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On the sixth day of Christmas our Branch came to see…..

Six guinea pigs!

Guinea pigs, potatoes, piggies, guineas, whatever you like to call them, are great pets for the right person. In July, six were abandoned in a pram behind a bin in Norwich, including a mum and babies. They came into our care and the Animal Welfare Team sprung into action ensuring they had everything they needed; as you could imagine, they were not in the best state so needed some TLC.

• When excited guinea pigs may repeatedly perform little hops in the air, also known as “popcorning”.
• Guinea pigs communicate through a series of squeaks, chirps and purrs.
• A female guinea pig is called a “sow” and a male is called a “boar”.
• Guinea Pigs are born with teeth that are constantly growing throughout their lifetime
• The guinea pig can open its eyes while in its mother’s womb 14 days before birth
• Although they are called “Guinea Pigs”, they are not closely related to pigs, but named for their short, robust body & piggish appearance. “Guinea” refers to Guyana, a country within their natural range.

Care tips for guinea pigs

Guinea pigs cannot produce Vitamin C

That’s right! They cannot produce their own vitamin C so they need to be given this to help keep them healthy. The easiest way to do this is by providing them with plenty of veggies!

They do not like to live alone

Guinea pigs are social animals so need to live in groups or with another. The best pairing is 1 neutered male to a few females.

You may need to assist them with going to the toilet!

It is not uncommon for Guinea pigs to suffer with impaction where poo gets stuck in a little pocket near the anus. This is more common in boars or older Guinea pigs. If this happens, seek advice from you vet on how to remove it,

You will need to clip their nails

Guinea pigs nails continuously grow and can curl under into their paws. To avoid discomfort or injury, you should cut their nails on a monthly basis. if you are unsure how to do this, seek advice from your vet.

EmmaOn the sixth day of Christmas our Branch came to see…..