How to Handle a Guinea Pig

Your guinea pig is a soft creature with tiny bones.  Keep small children from handling him because they cannot detect these bones beneath his fur, and they can be too rough.

Guinea Pig Snoozing

Whenever you lift your guinea pig, wrap one of your hands gently but firmly around his body so that the palm of your hand secures his underside.  It’s important to keep at least one of his front legs held in place so that he realizes he can’t run.  Do this by resting one of your fingers on top of his leg.  Even so, he’s likely to try to jump if he’s frightened, so move slowly and carefully.  Cup your other hand under his bottom, with his hind legs resting comfortably on it.  Then you’re ready to lift him out.

Hold him close to your chest while he’s out of his cage.  This gives him a feeling of security, so that he’s less likely to nip or bite at you.  The tendency to nip when frightened is, of course, another reason why children should never be involved in the actual transport of your piggy.  A guinea pig does not land catlike when it jumps; it is likely to sustain injuries and even broken bones.

To return your piggy to his refuge, simply reverse the process, but be mindful of squirming.  Lower your guinea pig very close to the floor of his cage, but do not release him until he stops struggling.  He’ll want to bolt as soon as he’s released, so reduce the threat of injury by waiting until he’s still.  He’ll soon become familiar with the process.

If you have a question or a guinea pig tip to share, check out the Guinea Pig Care Facebook Page

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