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do guinea pigs need to be indoors during the winter? does anyone keep them outside.

(15 Posts)
SlartyBartFast Fri 28-Aug-09 09:37:24

have 2 guineapigs got in February, they were squeaking last night and I wondered if they were cold, probably not, but has anyone experience of not bringing them in in the winter.
we don't have a shed, we don't have much room in the house as it is.
i have seen adverts for heat pads, anyone use them?
What counts as winter? November, day and night, or do you bring them in night time only?

OhYouBadBadKitten Fri 28-Aug-09 09:43:03

I tend to keep mine outdoors as theres 3 of them (when we had one I brought her in)

As the temp starts to drop I add in extra hay. As the temp gets below about 5-10c at night I put in a guinea pig house into the sleeping area and pack round the outside of that with plenty of hay. I also put on an insulating lid that my neighbour made for ?something and have a plastic clear sheet that I pull v. loosely over the front to stop the draghts getting in.

If it drops much below zero then I put them in the garage.

Tis my understanding that you shouldnt take guinea pigs from a very cold outdoors and bring them into a warm house. Something about thermal shock?

SlartyBartFast Fri 28-Aug-09 09:53:30

that's helpful.
i do have a shed crammed full and gpigs live in double hutch with rabbits segragated at the bottom - so i spose if i bought a single hutch for them to try and fit in the shed?
but this is for the occasions when it drops below zero?
hmm, or alternatively buy an indoor hutch and face the fact that they will be indoors from ? november to January?

OhYouBadBadKitten Fri 28-Aug-09 10:37:09

Its a hard choice! We have no room indoors really for pigs (and one of our cats would torment them endlessly) I think if I did comfortably have the room then I'd have them inside.
Mine do seem to have a thicker, shaggier coat compared to my friend who only has indoor pigs.

SlartyBartFast Fri 28-Aug-09 10:45:50

thanks - we will have to make room somewhere wont we? smile

OhYouBadBadKitten Fri 28-Aug-09 12:10:39

bonus from having them inside is that they really do completely tame into lovely cuddly things

SlartyBartFast Fri 28-Aug-09 16:59:10

aaah smile

weegiemum Fri 28-Aug-09 17:01:19

We bring ours in, but we live in Scotland and the temperature can be a bit lower than if you live in the south of England!

SlartyBartFast Fri 28-Aug-09 17:03:52

true, it is not often minus degrees down't south

Sagacious Fri 28-Aug-09 17:14:02

We have a water and windproof hutch cover and plan on extra bedding and padding out with shredded newspaper.

Dh has allocated some spare blankets to stick inbetween the cover and hutch for extra insulation.

We are in the sunniest part of Essex though (a veritable micro climate) so its rarely below freezing)

But if it is I can imagine even "alpha macho male" dh hearing squeaking and setting up temporary quarters indoors. grin

123andaway Fri 28-Aug-09 18:26:46

We have indoor piggies, and they are the tamest cuddliest little things!

I think the advice for outdoor piggies is that they should be inside (or in a well lit shed or garage) from early nov until late Feb.

Mine have an indoor rabbit cage, and live on top of my chest of draws! They don't make a mess and with a weekly clean out don't smell at all.

ohnelly Mon 31-Aug-09 11:27:32

Ours live outside all year round, just give them extra bedding and make sure they have a 'bedroom' where they can get out of the wind and they will be fine

Meglet Mon 31-Aug-09 11:32:18

Mine are outdoors (but in the shed). They have a duvet and blankets to cover the hutch.

Until I had dc's they were in the house. It was nice to be able to chat to them more smile.

SlartyBartFast Mon 31-Aug-09 11:39:20

thanks for the furtehr input. smile
dh not keen on them in the house hmm can't understand why. i am sure they woudl be very happy, however i may leave them outside with extra bedding.
decision not firmly made smile

bruffin Mon 31-Aug-09 11:53:13

Ours live outside and spend all day in the run and night in the hutch.
They are still very cuddly and tame. We give them extra hay in the winter but if it's really bad we bring the hutch into the garage (the car has never been in it)

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