How to Hold a Guinea Pig Correctly (with Pictures & Videos)

Adopting a new guinea pig is an exciting time. These little creatures are adorable and full of personality. Most new guinea pig owners love to hold and cuddle their new pet. However, it can be a little more complicated than you might first consider. However, guinea pigs are relatively small and can run very fast.

It’s important to handle it properly to avoid possible injury or a guinea pig escapes. In this article, we’ll help you learn how to hold your guinea pig and reduce your risk of injury.

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8 Tips for Holding a Guinea Pig Properly

1. Don’t Try to Hold Your Guinea Pig First

While you may be excited after adopting your guinea pig, you should give them some space for a few days after adoption. Many are stressed by all the new sounds and smells of moving. It is best to give them plenty of space and interact with them a little during the first few days. Stress can be very damaging to a guinea pig, so you should try to make it as comfortable as possible.


2. introduce yourself

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After a few days, you can start introducing your guinea pig to you. You don’t have to take them out of their cage at this point. But you can start sticking your hand in their cage and potentially feeding them. Stroking is recommended after your pet seems comfortable in your presence.


3. Take Your Guinea Pig

The guinea pig will most likely try to avoid being picked up. Luckily, they were in a cage, so it was easy enough to trap them in a corner and retrieve them. You can also use objects in the cage to make your guinea pig stand still long enough to lift it. If there is a tube in the cage, this is very useful. Rodent homes can also help corner them.

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Please lift your guinea pig by tucking your hands under his tummy and lifting him up.


4. Hold Your Guinea Pig with Two Hands

Veterinarian holding a Guinea Pig

After lifting the guinea pig out of the cage, hold it with both hands close to your chest. This will make them feel the safest, and your chest will be under them to prevent any possible jumps. Your second hand should be close to his bottom to make him feel more secure. This makes the guinea pig more stable and prevents them from feeling like they are falling.

You should have a firm grip on your pet, but don’t squeeze it so hard that you hurt it. You don’t want them to jump out of your hands. You should sit holding your guinea pig to prevent it from falling high. Your movements may also frighten them at first, which may cause them to try to jump.


5. Give Snack

You should give some treats as you hold them. This makes them associate being held back with good things, which will make them a little more accepting of the process. Be sure to feed only safe foods.


6. Return the Guinea Pig Safely to Its Cage

guinea pig wrapped in a towel

After the holding session is over, you should hold your guinea pig firmly as you put it back in its cage. Some guinea pigs become too excited to return and may jump when they see their cage. However, this can lead to injuries and similar problems, so you need to hold on to it firmly.

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Use two hands to gently place your pet back into the cage. You can turn your guinea pig on the bottom first to reduce the chance of jumping at the last second.


7. Keep sessions short

You should keep the sessions short, especially at first. You don’t want to stress your guinea pig, as that can make them less likely to want to be held. However, you have to hold it often. Daily sessions will allow them to warm you up from time to time.


8. Watch Children

guinea pig licking the girl's arm

You should always supervise children when they are handling your guinea pig. Children don’t always know how to hold a guinea pig properly, which can lead to serious injury. Children should always sit holding the guinea pig. They should not be allowed to carry animals from room to room, as this could cause more serious injury.

Guinea pigs may be sensitive when handled by children, as they tend to be a bit more violent and excited. Limiting their exposure is essential to reducing their stress levels. You may want to keep their sessions with children especially brief to prevent an increase in stress levels.

Looking for more guinea pig care guides? Try:

  • How to Introduce Guinea Pigs to One Another (Based on Proven Methods)
  • Can Guinea Pigs Eat Popcorn? What you need to know!
  • What do Guinea Pigs like to play with? 11 Toy Ideas Guinea Pigs Will Love

Featured Image Credit: Shschus, Shutterstock