Bringing Your Guinea Pigs Home
The First Few Days
The first 3-4 days you bring your guinea pigs home, it can be very tempting to pick them up and cuddle with them. However, they’re in a new area – and very scary area – and they need time to get used to that.
Give them several days to adjust to their new areas and life, because this is a very stressful time for them. Try to avoid making loud noises and hovering around them, because they need to take their own time to get used to what’s around them.
You need to ensure that when you bring one or more guinea pigs into the house that they have a good area to hide – each guinea pig needs his or her own place, too, or a fight could break out!
Ever catch yourself just looming over your dear pet’s cage, shadowing them as you’re watching what they’re doing? This is going to scare the sweet out of your little pet!
This makes your pet think that an eagle is swooping down to attack, and causes him to be very scared. Instead, when you want to observe your pet, kneel down to eye level with the cage. This will allow him to see you as more of a friend, and less of a foe.
The best way to get your pet to trust you is, without a doubt, bribery. Sound crazy? Perhaps. But it’s true! Bribing the small animal that you want to love and adore is the best way for trust.
The best things to bribe with? Treats, of course. Because the guinea pig has so many things it loves to eat, you’re going to have no shortage of bribing tools. Check out Chapter Five for more information on your guinea pig’s favorite things to eat.
Best Bribing Ways?
Ready to bribe your new pet right into your open arms? Good!
Start by showing your pet the delicious treat you’re offering them, then set it at the open door of the cage. Sit just outside, with your hands in your lap, and wait.
After a certain amount of time, if he hasn’t taken the treat, carefully and slowly pick it up again, close the cage door, and leave. Try this several times a day until he gets the idea that he has to come and get it.
Each time he comes, try to move a little closer to your pet’s cage. This way, he’s going to get used to your presence slowly.
After a while, he’s going to be timid, but take the treat from your hand. If you give it enough time and patience, he’s going to even welcome taking the treat from you, and won’t be afraid to run and jump in excitement when he sees you coming.
To Pick Your Guinea Pig Up…
Don’t lure your guinea pig with treats in order to pick him up, because you’re going to hurt the tentative bond of trust you’ve built with him, and possibly damage any relationship in the future.
Instead, build trust by petting and loving your guinea pig, and showing him that you’re not a scary predator, but instead a loving friend. Remember that in the wild, people like you would eat this poor little critter!
The Actual Holding
Be careful when you pick up your guinea pig! Because of the shape of their body, you can damage their lungs if you grasp them too hard.
Gently cup the torso of your guinea pig, and support the rear as you lift up. Don’t hold them too hard, and instead carry them gently, ensuring that you’re supporting their entire body well.
Remember to carry them with care, and small children should always hold their guinea pigs with great supervision – because of their small bone structure, they can be easily injured if dropped.
Relaxing Your Pet
Don’t you just love the idea of sitting on your couch, petting your guinea pig in your lap, and reading the paper or watching the news? It’s a great idea, but in practice, it takes a while.
When you first handle your guinea pig, do so in a quiet room, and make sure that nothing is going on. Have a treat ready, and see if you can get him to eat it on your lap.
If you’re patient, he will, and eventually he’s going to love being handled by you, and actually request it by squealing when he sees you coming near.