Guinea pigs are a significant commitment for new pet owners, and many do not think to ask, “how long do guinea pigs live.” The answer can be shocking, especially if you have had gerbils or hamsters.
How Long Do Guinea Pigs Live?
The average guinea pig lifespan for pets is between 5 and 7 years. In the wild, that changes to 1 to 4 years. As it happens, guinea pigs live a long time in captivity since there are no predators or food scarcity.
Please note these are average numbers for how long guinea pigs live, not guarantees.
Stages of Life for Guinea Pigs
Guinea pigs move through three stages of life as they age. Each stage brings slight changes for the guinea pig and new things for you to monitor your guinea pigs for. Things like diet and enrichment stay relatively constant, however.
Juvenile is used to describe guinea pigs from 0 to 6 months. Guinea pigs are born with their eyes open and their first fur coat. Since they are prey animals, they grow and mature quickly. However, during this phase, they need plenty of calories with a balance of nutrients to support that growth.
Adult guinea pigs are typically classified as between 6 months and 5 years old, though the range can vary slightly. These guinea pigs are done growing but still require lots of enrichment and a balanced diet.
Senior guinea pigs are any piggle who is 5 years or older. These guinea pigs require some specialized veterinary care, including regular exams. You may also find these guinea pigs need a specialized diet.
How to Help Guinea Pigs Live Longer
Guinea pigs are relatively easy to take care of for a pet. You must ensure a balanced diet throughout their lives to provide your guinea pigs with a long, healthy life. Additionally, keeping guinea pigs in social groups helps them.
Guinea pigs also need regular exercise and a rotation of toys to stave off boredom. This is important as your guinea pigs age since weight and attitude can indicate future health.
Additionally, regular vet visits and quick checkups become more critical as your guinea pig ages. You can conduct these short exams during your daily handling of your guinea pigs.