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Helping A Guinea Pig Entertain Himself

What can be done to help a lone guinea pig be happy in his cage all day?

Shannon Cauthen
Posted: July 23, 2013, 2:10 p.m. EDT

guinea pig by tube full of hay
Guinea pigs enjoy "toys" like cardboard tubes or paper bags that are stuffed with timothy hay.

Q: What kind of toys/ things should I get my guinea pig to play with? I am not able to get another guinea pig, so he is in his cage most of the day and does not have a lot of toys. I need advice on how to minimize his loneliness.

A: In order to prevent your single guinea pig from becoming lonely, offer him an assortment of toys that will provide optimal stimulation. Toys, such as brown paper bags and toilet paper tubes, are great fun for guinea pigs — especially if these items are stuffed with timothy hay.

Guinea pigs also enjoy the occasional brown cardboard box. The least amount of ink on the box is preferred. If you have a child who loves to color, he or she can use nontoxic crayons to create quite a house for the furry tenant from the box.

Pet retailers often offer toys for guinea pigs, and you can also purchase some of the toys made for birds. Guinea pigs are very oral creatures. Possibly this is due to the fact that they cannot see in front of their noses. Anything that comes around that area is fair game for a sniff, lick or gentle nibble. Bird toys are held to a higher standard of manufacturing due to the destructive nature of birds. Stick to the hard plastic toys, and avoid toys made from hide, string or latex to broaden your guinea pig’s in-cage experience while you are otherwise occupied. Mirrors, bells and hammocks hung low add great distraction. Beds are also fun to jump in and out of, flip over or otherwise nap in.

Changing out toys and having variety is the key to life for guinea pigs. Just like people, they enjoy changes in some areas and this includes toys.

See more guinea pig Q&As, click here>>
See guinea pig health Q&As, click here>>
See Shannon Cauthen's author bio, click here>>

Posted: July 23, 2013, 2:10 p.m. EDT

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Reader Comments
Thanks for the information! While I would always encourage people to get 2 guinea pigs if they were just getting them new, I rescue all kinds of animals including small critters like guinea pigs and rats that prefer to have company. it is often the case that these animals are single when I rescue them and I don't want to introduce another adult or older juvenile to them. I try to pay a lot of attention to them to make sure they don't get lonely.
Lisa, East Hampton, CT
Posted: 7/23/2013 4:51:53 PM
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