Guinea pigs are prone to stress from heat. You'll want to work harder to keep your guinea pig cool in hot weather, especially if the temperature is over 30° Celsius. It's important to keep your guinea pig safe in these dangerously hot conditions. Learn how below.
Step 1. Move the guinea pig into the room
The most effective way to keep guinea pigs safe from heatwave attacks is to move them indoors if they are outdoors. The temperature in the house helps keep your guinea pig cool, especially if you have a fan or air conditioner.
The laundry room or bathroom is the best place for your guinea pig because this room is an example of the coldest room in the house. Also make sure your guinea pig is safe from other pets or small children. Do not turn on the washer or dryer when guinea pigs are present, as guinea pigs are sensitive to noise and the generator in the washing machine will release heat and moisture
Step 2. Move the guinea pig to the shade
Avoid direct sunlight which can instantly heat the cage. Your guinea pig's cage can stay cool if you place it in a shady place such as under a tree or a roof.
If you can't move the cage into the shade, you can choose to put it in or at least put a tarp on the cage. However, you should check your guinea pig more often
Step 3. Don't put your guinea pig in a shed or garage
The room temperature here can be twice as hot as the humidity rises. These rooms do not have good air circulation or ventilation so they trap heat in them. Avoid placing guinea pigs in sheds or garages as this can cause them to die!
Step 4. Keep it away from windows
Guinea pigs should be kept out of direct sunlight. Do not place the cage near a window because sunlight can directly hit it. You can prevent the sun from getting in by closing the windows or closing the curtains.
Step 5. Refill your guinea pig's water container regularly
Water can evaporate or even heat up quickly in hot weather. Guinea pigs will refuse to drink warm water! Refill the water at least three times a day in hot weather and touch it to make sure the water is as cool as room temperature.
Step 6. Provide more than one water source
Water is essential for keeping your guinea pig hydrated due to the weather conditions. In addition, water is also important to prevent other problems from arising. You can help your guinea pig get plenty of water by providing more than one water source. The more guinea pigs, the more water sources you have to provide. Some guinea pigs guard their territory so much that they may not want to share water resources.
Step 7. Feed vegetables that contain lots of water
Choose vegetables with a high water content such as cucumbers and berries which can help relieve discomfort in hot weather. You can also choose to serve frozen vegetables as a meal if you prefer.
Do not exaggerate. Provide only a few vegetables with high water content. However, this doesn't mean you have to overdo it and feed your guinea pigs vegetables with a high water content. The guinea pig still has to get nutrients from other vegetables
Step 8. Use fans and air conditioners
These things are great for keeping your guinea pig cool. However, do not point the fan or air conditioner directly at the guinea pig. Fans and air conditioners can help cool the air, but there's no need to point them directly at your guinea pig as this can stress them out.
Step 9. Put packs of ice and the like into the cage
Bottles of frozen water, packaged ice, gel, and chilled tiles can be included in the cage to retain cool air and give your guinea pig a cool resting place next to them.
- You can fill a plastic water bottle with water and freeze it overnight. Wrap it in an old rag or cold flannel, then put it in the cage.
- You can also put used tiles overnight in the freezer to cool and place them in a cage so your guinea pig can rest on them or next to them.
- Frozen gel packs can also be used as long as your guinea pig doesn't bite them!
Step 10. Watch for signs of dehydration
Hot weather is a time for you to pay more attention to your guinea pig's health because guinea pigs are prone to stress or dehydration from the heat
Step 11. Keep your guinea pig's fur clean
Long-haired guinea pigs can easily experience heat stroke because their longer coats can withstand heat. In contrast, short-haired guinea pigs are less prone to it. You need to pay more attention to the long-haired guinea pig. If you want to reduce the hot air pressure on your guinea pig, consider trimming its fur and keeping it groomed and short.
Step 12. Provide a hut or shelter
Guinea pigs like to hide from the sun to help lower their stress levels. Make sure your guinea pig has access to a hiding place or small hut, but avoid plastic ones as they heat up easily.
Step 13. Cover the sides of the cage with a damp cloth or towel
Moisture from a rag or towel can help keep the cool air temperature in the cage and ultimately reduce heat stress. Rinse the rag with cold water containing ice cubes and make sure you wring it out well. Do not place the cloth over the food container as this may damage the pellets. Only partially cover the sides of the cage to ensure you can see the guinea pig and vice versa.
- Do not put your guinea pig in the laundry room while the dryer is on. The resulting heat and humidity can kill your guinea pig.
- Do not leave your guinea pig in hot places as this can cause your guinea pig to experience lethal exhaustion or even death.
- Avoid cages, roofs, and huts made of plastic. Plastic can heat up fairly quickly.
- Do not feed guinea pigs lettuce.
- Never place your guinea pig cage in a shed or garage.