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Diet

Your Guinea pig is never happier than when he/she are eating! They can eat a wide variety of food. They need constant access to hay, a good quality dried food and small amounts of fresh food (preferably twice a day.) This is because they cannot produce their own vitamin C so need to be topped up regularly in order to keep them healthy. A diet consisting purely of dried food though is not healthy for your Guinea pig as these dried foods are full of protein and excessive feeding can cause kidney stones. Please ensure you buy good quality hay, damp smelly stuff just isn't good enough. There are lots of different types available too such as Timothy Hay, Orchard Hay, Meadow Hay, Alfalfa... it's all good stuff.

Guinea pigs also enjoy a variety of wild plants including of course dandelions and grass. However, if you feed them these please make sure the grass has not been treated and that the dandelions are not near the road otherwise they can be poisoned by exhaust toxins.

Any fruit or vegetable should be clean and fresh, anything left over should be removed before it goes stale.

Grass clippings from the mower should not be fed as they will make Guinea pigs poorly.

Water

They Will need clean fresh water daily and easy access to it of course.

Please make sure the water bottle is cleaned out well too, especially the spout. Bits from the Guinea pig’s mouth can go back up through the spout and into the bottle so please change the water daily and use a mini bottle brush for the spout. A soak in Milton once a week is recommended. (The metal spout that is, NOT THE PIGS !!!)
 
VEGETABLES AND SALAD

Artichoke
Asparagus
Bell/sweet peppers – red,green,yellow (not hot or chilli)
Broccoli
Brussels Sprouts and stalk leaves
Butternut squash
Celery leaves and stalks
Carrots including tops / leaves (not too many, Vit A content linked to health problems)
Cauliflower stalks
Cabbage
Corn on the cob (strings, leaves & stalks are edible too)
Celery Root / Celeriac
Cucumber
Chicory
Courgette
Garden cress
Green beans
Kale
Lettuce - Romaine, Cos, Lollo Rosso, Lambs Tongue (not iceberg)
Mange tout
Peas in pod
Parsnip
Pumpkin
Pak choi
Rocket
Radishes (if mild)
Spring greens
Spinach (feed in moderation)
Sweet potato
Swede
Water Cress
 
FRESH HERBS

Basil
Coriander
Dill
Mint
Parsley (curly and flatleaf)
Thyme

FROM THE GARDEN AND HEDGEROW (please make doubly sure you pick the right ones. Wild Flowers of Britain by Roger Phillips is extremely useful for identifying safe wild plants)

Agrimony
Apple tree leaves/branches
Blackberry leaves
Chickweed
Clover
Cow Parsley
Coltsfoot
Dandelion (flower and leaves)
Grass
Groundsel
Hazel branches
Mallow
Pear tree leaves/branches
Plantain
Raspberry leaves
Stinging Nettle
Wild Strawberry (berries and leaves)
Yarrow

FRUIT

Apple (don't over do these, can cause mouth sores)
Apricot
Bananas
Blackberries
Bilberries
Blueberries
Cherries
Cranberries
Cantaloupe Melon
Currants - yellow, red or black (leaves also edible)
Grapes (in moderation, high in sugar)
Grapefruit (caution - sores around lips can develop)
Guava
Gooseberries
Honeydew Melon
Kiwi Fruit
Mango
Nectarine
Orange (caution - sores around lips can develop)
Papaya
Fresh Pineapple
Pear
Plum
Peach
Raspberries
Strawberries

Tomato (sores around mouth can develop; leaves poisonous)
Tangerine / Mandarin (caution - sores around lips can develop)
Watermelon (can cause diarrhoea - high water content)

Never feed potatoes, iceberg lettuce or rhubarb.

Think "safety" too when gathering wild plants. If in doubt, please leave it out. They don't want poorly tummies.

Remember that All Guinea’s love to chew. Small branches from apple/pear trees or hazel will be most welcomed. Make them about 6" long, cut off any spiky bits and ensure they don't have any fungus on them. Leaves will be enjoyed too. They will neatly eat all the bark off and it saves them gnawing at your hutch interior.

Strive for a balanced diet of fresh foods with as much variety as you can possibly achieve. Too much of one particular food is never a good thing (boring too) and just like people they do have our preferences!