Grooming Your Guinea Pigs
Grooming is an important and regular part of critter care. It keeps your pet comfortable, happy and healthy!
Providing your guinea pigs with the correct care is vital to ensuring they live healthy and happy lives.
Guinea pigs only require bathing when necessary. Cavies will naturally groom themselves. You may notice a opaque liquid which will be secreted from your cavies eyes. This liquid will assist in cleaning your guinea pigs face and body. A guinea pig will groom itself numerous times a day often after eating vegetables or after burrowing through grass hay.
Long haired guinea pigs will require daily grooming and bathing every 3 to 4 months to maintain the condition of their coats and ensure that it does not become matted.
Always choose a small animal shampoo to ensure your cavies skin does not dry out or become irritated. A soap and chemical free, all natural shampoo is considered best.
Guinea pigs have four toes on their front feet and three on their hind feet with each foot having nails which continually grow throughout the guinea pigs life, and as a result will require regular trimming. Each nail has a blood vessel known as the "quick" which is pink or red in colour. See our chart for more information.
Guinea pigs should have their nails trimmed on a monthly basis or as needed. Regular trimming is advised as; When the nail regrows there will be an indent where the last trimming took place, making it easier to cut your guinea pigs nails in the future.
For a video guide on nail trimming, grooming and more see this pawsome video by our Team member Niomie who is also a qualified Veterinary Nurse.
Some guinea pigs require regular grooming especially those of the long-haired variety. Always us a soft bristled brush which only removes lose hair and does not pull the coat. Use a gentle stroke, in the same direction that the hair is growing. Do not push the brush upwards and brush against the grain. This will hurt the guinea pig. The bottom region is important to kept short on all guinea pigs regardless of breed. If your guinea pig requires a butt cut it can be better to gently spray the coat with lukewarm water or to cut after bathing. Wet hair tends to be easier to cut as the strands join increasing the cutting surface area. You can also cut on dry hair.
See our basic grooming graphic below: