Do you know the difference between a hamster and a guinea pig? What makes a guinea pig particularly different from a large gerbil? Or a hamster? Do they behave the same……or are they completely different small pet experiences?
The truth is, 1 big difference is that “cavies” (as guinea pigs are called) take naps throughout the day and night, so they are not too sleepy to play when people are awake. If you have ever been kept awake at night by the sound of the gerbil or hamster running on their squeaky wheel, you know that having a non-nocturnal pet can be important.
Over a million people in the United States keep cute little cavies as pets.
That’s a pretty surprising number for a pet that doesn’t get as ton of press! Many families find them to be the perfect companions for themselves or for their children.
The story of guinea pigs is exciting and it explains why they are such popular pets.
Children love to touch and hold and carry their pets like babies. Unlike hamsters and gerbils, cavies are cuddly creatures and easy for small arms to hold.
They have real personalities and will even give you a nuzzle of affection from time to time. (whereas other “similar” pets tend to do their own thing)
Guinea pigs make an excellent choice as a first pet because they don’t need to be potty trained, taken for walks or provided with special temperatures. A small cage with some bedding, newspaper and a steady supply of water and food makes for a happy guinea pig. The low maintenance involved makes them good companions for adults as well.
Guinea Pigs CAN be the perfect small pet for YOUR household!
And unlike snakes, rabbits, birds, dogs or fish, your cavy is going to be easy to handle, quiet, independent and ready to make friends with you.
If you’re too busy to pet or play with your guinea pig, they will not scratch and whine at the door like a dog, demanding your attention.
When the sun comes up, you will not hear them chirping like a bird. Regardless of why you want to own one as a pet, itís a good idea to learn more about their long and fascinating history with human beings.
The history of this unique small pet is educational and helps you and your child understand the best way to take care of the new addition to your family!
(because at the end of the day, like ANY pet… your little “piggy” IS an extension of your family, and a responsibility, albeit a fun and friendly one as well!)