How Long Can Guinea Pigs Go without Food?

Do you find yourself leaving your guinea pig behind from time to time on account of vacations or work trips?

With nobody to look after your pet when you’re gone, you might wonder how long the little creature can go without food.

During these times of separation, you must know what you can do to ensure your pet lives healthily and happily.

How Long Can Guinea Pigs Go without Food?

Although nobody has starved a guinea pig as a part of an experiment to find out the exact number of minutes, hours, or days they can survive without food, it’s clear that they can’t go too long without eating something.

As a guinea pig owner, you must have seen your pet eating almost consistently throughout the day.

This grazing-like-eating routine ensures the optimal functioning of their intestines and liver.

If they don’t get any food for 24 hours or more, they may start feeling lethargic and face intestinal problems.

Ideally, they should have access to hay and fresh food packed with vitamin C for a healthy gut and prevention of gastrointestinal stasis, which can be fatal.

A good rule of thumb is to not deprive your pet of food for more than 12 hours.

This, of course, is for when you’re away from them. You must leave them with several days’ worth of food when going away for a day or two.

Otherwise, your guinea pig should have access to food at all times throughout the day and night.

What Do Guinea Pigs Eat on a Regular Basis?

Guinea pigs are herbivores – this means no need for eggs, dairy, meat, or insects!

Most guinea pigs eat timothy hay on a regular basis. If they don’t get it, their teeth may end up growing over their tongues, restricting them from eating altogether.

This happens because the teeth of guinea pigs are always growing. This is why they need something dry and fibrous to chew on to wear down their teeth.

These little pets also like to munch on fresh fruits and leafy vegetables.

You should consider feeding them lettuce and cucumber regularly, as they source out water from these green veggies. Other fresh food to feed your guinea pig includes:

  • Bananas
  • Tomatoes
  • Watermelon
  • Blueberries
  • Strawberries
  • Parsley
  • Green pepper
  • Cantaloupe

What They Shouldn’t Eat

Here’s a list of food that is toxic for guinea pigs:

  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Coconuts
  • Avocados
  • Grapes
  • Chives
  • Raisins

Tips to Take Care of Your Pet Guinea Pig While You’re Away

The fact that guinea pigs can’t survive for long without proper food makes it challenging for frequent travelers to ensure their pet’s health while they are away.

Here are a few useful tips that can help you take care of your pet when you’re not with them.

Ask Someone to Take Care of Your Pet

It’s always best to have someone check up on and take care of your pet in your absence.

Make sure you take some time out to discuss your pet’s needs and train the individual to take care of the little creature before you leave.

This will give you the much-needed peace of mind and you can even travel for extended periods of time without worrying about the health of your pet.

Consider Boarding Your Pet

In case you don’t have any family member, friend, or neighbor who can promise to take care of your guinea pig while you’re away, you should consider boarding your pet.

Thankfully, many facilities willingly welcome pets and take care of them for several days.

You can try your luck with your vet or at a local pet shop for an affordable boarding service.

Use a Hay Rack

Rich in fiber, hay is a highly nutritious food for guinea pigs.

Just keep in mind that these creatures can eat a lot of timothy hay so it’s best to use a hay rack for a no-mess experience.

Moreover, with a hayrack, you get a chance to keep more hay in stock for your pet than you ever could by throwing some on the floor of their cage.

Install a Pet-Monitoring Camera

Thanks to modern technology, now you can keep an eye on your pet guinea pig while you’re away by simply setting up a camera at home.

You can then monitor your pet’s behavior and actions on your smartphone and make sure that they don’t run out on food.

The Bottom Line

It may be challenging to keep your pet guinea pig fed while you have to travel but it can be achieved with just a little bit of effort.

After all, it’s for your cute pet’s wellbeing!

The little creature depends on you for its survival so make sure you ensure an adequate supply of food before you leave them alone.

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