Can our guinea pigs live outside all year?

(27 Posts)
MrsGreen Wed 24-Sep-08 12:49:34

We are getting two baby female guinea pigs next weekend.

They already live outside where they are and we plan for them to live outside with us.

I am a bit concerned they will get very cold in the winter. How can I prevent them dying of cold?

Thanks
Gilly

southeastastra Wed 24-Sep-08 12:50:21

knit them jumpers

RubyRioja Wed 24-Sep-08 12:51:42

They can, but ours come indoors. If they spend their first winter outside, they store fat. I think it is harder if they have already wintered indoors.

Ours would become less social if outside without us I think.

FioFio Wed 24-Sep-08 12:52:32

Message deleted

GordonTheGopher Wed 24-Sep-08 12:53:40

I used to bring mine inside for the winter - dh was not pleased! I think as they are babies I would personally bring them in but as long as you've got loads of bedding and are out of the wind they should be ok.

Ours always lived outside when we were kids, and we were ruralish.

Once it starts to get 'properly' cold Novemberish, I would cover the front wire part of the hutch with first a blanket and then a tarpaulin. (We used to keep it on top of the hutch with bricks iyswim.

Make sure they have loads of bedding and that it is not wet.

Also that the bit that they sleep in is very small, so it is easy for them to keep it warm with body heat.

I meant cover it at night, not all the time btw!

Fennel Wed 24-Sep-08 13:01:08

Ours did live outside for most of last winter, but we are in one of the mildest parts of the country. And last winter they had a big rabbit to snuggle up to which kept them warm. Not sure about this winter, with the rabbit not here any more.

Our 3 seem VERY fat lately, maybe they are storing up for a winter outside?

GordonTheGopher Wed 24-Sep-08 13:01:09

Oh and you can buy fancy covers for example.

ChopsTheDuck Wed 24-Sep-08 13:02:55

we got sacking to cover ours to begin with but we did end up putting their hutches in the shed.

everlong Wed 24-Sep-08 18:15:52

I'm going to move ours in the garage soon. I think it will be better for them.

We don't put any cars in there.

jenmak Wed 27-Oct-10 19:25:44

Many people put their guinea pigs inside but we've just bought ours a cover for their hutch so they can stay out.

you could also keep then in a shed or garage but most advice is that it is too cold over hear if they are not protected. There lots of covers www.the-rabbit-hutch-shop.com/rabbit-hutch-cover.h tml if your looking for one.

ragged Wed 27-Oct-10 19:28:07

Ours did; we had some give birth outside midwinter (mid Feb) and the babies were fine.
Hutch must be very dry and free of drafts, though.

jaffacake2 Wed 27-Oct-10 19:30:18

I still have nightmares about frozen guinea pigs which we thought would be ok but then freak snow came. Completely stiff in the morning-not goodsad

jenmak Wed 27-Oct-10 19:36:51

you can leave them outside no problem, better if you get a rabbit hutch cover, theres lots at www.the-rabbit-hutch-shop.com/rabbit-hutch-cover.h tml sign up for their pet club newsletter and you get 5% off your first order

ragged Wed 27-Oct-10 19:37:33

Did he live alone, Jaffa? Ours lived outside in snow, all sorts of weather!

WizzleWoo Wed 27-Oct-10 21:08:33

Glad that i found this thread - we got two baby gps at the weekend and were told that they could not under any circumstances live outside as they do not have winter coats. So we got them an indoor cage and settled them in - only to find that our ds is allergic and is very tight chested .
We do have a hutch outside that we could put in the unused garage, but it is cold in there. Dont want to take them back as ds is very attached to them and it would really upset him. So would it be alright to put them in the garage during the day and maybe bring them in the house at night when he is in bed? Obvs my sond health is the most important factor in this , just trying to think of a way to keep everyone happy!

reikizen Wed 27-Oct-10 21:14:31

jaffacake2 that's awful! The first night we got ours there was freak snow but thank god they were fine! Ours live in the sort of enclosed porch attached to the kitchen in winter, it's more sociable I think as much as anything.

Goingspare Wed 27-Oct-10 21:21:38

We've had ours in the garage for the last 4 years - lots of hay for insulation and heavy blankets on the hutches last winter. This year, they're all getting old (3 of them) and one of them has been ill and is thin, so they've all come indoors together.

Whoopee.

The garage should be fine if dry and draught-free, but if they're young and have never been out, it would be better to have them indoors overnight. Don't bring them into a heated house and plunge them back out into a very cold environment in the morning though. Bring them in last thing?

silver73 Wed 27-Oct-10 21:46:05

Have them indoors if you can they are wonderful pets and you really get to see their little personalities if they are indoors.

Otherwise get one of the hutch covers suggested and as they are babies you could get one of these - they are fab and you won't worry about them at night if they have one...

www.amazon.co.uk/Snugglesafe-Microwaveable-Heat-Pa d-Cover/dp/B001A36EUG/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=12882 12315&sr=8-2

Goingspare Wed 27-Oct-10 21:58:55

Yes, my weary 'whooppee' was because we haven't really got room for them, but it's actually very nice to have them indoors. They're in the dining room, and our sow finds the sight of us eating absolutely fascinating. Perhaps she didn't realise we did that too.

If you have allergy problems though, you don't want to have them in at first then find you have to put them out later on when they're used to the warm.

WizzleWoo Thu 28-Oct-10 09:54:08

Thanks for all the replies - would love to keep them inside but they are really affecting him. Have now got a snugglesafe and they are safely in the garage , with lots of warm blankets and lots of hay! Will bring them in later but hopefully they will be nice and warm now!

silver73 Fri 29-Oct-10 13:16:57

Good news about the snugglesafe - they are fab. When it is very cold you could heat up the snugglesafe in the morning to keep them warm during the day and at night to keep them warm during the night.

tippytumbles Mon 29-Nov-10 16:06:43

I'm going to get a snugglesafe for my piggies who live in the conservatory thanks for the link silver73

nameymcnamechange Mon 29-Nov-10 16:23:59

My three girls are in now and I am just loving it. They don't smell at all and are such little cuties.

And it is so freakishly cold now that surely no guinea pigs could possibly survive outside???

DanZZZenAroundTheTreeAgain Mon 29-Nov-10 16:31:43

that's a shame wizzle. They'll be fine in the unheated garage if you keep their cage insulated a bit.

I bring ours indoors over winter. They are indoors now because it feels unbelievably cold to me

DanZZZenAroundTheTreeAgain Mon 29-Nov-10 16:32:43

plumber came round this morning. Last night his fish pond froze over, all the fish are dead. Depends where you are I suppose. We are overseas, very cold atm IMO and about to get worse

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