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Can guinea pigs be bathed?

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Can guinea pigs be bathed?

Guinea pigs, and especially the smooth-haired ones, are animals that do not require bathing. They are creatures that can take great care of their fur on their own, as long as you properly take care of their cage, not forgetting to change the bedding often and remove the remnants of vegetables and fruit. Unfortunately, there are situations when a pet is sick or gets dirty in a place that it is not able to clean itself. Then we have nothing else to do but organize a bath for our pet. However, it should be remembered that washing too often can dry out the delicate skin of your pet. Improperly selected cosmetics can also have a bad effect on the condition of the skin and the formation of irritation. So how should the bath be carried out to bring only benefits to our pet?

At the beginning, it is good to prepare all the necessary utensils so that the pig is not additionally stressed by running and feverishly searching for the necessary things during the bath. The items that you need to prepare include:

  • a place to bath, i.e. a clean and flat sink where the pet will not slip,
  • two towels,
  • properly selected shampoo for guinea pigs,
  • a soft brush for combing the hair,
  • a hair dryer.

A very important step before the bath is to calm the pet by rocking it on its lap. The help of another person, who can prepare hot water during this time, is useful here. Keep in mind that guinea pigs have a slightly higher body temperature than we do, so the water must be warm, not hot. The stream must not be too strong either. At the bottom of the sink, we can put a small towel that will cushion the paws and prevent the animal from slipping, thanks to which it will feel safer. The next step is to gently put the pig under the sink. Mine likes water and baths, so she confidently enters the sink and settles in, stretching out her hind paw, which means she is relaxed and ready to wash. When the pig is in the water, gently moisten its fur, avoiding its eyes, nose and ear area. You should always remember not to leave the pet alone and constantly monitor the water temperature. If the animal seems anxious or stressed by the whole situation, you can give him treats prepared in advance.

In what cosmetics should you wash guinea pigs? The answer is: in a specially dedicated shampoo. It does not contain any perfumes or substances that could irritate the animal’s skin. In its composition, however, we can find agents that prevent the formation of mycosis and unwanted enemies in the form of skin parasites. Such a cosmetic is gently massaged into the pet’s fur with circular movements and then rinsed very thoroughly. If our piggy was very dirty, this action can be repeated, but you should check whether we have rinsed the cosmetic thoroughly from the sensitive skin of the pig. As for the ears, clean them with cotton buds or cotton buds for children.

During bathing, it is very important that the pig has constant eye contact with the person who is bathing it. This will allow her to feel safe and not be stressed by the whole process. The health of the animal should not be forgotten either, so special attention should be paid to the delicate spine of the pig, which can be damaged by too rapid movements.

The next step after rinsing off the shampoo is to transfer the pig to a towel and gently dry it, remembering that our movements should be calm and gentle. My pet likes to feel the warm air of the dryer on it at this time. I set it to the lowest speed and set it about 40 cm from the pig. After bathing, put the dried animal in a clean, freshly lined cage.

When caring for a guinea pig, however, you must remember that bathing should be a last resort for us and should be performed only when it is absolutely necessary. This is an event that stresses the animal a lot, especially if it is with us only for a few days. We also never pour too much water into the sink, because pigs are animals that avoid swimming, and too deep water can drown your pet. If we follow these rules and keep calm and self-control, there is a good chance that our pet will like the baths and will want to participate in them, and this process will be great fun for him.

Photo on thumbnail: joannawnuk /