While most of us know of Peruvian guinea pigs, only a few know anything about them.
If you are considering whether to welcome a new furry into your life, you must ensure that you are fully prepared for what it will need.
This includes its habits, diet, equipment, etc.
Below we will explain everything you need to know about this adorable pet so you know all you need to know before rescuing or purchasing.
What do you need to Know Regarding The Peruvian Guinea Pig?
As the Peruvian is an exquisite variety of the guinea pig family, it is often difficult to find.
They are indigenous in Bolivia, Argentina and Peru.
They are a recognized breed and we describe as a non-self variety of guinea pig.
It’s a hairy situation
As strange as it may seem, when they are babies they have short hair however, it grows until the guinea pig reaches maturity and can grow up to 20 inches.
Their hair forms a natural path along their back and this displays the coat beautifully.
Because of their overlong hair, a lot of time will need to be set aside for upkeep, which will involve grooming and washing more frequently than other types of guinea pigs.
The Peruvian comes in a wide variety of colors and patterns that include bi-color or even tri-color.
They can also be single colored, which is also known as “self” Peruvians.
While two colored Peruvian is fairly common, a tri-colored is rare.
For someone interested in showing a tri-colored Peruvian pig is ideal.
Light brown, black, dark brown and white are the more typical colors.
Peruvians can be a gray color, however, it is rarer.
Peruvians are frequently mistaken with the Abyssinian cavy, because of their similar looks before reaching maturity.
You can expect to have your pet for five to six years which is quite a good life expectancy.
Your female qill reach sexual maturity between 20 weeks and 1 year.
Typically, a female will have 3 (three) litters per year; however, she can have up to six or even more.
Maintenance and Care
If you are an older person Peruvians would be perfect for you since they require a lot of extra care that would be too much for a kid to handle.
Peruvians require regular grooming and washing, as their coats must remain spotless and smooth.
They need to be brushed every day to maintain their glowing coat.
Should they require even more attention, you will not mind because they are actually lively and charming.
What Are the Personality Traits of Peruvians?
We can describe Peruvians as curious beings that are attentive and enjoy exploring their surroundings.
This cavy is an affectionate critter who loves the care and companionship of you, their owner parent.
This breed will do very well when you have the time to you to play and be social with it.
As Peruvians become more familiar with their human, they will adore you and voice a variety of cute sounds.
As cavies are highly social, they do best with a friend.
However, you must ensure that their home is suitable meaning big enough to avoid one bullying the other and any altercations.
What are the Grooming Requirements for a Peruvian Guinea Pig?
To avoid your pet’s home being filled with fur, you must brush his hair every day or minimum one day a week.
Similarly, this will also help remove large dust particles and stop his coat from matting.
Unfortunately, this is not an activity that guinea pigs enjoy, particularly with their backside.
Therefore, you must be very gentle when you brush and we recommend that you use a comb with wide teeth or an infant baby brush which is soft.
You should be careful to never tug on a guinea pig’s fur, especially with very sensitive places like his bum.
If your guinea pig has very knotted hair, then you must bathe him first.
This method will make untangling the hair with your fingers a lot easier than using conditioner and shampoo used for babies.
Once you have dried your pet gently, you will brush through the guinea pig’s coat.
Should you encounter further tangles, hold the fur with your fingers and brush the edges first, take care when you near the skin.
Remember that bathing can be quite a nerve-racking experience for guinea pigs and we should avoid it.
Majority of guinea pigs do not require bathing except if they have parasites, an unpleasant odor, filthy or have extremely tangled hair.
It is useful to get your cavy into a grooming ritual from as early as possible, so they become familiar with the practice and hopefully enjoy it.
The cavy’s coat should be groomed with clippers and a fine comb at least one day a week.
You must pay close attention when cutting your pet’s hair as he can get hurt.
A useful tip is to keep your guinea pig distracted while cutting him to avoid any mishaps.
The easiest way to divert the attention of a guinea pig is with the help of fresh food.
Ensure that the hair is short enough to allow your pet to move around easily.
What Does My Guinea Pig Need?
Peruvians have a very similar diet to any other guinea pig.
They enjoy a quality blend of guinea pig fodder which contains proteins, fibers and minerals.
You must provide your guinea pig with a lot of fresh food as it contains vitamin C, which you will not find in their little bodies unless you do.
Fruits and vegetables are good for them, but you must give them in small portions.
Now you are probably thinking: What types of fruit and vegetables are good for my pet?
Don’t despair, we have the answers right here:
· Fruits such as apples, strawberries, blueberries, bananas, and melons are ideal pleasures for your tiny friend.
· Vegetables that contain the important vitamin C are romaine lettuce, carrots, tomato, spinach, parsley, broccoli, dandelion, clover and Chinese cabbage.
Before introducing new food, it is important to ensure that your guinea pig gives his stamp of approval.
It is very important to change his water every day, otherwise it’s very easy for it to get dirty and make your little buddy very sick.
For the setup, a medium crate with a plastic bottom where you can keep the wood shavings is ideal.
It is important to have either a cylinder or a container where the guinea pig can keep fit and have fun.
Daily exercise is necessary to prevent issues with their weight.
How Can I Get a Peruvian Guinea Pig?
Adopt don’t Shop
Finding a Peruvian guinea pig is not as easy as you might expect as they are rare and most likely won’t be found in your local pet stores.
However, you may sometimes locate them at rescues.
A wonderful organisation that may help you is https://www.petfinder.com/.
Alternatively, contact a trustworthy local breeder and look at guinea pig sale and adoption pages.
When adopting, make certain it is healthy. Signs of a healthy cavy are:
· Good teeth;
· Sharp eyes; and
· Glossy coat.
A cavy will be a great pet regardless of gender or age.
Peruvians are definitely on the pricier side, ranging between thirty to sixty dollars.
In conclusion, the Peruvian is a magnificent animal that requires slightly more time than its other guinea pig counterparts.
That is why it is not an ideal pet for inexperienced children and other types of guinea pigs would more suitable to them.
This cavy would be perfect for an adult or an enthusiast who has enough time to groom and give them the required attention.
The fact that they require your total devotion is mainly why they are not as common as other varieties of guinea pigs.
Therefore, if you intend welcoming this cavy into your home, you must prepare to give him a lot of your time.