Amazing Animal Facts: Gregarious Guinea Pigs

Guinea pig
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Social Butterflies

All this enticing performance is, of course, meant to convey the deeply social nature of the guinea pig, who appears to be happiest when surrounded by family of any species. “They like to have a pal, but they respond well to humans, too. Some are more social than others, but they do tend to eat together and snuggle together,” Lanier says.

Fetterman says the guinea pig’s loving nature is one of its best traits. “They absolutely love to be with people," she says. "I feel like the most important thing about caring for a guinea pig is making sure you spend enough time with him or her. Guinea pigs are very social animals, and you need to make sure you spend as much time as you can with your guinea pig each day.”

The Right Stuff

Guinea pigs can live as long as seven years, so befriending one of these spunky rodents is no small commitment. For optimum guinea pig happiness — leading to a lot more of the popcorning, chattering and socializing that make everyone smile — Lanier recommends a roomy cage at least 4 feet by 2 feet, quality food, exercise and lots of love and attention. “The number one need is to be cared for properly. They can’t just sit in the cage and stay there all day,” Lanier says.

“Any new guinea pig owner is in for a treat,” Fetterman adds. “They are very friendly and social animals. They love to be played with and held. In my opinion, guinea pigs are a great addition to a family.”

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