Deciding to get a guinea pig for the first time is an exciting thing.
There are many great things about owning a guinea pig which is why they are one of the most popular pets in the world today and are increasing in popularity.
Their cuteness and amiability are over-riding factors in why so many decide to take on the care of a guinea pig as a pet, not to mention how they are economical, easy to care for and very good for your well being.
Here we look at one of the most important questions to consider when getting a new piggie.
How Many Guinea Pigs Should I Get?
An important question that needs answering before getting a guinea pig is ‘how many should I get?’
The reason is this;
Guinea pigs are very sociable animals and are naturally used to living with one another so if you can help it, it is not good for the guinea pig to be kept apart from others.
There are always exceptions to this, however, as some do prefer their own company. If you are buying two together for the first time, then assuming they have been purchased at the same time, the cavies will have no trouble settling down.
It is always best to keep cavies of the same sex together unless you want to breed them. You will find that two of the same sex will live together just fine.
A good mix is to have one older and one younger guinea pig together of the same sex.
Two older guinea pigs cohabiting can often be difficult. If you do have a male and a female together, then you may want to get the male neutered by a vet.
Usually, cavies do prefer to share a cage but you could give them a separate place to bolt to, such as a box each. The cage does need to be of a good size though, to accommodate them both.
If you are going to have male guinea pigs together do be aware of these things;
– Some get on well but others may not get on so good.
– When first introduced there may be some fighting between them and one may attempt to mount the other. This is a show of dominance.
– If they do attack each other you should consider separating them.
– You shouldn’t have this problem if you have two males that have been raised together and haven’t encountered females.
If you are going to have a male and female guinea pig together then be aware of these things;
– The male will attempt to mount the female as soon as possible.
– If the female is not in season, she will reject his advances, however if she is in season she will happily accept him.
– If you have an older neutered male then don’t put him immediately with the female after he has been neutered. Allow some time to pass by so any active sperm will die off in the male before letting share the same cage.
If you are going to have two females together then be aware of the these things;
– Two females will usually get on very well together.
– Do provide a place for them to get away from each other if there is squabbling.