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Wednesday, April 9, 2008
Learning “Pig” Language

By Leah McNeil
Leah loves guinea pigs more than chocolate. Share in her adventures of guinea pig ownership.

Click image to enlarge
It's hard not to fall in love with these furry cuties
Image Courtesy Leah McNeil
Princess Snowflake poses for a pigture

Hello there! Leah and Princess Snowflake here. I'm sure that many of you are new to the world of guinea pigs. And many of the veteran pig owners (including myself) can attest to the transformation you are about to go through over the next few months. I don't know how or why or even when it happens, but soon your life will be taken over by your guinea pig(s). You will find yourself doing strange things like going to the grocery store at midnight because your pig's veggies are not fresh enough for their late-night treat. You'll find yourself at social events where acquaintances show off pictures of their (human) children and you, in turn, show them a picture (or maybe two or three or four) of your guinea pig(s). You'll come home from a looong day of work and walk right past your spouse or significant other and go straight to the guinea pig cage to check on your pig(s) to make sure they are OK. Ooops. This is no joke, guys. Each of those instances has happened to me personally – and more than one time.

One of the most fascinating things to happen is that you start talking and writing in a different language – in “pig” language. For instance, guinea pig owners call themselves “slaves” because essentially, over time, you become a slave to your tiny, little pig. Contrary to popular belief, piggies can be quite demanding and rather high maintenance. You will say/write things like: Have a nice wheeeek! or Merry Pigmas! Soon, you will seek out other guinea pig owners/lovers and start pigticipating in (and maybe even organizing) pignics and pig-jama parties. You will buy all kinds of stuff to satisfy your critter's pigly needs, especially those ever-popular hidey places called pigloos that you find in pet stores.

Interestingly enough, a common misconception of guinea pigs is that they are throwaway pets and such “pignorance” will bother you. Hopefully over time, whee can continue to educate people and eventually change that way of thinking. Next, any “pignomaly” in your pig's appetite or behavior will warrant a visit to the vet. And last but not least, you will start taking lots and lots of pigtures of your guinea pig(s) because, let's face it – you can never have enough piggie pigtures!

Now, I know that all of this pig-centric behavior is a lot to absorb. So, for you new piggie owners, whatever you do, don't fight it. Embrace it. And just enjoy turning your guinea pig into a spoiled rotten little monster, like my Princess Snowflake. I promise you this: Your pig will love you for it...Wheeeek!

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Learning “Pig” Language

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Reader Comments
I just found your piggie blog leah and i love it! I had to laugh when you said 'You will find yourself doing strange things like going to the grocery store at midnight because your pig's veggies are not fresh enough for their late-night treat' .... its SOOO true! hahaha. x
kim Ritchie, originally baltimore-now UK England, MD
Posted: 5/8/2008 6:39:33 AM
I agree, you do start talking pig language...I do with my friends e mails and e cards. And I check my pigs every morning before anything else.
Kate, Milwaukee, WI
Posted: 4/12/2008 10:32:13 AM
Everyone who knows me knows my house is the same way as your house, Leah! I run past everyone and downstairs to see the piggies and bunnies. Well, I do stop and say hello to the birdies Oscar and Daisy. Everyone gets talked to in 'piggy talk', and even Oscar the parrot talks like that now.

Of course, there is no one better than Leah to give us stories about Princess Snowflake. She is the expert writer! I hope you all have seen and purchased her lovely book. LINK
Judi of Metropolitan Guinea Pig Rescue, Round Hill, VA
Posted: 4/11/2008 7:32:17 AM
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