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So, youíve made the decision to provide a good home for a pet. Also, youíve decided that that pet will be a guinea pig. So far, all good. Despite the best of intentions, new guinea pig owners often make a couple of mistakes when just starting out on the journey.
Whilst itís true that not all of us are natural care givers Ė some of us are natural singers or sculptors or absolute aces in calculating AFL betting odds Ė we are all able to learn new skills as well as how to take good care of our pets.
We have compiled a list of 5 of the most common mistakes that are made by new and prospective guinea pig owners.
Pet Store Sympathy
This one is by far the most common mistake of all. You pass by the pet store and the guinea pig enclosure catches your eye. Six guinea pigs are crammed into a cage that is very obviously not anywhere near big enough for all six to comfortably move around in.
Your instinct to save and protect kicks in and you decide that buying your pet from the pet store will not only ensure that at least one of the six animals get into a good home, but it will also free up a bit of space and alleviate the pressure for those who remain behind.
However, the right
thing to do would be to just keep on walking. The only way that the pet store problem is ever going to be solved, is if we stop supporting pet stores altogether. Buying from a pet store only serves to stimulate the market.
Itís an unforgiving market that allows people to trade in animal life for profit and its one that will prevail unless all financial support is terminated.
A Pair Is Better Than One
Have you ever considered what your life would be like if you were the only one of your kind, and to top it all off, you have to spend your days in an enclosed space, with no entertainment
whatsoever? Youíd very soon start to experience depression and loneliness.
Itís no different for your guinea pig. Companionship is what makes life worth living, and your guinea pig needs a companion of its own kind. Two is better than one. Invest in a friend for your guinea pig.
We all need space in which to do our thing and live our lives. The fact of the matter is, even the biggest and most expensive cage at your local pet store will never be big enough.
Consider, instead, to learn how to construct a custom-made cage for your pets
. Just because your guinea pig can walk a few steps, turn around and not touch the sides, doesnít mean that the cage is big enough.
Building your own cage isnít at all difficult and there are many handy tips and tricks available online.
Skimping on Nutrition
A well-balanced diet is important to any living beingís health
. Your guinea pig is no exception. Be sure to educate yourself as to what your guinea pig needs to eat, as well as the recommended volumes, in order to stay nourished and healthy.
Wood shavings used to be a popular choice for constructing a bed for a guinea pig. However, if the necessary care isnít exercised, and the wrong type is used, this can have a very negative effect on the health of your guinea pig.
Instead, consider using a bed made of fleece. Fleece makes cleaning your cage a real hoot, and even better yet, its friendlier on the environment.