How to Prevent Respiratory Problems in Guinea Pigs

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Use a well-ventilated cage.,
Place the cage in a draft-free area.,
Put low-dust bedding in the cage.,
Clean the cage.

A well-ventilated cage allows fresh air to enter and circulate through the cage. Also, a cage with good ventilation prevents the buildup of ammonia, which can irritate a guinea pig’s respiratory tract. Wire cages provide great ventilation. Glass cages, however, do not., Proper cage placement is another prevention strategy. Put the cage in an area where your guinea pigs will not feel a constant draft of air.For example, place the cage away from ceiling and floor vents.

A constant draft of air could bother your guinea pigs’ respiratory tracts.
Within the draft-free area, make sure the cage is not in the direct path of sunlight.This could warm up the cage too much.

, Dust can lead to respiratory problems in guinea pigs. Yesterday’s News cat litter and CareFresh® are great low-dust bedding choices for guinea pig cages.If you are not sure if the current bedding is dusty, take some of it in your hand, go outside, and toss it up in the air. If you see lots of dust in the air as the bedding falls to the ground, switch to a low-dust bedding.Sawdust shavings contain a lot of dust.
Some beddings, such as cedar shavings and pine shavings, contain aromatic (scented) oils that can cause respiratory tract irritation.Change the bedding whenever it becomes wet or dirty.

, A clean cage is very important for preventing respiratory problems. First, place your guinea pigs in a guinea-proof room (no hiding spaces or visible electrical cords) or small travel carrier.Next, remove all bedding and accessories from the cage. Clean the cage with warm, soapy water and a sponge. Let the cage dry completely before putting fresh bedding, cage accessories, and your guinea pigs back in.Consider these other helpful cleaning tips:Make a schedule so you don’t forget to clean the cage.
Wash the food bowl and water bottle with unscented soap. Your guinea pigs may not like the smell of scented soap.
Instead of soapy water, spray a 50/50 mixture of white vinegar and water to clean the cage.
Clean the cage at least once a week.

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