We all know that guinea pigs are easier to care for compared to other pets, but still, they require an abundant amount of money to meet their basic needs. So, here are some useful tips to save money on guinea pigs that I discovered through my experience of owning guinea pigs, that you’ll wish you knew earlier to save thousands of dollars.
How to Save Money on Guinea Pigs
1. Use Fleece or Shredded Paper as Bedding
Although fleece bedding may seem expensive, it really benefits in the long run. I highly recommend choosing high-quality fleece because they can last for a couple of years and are easy to clean.
Now using shredded paper/cardboard might seem weird, but it saves tons of money, space and the environment.
All you need to do is buy a cheap paper shredder if you don’t already have one, and shred cardboard boxes like amazon one, useless documents and papers.
Tada! DIY paper bedding. It absorbs your guinea pigs’ urine and smells of it, and if you’re worried about the bedding being too hard, simply sprinkle a little bit store brought bedding on top, or softer shredded paper.
However, My guinea pigs personally don’t mind when I just put hard shredded cardboard
When you shred paper and cardboard, make sure to take off any staples and tape!
2. Buy Hay From Farms
2. Buy Hay from Farms
I’m sure we were all shocked at the amount of hay these little critters munch down in a single day. That’s why when my family goes on a day trip to more rural areas of our province, we would always bundle hay from farms.
Firstly, find Farms that sell hay for HORSES. Buy a stack of two (my family bought 4 just for a single guinea pig), Keep one stack handy, and transfer some of the hay into a bag or box for more convenient feeding.
Trust me, the stacks are big, but you’ll be surprised how quickly these stacks will be emptied as well as the amount of money you saved!
In other words – Guinea pig Costco!
BONUS: most hay from farms are in better quality than hay from pet stores. Popcorn drooled over the farm’s hay after tasting it 🙂
Note: The farm is NOT sponsored. My family and I just go to this farm
3. Make Your Hideouts
Have you ever visited a pet store and seen hideouts in different shapes and sizes, that got your interest until you peaked at the price tag? Or bought an expensive hideout for your guinea pig, just for them to get stuck in it as they grew bigger?
Sadly, both situations have been way too familiar to me, so that’s why my sister and I began using cardboard boxes as hideouts. Here’s how to make it:
Step 1: Find a suitable cardboard box (size doesn’t matter). Make sure it’s clean and safe for your piggies
Step 2: Cut a hole/door(s) on the cardboard box
Step 3: There’s no step 3
To be honest, 90% of my guinea pigs’ hideouts are homemade. If you’re a more DIY person, feel free to decorate it, or add more doors to the hideout!
In contrast, the rest of the 10% are hideouts that I think will last long, and ones I’m not able to make it, like these two
Also, your guinea pigs don’t care how beautiful or ugly their hideouts are, as long as it’s comfortable for them
4. Feed them Guinea Pig Style
And what does that mean?
Cut grass from outside for them (make sure there are no chemicals though), broccoli and cauliflower stalks, parts of bell peppers you usually throw away (no seeds), ends of cilantro/parsley, etc.
To guinea pigs, it’s just another piece of mouth-watering veggie for them to munch on.
Adding to that, This tip might seem little but over time, the number adds up.
5. Keep your piggies healthy
Last but not least, an obvious one, because who wants the loved piggies sick? Plus all the vet fees are worth a king’s ransom.
Moreover, PLEASE Take your guinea pig to the vet if the first sign of sickness appears. Guinea pigs are tiny creatures and their illness can worsen at an alarming rate, meaning the fees will only go up as the illness worsens. Un, Unfortunately, I learned this the hard way.
Most importantly, remember it is better early than late. Trust your gut if you think your potato-shaped furball is not himself/herself – it’s your guinea pig mama/papa instincts 🙂
What do you think?
So, do these tips help you? Please shoot me a comment if you have any more suggestions, questions, etc. Hope this article helps and please share it with someone else who also has guinea pigs!