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Love Me, Love My Guinea Pigs

I wake up every morning to three little fuzzballs going "wheek! wheek! wheek!" 

Guinea pigs Kai, Hawk, and Ellie, came into our lives unexpectedly last winter when they needed to be rehomed.

My husband and I weren't prepared for how attached we'd be to them, but each girl has her own quirky personality, likes, dislikes, and needs.

We dote on them with their favorite foods, nose boops, and tons of yummy hay.

Four picture collage of cute guinea pigs.

Clockwise from top left - Hawk ready for Halloween, Kai snacking on a marigold, Ellie pondering some watermelon, and Ellie “potato-ing down”.

Hawk is the cuddly one that will let us pick her up anytime, and she would climb into my hair if I let her.

Ellie likes to be held, but does not like to be picked up - we call her Princess Potato because she tucks her feet underneath herself and takes on the look of a furry baked potato.

Kai would rather you didn't touch her, but she would love some cilantro if you have any handy - she will come over and say hello happily, just don't get in her personal space bubble. 

Here are some facts I've learned as a guinea pig mom:

  • They are crepuscular, which means they tend to be most active around dawn and dusk.
  • 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.
  • Guinea Pigs can live up to 10 years!
  • Guinea Pigs are born with teeth that are constantly growing throughout their lifetime.
  • Although they are called “Guinea Pigs”, they are not closely related to pigs, but named for their short, robust body & piggish appearance. 
  • Guinea pigs prefer to take short naps throughout the day and night.
  • Guinea pigs don’t have the same number of toes on their fore feet compared to their hind feet. They actually have 4 on their fore feet and 3 on their hind feet.
  • They are very social animals and love the company of others. It is often recommended that they have a buddy.
  • Because they don't produce vitamin C themselves, supplements or food that is high in the vitamin must be provided. 

As you can see, getting a group shot does not work out with these ladies.

Want to learn more about having guinea pigs as pets?

We have plenty of books to help!

Guinea Pigs by Julie Murray

Guinea Pigs

by Julie Murray

Offers a simple introduction to guinea pigs and how to care for them as pets.

Guinea pigs = Cobayos by Erin Falligant

Guinea pigs = Cobayos

by Erin Falligant

Pets! We love them, and we take good care of them. Learn all about what Guinea Pigs need to be happy and playful pets. ¡Las mascotas! Las amamos y las cuidamos mucho. Aprende todo sobre qué necesitan los Cobayos para estar felices y ser mascotas juguetonas.

Pet Guinea Pigs up Close by Brynn Baker

Pet Guinea Pigs up Close

by Brynn Baker

Full-color, zoomed-in photos and simple text let you oogle those cute little noses and toes.

Little Kids First Big Book of Pets by Catherine D. Hughes

Little Kids First Big Book of Pets

by Catherine D. Hughes

From cats to dogs to guinea pigs to birds to fish to snakes and more, this reference book introduces kids to a wide variety of family-friendly pets.

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