Guinea pigs are adorable, aren’t they? They waddle into your life and before you know it, the little one has become your friend. Of course, nobody wants to see their little friend suddenly losing patches of hair. After all, the luxurious coat of the guinea pig is one of the features we love about them. Besides, guinea pig hair loss can be a signal that there is a problem that needs to be addressed really quickly.
There are some causes of hair loss in guinea pigs that are normal and you really do not have to be alarmed about it. However, there are some that, unless treated quickly, can prove detrimental to your little friend. Let us take a look at some of the causes of guinea pig hair loss:
Obviously one must consider that parasites could be the problem behind the hair loss. These parasites are usually in the form of either mites or lice. Skin irritation and hair loss result but with a treatment provided by your vet your little guinea pig should be right as rain before long.
Your local small animal vet can provide the right prescription to deal with mites – A great product I have success with is Revolution
This type of infection is usually the result of ringworm. More often than not, you will notice it appearing on the face. Anti-fungal creams and shampoos are called for.
Staphylococcal and Cryptococcosis are the two most common forms of bacterial infections that affect guinea pigs.
Hair loss occurs but it can be treated with a course of antibiotics.
A diet that does not contain enough vitamin C can result in guinea pig hair loss. If you want your little friend to have the healthy, thick, luxurious coat he is supposed to have, make sure that his diet is properly balanced.
This includes Vegetables twice daily, guinea pig pellets (With Vitamin C) and a 24/7 supply of hay! You can see our recommended guinea pig food list here.
Your guinea pig might have injured himself in his cage or while playing with his toys. Check the cage and accessories for any parts that might cause your pet to become injured. Also, if you keep more than one guinea pig in the same enclosure, they sometimes fight. Although not a common problem it can occur. Your guinea pig hair loss could be attributed to a battle scar, in which case it is best to separate them, and let the injured party have his own space.
Although not exhaustive, the above list covers the more common reasons why you may notice hair loss on your guinea pig. If you have noticed the problem, your first port of call should be the vet’s office. Letting your guinea pig receive an examination by a professional will help to address any health issues that might be responsible for the hair loss before they become a major concern.
Guinea Pig Hair Loss Action Plan
You’ve noticed the hair loss, now what?
1. If the hair loss is through fights with another guinea pig, separate the animals.
2. Check the cage and accessories for parts that might have caused injury.
3. Take the animal to a vet.
4. Feed a healthy, balanced diet that is rich in veggies and vitamin C.
5. If the hair loss requires treatment, follow the instructions carefully and be consistent.
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