Guinea pigs do not speak, but with their sounds, they show us if they are happy, sad, or sick. The better you understand their sounds the better you will know what your guinea pig is trying to tell you.
It is essential to know what sounds guinea pigs make when they are sick in order to help them.
What are the sounds when the guinea pigs are sick?
When guinea pigs are sick they make different sounds like chirping crackling, hooting, wheezing, clicking, shrieking, and teeth chattering.
Apart from the sounds that guinea pigs make when they are sick, it is important to know their body language, which will also help you to know more easily if everything is okay with them.
Guinea pigs often know how to hide when they are sick, to protect themselves from possible predators that would take advantage of their current weakness.
In today’s article, you will find out what are the sounds that guinea pigs make when they are sick, what are the signs when they are sick, and what to do to help them.
What are the sounds when the guinea pigs are sick?
When a guinea pig is sick, it emits different sounds, and if we know its meaning well, it will be easier to help our pet.
Therefore, here are the most common sounds when guinea pigs are sick, and their meaning.
- Chirping – this sound is not very common among guinea pigs and resembles a bird’s call. This sound can mean that the guinea pig is anxious, however, this sound and its meaning are not well understood.
- Shrieking or squealing – this sound means that the guinea pig is in pain, or that it is sad and unhappy, and it needs to be taken immediately for examination to see if it has any health problems.
- Crackle, hooting, wheezing, and clicking – all these sounds indicate that the guinea pig has problems with the respiratory system. Difficulty breathing is dangerous to the health of guinea pigs and should be taken to a veterinarian.
- Teeth chattering – is a sound that guinea pigs make when they are aggressive and when they are planning to defend themselves or to signal others around them not to approach them. The same sound can also mean that the guinea pig is not in good health.
- Whining – this sound means that the guinea pig is not well, that they have a problem and if necessary you should take them to the vet.
All these sounds are best followed by the body language of the guinea pigs because sometimes the sounds do not necessarily mean that your pet is sick, it is best when, apart from sounds, they indicate to us that they are sick through body language.
Do guinea pigs get sick easily?
Yes, guinea pigs often get sick because they are very sensitive and susceptible to diseases.
It is enough for them to breathe cold air and get an upper respiratory infection or pneumonia, especially small guinea pigs.
That’s why the temperature in their cage should always be appropriate ie between 60 and 85 °F to prevent infection.
What are the signs that a guinea pig is sick?
Apart from the sounds, the body language of the guinea pigs can help us to know that they are sick.
The most common signs of illness in guinea pigs are:
- occurrence of diarrhea
- loss of appetite
- blood in their urine
- weight loss
- hair loss
- joint pains
- discharge from the eyes and nose
- breathing difficulties
- hiding in the cage
- bad smell of poop
All of these signs and symptoms are characteristic of a guinea pig being sick, so if you notice them you will need to take them to a vet to be examined.
Sometimes it might not be anything serious, but it’s still best to get checked out.
What are the most common diseases that guinea pigs get?
Guinea pigs can have various diseases that can seriously threaten their health.
Here are some of them:
- respiratory system infections
- dental problems
- skin parasites
- bladder stones
- vitamin C deficiency
That’s why you should carefully monitor their body language and the sounds they make when they are sick. Let’s take a closer look at all these diseases that guinea pigs can get.
Diarrhea is one of the most dangerous diseases that can affect guinea pigs and can be fatal to their lives.
The most common causes of diarrhea are eating too many carbohydrates, too many fresh vegetables, and not enough fiber in their diet.
When guinea pig has diarrhea then they are also in danger of dehydration. Diarrhea and dehydration can cause fatal consequences and the death of the guinea pig in a few days.
When a guinea pig has diarrhea, it has watery poop, has no appetite, becomes lethargic, and gets tired quickly.
When a guinea pig has diarrhea, it must be taken to a veterinarian immediately to be examined and treated.
Infections of the respiratory system
When guinea pigs have problems with the respiratory system, they become lethargic, have difficulty breathing, have discharge from the eyes and nose, lack appetite, and other symptoms.
Infection of the respiratory system in guinea pigs is obtained from their environment as well as from debris in their hay, pellets, and where they live.
Other causes of respiratory system infection are stress, inadequate diet, and poor care of your pet.
When a guinea pig has an infection of the respiratory system, their condition can change very quickly and go from a small cold to pneumonia.
Bacterial infections or viral infections cause pneumonia in guinea pigs.
UTI infections of the urinary tract
Female guinea pigs are more likely to get urinary tract infections and should be taken to the vet in such situations.
The most common signs of UTI in guinea pigs are:
- loss of appetite
- they have pain when we touch them
- the appearance of blood in their urine
- when they urinate they have pain
When a guinea pig has a UTI, it can run a high temperature of around 104 F and make a squeaking sound.
Bladder stones are very painful and guinea pigs have a hard time with this problem.
When guinea pigs have bladder stones they have blood in their urine, frequent urination, and difficulty urinating.
Bladder stones are often caused by eating foods that are high in oxalates, such as parsley, spinach, celery, and strawberries.
In such situations, it is usually necessary to perform an operation, which unfortunately is very risky for the life of your pet, while if everything is fine, the guinea pig recovers in 1-2 weeks.
Bladder stones are more common in older guinea pigs.
Vitamin C deficiency
When guinea pigs lack vitamin C, scurvy can occur, which is a very dangerous disease.
Symptoms of vitamin C deficiency are:
- loss of appetite
- movement problems
- joint pain and swelling
That’s why you must make sure that they always have a diet enriched with vitamin C because guinea pigs cannot produce this vitamin on their own and must get it through their diet.
Ringworm is a fungal infection that is contagious and can be easily spread to other guinea pigs.
When guinea pigs have ringworm they have more itching, dry brittle skin, hair loss in certain areas, and similar symptoms.
It is necessary to take the guinea pigs to a veterinarian who will prescribe medication or oral antifungal treatments after the examination.
Guinea pigs can also often get parasites such as mites and lice. When guinea pigs have parasites they have the following symptoms:
- falling out of parts of the hair
- redness of the skin
In such situations, it is necessary to take them to a veterinarian who will examine your pet and prescribe appropriate therapy for treatment.
Guinea pigs have problems with their teeth if they don’t wear them down enough because they are always growing.
That is why it is necessary that they eat hay and have enough toys and wooden blocks to help them reduce their teeth.
If their teeth overgrow they will have difficulty eating, and mouth sores may occur.
It is necessary to take the guinea pigs to a veterinarian who will reduce their teeth with special tools, in any case, you cannot do the reduction of the teeth at home.
When guinea pigs have problems with their teeth, they lose their appetite, lose weight, and may develop other diseases.
Read more: Can Guinea Pigs Catch Human Colds? Let’s Find Out
How to prevent diseases in guinea pigs?
In order to prevent diseases, sounds of pain, and discomfort in guinea pigs, it is best to monitor their health.
That’s why you should periodically check:
- The nose – should always be clean, not runny, because when they sneeze and their nose runs it is the beginning of a cold.
- Eyes – their eyes should be clear and bright, whereas if they are cloudy or have a milky discharge then something is wrong with them.
- Fur – it should be clean and thick, while if they have shedding and redness of the skin then it is the beginning of health problems.
- The feet – always make sure that their feet are neat, or rather that the nails are always cut, don’t let them grow too long, they can cause problems and pain during movement.
- The back of the body – should always be clean and dry, and if it is wet and smells, it can mean that they have urinary infections.
- Teeth – you should always have enough objects and toys to reduce the teeth, because if you notice that the guinea pigs refuse to eat they may have overgrown teeth that cause wounds and diseases.
When guinea pigs are sick, they make various sounds that want to tell us that something is wrong and ask us to help them.
Guinea pigs when they are sick they usually use sounds like chirping, crackling, hooting, wheezing and clicking, shrieking, and teeth chattering.
The sounds together with their body language can help us find out more easily what their illness is and how to help them.
The more we know their body sounds and speech, the easier it will be to help them heal.
Read more: How Warm do Guinea Pigs Need To Be? Let’s Discover