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Bored guinea pigs. What do you do with them when it is constantly wet outside?

(18 Posts)
Flightattendant Wed 04-Nov-09 17:18:27

I am feeling really sorry for our pigs atm. It's soaking in the garden, if not actually raining, and they are sat in their little hutch all day every day unless I take them out for a rare undisturbed cuddle...ds2 is usually around and they are scared of his noise!

We tried putting them on a big tray thing (about 2ft 6 square) which ahs raised sides and filled it with shavings and hay for them, plus large cardboard box to hide in - they sat and quivered in the box, hated the tray and being uncovered.

I hate the thought that they are so bored and unexercised. What are you meant to do with them, is putting them out on damp/wet ground Ok as long as they have a dry hut to go in and get their feet off the floor?

Just waiting for new run to arrive as last one had no lid and was a bit knackered, and will get little wooden hut if people think it is a good idea.

Flightattendant Wed 04-Nov-09 17:19:58

Oh and I thought about putting run in the house, but what do you put under it? They wee an awful lot and obviously no grass indoors to eat either!

Maize Wed 04-Nov-09 17:21:00

Ours seem quite content not to do a lot tbh, we have a run for them we use most days but they seem to sit a lot in there too. It took them a few goes to get used to it, so persevere.

I think as animals they are not playful (like rats etc) I think their main function is to eat, sleep, argue, squeak and maybe popcorn a bit so I wouldn't get too worried about entertaining them.

I don't put mine outside when it is damp I don't think they like it?

Maize Wed 04-Nov-09 17:21:46

Our run is inside.

We put a plastic sheet thingy on the floor and then stick towels over it. Easy and absorbs any pee.

Sagacious Wed 04-Nov-09 17:23:57

I've been putting mine on the still dewy grass in the part of the garden that gets the sun so they've had a good few hours today in the warm and putting their little plastic house filled with fresh hay in the corner so they can dry off.

Am putting in usual cereal box tunnels (so dry) as their play things

They're still popcorning so I guess its ok

[am no expert though]

Flightattendant Wed 04-Nov-09 17:24:15

Thanks! Yes when I open the door of the sleeping bit, they do look a bit like 'wtf do you want? I was enjoying that!!' and tend to be in their 'flat' posture, like they are just bumming around. grin

The eating section of the hutch gets very manky very quickly though if they are in all day as they wee in it.

I will try to persevere with indoor run then and see if they get used to it.

Keeping them safe from ds2 is always a concern atm - I think I might have to put him in the free ads.

Sagacious Wed 04-Nov-09 17:25:48

If the grass is really wet I stick them on the patio as I figured they'd get the exercise and its good to rub down their claws.

BeehiveBaby Wed 04-Nov-09 17:26:07

Get a bigger hutch? They shoudl really have all the space that they need to exercise (ie. 7-8sqft for 2) within their usual living space. Males in particular can suffer anal prolapse without enough exercise.

Flightattendant Wed 04-Nov-09 17:26:27

Ooh Sag, how do you make a cereal box tunnel please? That sounds good!

I think there is a sunny bit in the garden still. I need a little hut for them - ours have got an igloo but it doesn't have a floor so no good in the wet.

I did find a load of carpet tubes outside the local discount flooring place and have been sawing them up for tunnels. Did put one in the hutch but they just looked scared...i have nervous pigs sad

Flightattendant Wed 04-Nov-09 17:29:53

Ah that's what I was worried about Beehive. sad

They have a 3ft hutch which I don't think is big enough considering they're not getting out in the run. It's Ok if they are having 8 hours a day in the garden I suppose but we only got them in March and I hadn't configured the winter arrangements.

Have got a spare 4ft hutch outside but it won't fit in the conservatory...will they be ok all winter out there?

Fwiw I'm not a horrible cruel person, just spent £200 on 6ft long rabbit hutch shock plus another 80 on insulated cover...think I am going to fall out with my bank manager...but the rabbits are fairly happy anyway!

They will be running free at the end of the garden once I have finished sinking wire into the ground all round it...

Flightattendant Wed 04-Nov-09 17:30:21

They are girls btw. They do have the odd scrap in the hutch, I think they annoy each other.

Sagacious Wed 04-Nov-09 17:34:49

Flight
I just put any cardboard box down (if they're small I sort of squash them so they can fit through) they seem to like it best if I make a sort of assault course so a bit of a dash through gap.

Shredded wheat boxes are popular as are amazon boxes as they're quite sturdy but anything will do.

You do have to have a ready supply due to the amount of wee and poop they seem to generate but I'm a keen eviromentalist and any rejects end on the compost heap. grin

Am I missing something ? I thought everyone did it?
Is this an idea I should patent?

[getrichquickideano 30098]

Flightattendant Wed 04-Nov-09 17:38:16

LOL and I particularly like your suggestion of squashing the guinea pigs grin

kingprawntikka Thu 05-Nov-09 08:16:04

Ours are indoor male pigs and i have an indoor run for them . I stand it on a piece of vinyl flooring so it only takes 5 mins to wipe over at the end of the day . I put them in it for about 8 hours a day. It has some cereal boxes in a long cardboard tunnel, some of those Chubes you get in pet shops, and some of those bendy large sticks you can make tunnels out of. I try and rotate what toys they have in there. Mine also like a toilet roll tube filled with hay and a couple of treats hidden in it( slit the roll open first so they can't get their head wedged in!) and little paper bags with hay in. They will spend ages pulling the hay out to eat even though their hay bale is next to them!

Fabster Thu 05-Nov-09 08:26:41

Have to go to school now but getting on here for ideas.

Mine were out for a few hours yesterday and had fun but the lawn is muddy and wet.

Flightattendant Thu 05-Nov-09 11:28:04

Ooh some lovely ideas! Not sure if we have an area of wipeable flooring suitable, but still...I'm sure I can arrange something.

Fab, you are a far better guinea-pig-mummy than me. I remember you saying you like to cook for your children, and I am sure you are always taking care of the piggies in the same way...mine are lucky if I lob a carrot in once a day wink no I do try harder than that, but Could Do Better. Same with the children...

<hands out pringles again, as we are out of bread> grin

kingprawntikka Thu 05-Nov-09 15:10:47

I bought a small bit of vinyl for £15 and stand the run on it. Made the cleaning up a lot easier than using newspaper!

BeehiveBaby Thu 05-Nov-09 16:30:52

www.zooplus.co.uk/shop/rodents/cages/rabbit_cage/83034

This cage is quite inexpensive and big if you have room. Be warned, having them indoors in addictive. Sorry if I sounded mean, was just being quick! We just have a run really, so guinea pig just stays in there. I made it from these:

www.ikea.com/gb/en/catalog/products/50058507

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