Guinea Pig Life Span – One of the most essential aspects that pet owners need to take into consideration is the normal life span of the specie they are going to choose. As far as guinea pig life span is concerned, they are not the same as traditional domesticated type of pets such as dogs and cats. But, they primarily outlive some other domesticated rodents such as hamsters and mice.
Guinea pig life span may last four around four up to five years or even more while hamsters and mice can only live for a couple of years. However, an individual guinea pig lifespan depends on different things such as their diet, illness and lineage. Longer life span of guinea pigs manifest longer commitment and responsibility particularly if you really wanted to let your guinea pig lives healthy and happy life.
Average Guinea Pig Life Span
The average lifespan of an individual guinea pig may last for five up to seven years depending on their breed and specie. According to School Veterinary Medicine website of University of Pennsylvania, the duration of the guinea pig life span relies on the extent of love and care they are receiving that comes from their owner. There are also some other aspects that plays an essential role on their life span and that includes the quantity of exercise they are performing as well as their cage size.
Male guinea pig can survive longer when compared to the female ones but there are some species of female guinea pigs which might surprise you. One of the well-known guinea pigs around the world may live for fourteen years or more. According to the website of Michigan Animal Diversity, breeding of female guinea is primarily shorter compared to other species which is about three and a half years.
The aging process of guinea pigs is a bit the same as with humans. They opt to exercise less, drink less, sleep more, eat less and be at their less excited mood regarding simple things. They may also undergo several health related concerns and issues the same as human. One of the commonly observed diseases that they may experience includes arthritis.
Certain veterinarians can unwillingly treat some older guinea pigs. This is due to the fact that putting too much stress on their life may lead to sudden death. Hence, you need to put emphasis to a consistent routine when you have guinea pigs not only during their mature age but even as young as they are.
Despite of the fact that the average expected guinea pig life span is about five up to seven years, there are still some other breeds and species of this animal which may luckily survived for fourteen years or even more. This is the reason why pet owners are really choosing the best breed of these pet since they wanted to choose one which may last their life expectancy for long years.
Few Kinds of Guinea Pigs and Their Life Span
Are you familiar with the different kinds of guinea pigs and their life span? If not, then take into consideration the following kinds of guinea pigs and they are as follows:
Peruvian Guinea Pigs
These types of guinea pigs are long haired type of species which is similar to Shih Tzu’s. They have silky and long mane making them easily identifiable from all other types of guinea during their middle age. They are the type of guinea pigs which may last for an average life span at around five up to seven years.
Sheltie and Peruvian Guinea Pigs
Sheltie and Peruvian Guinea pig shares the same traits as they are both long haired. Apart from that they also have the same life span.
Hairless Guinea Pigs or Skinny
Hairless guinea pigs which are known as skinny pigs have hairless trait along with wrinkled and smooth body. Their lifespan may last for up to seven years or more.
This kind of guinea pig also carries their hairless gene. They also tend to live for longer years more than the skinny pigs.
These are only some of the different kinds of guinea pigs that you may choose to have at home. Choosing any of these types can best give you an amazing experience. But, if you wanted to spend time with your guinea pigs for longer span of time, then you may choose to have a kind of guinea that exceeds normal guinea pig life span.
Does The Lifespan of Guinea Pigs Depend on their Kind?
Does the lifespan of guinea pigs depend on their kind – a common question of those people who are not aware of the best type of guinea pigs they are going to choose? Well, the lifespan of a guinea pig doesn’t necessarily depend on their kind; it’s more on their vulnerability. The more they are vulnerable, the more chance for them to die since they are not given proper care and attention they need.
Hairless guineas are at risks most of the time. This is due to the fact that they are vulnerable to the continuous changes in the temperature. Apart from that, they don’t have any fur that will protect their body from both cold and hot temperatures. Hence, they need to be placed on the best conditions suited to their needs. They are even vulnerable to some type of infections and injuries. As their skin is exposed, it only manifest their body is not completely protected. Well, there are two different kinds of hairless guinea pigs namely the Baldwin and the Skinny guinea pigs.
Essential Factors Affecting Guinea Pigs Life Span
There are huge numbers of factors that affects guinea pig life span and some of these are as follows:
Despite of the fact that breed is not an essential factor in guinea pig life span, still you need to take it into consideration before you finally choose one.
For example, skinny pigs may live longer having a lifespan from six up to eight years. Hairless guinea pig may offer higher average of life span from seven up to eight years when compared to other kinds. Whereas, long haired type of guinea pigs live less having an average lifespan from five to six years only.
Attention and care that guinea pig are receiving also plays an essential role on their lifespan and part of this care is more on giving balanced and healthy diet. According to University of Pennsylvania Veterinary Medicine, alfalfa based type of pellets are not highly recommended for your growing guinea pigs. Despite of the high quantity of calcium contained in this food which may help your guinea pigs to grow, too much of this may result to unhealthy issues. As an alternative, you may try to choose orchard grass or timothy hay.
Another thing you need to consider is to let your guinea pig acquire enough amount of Vitamin C in their body. Such type of vitamins may help them to have longer and healthier life. It’s essential to take into consideration some fortified Vitamin C pellets combined with occasional vegetables such as lettuce and carrots at its appropriate amount to prevent stomach issues to occur. You may also let them take in vitamin C tablets and remember not to have it mix with the water they’re drinking. You may also give them high quality and fresh grass hay to help them digest their food in a healthier way.
Apart from the food, there are also other things you need to consider when it comes to guinea pig life span and that includes some health issues. Having too small type of cage at home manifest less amount of space for guinea pigs to roam and run around. Without appropriate amount of exercise, there might be great possibility of having underdeveloped bones and muscles. They may also not eliminate some toxins in their body. Regular cage cleaning may also promote better health.
For instances that your guinea pig is suffering from any type of illness, the best thing you can do is to seek for an immediate and effective help from a professional veterinarian. Guinea pigs needs to be weighed at weekly basis since one of the usual symptom to determine that they are experiencing any health issue is weight loss. There are also some other symptoms to determine that they are sick or ill such as sneezing, labored breezing, blood in their urine, diarrhea, lethargy and more.
As you pay so much focus on their health issues, expect that their lifespan will be extended at significant manner as much as what you want.
What Will Decrease The Lifespan of Your Guinea Pig?
Here are the lists of some of the things which may decrease the lifespan of your guinea and they are as follows:
1. Disorders and Diseases
There are different types of disorders and diseases that your guinea pig might be suffering and some of these are as follows:
- Dental disease
- Ear and eye disorder
- Nutritional disorder like appetite loss and deficiency in Vitamin C
- Metabolic disorders like pregnancy toxemia, calcium deficiency, and organ system hardening
- Airway and lung disorder like adenovirus infection, bordertella and bronchiseptal infections, pneumonia and even streptococcosis
- Reproductive disorders like mastitis, ovarian cyst, bordetellabacteria as well as dystocia
- Skin disorder like ringworm, barbering, fur mites, lice and even bumblefoot
- Disorders that affects some body system of their body like inflamed lymph nodes
- Tumors and cancer
The whole world is littered with different stories with regard to the different treatment for guinea pigs. But, the bottom line is, if these species are not well-treated, they stand to acquire better chance to live longer. But, when they’re not watered and fed well at the same time kept in better condition and not given utmost care, then they will eventually suffer.
Another effective means of not treating illness of guinea pig is through keeping it on their own. When they treat it by their own, they may experience sadness and loneliness which can potentially kill them slowly.
Moist and damp environment are dangerous for your guinea pig. Such type of environment may cause several issues to your guinea pigs such as allowing them to acquire ring worm or respiratory infections. This is the reason why you need not to leave your guinea pig outside especially during rainy condition.
4. Extreme Temperature
The most suitable temperature for your guinea pig is in between ten to thirty degree Celsius. If your areas temperature fall above or below such temperature, expect that your guinea pig might suffer. They are considered to be very hardy creature which can withstand hot and cold conditions but these species may not take any advantage from it.
Not feeding your guinea pig will not provide them any benefit. Apart from that, giving them wrong type of food may also harm them. Not giving them food at the right time may also lead to malnutrition which may lead to sudden death.
An Old Age Guinea Pig
The same as other animals, guinea pigs may also die at their old age. Well, there are some noticeable signs you need to consider to determine that they’re already getting old and they are as follows:
- They slow down some of their movements. You may notice that they are hurt when doing some intense movement.
- They will never be as playful anymore.
- Their fur starts to grey especially on the facial area.
- They sleep for longer hours
When these things are observed, spend time and effort to offer your guinea pig extra love and care to extend their life.
Read more: Cute guinea pig
The Death of Guinea Pigs Companion
Guinea pigs are well-known in creating special bonds with each other especially when they’re on similar cage. This is just a manifestation that the death of one guinea will be taken seriously by the other. For example, if there are two guinea pigs in one cage, the death of one will let the surviving one extremely lonely and sad.
Bringing inside the cage a New Guinea pig as a replacement will be an essential thing to do but you need to allow the remaining guinea to grieve from their loss. One important thing to help them is to provide them some goodies and toys to forget what happened.
As guinea pig starts to mature, spend more time with them or even allow them to stay in your soft and caring arms. For instances that they are suffering from unhealthy issues, seek for an immediate assistance from veterinarian. Despite of the fact that your guinea pig is already old, there are still other things you can do to extend their life.
This guide highlights guinea pig life span. Reading this guide may eventually help you to choose the best kind of guinea which may live for longer span of time. This also helps you on how to take good care of your guinea pig and spend more time with them.