Guinea Pig – Handling

Like rabbits, guinea pigs need constant and consistent handling in order for them to remain cool, calm and collected when being cuddled. Baby guinea pigs are like little bars of soap, they are not used to being handled and due to them being smaller animals, they may see it as a risk. It is advisable to start handling baby guinea pigs as soon as possible, (4 weeks +) this is to enable the guinea pigs to adapt to handling, and not necessarily associate handling with fear, potentially making it easier for you to handle your guinea pigs later down the line. It is always advisable that when adopting animals from the rescue to come and meet them first, if for children an older pair of pigs who are used to being handled may be more suited to you.

Guinea pigs should always be held gently, they are small animals and are easily broken if held to hard, or squeezed. Handling should always be consistent and not just now and then, this enables your pigs to remain calm when being picked up. When picking up your guinea pigs you should always ensure you have them fully supported, it is vital that your pig feels safe. Due to their smaller size they are able to wriggle and move quickly, if your guinea pig is unsure on handling, it may be advisable to sit on the floor, so that if they do wriggle, they haven’t far to fall. It is always good to familiarise yourself with your animals, gaining the trust of your guinea pig is important and will play a massive part in your guinea feeling comfortable being picked up and handled.

The bond between yourself and your guinea pig will grow as trust is gained, handling your guinea pig correctly will enable your guinea pig to remain calm, and feel comfortable therefore not breaking the trust.