If you’re a new guinea pig owner, then you’re probably wondering whether your furry little friend needs air conditioning or not.
In fact, this is a very common question amongst various pet owners and almost all of them wonder whether their pet needs an air conditioner or not.
The weather does get pretty hot in summer and spring, and despite tons of cool water and ventilation, there is a need for air conditioners.
But the important question still remains – do your guinea pigs need air conditioning?
Do Guinea Pigs Need Air Conditioning?
No – your guinea pig doesn’t need you to turn on the air conditioner specifically for them.
You don’t want to put the air conditioner on full blast and make your guinea pig sick.
In fact, there is an ideal body temperature that your guinea pig needs to maintain.
Excessive cooling is actually very harmful to guinea pigs.
As one of the most sensitive animals, their bodies will work twice as hard to keep the natural temperature at its optimum levels.
Cold air and blowing air directly at the cage or hutch can actually stress out your guinea pig, which isn’t good for their health.
Excessive cooling can also lead your guinea pig to overeat, which can cause digestive problems and obesity.
So simply put, your guinea pig doesn’t need air conditioning.
What’s the Ideal Temperature For Guinea Pigs?
Turns out the ideal temperature of your guinea pig’s cage should be 50 degrees Fahrenheit (or 10 degrees Celsius).
It’s important to maintain your guinea pig’s environment’s temperature in order to ensure that it’s happy, healthy and thriving.
Like humans, animals are also sensitive to temperature changes – higher temperatures mean efforts need to be made to cool down, which can be exhausting, and colder temperatures mean the body will exert itself harder to maintain equilibrium.
How Can You Keep Your Guinea Pig Cool In Summer?
Unlike humans, guinea pigs don’t need air conditioners, but they do need to be kept cool when hot summer rolls in.
Summer can be pretty harsh on guinea pigs, especially the long-haired kind.
Some guinea pigs can get a heat stroke or even be dehydrated. This can lead guinea pigs to exhibit behaviors like lethargy and cause panting and convulsions.
Sure, your guinea pig’s hutch or cage can be placed in a room where you do turn the air conditioner on, but you’ll have to turn it off after a while to prevent overcooking.
There are other ways, however, to make sure your pet is comfortable and cool.
Make Sure Your Guinea Pig Has Water At All Times
Guinea pigs are super active animals.
Cold or hot, they’ll still play and hit the running wheel, so to prevent dehydration and other issues, it’s best to make sure they have a steady supply of fresh water all day.
The ideal water volume your guinea pig can drink in a day is between 80mls and 100mls, so keep an eye out for that.
Try Switching Up the Water With Cold Water
Some guinea pigs like room temperature water, but a great way to cool down your pet in a hot summer is to give them cold water in another bottle or bowl.
You can also add a tiny bit of ice to keep the water in the bowl or bottle cool – this is especially helpful if your guinea pig isn’t a fan of cold, cold water; a tiny amount of ice keeps the water from warming throughout the day.
Keep the Cage/Hutch In a Cool and Shaded Place
Another way to keep your pet cool in summers is to keep their hutch or cage in a cool and shaded place.
A cold and shaded place has a much more regulated temperature than using the air conditioner.
Pick a clean and well ventilated corner of a room or a shelf that is away from sunlight.
Avoid keeping your guinea pig’s cage near warm rooms like the pantry, kitchen or even bathroom.
Keep a Fan Around to Create Air Flow
If it’s excessively hot where you live, then keeping a fan near your guinea pig’s cage can create an airflow that keeps the cage or hutch ventilated and cool.
Remember not to point the fan directly at the hutch or keep it close by.
The idea of using a fan is to create airflow to ventilate the air and cool its temperature.
Try Self Cooling Mats
Many pet stores carry self-cooling mats for animals like guinea pigs and their cages.
A great way to keep your guinea pig’s hutch cool is to add a mat to the bottom of the hutch.
This is especially helpful for long-haired guinea pigs that need extra effort to stay cool.
Besides, these mats keep the ground temperature of the pet’s cage at optimum levels.
Brush Out Excess Fur to Avoid Heating
Grooming is also very important when it comes to keeping your animal cool.
Just like with any other animals, brush your guinea pig’s hair regularly to get rid of stray hair and make shedding easy.
You can even trim excessively long hair to make your pet feel cooler and lighter during hot summers, and letting the hair grow out for natural warmth in cold weather.
Soak Your Guinea Pig’s Leafy Green Feed In Ice Water
You can also soak your guinea pig’s food like leafy greens, cucumbers and carrot sticks in ice-cold water before dropping some in the hutch or cage.
Cooled food is also a great way to keep your pet cool from the inside.
The cool food will feel soothing and is healthier for your pet’s health in the heat.
Besides, an icy soak adds a bit of crispness which guinea pigs like!
Give Your Guinea Pig Plenty Of Watery Veggies to Eat
You can also modify your guinea pig’s diet by adding more vegetables and food, which have high water content.
This will keep your pet hydrated.
Watery leafy greens and veggies alike are great to give your guinea pig in hot months.
They prevent issues like urinary problems and dehydration – and as a bonus, they regulate your pet’s body temperature.
How Can You Keep Your Guinea Pig Warm In Cold Winters?
Winters can be pretty brutal to little guinea pigs.
Come winter, your pet will exhibit lethargy, excessive hunger, and other exaggerated bodily functions to help their body produce more heat to keep warm.
This also proves why guinea pigs do not need air conditioners! So what can guinea pig owners do to keep their pet warm in winter?
Give Your Guinea Pig Extra Calories
Like any living organism, your guinea pig’s body will work extra hard to keep the body warm.
This means your pet is going to be using a lot of energy and calories during winter.
Increase your guinea pig’s feeding times and add some extra calories to help them stay healthy and strong during winter.
Elevate Your Guinea Pig’s Hutch/Cage
The bottom of the cage or hutch can get pretty cold, especially if it’s placed on a table near a window or on the ground.
A great way to prevent this is to elevate your guinea pig’s cage or hutch so that the bottom doesn’t remain super cold.
Add Extra Hay In Your Guinea Pig’s Hutch/Cage
Add extra hay in your guinea pig’s cage or hutch to provide extra warmth.
It’ll keep them snug and also provide extra chewing material to grind their teeth with.
The hay will also provide a buffer between their paws and the cold cage floor, so when winter rolls in, add extra hay in your pet’s cage and keep on changing it when it needs cleaning.
Cover You Guinea Pig’s Cage With a Warm Blanket
If the area you live in is particularly draughty, you can cover a side of your guinea pig’s cage or hut with a small fleece fabric.
Not only will it block the cold air from flowing through the cage, but it’ll also provide warmth, which is very welcome in cold seasons.
Keep Your Guinea Pig’s Hutch/Cage In a Warm Place
Move your pet’s cage from the windows, draughty rooms and cold ground when winter rolls in.
Find a warm place in your home to place the hutch in for a few months or until winter passes.
It’s extremely important to make sure your pet is nice and warm.
So there you go! Guinea pigs don’t need excessive gadgets like heaters or air conditioners to regulate their body temperature.
In fact, exposure to air conditioning can negatively impact their health.
A simple modification of the cage, diet and grooming routine can help your guinea pig regulate their body temperature and maintain their best health!
Besides, all you have to do is make sure your guinea pig’s cage maintains the ideal temperature of 50 degrees Fahrenheit (or 10 degrees Celsius).
However, do be careful. When your pet exhibits signs of overheating or cold, which is characterized by reduced appetite and less activity, speak to a vet immediately!
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