As a new Guinea pig owner, you may be wondering how to become best friends. With a bit of patience, you will be able to become friends with your new pet in no time at all. However, your Guinea pig may take some time before it can adjust and get used to being around you first. The below advice will guide you on ways to form this close bond between the two of you quickly!
The best way to get your guinea pig’s friendship is by showing kindness, being gentle and patient. In addition, mimicking some of the guinea pigs’ social interactions can help strengthen the bond you have with them.
Show Them Kindness
Guinea pigs are social animals and love interacting with their species, as well as humans. Therefore, it’s vital to reciprocate the affection by being kind and patient with them, which will help the process go more smoothly! Offer them treats by hand and speak in a gentle, loving voice.
Guinea Pigs need to be handled regularly from when they’re very young, so this is the perfect opportunity for bonding with them early on. They might seem like shy creatures at first, but it won’t take long before you start noticing their cute personality. By being gentle with them, you will eventually gain their trust.
When taking care of a new Guinea pig, patience is vital. It might take some time for your guinea pig to get used to you and feel comfortable in his or her surroundings. Building trust with a Guinea pig is one of the hardest things to do, and being patient will come in handy.
How can I pick my guinea pig up without them running away?
Entice them to come to you rather than grab them out of the cage is the best way. Guinea pigs natural instance is to dart around when they feel threatened. They showcase this type of rapid darting behaviour within herds of guinea pigs. It’s called a stampede!
- Start by laying a small tea towel or fleece blanket down in their cage.
- Use some treats or vegetables to get them to stand on the blanket.
- When your guinea has stood on the blanket and has had a little nibble on the food item, you can slowly swoop up the blanket. However, be careful not to cover your guinea pig completely. Then gently pull your pet towards you and into your chest for support.
- Take a seat, and let them have some freedom on your lap, whilst being careful they dont fall off your lap.
Extra Tips: Guinea Pig Handling
- Light small strokes
- Always smooth your guinea pig the same way the fur grows.
- Offer some delicious treats.
- Speak softly
- Hold them loosely. Never grip your guinea pig too tight, but enough to stop them from jumping off you and hurting themselves.
- I know you love your guinea pig, but don’t over-hold them. It would be best at first to hold for shorter times so that they can adjust to their new surroundings and become a little more comfortable.
How long does it take for a guinea pig to trust you?
The amount of time it takes for a guinea pig to trust you is anywhere from three days up until four weeks, but most often, after one week, they have shown enough patience with your presence that you’ve gained their friendship.
Mimicking A Guinea Pig
The social body language between guinea pigs can tell you a lot about them. Some you can mimic to help you make friends quicker.
Guinea pigs are clean animals, and they like to do a bit of self-grooming. Guinea pigs’ eyes secrete a white fluid that they then use their hands to rub over their face and through other parts of their fur. You can mimic this by doing the same and rubbing your face, and smoothing your hair. To do this, you must be at their level and never overshadow the cage. If you get any response, like a look, or they come a bit closer, or start to social squeak, give them a treat but don’t pick them up. It would help if you gained their trust slowly.
Herd Dominance Behaviour
In the wild, a group of guinea pigs is called a herd, and within this herd, there is always one dominant guinea pig. The herd sizes are around ten guinea pigs. To establish who the herd dominant guinea pig is, they will fight for the place. It is often over in minutes, and most of the time, it doesn’t result in anything too nasty. However, one of the deciding factors of a dominant herd leader is that they will bite the other guinea pigs ears. You can mimic this. A tiny punch of the ears of a new guinea pig shows them that you’re in the herd, and they are too. However, you are the dominant one.
Dominance pinching should be the weakest of pinching possible. You dont want to hurt them.
Guineas pigs are very friendly, and they love to be together with other guinea pigs, and they often display signs of affection by rubbing their heads onto the cheeks of other guinea pigs. You can mimic this by rubbing the cheeks of your guinea pig. But, of course, that’s if they let you. Cheek rubbing would also be the ongoing signs of affection from you throughout their lives.
Lifting Up A Guinea Pig
Eventually, you will be able to pick up your guinea pig with ease. The guinea pig is best lifted by placing one hand around the animal’s trunk and gently supporting its hind end.
Your Guinea pig loves you if they display the below:
- Happy to be held by you
- Take treats from your hand
- They often climb over you
- If they are talkative when you go near them
- Being playful around you
After a while, using the advice above, you should be able to pick up your pet guinea pig with ease, especially since they know the end game will either be a cuddle or treat. However, this may take some time to trust that because it’s their instinct to be cautious. After a while, you will be able to lift your guinea pig without a blanket or treat.
Good luck, and happy guinea pig parenting!