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What Can Guinea Pigs Eat?

Updated on February 11, 2016
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Lesley is an artist and a guinea pig care guide author. You can see her artwork and downloadable guide at When Guinea Pigs Fly on Etsy!

What to Feed Your Guinea Pig

Millie the guinea pig. So super cute!
Millie the guinea pig. So super cute!

You may be thinking of adopting a guinea pig and want to know what they can eat, or perhaps you already have a guinea pig and are wondering if a certain food is okay to feed them.

We will discuss:

  • What guinea pigs can eat.
  • Which foods can make them sick.
  • Guinea pig favorites that may surprise you.
  • Safe food for picky eaters.
  • What to do if you worry you've fed your pet the wrong thing.

These suggestions for different foods, kibble, hay are based on my own experiences!

Fruits and Vegetables

Guinea pigs love fruits and vegetables, which is great because fruits and vegetables are an important part of their diet and keep them happy and healthy!

Different guinea pigs have different preferences, but generally, they love to sample a variety of different fruits and veggies. Carrots, peppers, and dark lettuces are a surefire hit with my guinea pigs. If you encounter a picky eater who won't eat fresh produce, ask your veterinarian about different types of Vitamin C-fortified pellets to make sure your little friend gets the right nourishment.

Here is a list of just some of the many fruits and vegetables that guinea pigs eat and that give them the best nutritional benefits. Fruits are high in sugar, so it's best to view them more as treats. Also avoid any sudden major changes in your pet's diet until you know how their tummy reacts to things.

  • Red, green, or yellow pepper Red has the highest Vitamin C concentration.
  • Carrots Both the roots and green tops are perfectly safe to eat.
  • Apples Just make sure they don't have any seeds.
  • Oranges
  • Leafy greens These include red lettuce, Romaine, and Boston lettuce. Offer leafy vegetables in moderation to avoid diarrhea. Feed spinach a bit sparingly to avoid potential kidney problems.
  • Cucumbers
  • Broccoli Offer in moderation since it can cause gas pain.
  • Green beans
  • Grapes
  • Bananas
  • Dandelion greens
  • Cherry tomatoes Offer in moderation.
  • Cilantro
  • Parsley Guinea pigs love either curly or flat parley and it smells delicious when you're tearing sprigs off the bunch!

Never Feed These Foods to Your Guinea Pig

While guinea pigs do enjoy a variety of flavors and types of fruits and vegetables, there are some that you shouldn't offer. They are not all poisonous, but should be avoided because they're either low in nutrients or produce gas and other tummy troubles. A few, however, are very poisonous to your piggie.

As with the good foods list, this list is also not comprehensive, so if you're unsure, wait until you've either talked to a vet or asked someone who might know (like me!) before feeding your piggie.

Do Not Feed:

  • Iceberg lettuce It won't kill your guinea pig if you give him or her a little piece, but it has virtually no nutritional value, and is quite fibrous and watery. It's been known to give guinea pigs diarrhea. With the great selection of other more leafy, dark lettuces available, just avoid this one and go with one of the others.
  • Any type of cabbage Like iceberg lettuce, a small piece is not likely to severely harm or kill your guinea pig, but it's very gassy and not good for their little systems. Stay away from it if you can.
  • Cauliflower Also very gas-producing. Again, not poisonous.
  • Potato peelings Toxins can exist in potato skins, particularly if they've begun to turn green, and can be poisonous.
  • Raw beans This doesn't mean green beans. It means things like raw, hard kidney beans, split peas, pinto beans, etc.
  • Shelled nuts or seeds Particularly things like sunflower seeds or 'bird seed' type mixes, pumpkin seeds, peanuts, etc.
  • Rhubarb The leaves of the rhubarb plant are poisonous, and the stalks are very, very sour.
  • Any type of meat.
  • Dairy products While many stores will offer yogurt drops and other "treats," dairy is not healthy for guinea pigs and can actually cause problems. Feed natural treats like veggies instead of store-brand treats. It's less expensive and your piggie will be much happier.
  • Chocolate, coffee or other products containing caffeine.
  • Alcohol This should go without saying!!
  • Hamster, gerbil, rabbit, or any other non-guinea pig food.
  • Corn kernels. Popcorn isn't a very good idea either. Guinea pigs choke easily.
  • Sugary foods.
  • Ice cream.
  • Processed or fried foods Includes potato chips, nachos, or french fries.
  • Cheese.
  • Anything spicy. Jalapeño peppers and anything with cinnamon.

The Best Hay for Your Guinea PIg

Why do guinea pigs need hay in their diet? Guinea pigs have unique digestive systems that require a constant supply of fiber to help them digest their food and prevent impactions. Their stomachs go through a double digestion process. They eat once, digest their food, create soft fecal matter in a pouch in their rump, eat those, and digest it again. I know that sounds gross, but this is an important part of your piggie's health!

Hay is a staple in a guinea pig's diet. They can honestly never have too much hay. When guinea pigs are babies, they can have some alfalfa hay, which has a different balance of nutrients than the timothy hay that adult guinea pigs eat, but by the time they're full-grown guinea pigs, they should have mostly timothy hay—and lots of it!

You can find Western timothy hay in most pet stores, but you want to make sure that you find a bag that looks nice and fresh. Sometimes when I go to the pet store, I find bags of timothy hay that look more like straw. It pays to find a nice, fresh, green bag of hay. Your piggie will be so happy!

A great brand to go for is Oxbow. I discovered it online and then found that my vet used it, too, so it's definitely the cream of the guinea pig crop! Some of their products are carried in pet stores, and your vet may also carry these supplies, but it's very simple and affordable to order right through a website like Amazon. I found some of the products and have listed them below for you!

Guinea pigs will eat it nonstop, but you don't have to worry because it will not make them fat. No amount of hay will put weight on a piggie because it's not actually fully digested into their body. It's used by their digestive system to "move things along." In addition to Western timothy hay, there are other varieties with different nutritional properties, textures, and flavors.

Oxbow Animal Health Western Timothy Hay for Pets, 50-Pound
Oxbow Animal Health Western Timothy Hay for Pets, 50-Pound

You can seriously smell the difference when you open the bag of Oxbow (hopefully you don't have hay allergies!). Our veterinarian uses this brand, so I'm confident that it's the best one. This is a really big bag sure to last you awhile!

 

The Importance of Guinea Pig Pellets

It's completely possible to sustain your guinea pig solely on fruits, vegetables, and hay, but you want to make sure that you're feeding them enough vitamins and minerals. If you are thinking of skipping pellets altogether, speak with your vet about it first.

Assuming that you go the more traditional route of combining pellets with fresh vegetables and hay, here's what you need to know:

  • Don't feed your guinea pig anything with seeds. Even though there are "treats" marketed to guinea pigs on the shelves of pet stores, it's best not to buy them. These are unnecessary to a pig's diet and guinea pigs are prone to choking, so if it looks like birdseed or hamster food, move along to the next choice.
  • Most pet stores will carry a variety of brands. Even if a bag of pellets says that it's fortified with Vitamin C, do not take this as a replacement for vitamin-rich vegetables. We will cover Vitamin C in the next sections.
  • Guinea pigs cannot eat hamster, rabbit, or gerbil food. The nutritional balance isn't the same.
  • The best brand of pellets I've found so far is. once again, the Oxbow brand. My guinea pigs seem to like the taste the best, and this formula has a special type of Vitamin C that is meant to last a long time. My veterinarian has said in this case with the Oxbow brand. You could technically omit the other vitamin supplements in vegetables and the guinea pigs would be fine. But you want to feed them those anyway because they love them so much!
  • Unlike hay, too many pellets will make your guinea pig overweight. Some piggies will pick at their food and others will clean their plate! If you notice your guinea pig gaining weight, there are a number of things you can do to make sure it doesn't get out of hand, while still keeping them satisfied.

Oxbow Essentials Adult Guinea Pig (Timothy Based), 5-Pound Bag
Oxbow Essentials Adult Guinea Pig (Timothy Based), 5-Pound Bag

If you have a baby guinea pig, the Cavy Performance pellets are the ones to go for. For healthy young to adult guinea pigs, Cavy Cuisine is the one to buy. They're made out of some of the high quality hay that I talked about in the previous section, along with the right balances of vitamins and long-lasting vitamin C, unlike the other brands at the mega pet marts. In this case, convenience isn't a fair trade for quality.

 

Guinea Pigs Need Vitamin C

Scurvy's not just for pirates anymore! We've established that guinea pigs love fruits and veggies. This is a wonderful thing because guinea pigs, like humans, are one of the few species of animal whose bodies aren't able to generate Vitamin C. If guinea pigs don't get enough in their diets, they can contract a condition known as scurvy. This can make a guinea pig very sick or even die, so it's important to get at least 10mg of Vitamin C into their systems each day.

You or I might drink a glass of orange juice, eat a packet of fruit snacks, or take a multivitamin.

Guinea pigs can get their vitamin C needs through fresh vegetables. You may wonder whether crushing up a small amount of a Vitamin C pill into their water would be good for them, but this isn't advisable. Vitamin C is incredibly light sensitive, meaning it will lose its potency quickly when exposed to light. The best ways to deliver this vitamin are:

  • Red pepper These vegetables contain an immense amount of Vitamin C. Since some guinea pigs won't really take fondly to an orange, they're almost always ravenous for peppers.
  • Pellets Some claim that they have "long-lasting vitamin C," but you have to be aware that the bags will have been sitting on a warehouse shelf for a long time before purchase. The Vitamin C may have been exposed to enough light and been sitting long enough to have been mostly if not completely depleted.

Did you find this information useful? Please feel free to let me know your thoughts or questions!

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    • profile image

      Eli 8 months ago

      Love

    • profile image

      jc 9 months ago

      hi.. i learned a lot but since i bought a guinea pig i feed them a lot of cabbage so my guinea pig will die?

      and here in philipines i think in any pet stores they dont have grass hay or timothy hay is that ok even my guinea pig dont eat grass hay or timothy hay?

    • profile image

      Andrea 16 months ago

      Hi I was wondering can you give guniea pigs watermelon without seeds?

    • profile image

      shaggy1978 2 years ago

      can guinea pigs eat Asparagus?

    • craftybegonia profile image

      craftybegonia 2 years ago from Southwestern, United States

      Very informative. Those are really cute little fellows for sure!

    • Socialpro54 LM profile image

      Socialpro54 LM 4 years ago

      This is an informative lens, it's very thorough and so well done!

    • anyavnclv lm profile image

      anyavnclv lm 4 years ago

      Thanks for the info! I will forward this link to my sister so she can better care for her Guinea Pigs.

    • Meganhere profile image

      Meganhere 4 years ago

      Guinea pigs are great pets for children. I love them.

    • Cynthia Haltom profile image

      Cynthia Haltom 4 years ago from Diamondhead

      I was unaware that there are so many food that are harmful to guinea pigs. This is very useful information that I can share with my grandson.

    • profile image

      Margot_C 4 years ago

      I had no idea there were so many things you shouldn't feed your guinea pig. Some of them were no-brainers, but a couple were surprises. Thanks for being such a good advocate for these little guys.

    • profile image

      Faddyswooshpets 4 years ago

      Hi I never knew Guinea pigs had such extensive diet. I thought it was just water, hay, lettuce and pellets. Thank you.

    • southpaw23 profile image
      Author

      southpaw23 4 years ago

      @taemeiser-wagner: Hi there! Sadly graham crackers aren't in a guinea pig's natural diet. For something crispy and sweet as an alternative, you could try a small slice of apple! Thanks so much for your question and best of luck with your new peegs! <3

    • MBurgess profile image

      Maria Burgess 4 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada

      Very thorough outline on what it takes to properly care for a guinea pig. I have had 3 and I absolutely love these creatures! Thanks for sharing this helpful lens!

    • profile image

      2LilPiggies 4 years ago

      Hello my husband bought our sons a guinea pig each for their bdays a couple weeks ago. We got a mommy and one of her babies well within the last week the mommy has got super huge. She's doubled in sized we feed her the food were suppose to and only give them carrots and slicesof apple as treats. Could she have gotten pregnant before we got her?????? The baby is still the same size so I know were not over feeding them. Please help!!!!

    • JeffGilbert profile image

      JeffGilbert 4 years ago

      This is great info. Very well researched and also from speaks from personal experience. Great lens!

    • profile image

      taemeiser-wagner 4 years ago

      Can guinea pigs eat graham crackers? Im new "mom" with 2 pigs.

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      kiernanmay317 4 years ago

      i have a guinea pig and i love her SOOO much and i do not want her to get hurt or feel bad so i loved this cite personally (her name is Cinnamon but i can't feed her cinnamon) (this is just for laughs)

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      shannon-l-nolder 4 years ago

      @LilacsintheRain: but a cage and bring the guinea pig inside or it will die

    • soniathereviewe1 profile image

      soniathereviewe1 4 years ago

      We are guinea pig freaks too. :-) RIght now we only have 1, and she's enjoying life with 2 male bunnies. Guineas are such gentle creatures. :-)

    • soniathereviewe1 profile image

      soniathereviewe1 4 years ago

      We are guinea pig freaks too. :-) RIght now we only have 1, and she's enjoying life with 2 male bunnies. Guineas are such gentle creatures. :-)

    • Simplesimone profile image

      Simplesimone 4 years ago

      Thanks for posting all the things a guinea pig can eat. My six year old nephew is getting two for Christmas, this has been a very helpful lens.

    • profile image

      Rockbleeder 4 years ago

      Thanks for this article. I had a guinea pig before but I left it to my parents' house. It died after some months. I still don't what caused its death.

    • Dianna206 profile image

      Dianna206 4 years ago

      I found a brand of guinea pig food that includes pumpkin seeds. Not the salted kind of course, but it has all kinds of things mixed in it in addition to the pellets. My guinea pig actually picks out the pumpkin seeds first and eats them! On this lens, you say that it's not good for them. Should I pick them out of the bag or something? Thank you!

    • avigarret profile image

      avigarret 4 years ago

      This is a terrific and extensive lens that should be read by all owners of Guinea Pigs. Not only will it prolong the lives of these adorable bastards, but also make their lives more enjoyable.

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      mistaben 4 years ago

      I really like your ideas, fantastic info!

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      dellgirl 4 years ago

      This is an informative lens, itâs very thorough and so well done! Thank you for sharing it, I learned something new here.

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      AnimalHouse 4 years ago

      Thank you for sharing those guidelines on caring a guinea pig. Well presented lens! Nice job!

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      LilacsintheRain 4 years ago

      @Image Girl: You can't feed any animal chocolate. Some chocolate beans are okay but most are not and it's not worth it to play Russian roulette with the health of pets. I don't bother about the cocoa beans they can eat; I just have a hard fast rule, "No chocolate of any kind for animals." Always best to check online to find the best diet and particular health needs for each animal type.

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      LilacsintheRain 4 years ago

      @Barbara116: Tang is full of sugar. I would be concerned about their teeth. You can get chewable "ascorbic acid" in the health food store. This is vitamin C minus the sugar. I get it in tablet form for me. You could grind it up into a powder and add it to water until it is a light orange. I have doves and this is what i do for them. They love it and they look SO much healthier.

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      LilacsintheRain 4 years ago

      @sierra-bouthillier: I'd stay away from zucchini, too. Not only does it have seeds they could choke on, the skin contains toxins that neither humans nor animals should eat.

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      LilacsintheRain 4 years ago

      @southpaw23: Too much salt will dehydrate them and drive up their blood pressure (strokes). Best to stick to fresh fruits and veggies and keep a fresh supply of water close at hand.

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      LilacsintheRain 4 years ago

      @southpaw23: I don't agree about the vet. Vets these days are more interested in handing you a bill than EVER they are about the best interests of the animal or you. They will load you up, selling you all sorts of things for an animal they know is too far gone or is so fragile that none of these meds will help. They run tests for things they already know the answers to just so they can hand us a padded bill. I moved here seven years ago and I went through FIVE unscrupulous vets before I found one that really cares about the best interests of the animals; it's a national disgrace an a particular problem in Floriduh.

      If I were her, I'd first clean the foot with liberal amounts of hydrogen peroxide; which can be purchased anywhere that sells pharmaceuticals. Then I would look for any signs of a break in the skin or any kind of skin eruption; if there is one, this is the place to focus. You can also get a tube of topical antibiotic cream from your grocery store and put that on it. The hydrogen peroxide kills anaerobic bacteria and the topical cream will kill aerobic bacteria. Keep the foot and the cage clean. Remove any "poop" clots, especially from his feet. Don't forget the bedding in the cage will collect urine and this can be very bad for not only his feet, but his lungs. Urine rots like anything else and will be full of bacteria. The best way to heal anything is to keep it as clean as possible. I would clean that foot four times a day and watch its progress carefully. I would put small amounts of the hydrogen peroxide in a clean spray bottle, and keep spraying that foot. If it doesn't show progress in say three days, then I'd head for a vet. It's a real shame that vets have become such crooks. My vet bills are higher than my health bills for both my mother and myself!

    • profile image

      prosperityjane 4 years ago

      Please keep us all updated on this little guinea pig!!!!

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      prosperityjane 4 years ago

      Please keep us updated on this little guinea pig!

    • southpaw23 profile image
      Author

      southpaw23 4 years ago

      @LilacsintheRain: Hi again! You're welcome to send me an email any time at lesley@theguineapigguide.com I hope the little sweetie takes the veggies and you'll be able to grab her. She is a fighter, for sure! I am thinking of both of you and hoping for a safe capture into your home, and I am here for you to help in any way I can!

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      LilacsintheRain 4 years ago

      @southpaw23: Yes. I saw her the day she was dropped off but then not again until today. I know they don't have any real defenses other than running away but we have snakes, osprey, raccoons, opossum, big rats, cats and dogs here. I resigned myself to her being lost until today. I was very surprised to see her; and the little monkey ran off under the house to hide. I set out a dish of fresh veggies and fruit but I need to get a water bottle and pellets, etc. Thank you for your support. I'm afraid I am way out of my depth here bc I have never owned a g-pig so I know virtually nothing about them. Any guidance you can spare would be gratefully appreciated. Tomorrow I will take myself off in search of a large cage and the accouterments you have listed here. Yes, I would like to message directly. At the moment, this is my top priority concern. Where can I reach you? And thank you from the both of us :)

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      ohcheap1 4 years ago

      Good thing is they LOVE covered shelters. It wouldnt take any amount of coaxing to get him/her to run into a cage if prompted with some bell pepper or other snack. They seek out covered areas.

    • southpaw23 profile image
      Author

      southpaw23 4 years ago

      @LilacsintheRain: Hi there! Oh my goodness that poor piggie, and how sweet of you to be researching how to care for her! I am surprised she has survived the weeks already, as guinea pigs are such prey animals and not meant to be let out in the wild. That is so awful that the ASPCA people won't take her to a shelter! But how lucky she is that you are there for her. I think it sounds like fate! Getting her inside and safe is top priority right now, so I'd say you can start with a store bought cage from a place like PetCo just in the meantime (the bigger you can find the better), a water bottle, food dish, pellet-based piggie food and timothy hay, and aspen or carefresh shavings. I'd be happy to help answer any questions or guide you through caring for her if you want to message me directly! I'm so glad you commented. Hopefully we can save her and help her find a loving home with you!

    • profile image

      LilacsintheRain 4 years ago

      Someone dropped off a g-pig on my front lawn. She's been out there for a couple of weeks now. I have been doing a crash course in g-pig health and care (good thing you were here to guide me, I was about to feed her ALL the wrong things!) I'm worried about her; the winter is coming on. I live in west Central Florida. The Animal Control people won't help, nor will the ASPCA. How can I get her indoors before we have a killing frost; she won't survive it; I wouldn't either!

    • southpaw23 profile image
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      southpaw23 4 years ago

      @julia-sky-75: Hi Julia! Yup, guinea pigs can safely have strawberries, just in very occasional quantities as treats since they can be quite sugary. My guinea pigs unfortunately turn their noses up at these treats, but that just means all the more for me :D

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      julia-sky-75 4 years ago

      Can i feed them strawberrys ???

    • uneasywriter lm profile image

      uneasywriter lm 4 years ago

      Good guinea pig feeding tips. Will keep these in mind! Thanks

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      rooshoo 4 years ago

      Guinea pigs are cute. Great lens!

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      lisadavi 4 years ago

      i one guinea pig it got really bad pooly i took it to the vet it because i gave it to much lettuce they but my guinea pig to sleep it was that bad i got up set about it he die 2 year a go now i ws not happ with it

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Thank you for such an informative lens.

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      jimmyboy88 4 years ago

      i lost one 2 years ago and recently a friend's piggies gave birth to 3 babies. She is giving me 2 of them so i am back to rearing guinea pigs again :)

    • spids1 profile image

      spids1 4 years ago

      Great lens very well written.

    • southpaw23 profile image
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      southpaw23 4 years ago

      @southpaw23: Oops it said disguises and I typed vitamins haha. My phone autocorrected me!

    • southpaw23 profile image
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      southpaw23 4 years ago

      @crystal-mcneese: Hi Crystal,

      Unfortunately that isnt a match. Guinea pig pellets are specifically created to match the balance of nutrients and the disguises pigs need for their species. While they appear similar to animals like bunnies even then they need separate food. They have no relation to pigs at all so this would be particularly dangerous. Definitely provide your guinea pig with food specifically made for guinea pigs.

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      crystal-mcneese 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Just a question..... My daughter has a miniture potbelly pig and I was wondering if you knew if it was safe to feed my guineas the same pig feed???

    • EbooksFreeWeekl1 profile image

      EbooksFreeWeekl1 4 years ago

      Informative lens. good to know thx! :)

    • alexandradouglas profile image

      Alexandra Douglas 5 years ago from Florida

      Very useful info! I have had guinea pigs my entire life until now. Lost my last girl a month ago. She was 7 years old. She lost her best friend a month prior therefore I think she mourned herself to sleep. Great lens! Feel free to visit mine. Not guinea pig related but animal related more or less.

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      malcomiscool 5 years ago

      I have fed Oxbow Timothy hay for the last five years. I have a guineapig rescue and feed over twenty hungry mouths and the crave the evening feeding when the hay bin is opened.

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      sarahjjac 5 years ago

      Great lens!

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      danielle-p-duffield 5 years ago

      I enjoyed your site and information it seems every site has something different to add to our wealth of PigPig knowledge, thank you. -Danielle, Tim and PigPig's Tribble and Wicket

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      danielle-p-duffield 5 years ago

      @krissy-gee-7: I feed my Piggies, Tribble and her daughter Wicket both Abyssinian PigPigs, Kiwi every once in a while, they love it and it does have good nutritional values too. One bite for me, one bite for da PigPigs. This is a fun page and here are a couple more that have helped us greatly:

      Guinea Lynx has a great nutrition chart that you can print out and Jackies Guinea Piggies is a little more "personal" like this page is and lots of fun.

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      krissy-gee-7 5 years ago

      Thank you for you tips on feeding our newest family members....it was a big help for us. Just wondering if they are allowed to eat KIWI FRUIT?...

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      sierra-bouthillier 5 years ago

      @anonymous: you need to check if she had clean water, and maybe give her some bellpepper every once in a while, for vitamin C. You may also need to change her diet, because they cannot have corn kernals, or seeds. try to get something better, like Gerty Guinea Pig food, made by the company called "Supreme Original." It isn't really that cheap or expensive eigther. Hope this helps!

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      sierra-bouthillier 5 years ago

      @Buddy1024: What kinds of fruits and vegetables are you feeding them? That may be the cause, or she may be pregnant, because this has happened with many guinea pigs I know. It may also be because she doesn't get enough exercise. It is best to give them "floor time" for about 30-45 minutes a day. She may be agressive because ytou don't hold her enough. Message me if this continues after you try this stuff. Also please tell me what foods you have been feeding them.

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      sierra-bouthillier 5 years ago

      @tina-resoort: you can, but don't feed them too much because when we eat big amounts, we get gassy and upset stomachs, so just think of what it does to our little babies. You also need to watch out for the stringy parts that get stuck in our teeth and throat, because this can cause a guinea pig to choke. They can also die from eating too much, because their stomachs can't handle it. I give my guinea pigs a few leaves about every 3 days. So the answer is yes, but NEVER too much. Also remember that celery is a high water tolerenced food.

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      sierra-bouthillier 5 years ago

      @danielle-rose-9634: oranges, broccoli, cherry tomatoes, cherries, bell peppers, carrots, bananas, grapes, cucumber... there are many more, but those are the ones that they seem to enjoy. Just NEVER feed them iceburg lettuce.

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      sierra-bouthillier 5 years ago

      @krissy542: yes, you can but you shouldn't put it in their food dish, or they may think that this is something to eat as a meal. They will pay too much attention to the wheel, and won't bother to eat food because they will have eaten too much salt. Also, if you do decide to have a salt wheel, make sure you ALWAYS have clean, fresh water in the bottle. You should also make sure that they are drinking enough water so they won't get de-hydrated. If you notice them acting weirdly after you place the wheel inside of their cage, PLEASE notify me incase it is a sign of a Kidney-Stone. But over all, the salt wheel is a good idea to cover the cravings of salt that your guinea(s) will have.

    • Onemargaret LM profile image

      Onemargaret LM 5 years ago

      I love guinea pigs! We lost two in recent years and I miss them so much! Great lens!

    • tillylooloo profile image

      tillylooloo 5 years ago

      Nice to see a recommendation for lots of hay. Shame many people dont realise this!

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      VaBeachMatthew 5 years ago

      My Wife was searching for Guinea Pig care and feeding and found this page... I chuckled when I came back to the computer and saw it was on Squidoo... Liked and commented... thanks ;)

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      taylor-tovey-7 5 years ago

      @XxLittleTxX: Try to feed him something while pulling the poop off and i dont know why his foot would be red but you should go to the pet store and ask what could be wrong because they know more about it than i do lol i wish i could help out a little more but sorry hope he is okay. :)

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      nina-f-1232 5 years ago

      @nina-f-1232: The problem resolved itself. I bought him Oxbow adult food and his bottom has cleared up! I just wish he was like a cat and would groom himself up in those areas. It gets so filthy!!!

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      nina-f-1232 5 years ago

      I was cuddling my adult male piggy and noticed his bum was really dirty. I try to give him baths once in a while but he hates them. But this isn't just dirty, its a white discharge and some greenish stuff in the middle. I read a few places online that this could be from too much calcium. Then on your site I realized I had been feeding him the wrong food. The pellets I have are Timothy Hay & Alfafa hay. I also give him regular Timothy Hay. I've stopped with the pellets for now but I wonder if this will go away on its own once I buy the right food or is there something else I should do? He is still pooping and peeing and I don't think he's in pain. He might be more moody than normal but that could be because I've been prodding him in his private areas. Any suggestions?

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      gabiann1 5 years ago

      @XxLittleTxX: that same thing happened to my pig. (guniea)

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      danielle-rose-9634 5 years ago

      @krissy542: I was wandrin what kind of fruit and veggies can guinea pigs eat?

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      melissa-mcavaddy 5 years ago

      @XxLittleTxX: Sounds like he really needs a vet. That might not be poo, it may be nacrotic tissue (dying/dead). This usually leads to an open wound, a decubitus ulcer or bed sore. It's a lesion and tends to remain open ooze and need proper wound care to heal...on people at least. Being that you can't get him to a vet right now, I would see if there are any Cavy rescues in your area that would take a look at it and point you in the right direction. Please don't get rid of him because of this...he'll likely just be put down. Good luck...saying a prayer for him!

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      southpaw23 5 years ago

      @krissy542: Hi Krissy,

      That's a good question. I've never had salt wheels for my piggies...or hm, I may have way toward the beginning but I don't think they went for it, if so. My policy with things like that is if there's a chance that it's not good, it's probably best to avoid it. With proper fruits/veggies and pellets/hay, guinea pigs should be able to get all of their necessary vitamins and minerals. I'm sorry I don't have a more definitive answer! I just did some searching and it looks like the general consensus is 'no', though I haven't consulted a veterinarian on it.

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      southpaw23 5 years ago

      @prosperityjane: Oh thank you, prosperityjane! This was something I'd heard but I wasn't sure of the details. I try to keep the spinach to a 'treat' and not a main staple of their greens. But it's good to know that it's so full of calcium. Thank you for this helpful tip!!

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      southpaw23 5 years ago

      @XxLittleTxX: Hi there!

      Unfortunately you really must get your piggie to a vet! It sounds like he has an infection that may require antibiotics, or he may have something called bumble foot, which can afflict guinea pigs at any age. Even though it's expensive, your piggies' life could be at stake and you need to make sure he is taken care of. If you can get to a local vet, ask them what they can do to help and if you might be able to do a payment plan. I wouldn't rely on at-home treatment for something like this without a proper diagnosis. He may need prescription medicine. I hope that he feels better and that you're able to get some help!

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      XxLittleTxX 5 years ago

      HI, Ive been on this website before to ask another question.. Im not sure if this is the right area to ask it, im sorry if its not but im desperate.. I think my guinea pig has a infection on his foot.. I can afford to go to the vet. His foot is swollen and has a piece of his poop on it. I once pulled it off and put oil on it. Im not sure if it worked but another piece of poop stuck to his same foot. When i pulled it off he didnt bleed, he was in pain though.. Not all the poop came off.. So this time i have to soak and pull. I dont know what to do PLEASE HELP. I clean his cage once a week. I now know i have to scoop his cage regularly, he poops way more then my girl guinea pig. His foot, i belive is reder then it should be. Its been like this for a while, Im trying to find help. Please help :D. Oh, its on his front paw (left). Also whenever i touch it, he squirms.. so that tells me hes in pain. If you dont know the question here it is... How do i heal a guinea pigs front foot, with a piece of poop on it and maybe infected, without going to the vet?? THANK YOU :D

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      prosperityjane 5 years ago

      I know this was mentioned below but I just wanted to suggest not to feed your guin-guins spinach. It contains too much calcium which can cause kidney stones. My piggies loved it so I fed it to them all the time but my little Nutmeg developed a stone and was so sick and she didn't make it through the surgery. I still hadn't put 2 and 2 together and still was feeding the spinach to Pumpkin. Then she developed a stone and had to have surgery. She's fine now but it's not worth taking the chance not to mention the pain and $$ to feed them spinach when they love other things too. Just my experience and 2 cents....

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      krissy542 5 years ago

      great information. I am wondering though can you give a Guinea pig a salt wheel? i am hearing two different things

    • profile image

      krissy542 5 years ago

      great information. I am wondering though can you give a Guinea pig a salt wheel? i am hearing two different things

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      neuromancer lm 5 years ago

      Thanks for this, I never thought that cabbage might really be bad for them.

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      livingfrontiers 5 years ago

      Cute and great information! I love your suggestions on the no list...a good one for us all:)

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      abby-werth 5 years ago

      Thank you so much for this handy information! We just purchased two guinea pigs (Abraham and Harry) and have already fallen in love! The petstore told us they could have a few treats from our frig but we weren't sure if we could trust that info or not! Now we know for sure what to give them.

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      melisa-r-hart 5 years ago

      Blaine and Spencer were bought about a week apart. I love them to death. We are still working on the handling thing and it is funny how different they are. Blaine is calm and just wants to snuggle. Spencer is hyper and "popcorns" all the timge and wants to eat the dogs toenails. These are my first guinea pigs so I am tyring to do the best I can with the little guys.

      So anyways, long story short, this is definately more informative then anything else I have seen. It's kinda funny cause my boyfriend eats mostly fruits and veggies too and pretty much the same thing too, so it will make the grocery shopping easier.

      Just one question, can they have mushrooms or things like peaches and plums?

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      webtechdl 5 years ago

      Thanks helped greatly now we know what he cant have.

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      ohcheap1 5 years ago

      My Vince and Howard (Mighty Boosch fans) are really picky eaters. They either love it or hate it. Spinach is a hate. WHAT?!?!? IKR I was really surprised. Kale on the other hand they will yell at each other over Kale. Vince has a weight issue. I dont know what I should do to help him. They have a 6'x 3' cage with a balcony and a partner in crime to play with. Any thoughts on ways to help him trim down?

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      tina-resoort 5 years ago

      can you feed Guinea Pigs celery or celery leaves

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      DeniseDurham2011 5 years ago

      I love Guinea Pigs. This is a great lens! It is so fun to watch them eat.

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      SoleSurvivor 5 years ago

      @anonymous: No!

      You absolutely CANNOT give them Sunflower seeds!

      They're too big for the guinea pigs to chew and even if they do chew them, they'll choke on the big pieces.

      Trust me buddy, i learned this the hard way.

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      GOT LM 5 years ago

      Nice work

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      Barbara116 5 years ago

      My vet says the easiest and best way to give a pig vitamin c is to add a small amount of Tang to his water. Just enough to turn the water very pale orange. My pig loves it! Cheaper too.

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      MGuberti 5 years ago

      The Guinea Pigs look so adorable!

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      kathysart 5 years ago

      Ever since I heard Mark Marone who hosts "Petkeeping" say how much he loves guinea pigs I have thought of getting a couple. Good advice on their care! Angel blessed!

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      MelonyVaughan 5 years ago

      Great information! Thanks for sharing!

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      Buddy1024 5 years ago

      I have 3 guinea pigs and feed them hay pellets and fruits and veggies But one of my guinea pigs is really really REALLY overweight. I tried to cut down about the pellets and veggies in the cage but the others started to get sick so I gave them the amount I did before. So I was wondering if there is a way to safely keep her weight down? P.S. All piggies are female and share one cage. Additional note: My over weight piggie is very aggrssive towrds other piggies. Why? P.S. Can not afford another cage. P.S. Three Piggie huts in cage. One for each pig. PLEASE respons A.S.P.A! I am VERY worried!

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      hatbat99 5 years ago

      hi my guinea pig ate some bread about the size of your thumb print is she gonna be ok? it was left on the table and she sniffed it out

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      Edutopia 5 years ago

      My niece has been lobbying hard for a guinea pig. Will have to go over this lens with her to make sure she knows everything she should about taking care of them.

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      dpethealth lm 5 years ago

      I really wonder what they do eat in their natural habitat. In reality where would they find vitamin C or if they come across nuts, will they eat it?

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      Image Girl 5 years ago

      sigh. a few years back a friend dropped a chocolate bar - and my guinea pig ate it and died. very sad. Years later and I still feel terrible about it.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @southpaw23: YES THAT IS TRUE BUT THAT IS NO REASON NOT TO GIVE THEM SEEDS AT ALL (oops caps lock):D

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: no - bananas are bad for them (DIARRHEA)

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @lifeloveliving: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

      dont give them oranges...

      they cannot eat citrus fruits (lemons or onrnges etc...)

      trust me