Can Guinea Pigs Escape Their Cages?

Guinea pig in a cage eating from bowl

Size

Guinea pigs like to be maintained in groups of two or more since they are sociable animals, but most commercial cages are too small to accommodate a couple of pigs. Many owners believe the "traditional" standard of 2 square feet per to be outdated and cramped. A single requires 7.5 square feet, while a pair requires 10.5 square feet, according to Cavycages.com. Even so, your guinea pigs will benefit from the extra area if you can give a larger cage. A DIY cage may often give adequate room for a low price, and you can create pretty unique cages. These are often preferable than a crowded commercial cage (more on homemade cage ideas below).

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Cage Style

Cages with wire floors or ramps should be avoided, but otherwise, guinea pigs aren't picky about the type of cage they require. Cages with ramps and low plastic shelves or ledges offer excitement for the guinea pig, but make sure they don't take up valuable floor room for laps. For adults, the distance between the bars can be up to one inch. Some property owners have devised ingenious solutions to the challenge of supplying adequate housing. Guinea pigs have the advantage of being rather large and not very fond of climbing or chewing, thus they are unlikely to climb or jump over a wall of acceptable height (18 inches should contain most pigs). If you have adequate space, a little imagination may go a long way toward creating amazing guinea pig enclosures, especially for groups of guinea pigs. Cages made of "Cubes and Coroplast" have become highly popular. Avoid the majority of guinea pig cages on the market since they are quite tiny. There are just a few commercial cages that come close to being suitable for guinea pigs.

Bedding

Avoid cedar shavings and, ideally, pine shavings for bedding. Hay and aspen shavings are both suitable options (a layer of paper underneath will help with absorbency). Newer recycled paper beddings, as well as a slew of other pet-safe bedding and litter options, are excellent choices.

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Nest Box

An upturned plastic tub or pail, or a cardboard box, will do as a nest box or hiding spot (the cardboard box can just be discarded if soiled and replaced). Tunnels and hides may also be made from large diameter PVC pipes with thick walls.

Toys

To enhance interest, toys should be included. Crumpled paper, cardboard boxes, balls, wood blocks, hard plastic cat and rabbit toys, fleece tunnels, little fleece blankets, willow rabbit toys, and hanging bird toys are all fantastic toys and hides for your guinea pigs. Just make sure there aren't any little pieces that might fall off or be bitten off and ingested.

Many specialists say that guinea pig bodies are not intended for this type of activity and that the danger of damage is too large. Other methods of exercise should be attempted.

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Food Dishes and Water Bottle

A sturdy ceramic bowl is a wonderful choice for a meal bowl. Instead of a water bowl, use a water bottle with a steel spout and ball to provide a steady flow of clean water. Keep in mind that guinea pigs drink a lot (and some like to "play" with the bottles), so monitor their water supply throughout the day and replace as needed. A tiny hay hopper may be installed to keep the guinea pigs supplied with clean hay.

The cage will likely need to be cleaned weekly or more often.

Exercise Pens

Your guinea pigs should be allowed to exercise unless their enclosure provides plenty of space. A portable wire enclosure can be used as a corral for the guinea pigs to keep them out of danger (you can create your own or buy wire playpens intended expressly for small animals or dogs) (getting under furniture, chewing on wires etc.). In the summer, your guinea pigs could appreciate a vacation outside, where a wire enclosure (completely fenced for the guinea pigs' safety) set up on the grass would provide a welcome change of scenery. Only do this if your grass is free of pesticides and fertilizers. When they're outside, make sure they have access to drink and shade.

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