Is it okay for guinea pigs to eat paper? Okay, this is a serious question. To answer this, we must know the eating patterns and oral habits of guinea pigs.
Do you ever wonder why your little piggie is chewing all the time? You definitely would have wondered it at least once. Here is the answer, your guinea pigs have their teeth growing till death. If their teeth keep growing, then soon, they will not be able to move their jaws.
Long teeth will not be suitable for guinea pigs because they take in mostly chewable food and avoid semi-solid or liquid food. Long teeth will soon become a pain and cause starvation and ulcer.
Don’t be scared. Guinea pigs are genius. They naturally have the habit of chewing. Even after finishing their meals, they chew on something to cut their teeth short. This habit keeps a check on their teeth growth.
What do Guinea Pigs chew?
Guinea pigs chew a lot. They chew on specific materials that they find tasty. Chewing something does not mean they eat it.
Guinea pigs mostly chew and spit the material out. Their regular food is different from chewable food. So do not think that they are overeating if they ask for more chewable. It is just they want to keep their teeth grinding.
Guinea pigs literally keep their teeth on everything they find tasty and easy to bite. You must be careful of what you put near them.
Reasons for Guinea Pigs to chew Excessively
Guinea pigs do chew a lot but not all the time. They chew whenever they are resting. If your piggie keeps chewing all the time and limits the food intake, then it is time for you to pay a visit to the vet.
There are a number of reasons for your pets to chew excessively.
Attention craving: Do you notice abnormal usage or chewable? Does your guinea chew all day? Then, your fluff ball might need attention. In your busy day, take some time to play with your piggies. Being alone for long periods can affect their mental health.
Piggies are little yet affectionate animals. They do not get used to an environment quickly. Once they are comfortable with you, they need to be pet always. If you leave them unnoticed, they will make up for their loneliness by excessive chewing.
Boredom: Piggies get bored too. Guinea pigs are highly active animals. They need physical activity also. If you are too busy and do not find time for your fluffies, they get bored.
What are they supposed to do all day? Stare at the wall? They do that too. They just add chewing to their list. If your guinea pig does not have much playtime and interaction, they start chewing.
It is always wise to buy guinea pigs as a couple or in a trio to avoid boredom.
Chewing food: Old guinea pigs chew the remains of food to keep their mouths active. Most of the young guinea pigs are active and playful.
When they age, they mostly stay in one place. Their eating habits also change with time. Since they cannot chew so much, they bring up the swallowed food and chew them.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Paper?
Paper is something that guinea pigs chew. It is more likely to be their chew toy. That does not mean they are to be fed papers.
Feeding papers may not be appropriate for Guinea pigs. You must understand the difference between chewable products and eatables.
Of course, the digestive system of Guinea pigs accepts paper and wood but only in small quantities. While chewing, some bits of paper might enter their digestive systems. This will be perfectly fine till they exceed a particular limit.
So the answer to the question would be no. You cannot feed them with paper. Guinea pigs are wild rodents, and they are not used to eating human-made paper.
If you feel that your piggie might be eating paper, then take him for a scan to the vet.
What else should I not give guinea pigs?
There are lots of foods that you should avoid giving your piggies. There might be various reasons behind it. Some foods might have high fat and sugar, which is a hazard to your piggies’ system.
Your piggie cannot chew all foods. Some might get stuck and choke your furball. The main items you should avoid in Guinea pigs are,
- Peanut butter
- Plant seeds
We might have seen rodents in movies taking in kernels, corn, and bread. That is not the case of Guinea pigs you raise in homes. Even if they belong to the same species, they do not have the same appetite.
House plants, flowers, and grass might be risky for your piggies due to the use of pesticides. Most beautiful flowers are toxic to guinea pigs. This why guinea pigs are encouraged more to take organic foods and chewable toys, including organic grass and sticks. You can find these organic products online.
Guinea pigs have the inability to synthesize vitamins, so they most of the time undergo deficiency. To compensate for this, they are given salt licks, which are large bars of salt. Overfeeding them with these salt licks can also be dangerous.
Only if your piggie is in deficiency feed them with salt licks. If they are subtle and still ask for salt licks, you can reduce the quantity. It is always advisable to avoid salt once they are normal.
Guinea pigs have an entirely different craving from other animals. So you must be extra cautious while feeding them. It is well and good if you provide them only the needed food.
Be extra cautious while you set them to lose apart from their natural habitat. This will prevent them from choking and unhealthy eating. Do not feed the store food daily. Your pig might get bored soon. Serve them variety.