Guinea pig grooming advice from Cat & Rabbit Clinic's head nurse Katie Sharman.
As well as being essential for keeping your guinea pig free from tangles and dirt, regular grooming is the best way to check them for skin lumps and bumps, hair loss, dental problems, and pests. Grooming also helps you to bond with your tiny companion - what small pet wouldn’t love a back rub and mani-pedi?
But how often do you groom your guinea pig and is brushing enough? Head nurse Katie Sharman has this advice, based on frequently asked questions by clients:
How often should I brush my guinea pig?
Short-haired breeds like the American Cavy only need brushing once a week to minimise shedding and keep them clean. Any more could result in loss of hair density and quality.
Long-haired breeds such as Peruvians and Abyssinians generally need brushing 2-3 times a week to prevent matting and dirt build-up, which can lead to infection and parasitic ‘invasion’.
What’s the best way to brush a guinea pig?
Depending on your pet’s breed and hair type, you can use the palm of your hand (add water if your guinea pig is shedding) or a metal narrow-toothed pet-flea comb. Be gentle, and brush in the same direction as the hair grows.
If your guinea pig isn’t a fan of being brushed, alter the frequency to avoid stressing them out. Whilst brushing, gently stroke them from head to toe, looking and feeling for anything unusual.
What else should guinea pig grooming include?
Grooming isn’t just about brushing, your pet may also need:
Monthly or bi-monthly nail trims
An occasional ‘butt’ bath
Weekly dental check & ear clean
Regular grease gland ‘clean-up’
How and why, you may be wondering? Download our handy checklist and learn top tips for grooming your guinea pig.
Here’s our Guinea Pig Grooming Guide for you to download.
Call 01604 478888 to book a dental check-up or nail clip, or for more advice on guinea pig health and care.