Techniques to litter box train a Guinea pig
|Laverne and Shirley|
Are Guinea Pigs Litter Box Trainable?I owned two long hair guinea pigs named Laverne and Shirley. I learned that guinea pigs could be litter box trained. I sure loved those pigs and wanted them to have the cleanest cage possible. I read various articles that explained how to do this.
I read that it was fairly difficult and some guinea pigs do not adopt this new habit. Most of the articles stated that fleece lining their cage encouraged better litter habits.
Guinea pigs go through bedding at an alarming rate. You may wonder if they are litter box trainable or if it is worth trying out.
|Carefresh Natural Small Pet Bedding is made from natural reclaimed paper fiber|
Guinea pigs are trainable but are a little harder than some small animals to train. Guinea pigs will urinate in one place but they are known to defecate all around their environment.
Even if you are just able to train your guinea pig to urinate in one place, it would cut down on how quickly their cage bedding needs to be replaced.
- Try using alternative bedding like fleece liners or pads. I line my guinea pigs cage with a liner and put different bedding inside of another area of her cage. The pads cut down on expenses.
- Decide how you plan to wash the fleece or pads. Will you hand wash and air dry? Do you feel comfortable washing in your own washer? Some people have bought separate washers that are portable. If you choose to machine wash, put your fleece in a cloth bag when washing. That will save your washer from accumulating pieces of hay.
|Washable absorbent pads! |
- Try to use bedding/litter that will not track out onto the fleece or pads. Regardless of how you wash the fleece, it's tricky to remove bedding stuck to it.
- Get a litter box. I placed a litter box in the corner and picked up accidents with a small broom and dustpan and put it in the litter. I put the hay above the litter box
- Place their food in front of their litter box. I kept their hay right by the litter box so that they could eat and use the bathroom in that location
- Practice makes almost perfect. I practiced these techniques for several months. It was a lot of effort!
- Keep the cage clean. I kept the cage very clean to encourage them to use the litter box.
Not completely. However, these techniques did make a difference in how frequently they used the bathroom outside of the litterbox. That alone was very helpful.
I found normal fleece was not a good bedding option for my guinea pigs. It did not absorb mistakes very well. If you are going to go the fleece route, I highly suggest getting fleece liners that are designed for guinea pigs.
I tried a softer Carefresh granule bedding I spoke about and a different litter in their litter pan. This route was best for my particular pigs. Litter training can make their cage a healthier environment. Even just hanging their hay over their litter pan will make a big difference
Please check out my article on guinea pig bedding and beds
Good luck with your training endeavors. Let me know below if you are going to try it or have started already.
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