24 Aug 2022

Why Is My Guinea Pig Always Hungry?

Does your guinea pig get hungry all the time? We’ve got the answers you’re looking for! Learn why this happens and how to care for your guinea pig in this guide.

Why Is My Guinea Pig Always Hungry?

Guinea pigs, by nature, eat as much as they can.

However, several factors can influence your guinea pig’s hunger and cause it to eat more than it usually does. For instance, if your guinea pig is shedding its fur, it requires more food since it loses a lot of energy during this cycle.

On the other hand, a female guinea pig will require more food during the breeding seasons. The nutrients from the food play an important role in providing energy while lowering anxiety levels during pregnancy.

Various health diseases and parasites can also affect your guinea pigs’ appetite. Nevertheless, you can still avoid some of these problems by taking a few extra precautions while raising your pet guinea pig. Keep reading if you want to learn more!

Why Is My Guinea Pig Suddenly Eating A Lot?

Chubby Guinea Pig From Eating

Guinea pigs are well known for being hungry all the time. But, irrespective of how much they eat, you shouldn’t worry as long as they maintain their uniform diet.

Sometimes, your little furry friend might have a sudden spike in its appetite. This is where you will need to pay special attention since various external factors can affect your pet’s diet. There are several reasons why your guinea pig may become more hungry:

1. Shedding

If you notice that your pet is hungry all the time, there is a high chance it is preparing to shed its fur. Generally, guinea pigs don’t require thick fur throughout the year.

They mostly grow their fur for the winter season, and once it is over, you will notice that the fur starts to become thin due to shedding. This helps the guinea pig feel more comfortable during the spring season.

While shedding fur, it consumes energy, which causes an increase in its appetite. So, you should make sure to give it plenty of food during this time, especially if they are shedding in chunks.

As soon as the season is over, it will regain its energy, and the old appetite will be restored.

2. Breeding

Female guinea pigs have an increased appetite during spring since they are ready to breed and nurture their young ones. During this season, females require more energy and nutrients to have a healthy pregnancy cycle.

However, this might not be the case for all female guinea pigs. The pets that are taken outside to play regularly require more nutrients since factors such as sunlight can cause them to lose a lot of energy.

That said, spayed and neutered guinea pigs don’t show any breeding symptoms since they release a small level of hormones in their body. So, you can get your guinea pig neutered or feed it extra food during the breeding phase.

Guinea Pig With Babies

3. Parasites

Since guinea pigs tend to roam around where they want to, they have a high chance of getting infected by a parasite. This can cause a spike in their appetite. For instance, intestinal parasites are known for sucking all the nutrients from a guinea pig’s stomach.

Hence, your pet will feel more hungry, and you will need to replace the lost nutrients by giving it more food. Additionally, each parasite may have a different effect on your guinea pig. Some of these effects are as follows:

  • Sudden loss of weight
  • Skin irritation
  • Weakness
  • Shabby and dull coat

You can contact a veterinarian to deliver the necessary treatment if you notice these symptoms. Besides this, you can add a few supplements to your pet’s diet to help boost its immunity.

Guinea Pig With Face Mask On

4. Diabetes

Diabetes is yet another reason that can cause your guinea pig to have an unusual diet. However, only a few guinea pigs have this problem. It usually occurs when there is an abnormality in the pancreas.

In such cases, the pancreas cannot produce enough insulin, which is vital in regulating blood sugar levels. In addition, it is hard to analyse this disease since only a few guinea pigs are known for having it.

Diabetes can cause some guinea pigs to rapidly increase their appetite while others show signs of weight loss.

Since there is no cure for this disease, you can not eliminate it from your pet’s system. However, you can avoid the disease by maintaining a strict and well-balanced diet for your guinea pig. Ensure you feed your guinea pig items containing low sugar and high fibre.

Frequently Asked Questions

Old Guinea Pig Being Looked After

1. How Many Times Should You Feed A Guinea Pig In A Day?

Generally, we recommend feeding your guinea pig at least twice a day. Besides this, you should include a small snack of vegetables in their diet during the morning and evening. After all, your guinea pig will feel the most hungry during these hours.

And if there is an endless supply of hay, you don’t have to worry about feeding it late since it will be sufficient to keep it full throughout the day.

2. When Do Guinea Pigs Usually Eat?

Usually, guinea pigs eat food throughout the day, but they prefer to eat vegetables only during the morning and evening time. When it comes to the wild, guinea pigs are most active during the nighttime since they can avoid predators in the dark while hunting for food.

On the contrary, domestic guinea pigs don’t follow this pattern since they don’t need to hunt for food. They graze throughout the day instead since they can always munch on hay.

3. What Do Guinea Pigs Usually Eat?

Guinea pigs have a wide range of diets; hence, you can always change their diet whenever you see them enjoying a particular type of food. Hay is one of the most important components of a guinea pig’s diet since it has all the protein and calcium required for the body.

You should occasionally give them leafy greens and fresh vegetables since they take longer to digest. Similarly, you should only give pellets if you run out of hay stock.

4. Can I Feed My Guinea Pigs With Pellets?

Ideally, a guinea pig can be fed pellets if it doesn’t exceed 5% of the main diet. Just ensure that you check the nutritional benefits of the pellets by going through the main ingredients. We recommend choosing pellets with at least 20% fibre and 16% protein as the main composition.

Keep Your Guinea Pig Healthy and Happy

To sum up, a guinea pig will not overeat if it has a healthy and well-balanced diet. However, if it always feels hungry, you must adjust its diet accordingly. For instance, you can limit the number of pellets, vegetables and fruits you give it regularly.

A female guinea pig will require highly nutritious food full of energy and fibre. On the other hand, a sick guinea pig will need food to help improve its immunity from within. Similarly, certain seasons can affect your pet’s dietary requirements, which you should keep in mind.

You can always feed your guinea pig hay since it is good for the guts. That said, we will now sign off.

For the best guinea pig food and accessories, check out Planet Pet. We stock various premium products to ensure your pet is happy and healthy!

See you next time!

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