Guinea pigs are very fond of and love soft materials. They love to have a blanket or pillow in their enclosure. You will likely be enticed to place similar items in your guinea pig enclosure for additional comfort. But is it safe for them? Can guinea pigs have blankets in their cage? I did some research, and here is what I have learned.
Blankets and pillows seem to be a great addition to a guinea pig enclosure. Make sure you don’t provide old, threadbare blankets with holes, as paws can be trapped. Also, ensure that your guinea pig is not ingesting a large amount of fabric as it can lead to intestinal blockage.
Never wrap your guinea pig in a blanket. They may feel panic and trapped and can injure themselves trying to run.
Put down a blanket and let your guinea pig arrange it in their comfortable way.
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Can guinea pigs have a blanket?
Guinea pigs love soft fabrics. They will roll around in a towel and blanket in your home. Guinea pigs adore the warmth and softness of such materials.
These materials provide all manner of entertainment and comfort to guinea pigs.
Blankets provide softness, and also they get an opportunity of burrowing. Guinea pigs adore to burrow and dig to create a warm, dark space. That imitates the wild instinct of digging a burrow.
Blankets also help guinea pigs to get warm and protect their paws. Some guinea pigs have a tough, metal floor, which can lead to bumblefoot. A blanket or towel helps to prevent such an issue.
Guinea pig safe blankets
Blankets can make an excellent addition to your guinea pig enclosure. But there are some warning to this:
- Never provide a blanket with holes to your guinea pig. Your guinea pig can end up trapping their paws in holes. That can get your guinea pig in stress. They can also lose their nail while trying to flee.
- Guinea pigs usually will chew the fabric of the blanket. They will end up eating some parts of the fabric. Remove the blanket from their enclosure and get to the vet if they show any signs of intestinal discomfort.
- Your guinea pig can trap themselves in the blanket. They may also suffocate in case they burrow too profoundly. Make sure you don’t provide your guinea pig blanket, which is too big for them.
- Watch your guinea pig if they have any signs of an allergic reaction. Possibly a guinea pig can be allergic to the fabric, fabric softener, or laundry detergent.
- If you provide your guinea pig a blanket, don’t take it back and use it for yourself later. Guinea pigs are territorial. If you try to claim ownership, your guinea pig will become irritable or grouchy. Guinea pigs do hold a feeling of grudges.
You can visit the pet store if you want the perfect blanket for your guinea pig enclosure, as pet stores sell the specialist items for your guinea pig enclosure.
You will get the blanket pet store specially designed, keeping in mind the size and needs of guinea pigs. But they can be expensive.
A fleece blanket is suggested in case you want to recycle a blanket from home.
This material is very soft to appeal to guinea pigs, and also sturdy when being chewed.
Do guinea pigs need blankets in cold weather
Guinea pigs have an unexpectedly high tolerance for cold weather. Guinea pig bodies adapt accordingly with the change of seasons.
Although the ideal temperature should not be below 16°C(61°F), they can tolerate even if the mercury drops below that. Provided they have adequate supplies to survive.
Guinea pig adopts a thick coat of fur when fall arrives to accommodate the imminent drop in temperature.
Despite this, your guinea pig may also like the additional comfort provided by a blanket.
Guinea pigs find blankets comforting. Guinea pigs feel safe and secure by sliding under a blanket.
Avoid wrapping your guinea pig in a blanket. Guinea pigs hate the feeling of being restrained.
You are not helping your guinea pig by wrapping them in a blanket at night. Wrapping guinea pig in a blanket can cause stress to them.
Why do guinea pigs hate being wrapped in blanket
Guinea pigs don’t like the feeling of being trapped. Your guinea pig will try to free themselves, which can end up being injured or causing stress.
It can also result in a heart attack because of the desperation of your guinea pig to get free.
If your guinea pig is wrapped in a very secure manner, it can also lead to overheating in your guinea pig.
That can have terrible consequences. Guinea pigs like being a little chilly than too warm. A wrapped guinea pig can create a real risk of hyperthermia.
Why does my guinea pig keep digging at the blanket
Digging is the most common behavior in all guinea pigs. Digging helps guinea pigs to satisfy their wild instinct.
There are several reasons for your guinea pig digging blanket:
- Your guinea pig wonders if they can dig through a blanket, like hay or dirt. Digging blanket can provide your guinea pig hours of entertainment.
- Your guinea pig is making a blanket untidy or dirty to set it as they like. Guinea pigs don’t share a human fondness for clean, soft blankets. They like to crush blankets up.
- Your guinea pig loves the feeling of softness of the blanket under their paws. They can end up digging for hours without hurting their paws.
If your guinea pigs digging troubles you, distract them. Digging can cause a problem even if it is a natural behavior of guinea pigs.
Your guinea pig can end up digging in carpets or other surfaces in your home.
How to stop guinea pig from digging in blanket
Most guinea pigs are very much fond of digging. It does not matter what they submerge their claws into. That means that you can provide alternatives for stopping your guinea pig digging blanket.
Thick books like telephone directory will keep your guinea pig occupied for hours. You can also provide your guinea pig more hay to burrow into.
In the end, Guinea pigs will dig. It is what they do. Digging blankets in their enclosure are far better than any other alternatives. It is best to leave them to it.
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My guinea pigs ignores the blanket
If two guinea pigs share an enclosure, one may have claimed a blanket by two of them. Guinea pigs are territorial; this all is taken very seriously.
Your other guinea pig will never wish to use something which belongs to another guinea pig.
A lack of scent can also concern your guinea pig. Guinea pigs make comfort from familiar scents. Your guinea pig will lose interest in a blanket that has just been cleaned.
You should check the material of the blanket. In case it is unfamiliar, the fabric may be disagreeable to the touch.
You can try changing blankets for two alternatives; one of the same, one of a different material.
Make sure that your guinea pig has not gone through any negative experiences with the blanket.
An allergic reaction may stop her from using it. Ticks and fleas can also live in the bedding and soft towels.
If your guinea pig feels that their blanket makes them itch, they will keep a distance from a blanket then.
Is it okay to put a blanket over a guinea pig cage?
There will be a time when you will wish to throw the blanket out from your guinea pig enclosure.
The blanket is the best form of cover than other materials. A blanket covers the enclosure without affecting the circulation of air.
Weight it down on the ground in case you are concerned about the blanket falling off.
That will prevent the blanket from slipping if your guinea pig chews and jog it through the bars.
Why should I put a blanket over my guinea pig cage
There are several reasons to put a blanket over a guinea pigs enclosure:
- A blanket can help to stop the drafts. Your guinea pig’s enclosure should never be kept near drafts as direct airflow can make them sick.
- A blanket will help your guinea pig to calm down. If your guinea pig is unable to see activity outside their enclosure, they will be less nervous.
- Covering the enclosure from the blanket provides privacy and darkness. That helps your guinea pig to sleep.
- That will make your guinea pig safe as it prevents other animals from looking into the enclosure.
Make sure that you don’t leave the blanket over your guinea pigs enclosure for all-day.
That will cause your guinea pig some stress. Used infrequently, it can be an effective technique.
Are towels safe for guinea pigs?
Towels seem to be a cost-effective addition to your guinea pig enclosure. The primary three purposes for using a towel are:
- Towels play the role of cheap substitutes of a blanket. The towel can be rolled around on, or wrapped on for warming up.
- Guinea pigs love biting on a towel. Your guinea pig will spend hours on nibbling at an individual corner. That is safe entertainment until your guinea pig is not eating excessive fabric.
- Putting a towel in a guinea pig enclosure will act as a carpet for them. That will protect their paws, and also prevent dreadful conditions like bumblefoot.
Your guinea pig needs its towel with a blanket.
Don’t provide your guinea pig a towel, which will be of your use later. Once you provide your guinea pig a towel then it belongs to your guinea pig now.
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What type of towel is best for guinea pigs
Softer towels are best for guinea pigs. Your guinea pig will be comfortable with the fluffy towel. They will also find it hard to ingest the parts of the material.
A hand towel is suggested. A small towel will prevent the risk of suffocation in your guinea pig.
Do not provide your guinea pig a slightly wet or used towel. Your guinea pig can find the scent of the towel comforting, but this can be dangerous.
You should always make sure that your guinea pig must be clean and dry all the time.
There is a possibility of the soap remaining in a used towel, which is a risk for your guinea pig.
Guinea pigs have different skin alkalinity to humans. There is a chance that rash can be caused if human soap touches the skin of guinea pigs.
Guinea pig eating fabric
If you are worried about your guinea pig chewing on a towel, detect the behavior. Focus on alternatives rather than applying training or negative reinforcement for this.
Guinea pigs are very much fond of chewing. They will always look for something to chew.
Guinea pigs adore new experiences. If you offer a new toy to your guinea pig, it will capture their imagination. Put in a sweet taste such as honey to make it enticing.
If you grow very concerned, make the towel non-attractive. Dip the corner in something that tastes bad. Vinegar will do the work, as guinea pigs don’t like bitter tastes.
Just be aware that this can stop your guinea pig from using a towel. That could be harmful to their quality of life. Towels can be handy for your guinea pig if they use them safely.
Cleaning towel and blankets for guinea pig
Blankets and towels of your guinea pig enclosure should be cleaned occasionally. Your guinea pig will not like this. They will draw comfort from their familiar scents of the towel.
If the towel and blankets in your guinea pig enclosure are clean, there is no need to wash them.
While you clean an enclosure weekly, blankets and towels can be washed after every two weeks.
Again, this is presuming there are no stains on blankets or towels.
Check regularly if there is any urine staining in blankets. If the urine sinks into your guinea pig’s skin, it can result in the fur or scald’s yellowing. It will also create a bad, unpleasant smell.
How to wash guinea pigs towel and blankets
If your guinea pig has been sick, you should wash the blankets and towels of their enclosure.
You can wash it by hand in a sink or a bathtub. Make a solution of little bleach and warm water. That will kill germs and bacteria.
If you detect fleas in your guinea pigs enclosure, wash all the blankets and towels in a washing machine.
Make sure you use a mild heat(not for fleece liners) and a guinea pig safe detergent. That will kill eggs of a flea hiding in the blanket.
If you are just doing a general wash, neither approach is exceptional. You can also hand wash, with or without taking bleach.
On the other hand, you can also put the towel through a standard cycle with your laundry.
If used in the right manner, blankets and towels are an excellent addition in the guinea pig’s enclosure.
Blankets and towels serve many purposes and bring joy to your guinea pig’s life.
Apply a safety-first approach by avoiding overheating, restrictions, and choking hazards.
Sources: GI Stasis