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Befriending a Timid Guinea Pig

March 1, 2021

Guinea pigs a re very cute little pets. Of course, these guys can be quite timid. If you’re planning to adopt one, you’ll need to give your tiny furball time to settle in. A Burlington, ON vet offers tips on how to do that below.

D  on’t Rush Things

Don’t immediately try to pet or hold your furry friend when you get home. Give him time to relax and settle into his new digs. This goes double for pets that were adopted from shelters or from less-than-stellar living conditions. If your cavy is going to have roommates, give him a few days before you introduce them.

Talk To The Furball

Talking to your little buddy will go a long way towards helping him get used to you. Use a gentle, friendly tone of voice, and pay attention to how he or she reacts. Don’t speak too loudly!


Snacks can help you win over almost any animal. Use high-quality treats that your pet shouldn’t have very often. Cavy-safe fruits, such as apple slices and bits of bananas, are a good option. Just be sure to only offer things that are safe for Guinea pigs. Your vet can give you more information on this.

Be Gentle

Cavies are actually much more affectionate than many other pocket pets. Many enjoy being held and petted! When your furball seems comfortable, let him come out of his cage and explore a bit. Just keep him to a confined area. You can use a puppy pen or put a ring of cushions down on the floor. Hold out treats and call him to you. Petting or brushing him may help him feel safer.

Take It Slow

When introducing your cavy to family members, don’t have everyone meet him at once. Let your furry pal meet his new housemates—both two and four-legged—one at a time. If your pet gets overwhelmed, he may want to retreat into a hide box for a while. Just let him be!

Make It Fun

Another thing that will help your pint-sized pal feel more at home? Toys! Offer the little guy lots of fun toys. You can buy them, but you can also make your own. Look online for ideas and instructions. Just stick with safe, nontoxic materials and objects. Ask your vet for advice.

As your Burlington, ON veterinary clinic, we’re here to help! Call us anytime!

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