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Guinea Pig

Cute Guinea Pig The guinea pig or domestic guinea pig (Cavia porcellus), is a species of rodent belonging to the family Caviidae and the genus Cavia.
Despite their common name, guinea pigs are not native to Guinea, nor are they closely biologically related to pigs, and the origin of the name is still unclear.
They originated in the Andes of South America.
They are built somewhat like pigs, with large heads relative to their bodies, stout necks, and rounded rumps with no tail of any consequence; some of the sounds they emit are very similar to those made by pigs, and they spend a large amount of time eating.
Guinea pigs are large for rodents; the common pet breeds weigh between 700 and 1,200 g (1.5 and 2.6 lb) when full grown and measure between 20 and 25 cm (8 and 10 in) in length.
Guinea pigs can learn complex paths to food, and can accurately remember a learned path for months. Their strongest problem-solving strategy is motion. While guinea pigs can jump small obstacles, most of them are poor climbers, and are not particularly agile.
When happily excited, guinea pigs may repeatedly perform little hops in the air (known as "popcorning").
They are also good swimmers.
They live an average of four to five years, but may live as long as eight.

What do you need to take care of a guinea pig?

Food
The guinea pig's natural diet is grass. Their molars are particularly suited for grinding plant matter and grow continuously throughout their life. Guinea pigs benefit from a diet of fresh grass hay, such as timothy hay, in addition to food pellets which are often based on timothy hay. Alfalfa hay is also a popular food choice and most guinea pigs will eat large amounts of alfalfa when offered it. Feed him about 1/8 cup of guinea pig food per day.

Water and food bowls
You will need to provide a food dish and a water bottle.

Cage
The cages sold in many stores are often not big enough for your pet.
Look for a cage that is a minimum of 7.5 square feet. This will seem large for a young guinea pig, but it's the right size to accommodate an adult.
If you are getting two guinea pigs, get a cage that is at least 10.5 square feet to accommodate both of them.
Get a tray if the cage has a wire bottom.

Cage liners
Do not buy pine or cedar shavings because these are toxic for guinea pigs.
Timothy hay, which is part of the guinea pig diet, is the best form of bedding.

Grooming
Grooming of guinea pigs is primarily accomplished using combs or brushes. Shorthair breeds are typically brushed weekly, while longhair breeds may require daily grooming.

If handled correctly early in life, guinea pigs become amenable to being picked up and carried, and seldom bite or scratch.
They are timid explorers and often hesitate to attempt an escape from their cage even when an opportunity presents itself.


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