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Going away for 3/4 nights - Guinea Pigs

(5 Posts)
PatsysDouble Tue 12-Feb-13 20:52:45


We're going away for 3 or 4 nights and our lovely neighbours are going to pop round each day to sort the guinea pigs out.

Just figuring out what is the minimum of jobs that need to be done (and I'll tell them what I do too so they can do more if they want).

We've only had our 2 guinea pigs for 4 months and this is the first time we've left them so just wanted some other opinions!

They live in a 2 storey hutch outside. I'll clean it fully just before we go.

I pick out poos daily - could they skip this, or would it be awful after 4 days? We'd do a full clean out as soon as we get back.

I cover the hutch with a tarpaulin at night - it's going to be 3-7C over half term. Would it be ok to leave it uncovered? (Tarp and 2 blankets stay over the top back and sides all the time, cover just keeps night draughts out of downstairs - would save neighbours an extra trip in the evening).

I was thinking of asking them to come by once or twice a day, to fill food bowl, add fresh veg and hay, and top up bedroom hay. Would this be enough?

Any suggestions gratefully received!!!

70isaLimitNotaTarget Tue 12-Feb-13 22:16:12

Hi Patsy.
If your lovely neighbours are ok to check on the guineas twice a day, it would be much nicer for the piggies.
I personally would want my hogs covered at night in those temperatures- nice if their hutch is uncovered by day to give them some fresh air and daylight. But at night you want them protected completely against draughts and damp (and make sure the foxes don't come sniffing round)

Some pig owners can get a whole week out of a clean cage (my boars haven't read this). Have your neighbours said they would take out any dirty bedding and replace it?
Have you tried leaving their cage for 3-4 days to see how it would be (I left my boars for a week when they had to have emergency accomodation in the garage. They had loads of hay and soft barley straw and I was amazed that their run-they were in their rabbit run- wasn't as bad as I thought it would be)

Daily water and pellets, fresh veg (do you give twice a day veg or once).

And would your neighbours quickly check them for any injury? Just a quick cuddle would be enough- I don't know how hands on they'd be.They might be happy to cuddle them.

If it was me guinea-watching I'd definately do a morning and night visit- I'm sure they'd be happy to do that (and of course you'll give them a nice present.Something in the guinea-pigs pocket money budget) grin Wine/chocolates

PatsysDouble Tue 12-Feb-13 22:48:33

Thank you!
Our neighbours are great - they have chickens and we look after them whenever they are away and they are happy to reciprocate.

Didn't think about a quick cuddle with them - thanks!

I do water/pellets first thing in the morning, fresh veg when they come in the house midafternoon (and then more as and when the kids fancy cuddling/feeding), pellet top-up when I put them back outside and put the cover over.

Hutch is in our carport - usually a good 2C warmer than outside proper, but still covered over at night - will ask them to cover.

Didn't think about leaving the cage for a few days test either - too much of a clean-freak and scoop out as many poos as possible each time I go to it!
Will leave it from Thurs to Sat (will save me a job after work for a couple of days too!) and see how it goes.
Maybe it's a boar thing - our hutch would be horrible after a week too!

Thanks again!

FernieB Wed 13-Feb-13 08:39:01

Your neighbours will probably cuddle them anyway - who could resist a pig?

The hutch will probably be fine - my boys have been left for 3 days before and were fine. Definitely get them to check the pigs (and your house) twice a day - I'm sure they won't mind - and covering them up at night won't be too onerous.

Have a good few days away.

guineapiglet Wed 13-Feb-13 12:20:02

Hi, we used to ask neighbours to come in when we went away, it was easy when they were in the shed in the summer, but when they were in the house, they could come in a couple of times a day, and she would bring her grandaughter who would cuddle them and just let them know someone was around. I even left the radio on for them ( which neighbour turned off at night as well as the lights etc). I used to leave them fresh and clean, and was never away for more than 5 nights, but even so it was pretty smelly when we got back - neighbours would take top layer off and renewspaper and re hay.

If they are outside at the moment they will need covering up and fox proofing to make sure they are safe and secure.

When they had their holidays at a friends' up the road, a fellow guinea lover, they had a whale of a time. First class accommodation, huge garden to run around in, lots of attention, they never wanted to come home!

They will be fine for a few days, with plenty of supplies ready for them.

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