how do guinea pigs show affection

How Do Guinea Pigs Show Affection?

One of the wonderful things about guinea pigs is that can they be very affectionate animals.

Of course, just like humans, if they are raised in an affectionate household, they will be affectionate animals.

Some guinea pigs aren’t like this, or take a while to respond to you. But on the whole if you give them affection, mostly they will respond to you in a similar way.

So if you are getting to know your guinea pig, how can you tell if your guinea pig is being affectionate of not?

image wikipedia

Here are 8 ways that guinea pigs can show affection.

1. Nuzzling – sometimes when you are holding them they may look to nuzzle their head against your hands or if you hold it up close, possibly under your neck. Lots of animals do this most notably cats. But guinea pigs are very good nuzzlers too!

2. Purring – if you are holding your guinea pig gently and stroking it, you may hear your guinea pig purr. When they do this they sound like a quiet cat purr or a pigeon (thanks @LauraGrahamLG :)). It is very soothing to hear and it’s a great sign that your guinea pig feels relaxed.

3. Squealing – if your guinea pig is excited at something they may let out a squeal of delight to let you know how happy they are.

Of course do check that they are not squealing in pain but it’s a funny sound to hear but quite delightful at the same time. It also means, I need food now!! 🙂

4. Popcorning – if they are really excited, they may popcorn which is when the leap up in the air. This is a terrific sight to see and is a great sign that they are really pleased about something.

5. Grooming other piggies – Often when piggies live with each other you may see the grooming each other by licking each other or brushing their heads against the others body.

This is a sign of affection towards each other.

6. Licking – talking of licking, if you are holding one and it happens to lick you then this a good sign that your piggie is being affectionate.

If it goes to lick your nose that is apparently even better, but it hasn’t happened to me yet!

7. Chortling – Personally I love this sound. It makes me smile and one of the many many reasons why guinea pigs are just the cutest animals alive!

Sounds a bit like a small chipmonk, but its a realy sound of happiness and contentedness.

8. Kisses – Now this is a real show of affection.

When they don’t gnaw your hand off because they think its food, and stop short of licking it and its not quite a sniff either.

But they put their mouth’s up to your skin and give you a little kiss. Its very cute, and if you get one of these, you are in the piggie’s good books!!

These are some of the ways I’ve seen my guinea pigs be affectionate, I’m sure there are more out there. If you know of any more then let us know in the comments.

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23 thoughts on “How Do Guinea Pigs Show Affection?

    1. It’s not annoyance. My big suck piggy does that all the time when I scratch his butt. Loves it. If they are upset they will get nippy and chatter.

      1. Actually, the vibrating they do, as the mentioned here “chortling” is actually a sign of annoyance.. Your guinea pig does it while you pet his butt? Well, did you know that guinea pigs do not like being touched there? They are prey animals and petting them from behind scares them because they do not know what could happen. Refrain from petting them in any area that makes them do this.

    2. The purring is a sound of annoyance. My guinea pigs hate it if you scratch their butt like that. They also make that sound if they hear a loud noise or if they’re irritated with each other.

    3. Yeah my guinea pigs let out a bleeting noise that u described as chortling when I stroke them in their cage – it means stop it. Otherwise, I would agree with this! One of my guinea pigs loves me so much we just cuddle up together and she leans on me. She gets a little too love struck, though, and ends up licking me all over, including up my nostrils! (Which is so gross but so cute!)

    1. My Penelope kisses a lot! We just went through a time of “snuggling” and she kept kissing my nose, face and hands!! She is such a sweetheart!!

  1. I have a really fat guinea pig. When ever you are sad, he tends to lick your nose and under your eyes. That’s why I love him so much!

    1. Same here. I have two (Hugh and annabelle) and annabelle always licks me on the face when ever I hold her. It is so sweet. While Hugh, only occasionally, but when he does he has a but of a nibble as well as a lick.

  2. My guinea pig recently killed by a rat is the sweetest. She loves licking my eyes and cheeks. Whenever she hears my voice she’d squeal. If there are other people who picks her and knows I’m there she would find away to get to me through her squeals. She was there when my ex left me and helped me moved on but I didn’t saved her. I wish I got home early. I’m still sad.

  3. That purring is actually a sound of annoyance. They don’t like it when you scratch their bums like that. My guinea pigs also do that if they hear a loud noise or are mad at each other.

  4. It is a common (far too common) misconception that chortling and purring are sounds of enjoyment. Chortling and purring are sounds of annoyance. Most guinea pigs don’t like to have their fur rubbed in the wrong direction (what you did to evince a “purr”) and many don’t like their bum rubbed (what you did to evince the “chortle”). Most piggies are too polite to bite, so they give these warnings which are too often misinterpreted as signs of pleasure.

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