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Guinea Pigs/behavior of guinea pig

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Question
I have had my guinea pig for about 19 days he has always played and weaked when we went to his cage. now he stays in his igloo does not week. could he scared or stressed. he does come out to eat.

Answer
If he's not eating there's something wrong. Are you feeding him a good quality all green pellet made for guinea pigs and not rabbit food?  Do NOT feed the type of food you buy in the grocery store with the colored fruit loops, seeds etc to your pig.  

Kaytee makes a good product that is nothing but guinea pig pellets. I can't stress that enough the importance of feeding the right thing. They cannot live on just fruits and veggies. Those are treats only.

I would take that igloo out of the cage completely. He's using it to hide and it gives him a way to stay away from human contact. Take it out.  You can put it in the cage at night to sleep, but not during the day.

When you approach the cage speak to him to let him know you're coming. Guinea pigs quickly learn that the rattle of a plastic bag means lettuce or carrots. My entire caviary will begin to sing when they hear that sound, or even just the snapping of a carrot. So when you come to the cage try coming with just a small piece of something. A tiny chunk of carrot is still enough to excite him. He learns you're the 'food lady' and will come out to greet you.

Too many treats will prevent him from eating what he needs, just as giving nothing but french fries and chicken nuggets to a child will do the same thing.

If his food dish is getting empty then he's coming out to eat when you're not there.  Also make sure his water bottle is working and that he's drinking. If the water isn't going down then tap the end of the spout to make sure it actually is not stuck.  

Hopefully just a little change in his routine might make the difference. Please let me know how this works for him.

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Pat VanAllen

Expertise

As is sometimes the case, people in urgent need of information have a higher degree of expectation than those of us as experts are able to give. The experts on this site do their best to give the most accurate and responsible answers possible. We ask that you remember that it is not our intention nor place to criticize the professional advice given by your veterinarian, nor is it appropriate for us to comment on the correctness of a diagnosis made by a licensed physician. Our knowledge is experience based. Although many years of breeding and showing cavies gives me a wealth of experience it cannot change the fact that we as experts are not veterinarians and therefore may occasionally have to reject questions that appear to be asking us to criticize advice given by the licensed professional. Having raised and exhibited cavies for many years I have extensive experience in cavy care and husbandry. I currently have an active breeding program for pedigreed show animals but do not encourage backyard breeding for inexperienced owners. Although I don't encourage breeding for fun I'm always happy to answer any questions from an owner who is in sincere need of help. Pet owners wanting to breed should understand that even experienced breeders have litter losses. The mortality rate is high in cavies. The chance for losing both sow and pups is always present, even with experience. Although this is a site for experts to assist owners, there is no expert in any field who has all the answers. The wisest thing a good expert can know is their limitations. Not having an answer does not diminish one's ability or knowledge. It simply shows that we recognize our limitations and operate within them.

Experience

Raised and shown cavies for many years, having aquired my first cavies in the early 1970's as pets. My caviary currently handles 65 + animals in two different breeds and several varieties. Having been in the health care industry as a licensed nurse for 35 years I have hands on experience with care and needs in both humans and cavies. Member of American Rabbit Breeders Association and American Cavy Breeders Association.

Organizations
Awarded Lifetime Membership in of one of the oldest cavy clubs in the United States, on whose Board I served as Sec/Treas for six years and currently serving as President. Also editor/publisher of the club's quarterly newsletter. We are strong supporters of our youth exhibitors, most of whom are 4H members who are working on cavy projects. Through these projects they become good responsible citizens. We deal with all aspects of showing, breeding, caring for and sharing experiences in the fancy. The cavy fancy is not a new one but in some areas is still relatively unknown. Our goal is to inspire interest in high quality, responsible breeding to improve the species, not just the reproduction of guinea pigs. Our job is to educate owners to help them make the right decisions and choices in the care of their cavies.

Education/Credentials
Graduate in nursing. Certified in emergency medicine.

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