Getting a guinea pig is an important decision. Guinea pigs are not toys they are living, loving little creatures that will be joining your family. They make ideal pets for younger children but they do need a little adult supervision to make sure that they are cared for and treated well. Your little piggy could be with you for up to ten years. A healthy, happy pig can live as long as eleven years but they are easily expected to live for over five years.
You’ll also have to decide how many pigs you’d like to get. Guinea pigs are social little animals and love company. You’ll have to decide if you’re going to breed or not. If you’re going to get mixed genders your going to have to consider separating them as they breed very readily from a very young age. I would recommend when you first start with guinea pigs that you get two pigs of the same gender and as close to the same age as you can. Two boars as the males are called or two sows will get on very well together especially if they are about the same age. They will quickly work out their place in the pig family and settle down as friends.
You will have to consider how you are going to house your pigs but an in-depth discussion on caging is really subject for another article except to say that guinea pigs do not like the cold and would not do well in an outside cage in a cold winter.. You may find a neighbour or friend has spare pigs from a new litter of pups or you may go to a pet supply to buy them. It is wise to look at the condition of their cage and any other pigs that may be there. A sign of a clean cage is a good indication that the pigs have been looked after well. If there are any sickly looking pigs where you are getting the pigs from you should really consider whether you are going to get healthy pigs yourself.
You may like to consider adopting your new pig. Try local animal shelters or organisations. There are many guinea pig rescue centres around these days and they are always worth checking out. These organisations are run by responsible people who love the animals that they are working with and they are also a good source for advice.
As I said at the start buying a pig is an important decision. I hope you think carefully before you get your piggy and when they come and join with your family relax and enjoy them. They really are interesting little creatures.