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Grooming Guinea Pigs

January 15 2021

Have you recently adopted a Guinea pig? If so, you’ve got a pretty adorable little buddy! However, to keep your pet looking his best, you will need to keep up with your pint-sized pal’s grooming needs. A local McHenry, IL vet offers tips on this below.


Your furry pal will need to be brushed regularly. How often this happens will depend on his breed and coat length. However, fluffy cavies typically need more attention than short-haired breeds. You’ll also need to brush your pet more often when he is shedding. Use a soft-bristled brush, and gently move in the direction of your tiny buddy’s fur. Comb rosettes outward from the center. (Note: grooming rosettes is very important in Abyssians.) If you have a Teddy, you will need a few different combs, including a flea comb, a wide-toothed comb, and a slicker brush. Ask your vet for specific advice.


You’ll also need to give your little buddy regular peticures. Long nails can catch on things and tear. (You’re also more likely to get scratched if you don’t clip your pet’s claws.) You can use clippers made for people, though you’ll want to get your furball a dedicated pair. Be careful not to cut into the quick! Ask your vet to demonstrate proper techniques.


For baths, use an unscented, non-medicated kitten or cavy shampoo. Put about 2 inches of lukewarm water in the tub or sink, and gently lather your little buddy. Use a small cup to rinse him off. Take care not to get suds in his eyes! Dry him gently with a towel or, if he seems comfy, with a hair dryer on low. Don’t put your cavy back into his cage until he’s totally dry. Between baths, you’ll need to spot clean your pet, which you can do with a washcloth. You’ll also need to clean his grease gland. Ask your vet for more information.

Cleaning Ears

Check your cavy’s ears regularly. Look for things like ear mites, infections, and wax buildup. Call your vet immediately if you see (or smell) anything unusual. Clean your tiny pal’s ears monthly, using a cotton swab dipped in mineral oil or a specific ear-cleaning product. (Your vet can recommend one.) Be careful not to push the swab into the ear!

Do you have questions about Guinea pig care? Call us, your McHenry, IL veterinary clinic, today!