Interesting facts about Guinea Pigs

Owning any type of pet is a great responsibility, so I encourage more people to change their lives and adopt a pet. They provide unconditional affection and are warm creatures that can hardly wait for you to come back home and fill you with their love.

Guinea Pigs are no exception as they can make great pets for people of all ages, including children. They are not complicated to look after and generally live a few years, depending on the conditions you are willing to offer them.

My fascination for Guinea Pigs started with my own pet when I was a child, and only grew bigger over the years. And, since I couldn’t stick to only the main characteristics of them, I made a list of the top interesting facts about Guinea Pigs.

They love company

As with many other rodents, Guinea Pigs love the company of other fellows of the same kind, so make sure to acquire at least a pair if you want to keep these pets happy and active. Sure, you may be facing an enlarged family anytime soon, but Guinea Pigs are at their best when they have a companion. In fact, the enjoy grooming each other as they are very clean animals.

And, the happier and better they are looking after, the more you will get to enjoy their presence. The average lifespan of a Guinea Pig is between 4 and 7 years, depending on how much time you dedicate to them, and how happy they are with what you provide.

 

Choose the right type for you

There are three main types of Guinea Pigs, depending on their length and fur. The American/ English pigs are the most common type and feature short hair and a smooth coat. They are also the easiest to look after as they don’t require constant combing and grooming.

The second type is the Abyssinian Guinea Pig with a wiry coat that often forms swirls and requires combing. The last type is the Peruvian Guinea Pig with silky, long, and straight hair. These are the most pretentious when it comes to combing and looking after, but you will also have the most fun with them.

You can create countless hairstyles for your beloved Guinea pig, so they will make great companions for those who feel a little lonely.

Origins

Believe it or not, Guinea Pigs have nothing to do with pigs or the country Guinea for that matter. The origins of their name have plenty of theories, none of them fully approved or tested.

One of the theories suggests that the name Guinea was given, in fact, by their market value of one Guinea, a type of English coin that was used for trading in early ages.

 

What you need to know about Mongolian gerbils

 

Having a pet implies a certain degree of responsibility so I can only encourage more people to appeal to this. Apart from the great feeling of looking after another being, you will also be rewarded with unconditional love, regardless of the type of animal you choose as a pet.

Many people consider that only pets like dogs and cats get attached to their owners, but that’s clearly not true. If you show your pet love and trust, it will offer you trust and love in return. It is the same with all rodents, regardless if you choose a regular hamster, a chinchilla, or a gerbil.

And, speaking of, although it may seem tempting, keeping your animal in specific cages for gerbils may not be the best option, especially if you have a small kitchen where they can run free. If you decided to look after such a furry animal, here are some things you should take into account about their breeding and lifestyle.

They are extremely sociable creatures

Creating a bond with your gerbil could prove a bit difficult at the beginning, but once the rodent can trust you, you will receive in return love and devotion. Unlike other rodents that tend to be lonelier and night creatures, gerbils are very sociable and curious. Thus, they require external stimuli to trigger curiosity and help them improve their knowledge about the surrounding environment.

Since they are social creatures, the best way to keep your gerbil happy is to buy at least one other individual to share a cage. The more the merrier but don’t forget about keeping the environment interesting as well.

These creatures are also very attached to their offspring, so it shouldn’t come as any surprise that the children often choose to learn all their survival skills from their parents, by constantly being by their side until they’re mature enough to go on their own.

They are very clean animals

Unlike other pets, having a gerbil won’t require too much effort on your behalf. In fact, these pets are used to warm and dry climates, so they adjusted their body heat and internal needs to don’t drink too much water, and, so, not urinate that often. As a result, their cages remain clean for a prolonged period of time, while the air remains fresh. If you want to keep this fresh scent even longer, make sure to choose the right type of bedding.

I strongly suggest opting for cellulose bedding and not the regular wood dust because this contains essential oils that are harmful to Mongolian gerbils. You can also buy scented bedding made from the same cellulose if you don’t feel like freshening up the cage too often.