Guinea pig

Guinea pig

Cavia porcellus

Geographic range: Native of South America and common all over the world.

Physical description: There are 13 different breeds in the world that differ in colours and coat structure. Males are larger than females. They have compact, cylindrical-shaped, 20-26 cm bodies. Like other rodents, their teeth grow their entire life and they can cut them while chewing on wood. Their wild ancestors were brown in order to match their habitat’s environment.

Biology: These animals live in groups and are most active in the early morning and the evening. During the daytime, they look for food and explore their surroundings. Males are dominant in the group and can be aggressive when protecting their females or their territory. They have two typical defence mechanisms: “freezing”, when they don’t move at all or “running away” when they run into different directions trying to confuse the predator.

Lifespan: 4-5 years.

Food habits: They are herbivores: eating grass and hay. Also can eat vegetables, fruit and special food pellets.

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