Guinea pigs are commonly overlooked and misunderstood, since they are frequently confused with hamsters. They are, in fact, fairly distinct creatures with their own distinct habits and traits. While hamsters tend to be more isolated and sometimes “snippy,” guinea pigs are loving, gregarious, and charming. Continue reading to learn the several reasons why guinea pigs are excellent pets. Each of these points is covered in further depth in the sections that follow.
1. They Are Social and Adorable
Guinea pigs are very gregarious creatures by nature. Additionally, they thrive in couples or groups, since they are a herd animal (1). Considering this, it is usually preferable to have many than just one. This will meet their social demands and result in a much happy pet.
Additionally, the guinea pig is particularly loving and friendly toward its owner. They are usually very social and will send out little squeals of excitement when they meet their human owner. Consider the following quote from Nikki Vettel, which appears in the article “Pet Passions: How I Fell in Love with a Guinea Pig.”
Without a doubt, one of the primary reasons people keep guinea pigs as pets is their gregarious and friendly character.
2. They Have a Natural Ability to Interact with Children
There are several important benefits of acquiring a pet for a youngster. It instills in youngsters a sense of responsibility, empathy, and the ability to care for the needs of another living being. All of them are critical life lessons. However, it should be kept in mind that children are children, and as such, ultimate responsibility for the pet should rest with the adult. Regardless, keeping a pet is often a wonderful experience for both kid and pet. Typically, a warm and affectionate friendship will develop between the two. When this is taken into account, the guinea pig is a wonderful pet for a youngster.
Guinea pigs are often sociable and gentle. They are unlikely to conceal themselves from the youngster or nip at them when touched. Additionally, they are less delicate than a variety of other species, including hamsters, gerbils, and rabbits. As a result, there is some possibility for human mistake during handling. Having saying that, it is always advisable that youngsters be supervised while handling a pet, since the last thing anybody wants is for the pet to be injured. In general, their amiable demeanor and sturdy physical traits make them excellent companions for youngsters and family pets.
3. They Are Relatively Simple to Maintain
The simple truth is that there are no really easy-to-care-for dogs. In reality, they all demand a significant amount of time, love, and care. However, some animals are unquestionably simpler to care for than others. Guinea pigs most emphatically fall under this group. They are a perfect pet for busy folks with irregular schedules.
Unlike dogs, they do not need several daily walks outdoors and may be kept securely in their cage. Essentially, they need a cage of appropriate size and bedding. They need pellets, hay, and fresh vegetables with water as diet. Additionally, unlike other rats, they need daily Vitamin C supplementation (3). They will be pretty pleased in this setting if they get this daily care and have a companion. This, in turn, provides a busy owner who desires companionship but has an unpredictable schedule with the necessary freedom to engage in responsible pet care.
4. They Are Low-Maintenance
Guinea pigs are not only simple to care for, but they are also relatively affordable to keep. As is sometimes the case with animals, the easiest option to get a guinea pig is via an animal shelter. They often have a sizable number of animals available for adoption. Adoption costs initially average between $30 and $50, but may be less or more in your location. In comparison to animals such as dogs or cats, this is a relatively affordable option.
According to the pet-care website Costhelper, the typical monthly cost of feeding for a small pet is between $5 and $10. Numerous retailers even provide starter packages that contain a cage, food, bedding, and other necessary goods at a discounted price (4).
Personally, I guess that the cost of my guinea pigs is little greater than these figures. I’ve opted to get a fairly big cage and augment the food with high-quality supplements. Additionally, we see the veterinarian on a regular basis for checks. Nonetheless, there is no comparison between these prices and what I spend on my dog. They are also far less costly to purchase and care for, which is another reason they make excellent pets.
5. They Are Bright and Interesting
The overwhelming majority of human owners like having a pet with a personality with whom to interact. This is a crucial factor for many individuals when selecting a companion animal. This is also beneficial for the animal, since play fosters meaningful life experiences, physical activity, and critical socialization.
Fortunately, the guinea pig is a very intelligent and unique companion. They like playing and chewing on items such as little balls, pet tunnels, and anything else. They also like coming out of their cage to wander the surroundings. It’s worth noting, though, that they are prey animals with a natural propensity to flee and hide. As a result, it is advisable to confine them inside until they get accustomed and comfortable with their surroundings.
Guinea pigs are very energetic and sociable creatures that normally thrive on the cerebral stimulation offered by play opportunities. They could even squeak, screech, or “popcorn” for you! This is a behavior in which they leap up and down repeatedly into the air, much like a kernel transforming into a piece of popcorn! Guinea pigs are very lovable pets due to their interesting activities.
6. Their Life Expectancy Is Relatively Long
Make no mistake about it… we love and care for our dogs just as we would any other family member. That is why losing them can be such a traumatic event. Individuals typically need extensive counseling to recover from such a loss. That is why it is important for folks to adopt a pet with a reasonable lifetime. This category includes the guinea pig.
There is a widespread misperception that they are short-lived. In reality, a well-cared-for guinea pig has an average lifetime of between 6 and 8 years. This is far longer than the lifespan of hamsters, gerbils, or rats, which are typically just a few years.
Thus, What Are You Awaiting?
I began this post by asking, “Do guinea pigs make decent pets?” In answer, a variety of good arguments were provided, demonstrating unequivocally that they make excellent pets. They are especially beneficial for persons who need animal companionship yet have irregular schedules. Essentially, individuals who are in a position to offer a home for a guinea pig will rapidly discover that ownership is a really fulfilling life experience.
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