Hang the water bottle to the side of your guinea pig’s cage and remove the water bowl so that your little bun-bun doesn’t have another source to consume water from.
Guinea pigs may take some time to get familiar with the idea of drinking their daily dose of H2O units from a vessel other than a dish.
But if you remain persistent, you can get them accustomed to the changed practice of chugging water.
Water for Guinea Pigs
Drinking abundant water is vital for all animals, small or big, but it’s especially essential for pocket pets, such as guinea pigs, as they don’t sweat to regulate their body temperature.
As a result, they require plenty of water to cool down.
They consume the water, urinate, and voila, their body temp drops like the Times Square ball drop.
On top of that, cavies need water to wash toxins out of their digestive system, keep their kidneys healthy, and prevent/treat urinary tract infections.
All-in-all, guinea pigs should have a generous amount of water in a day.
In a volumetric sense, a cavy needs approximately 100 to 200 ml of water daily. However, that quantity is not set in stone as some guineas may not drink so much water and stick to about 50 ml a day.
If that is the case with your furball friend, they should be making up for their lack of water consumption through vegetables or fruits.
If not, they might be suffering from dehydration, which can be fatal if left unaddressed.
Feeding a Guinea Pig Water from a Bottle
There are many different types of guinea pig water bottles, which is why choosing one can be tricky. And if you don’t select the right one, your piggy may not drink its daily volume of water.
Primarily two guinea water bottles are available on the market
- One that is attached outside of the cage while its nozzle hangs inside for the guinea to drink water from
- The other one is placed inside the cell with its spout suspended at an angle for the guinea to drink water from
Either of the two can work for your cavy companion, but you must find out which one’s better.
Outside or Inside the Cage
Guinea pigs have different personalities. Some may be too energetic and love to jump around, while others may be a little less mischievous.
Depending on how naughty your furry pal is, you will have to choose the water bottle for them.
If your cavy companion is one to frolic and has the potential to be a bottle puller, inside hanging bottles may not be the right choice for them.
When guinea pigs can see a container hanging at the wall of their abode, they are likely to pull the spout (as it will be in their reach) to see what happens.
In that scenario, if the bottle is not attached to a retrievable cable, it will fall down.
So, unless you get a water bottle that is attachable with a cable, you should stay away from one that will hang inside your piggy’s cage.
With the outside drinkware varieties, you can make sure that your furball pal gets water and doesn’t get distracted by the hanging container.
In other words, they will not know that by pulling the nozzle, they can bring down the fixture on the wall.
As a result, they will only focus on the spout and try to drink water.
In a nutshell, if you have a naughty little fellow, you should go with the latter bottle type. And if you still want to try one of the inside ones, get the kind that’s attached to a retrievable string.
Water Bottle Placement
The placement of a water bottle is also essential in feeding guinea pigs water.
Some cavies may respond well to a water bottle that’s not too high above, close to the ceiling, while others may like ones hanging higher.
Typically the one suspended closer to the ground is better for guineas that like to take the nozzle down midway into their mouths to suck water.
On the contrary, piggies that can drink with just the tip of the spout will be fine either way.
To figure out which style of bottle positioning works for your cutie pie, try the following trick.
Place two drinkware pieces at different heights and fill them up with an equal amount of water. The one that gets empty faster will be your winner.
Cleaning Guinea Pig Water Bottles
Guinea pigs know how to create a mess, and they are really good at it. So, don’t think they will not dirty their bottles just because those items are closed.
They can (and will) introduce food bits into their water vessel through the nozzle. Therefore, don’t forget to wash it every other day.
And try to buy a transparent product so that you can see whenever the water starts to get muddy/cloudy. Then you’ll know it’s time for cleaning!
Dehydration in Guinea Pigs
As much as guinea pigs need water, they are often the ones consuming little of it. There could be many reasons why a cavy may not be drinking enough.
But before exploring the causes behind your baby bun-bun’s lack of water consumption, knowing the signs of dehydration is crucial.
Otherwise, you might not pick up on the telltale symptoms of a parched guinea pig and, resultantly, not do anything about it.
Guinea pigs generally breathe at a fast pace. But when they don’t have enough water in their system, their breathing can get even more rapid.
If you have ever noticed your little buddy’s torso movements, you will know if there are any changes in their breathing rhythm.
Loss of Appetite
Cavies need a generous amount of water to digest food properly. Therefore, when they don’t drink sufficient water, they may experience gut troubles and lose interest in eating.
That said, loss of appetite can also be an indicator of a different medical condition. If you cannot ascertain if your fur pal is dehydrated, contact your vet because reduced appetite is never a good sign.
If your cavy companion’s eyes seem crusty with visible discharge, it can be because of a deficiency of fluids in their system.
Like loss of appetite, crusty-shut eyes can result from any number of medical conditions. So, consult your veterinarian to know if dehydration is responsible for your pet’s eye problem or not.
You can also try looking for other symptoms of dehydration to ensure that your bun-bun needs more water. This way, you can spare yourself the worry and not have to involve the vet.
One of the most obvious and hard-to-miss signs of dehydration in guinea pigs is dark-colored urine.
If your cavy companion seems to be excreting deep yellow-colored urine, they might not have enough water in their body.
Additionally, if they are dehydrated, their stool will be dry as well. If checking the color of your fur child’s urine is difficult for you, perhaps analyzing their fecal pellets may not be as dry hard stool is hard to miss.
Another sign of dehydration in guinea pigs is rough coat. And check it is pretty easy.
Hold your petite pal’s fur with the tip of your fingers and pinch it a little; if it comes back to its original state, it is well-hydrated.
As already discussed, knowing the signs mentioned above of dehydration is important so that you can dig deeper and find out why your sweet pie is not drinking sufficient water.
Reasons for Not Drinking Enough Water
Look out for these factors to find out why your bun-bun is dehydrated.
Their Incisors Are Too Long
A cavy’s teeth are continually growing, which means if they are not trimmed, they can get in the way of eating and drinking.
If you provide your pet with an endless supply of hay, its teeth shouldn’t grow too long. However, if your piggy pal isn’t drinking enough water, perhaps a dental appointment for them won’t hurt.
Too Much Vegetable Consumption
Vegetables are loaded with water. If your little friend consumes too many veggies, they might not want to drink water. So, try reducing their vegetable supply and see if that makes a difference.
The Bowl Is Dirty
Guinea pigs are not the tidiest when it comes to consuming food or drinking water. Yet, they want their feeding bowl to be squeaky clean; otherwise, they will not have whatever you put before them.
If your piggy pal’s water dish is unclean or stinks, they will not drink water, even if that means getting dehydrated.
So, wash their drinkware not to put them off! An easy way of ensuring that your fur family member isn’t repulsed by their bowl is to swap it with a water bottle.
Water bottles make for an excellent utensil to feed guinea pigs water. They keep the water free from any contaminants that otherwise might make their way into your little bun-bun’s water in an open bowl.
Guinea pigs adjust to drinking water from bottles. But for that to happen, you must not present them with any other drinkware options, such as a bowl.
Remove all other water sources from your fuzzy pal’s quarters and just leave a bottle for them to satiate themselves whenever thirsty.
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