put a few treats beneath the hay. Then, let your furball root and dig. Another option is to set out several tunnels for your pet, and let him run and explore.
Spend some quality time with your cavy: pet him, play with him, and let him snuggle up with you if he wants. Many Guinea pigs love snoozing on their owners’ laps! If your furry friend is shy, offer him lots of food and toys to make him more comfortable. Your tiny friend may also enjoy a massage!
Please reach out to us, your local Saskatoon, Saskatchewan pet hospital, with any questions about Guinea pig care. We are always here to help!