Tag Archives: purring

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.

guinea pigs purr

Why do Guinea Pigs Purr?

You may have had a situation where you are holding a guinea pig and they are laid out on you and suddenly they begin to purr.

A bit weird don’t you think, surely only cats purr, not guinea pigs right??

Nope, guinea pigs purr too.

Actually, it’s a great sign.

Why do guinea pigs purr?

It’s a sign that your guinea pig is feeling relaxed and calm.

It’s a sign that they are at peace and are comfortable in their surroundings.

They may even close their eyes which is probably the ultimate sign that a guinea pig feels at ease in the environment.

When guinea pigs are purring it is a great sign and you should be pleased that they feel so at ease as they are naturally very cautious creatures and quite jumpy most of the time.

This is because they are always on their guard against predators being prey animals that they are.

So if your guinea pig begins to purr whilst you are holding it, be pleased that it feels comfortable in its surroundings.

It is a sign that you are doing the right things with regards to looking after your guinea pig.

the sounds of guinea pigs

The Sounds of Guinea Pigs: What Do They Mean?

One of wonderful, and not to mention interesting things that owners can appreciate when they have a cavy as a pet, is learning the sounds of guinea pigs and what they mean.

the sounds of guinea pigsGuinea pigs have a range of squeaks, squeals, grunts, purrs, and coos which enable them to express themselves. As you get to know more about your guinea pig, you become more used to the sounds of guinea pigs and what they mean.

image: flickr phillie casablanca

The sounds of guinea pigs

High pitched squeals from pups

A young guinea pig pup will give out squeaks that are high-pitched that let the mother know that they want attention from her.


When adult cavies are together, male and females may coo to each other which is a sign of affection.

Chattering of teeth

When adult males are together and there is a chattering of teeth, this means that there is a matter of hierarchy being discussed. It is a sign there is anger between the two. Something to bear in mind is that you shouldn’t put your hand in the cage when you hear chattering of teeth as you may get your hand bitten. If you feel you have to intervene, make sure you wear some protective gloves on your hands.


If a guinea pig is squealing when being handled then this means it is not being handled rightly, and it is being hurt in the process.


This is a shorter squeal but instead of a cry for help it is more of an excited anticipation often given out when they hear the owner coming or when they hear the rustling of a treat. This is often called wheaking as well.


This can be heard when the guinea pig is relaxed and enjoying itself. It is often heard when the owner is cuddling the guiena pig and showing affection. Guinea pig’s love being shown affection and will respond in kind with this purring sound, much like a cat.


Guinea pigs can often be heard snoring. However often it is a sign that the guinea pig may be suffering from an illness and so you should check with a vet as to the health of your guinea pig.


It sounds like a deep purr and is a sign that the guinea pig is angry about something.

Total silence

This means that your guinea pig has been paralyzed with fear if you can hear no sounds from your guinea pig. This is a serious cause for concern if this occurs.


It is a strange feet of nature to hear a guinea pig sing, in fact of all the sounds of guinea pigs, this one is the weirdest!

It is said to be caused by the teeth rubbing together in a way that they don’t usually do.

During this unusual action, they are seen moving their jaws from side to side rather than the usual up and down movements.

When a guinea pig sings it is meant as a big warning to the other guinea pigs in the herd to run and hide.

If you have a guinea pig who is singing, it is worth removing the guinea pig from the pack until they stop singing.