Guinea pigs are simple to take care of. You’ll need to provide them with a proper environment, give them appropriate nutrition, and be aware of physical and mental illness signs. The main thing is to keep an eye out for anything with your young ones, such as changes in eating or pooping habits, hair loss, swellings, or itching.
If you don’t feed your guinea pigs enough or offer them items that aren’t good for their digestive systems, they may lose or gain weight quickly, have trouble going to the bathroom, or possibly develop more severe issues. Keep an eye on their potty habits and consider weighing them regularly to ensure they’re in good health.
The best approach to prevent disease in pet guinea pigs is to have them examined annually by a veterinarian familiar with the species. It also helps if they eat, drink, exercise, and pass typical stool. Guinea pigs may have long, healthy lives with adequate preventative medical treatment and monitoring for unexpected indications or behavior.
Common Guinea Pig Diseases
Guinea pigs are easy to care for and make excellent family pets when handled regularly and gently. They are generally resilient creatures, although they are prone to specific illnesses. Guinea pig pet owners should be aware of the symptoms of these frequent illnesses so that they may seek medical treatment for their animals.
Pneumonia is frequent in young guinea pigs with underdeveloped immune systems, and it can be caused by various bacteria, including Bordetella and Streptococcus. Guinea pigs can naturally contain these germs in their respiratory tracts and may be asymptomatic (appearing to be healthy) carriers.
Pneumonia can cause decreased appetite, drainage from the eyes or nose, sneezing, and difficulty breathing in guinea pigs. A veterinarian should be consulted if a guinea pig is having trouble breathing as soon as possible. The veterinarian can collect a sample of the discharge for culture to determine the causative organism and prescribe suitable medications. For dog owners, you can consult your veterinarian about dog orthopedic surgery.
Guinea pigs are herbivores (plant-eaters) who rely on a healthy bacterial community in their intestines to digest their diet. These bacteria need a lot of fiber; thus, high-fiber hay should be the foundation of a guinea pig’s diet, fresh vegetables, and a tiny quantity of commercially available pelleted food supplemented with vitamin C.
GI stasis causes guinea pigs to eat, drink less, and pass fewer feces. GI stasis in guinea pigs can be caused by various factors, including dental disease, stress, or any other ailment that causes a reduction in appetite. Guinea pigs with GI stasis should see a veterinarian as soon as possible to get pain medication, fluids injected under their skin, and syringe-feeding with specially prepared liquid diets to assist in re-start food flow through their GI tracts. Click here for more details.
Vitamin C Deficiency
Vitamin C is necessary for the healthy growth and maintenance of skin, joints, and mucosal surfaces such as the gums. It’s also required for wound healing and immune system health. Guinea pigs with insufficient vitamin C experience skin issues, have to trouble healing wounds, and are more prone to contract various illnesses.
Rough hair coat, decreased appetite, diarrhea, unwillingness to move, swelling, painful joints, and hemorrhages and ulcers on the gums are all symptoms of vitamin C deficiency in guinea pigs. Most veterinarians advocate giving guinea pigs a daily vitamin C supplement as a liquid or tablet. Vitamin C supplements should not be shared with drinking water since they degrade quickly in water and lose their efficacy. Visit an exotic pet vet for additional information.