Why Is My Guinea Pig Always Hungry? (Causes+What To Do)

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Perhaps you’ve noticed that your guinea pig is constantly nibbling on their food supply. You’re probably wondering why my guinea pig is always hungry, aren’t you? Is your guinea pig having difficulty eating, is he or she suffering from malnutrition, or is there something else wrong? Let’s take a look and see!

Guinea pigs are always hungry, and this is because they are. Guinea pigs are foragers by nature, and this is reflected in their behavior. They have a natural desire to consume food whenever they have the opportunity. If they don’t eat for a few hours, their digestive system will slow down or even collapse, resulting in serious health problems. If they are shedding or nursing, they will consume more calories than usual.

It is your responsibility, as the owner, to provide your guinea pigs with an unlimited amount of hay, a cup of vegetables every day, and a small amount of treat every now and then.

Because guinea pigs are crepuscular creatures in nature, they tend to eat more during the hours of twilight.

The presence of constant hunger in your guinea pig may indicate the presence of a health problem such as diabetes or parasites in the animal.

It is critical for an owner to understand their guinea pig’s nutritional requirements in order to ensure that their pet lives a healthy and balanced life. This will ensure that they do not overeat or go hungry for long periods of time.

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My guinea pig eats all the time

Due to the fact that they are grazers, Guinea pigs have a complicated digestive system that requires them to consume a small amount of food on a consistent basis.

Wild guinea pigs forage through fields of grass, bushes, and clover, gnawing on whatever they can get their teeth into. They continue to do this indefinitely until they either run away because they are afraid of predators or until their bellies are full.

Because food in the wild can be scarce, guinea pigs have developed an instinct to consume as much as they can whenever they can.

When they come across foods that are both delicious and nutritious, their tendency becomes more dominant.

Examples include vegetables and fruits, which are always high in minerals and vitamins. Guinea pigs can consume as much of it as they want because they are unsure when they will be able to find more.

The same instinct that drives your guinea pigs’ starving and hungry behavior is also responsible for their behavior.

How do you know when a guinea pig is hungry?

Guinea pigs are always on the lookout for food. Your guinea pigs will always be hungry and will demand more food. They can’t seem to stop wheeling, especially when it comes to delectable fruits and vegetables.

You may believe that your guinea pigs are gluttons for punishment, and in some ways, you are correct. So the question you must ask yourself is whether or not your guinea pigs require additional food.

Unfortunately, there is no reliable way to determine their level of hunger at this time. The examination by a veterinarian is optional, and it is usually not necessary unless your guinea pig exhibits signs of malnutrition. There is no evidence to suggest that a guinea pig who is underfed is healthy.

Instead, you should provide your guinea with a well-balanced diet in the appropriate quantities, which is a great approach to take. If you provide your guinea pig with nutritious meals, he or she will not go hungry. But how much food do they need to be healthy?

How much to feed a guinea pig?

Guinea pigs’ food pyramid is divided into three categories, which are listed below in the following order of importance:

  1. Hays and grass
  2. Vegetables
  3. Pellets

You can give your guinea pig fruits as a treat if you give them to him in small amounts.

However, the question arises as to what constitutes an appropriate portion size for your guinea pig. How many times can you give your guinea pig food before it becomes ill?

Type of foodHow often to feedQuantity to feed
HayDailyUnlimited
Fresh GrassAlmost daily1/2 Bowl
VegetablesDailyMix Of 4-5 Veggies In A Bowl (125 Grams)
PelletsDaily¼ cup Daily
Fruits1-2 times a week1-2 tablespoon
Other treatsOnce a week1-2 tablespoon

Hay

Timothy grass is superior to legume hay (Alfalfa) in terms of nutrition for your guinea pig because it contains a higher concentration of nutrients. The amount of protein and calcium present in legume hay is substantial.

However, it is critical not to overfeed guinea pigs with legume hay, as this can result in health problems for them.

Because it is best to stick with healthy grass hay, you can give the grass in an unlimited amount of quantity. The following are the best grass hays for your guinea pig:

  1. Oat
  2. Timothy
  3. Wheatgrass

Vegetables

You can increase the amount of vegetables in your guinea pig’s diet by 10 percent to 15 percent per day. Some vegetables are superior to others when compared to other vegetables. Leafy greens contain a higher concentration of nutrients.

Additionally, crunchy vegetables such as celery can aid in the wearing down of your guinea pig’s teeth.

It is preferable for guinea pigs to have a diet that is rich in fresh foods. Guinea pigs’ digestive systems, on the other hand, should be prepared and adjusted gradually. It is possible that a sudden change will be detrimental to their health.

When you bring a new guinea pig home, you must ensure that your guinea pig is consuming grass hay for at least 2 weeks before gradually transitioning to fresh vegetables for consumption. Because it will help to improve their stomach, the sudden change will not cause them to have an upset stomach.

Leafy greens

You must include leafy greens in your guinea pig’s fresh food at a rate of at least 75% of the total amount of fresh food you provide.

If your guinea pig weighs 2 pounds or more, you can feed it one cup of leafy greens per 2 pounds of body weight every day of the week.

You should provide your guinea pig with the nutritious vegetables listed below:

  1. Red Cabbage
  2. Romaine lettuce 
  3. Bok choy
  4. Collard greens

Root veggies

If you compare the root vegetables to leafy greens, you will need to give them in much smaller quantities. Because root vegetables contain a high concentration of starch and sugar, they are considered to be healthy. The root vegetables are as follows:

  1. Carrots
  2. Radishes
  3. Yams
  4. Beets
  5. Turnips

Root vegetables do not pose a health risk. It does, however, contain a significant amount of fat. If you provide this in large quantities, the guinea pigs’ diet will become unbalanced as a result of this.

However, unless your guinea pig is severely overweight, there is no reason to completely eliminate root vegetables from their diet.

This type of vegetable should only be used in small amounts, according to the recipe. You can give the guinea pig one tablespoon for every two pounds of body weight that it has.

Herbs

In addition to vegetables, you can also give your guinea pig herbs to eat as a treat. It is the most effective method of making their meals spicy. All you have to do now is make sure that you deliver these herbs to them in a very slow and deliberate manner. A strong taste is enjoyed by some of the guinea pigs, whereas others are not fond of the herbs for the same reason. Herbs that are beneficial include:

  1. Basil
  2. Mint
  3. Dil

Veggies to avoid

You should be aware that some of the vegetables are not suitable for our guinea pigs, and you should avoid them. It is necessary to provide your guinea pig with these types of vegetables as a treat because they contain high levels of natural sugar. These vegetables are among them:

  1. Potatoes
  2. Sweet potatoes
  3. Mushroom
  4. Pumpkin

There are a few fruits and vegetables that you should avoid at all costs, aside from those mentioned above. For example, iceberg lettuce, onions, garlic, and avocados are all healthy choices.

You should know that only a few vegetables are safe to feed your guinea pig, with the rest being harmful. You should always check to see that the food you are giving your guinea pig is not harmful to their health before giving it to them.

Pellets

Pellets should account for no more than 5 percent of your guinea pig’s total diet. A small number of guinea pig owners, on the other hand, prefer to feed their animals only natural foods.

However, if you supplement your guinea pig’s diet with high-quality pellets, they will be beneficial to them because they will provide a good nutritional supplement.

By evaluating the nutritional value of various pellets, you can select the most appropriate one. To get the best results, look for foods that contain 16 percent protein and at least 20 percent fiber.

Muesli is also present in some guinea pig foods, so it is essential to avoid feeding them. Muesli is a type of food that contains a mixture of nuts, cereal grains, and seeds in a single serving.

Because guinea pigs try to eat only the foods that they enjoy, it is likely that your guinea pig will eat the fillers more than the actual healthy part of the meal.

If guinea pigs eat muesli-type foods, they will have an unbalanced diet as a result of their eating habits. A guinea pig can become overweight as a result of eating cereal-type foods.

Instead of a mixture of different types of food, it is preferable to choose a brand that has pellets that are similar in size.

Fruits

Fruits are a good source of minerals and vitamins in small quantities. It does, however, contain a high amount of sugar, which can cause your guinea pig to become obese.

As a result, the proprietor must provide only a small quantity of the fruits.

Fruits can be given as a treat only twice a week, which is more than enough. Also, make certain that you only feed it in small quantities.

Dried fruits have a sweetness that is three times greater than that of fresh fruits. As a result, it is best to avoid them at all costs. However, if you so desire, you can incorporate a small amount of it into their diet. It is sufficient to use a small piece of raisin as an example.

Also read: 70+ Fruits for your guinea pig(Learn which one is safe)

When do guinea pigs eat?

Mostly, guinea pigs eat throughout the day but they prefer to eat vegetables and snacks in the morning and evening. Wild guinea pigs are most active in the evening hours because it helps them to avoid predators.

Wild guinea pigs spend this time in the search for food or provisions. Domestic guinea pigs can also follow this pattern of feeding, but to a small extent.

Because domestic guinea pigs don’t have to search for food, your guinea pig will graze throughout the day.

However, the appetite of guinea pigs increases in the morning and evening as they feel safe during those hours.

Also, this prepares the body of guinea pigs for more activity, as it boosts the energy levels of guinea pigs with additional food.

How many times a day should I feed my guinea pigs?

You have to feed your guinea pig 2 times a day. Which includes a small snack of vegetable in the evening and the morning, daily. Your guinea pig becomes very hungry during those hours. So, it is best to serve them a good snack.

There is no need to worry if you get a little late on their food in the morning and evening. Your guinea pig will not be hungry if they have access to an endless amount of hay.

You need just to make sure that you fill up their supply of hay whenever you can. When you have some time, you can provide them with other foods for their balanced diet. You can give some pellets, some vegetables, and leafy greens.

The best time to feed your guinea pig is evening. However, your guinea pig will gladly change to the new schedule if you regularly feed your guinea pig at any other time daily.

Guinea pig suddenly eating a lot

Guinea pigs are always on the lookout for food. They must, however, consume a consistent amount of food on a daily basis. The diet of your guinea pig will remain the same from day to day, week after week.

If your guinea pig’s appetite suddenly increases, you should be on the lookout for any signs of illness. Your guinea pig may become hungry for a variety of reasons, including but not limited to:

Shedding

It’s possible that your guinea pigs are hungry because they’re getting ready to shed their skin, which is known as molting.

When the winter season is over, your guinea pig will no longer require their thick coat. They will begin to shed their winter coat fur to a thinner layer in order to be more comfortable in the springtime weather.

In addition, guinea pigs begin to shed their coats in the fall, just before the arrival of winter. They shed their fur twice a year, in the spring and fall. Shedding requires a significant amount of energy from a guinea pig, and it also increases their appetite.

If your guinea pig is molting in chunks, you must ensure that it has a sufficient supply of food. Afterward, their energy levels will return to normal and their appetite will return to normal after the shedding season is over.

Breeding

Is it possible for you to learn more about your female guinea pig’s increased appetite during the spring season? This has the potential to influence the breeding season.

Notably, the female guinea pig must maintain her nutrients and energy levels while experiencing the stress of pregnancy.

However, this is not always the case with guinea pigs. In most cases, it only affects guinea pigs who are transported outside on a regular basis for play or housing purposes. This can be triggered by the sun, light, and other environmental factors.

Additionally, those guinea pigs who have been neutered and spayed will not exhibit any symptoms during that time of year because they only produce a small amount of hormones.

Diabetes

Diabetes can also be a contributing factor to guinea pigs becoming malnourished. Fortunately, it is a relatively rare disease in guinea pigs.

Diabetic guinea pigs can be caused by an abnormality or impairment in the pancreas, according to the American Diabetes Association. The pancreas is unable to produce as much insulin as it should, which is required to keep blood sugar levels under control.

Because this disease is uncommon in guinea pigs, it can be difficult to diagnose and treat. From one guinea to another, the signs and symptoms of this disease can differ significantly. In addition, the veterinary surgeon must first rule out the most common diseases and disorders.

However, an increase in the appetite of a guinea pig can be a sign of diabetes in humans and other animals. Guinea pigs may experience weight loss as a result of this.

If you want to treat diabetes in your guinea pig, you must change the diet of the animal. Given that overweight guinea pigs are more likely than not to develop diabetes, it is essential that you modify their eating habits.

An extremely strict diet plan may be necessary to aid in the recovery of an infected guinea pig. It is always preferable to prevent a disease than to treat it once it has occurred. Guinea pigs require a well-balanced diet that includes foods that are high in fiber and low in sugar.

Parasites

An increase in guinea pig appetite that occurs suddenly may be due to parasites in the animal’s system.

The intestinal parasites in your guinea pig’s stomach have the ability to suck nutrients from the animal’s stomach. Consequently, you must provide your guinea pig with a large amount of food in order for him to consume the same amount of nutrients.

Your guinea pigs will exhibit a variety of symptoms depending on the parasites they are infected with. Other symptoms, on the other hand, can always be used to diagnose parasitic infections. Among the most frequently encountered are:

  1. Weakness
  2. Discharge
  3. Skin irritations
  4. A shabby coat
  5. Loss in weight

If you have reason to believe that your guinea pig is infected, there is no need to be concerned.

The treatments are administered by the veterinary surgeon in order to eliminate the parasite from the body of your guinea pig.

Additionally, they can administer supplements to your guinea pig in order to strengthen its immune system. This will allow your guinea pig’s appetite to return to normal and will aid in the recovery process from the disease.

What to do if your guinea pig is eating a lot?

If you provide your guinea pig with an endless supply of hay, you will also discover that he is hungry. Is it necessary to feed your guinea pig more if they have a greater appetite than usual?

The amount of food must be the same for each person. It is not necessary to add any additional pellets, vegetables, or leafy greens. Because if you attempt to do so, your guinea pig will completely disregard their hay, which will be detrimental to their health.

Instead, you should encourage your guinea pig to consume an increased amount of grass hay.

If your guinea pig is eating more hay, this should not be a problem; however, you may need to replenish their hay supply more frequently if this is the case.

The consumption of hay, rather than more vegetables or pellets, is far more beneficial to your guinea pig’s health. Due to the fact that those are not a regular part of their diet.

Guinea pig eating too much hay

Even if they have unlimited access to hay, your guinea pig will not be able to consume too much of it.

Guinea pigs are grazers, which means they eat grass. Regarding eating habits, guinea pigs are more similar to horses and cows than other animals, which is in contrast to the habits of other animals.

Guinea pigs, like horses and cows, require access to a sufficient supply of hay to graze on whenever they please to survive.

Hay does not have to be high in nutrients in order to be nutritious. However, it must be hygienic and contain a high amount of fiber.

Is my guinea pig eating too much

There is no reasonable way to determine whether or not your guinea pig is overeating until your guinea pig begins to exhibit any signs of illness.

Make certain that you are not feeding your guinea pig excessive amounts of the same food on a consistent basis (see below).

In most cases, guinea pigs will be able to tell whether they are full or not. The majority of the guinea pigs, on the other hand, have a sweet tooth.

Even if the guinea pigs are completely satisfied, they can consume high-sugar vegetables or fruits.

In a similar vein, some guinea pigs are more prone to overeating than others when compared to the rest of the group. The personality of your guinea pig will have a significant impact on the outcome.

It would be best if you could provide your guinea pig with an endless supply of hay while only giving him a limited amount of treats. Overeating will be less tempting as a result of this.

Additionally, it will reduce the number of health problems that they experience. Above all, when compared to fruits that are high in sugar, hay that is high in fiber can be less harmful when consumed in large quantities.

Is my guinea pig eating enough

Before overeating becomes a problem, it can be difficult to locate healthy food. However, there is a way to determine whether or not your guinea pig is getting enough to eat.

Check the fecal pellets of your guinea pig to see if they contain any pathogens. It will assist you in determining whether or not your guinea pig is eating a nutritious diet. The following characteristics can be found in the best sample, and they are as follows:

  1. Dark brown
  2. Rounded
  3. Slightly soft
  4. Consistently sized

Shapeless and watery stools may indicate the presence of digestive issues. If you notice any of these symptoms, you should investigate your guinea pig’s diet. It must not contain any of the following:

  1. Poor quality of hay
  2. High level of sugar
  3. High level of protein
  4. Less amount of fiber
  5. A lot of fresh vegetables

If you do not notice any signs of imbalance, you should consult your veterinary surgeon for advice on how to correct it. This may entail altering the diet of the guinea pigs or administering medications to treat the illness.

It is perfectly normal for your guinea pigs to graze on their food throughout the day. Guinea pigs’ appetites can, however, increase during the springtime or during the hours of twilight, depending on the season.

In general, if you provide a guinea pig with a well-balanced diet on a regular basis, they will not overeat. If they do, you will need to make some changes to their meal preparations in order for them to be satisfied. Among other things, they should be given fewer vegetables, fruits, and pellets than they would otherwise receive.

There is no need to be concerned if your guinea pig appears to be hungry all of the time. They are free to graze on as much hay as they want. However, it is important not to overindulge in pellets and fresh food.