Wednesday, January 30, 2013

5 Common(and not so common) Myths about Guinea Pigs

Guinea pigs are usually thought of as cute little creatures that you can hug and cuddle and love on... True, right? Wrong. Along with 5 other common (and not so common) myths about your piggie, this list is 100% fact and it has info you can trust.

Myth #5: Guinea Pigs can live in aquariums.

Fact: Guinea pigs can get sick easily, so this is not an option, because ammonia can build up in the tank, and it does not have good ventilation. Guinea pigs also have a lot of stress, and clear glass surrounding them can frighten them. A better choice would be a wire cage. Not only is it safe for them, it also has a protective feel to it, since piggies do not like the feel of open-ness all around them.

Myth #4: Guinea Pigs are great for Easter or birthday gifts.

Fact: Live animals like guinea pigs should never be a gift for anyone. Pet owners should do research on the animal, and then the family will go out and choose the pet together. In the "Easter Situation," the adult will likely buy a guinea pig and put it in an Easter basket. Although it will be exciting for the child the first few hours, he will soon lose interest, leaving the pet in a bad living situation like a cardboard box. Also, the age of the child could determine whether the guinea pig is or isn't treated fairly. The adult will probably leave the child on his own with the guinea pig, and not teach him the proper way to hold him or take care of his needs. This also follows the "Easter Bunny" problem. Thousands of "Easter Bunnies" are bought every Easter-time, only to have them be neglected the rest of their lives in a hutch or other place not acceptable as a living area. If you are going to get a guinea pig or rabbit for a birthday or Easter, go out and buy the pet as a family, and do plenty of research.

Myth #3: Guinea Pigs and Rabbits can live together in harmony.

Fact: Although a brief playtime session is fine for a guinea pig and rabbit, you should never leave them together in a cage. Why?

  • Rabbits can be "bullies" to other smaller pets, and they will most likely try to hog the food, water and hay. Some rabbits have thumped a guinea pig with its back feet, causing paralysis in the guinea pig. Other have starved to death from the rabbits eating all the food.
  • Guinea pigs have different needs like food and nesting boxes. Rabbits could get sick from the guinea pig food, and vice versa.

Myth #2: Small Guinea Pig, small cage...

Fact: Guinea pigs, like rabbits, need a lot of area for different things. Food, water, hay, sleeping, potty area...... A big cage is better for a guinea pig!

Myth #1: Guinea Pigs can be held by the scruff of the neck.

Fact: Wrong! You may have seen vets or professionals say to hold animals like rabbits, guinea pigs, mice and rats by their scruff, but this is so not right. Although mother guinea pigs do hold their babies this way, this is because they cannot grab the bodies in their teeth because they would get hurt. In many books they say that it doesn't hurt animals to hold them in this way, because they have hardly any nerves there, and this part is true. The pinching of the neck doesn't hurt the guinea pig, but the feeling of being suspended in the air can hurt a guinea pig from wiggling so much. Animals should be held close to your body, with your one hand supporting the bulk of its weight, and the other wrapped gently around his chest. Back injuries could occur from the guinea pig trying to get down by wiggling his body, and he could be dropped. Also teach children the right way to hold them. Tell them that instead of squeezing and cuddling, you have to let them be treated with care. Always supervise children under 6 when holding and playing with a guinea pig. A good idea is to sit on the floor and let the guinea pig crawl on his or her lap versus picking him up since he could be dropped easily.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Daisy's Page

Daisy has her own page and she is very excited! She hopes to have her own blog soon and her wish might just come true!

Monday, January 28, 2013

Happy 3rd Birthday Daisy!

Daisy is having a great birthday today! I gave her some banana, pepper, crackers, and her treats that she doesn't get often! I will make the cake and put the pictures here soon!

Hi everyone!


I love these treats...

Hi again!

Even birthday girls get thirsty!

Oh, and hungry too.

Oooh, look at that.


Oh treats!

Thank you sooo much!

Hi again.

So much to see...



More treats please....
Another year...

What am I supposed to do with this?

Oh, treats!


Saturday, January 26, 2013

Saturday's Critter Debate: RAT VS. MOUSE!

Although I like both animals, many want to know...... Who is the Perfect Pet? We will find out on today's  Saturday Critter Debate, only on Critter Corner! With our host..... Peanut!

Peanut: Thank you, thank you....We welcome you to the Critter Corner Pet Debate. Our subject? Rat Versus Mouse! Our past poll was on the subject of pet rats, and the results are in!

"I have never owned a pet rat, but I think they would make good pets": 47%

"I have owned pet rats before, and they make the best pets!":25%

"I have never owned a pet rat, and I never will": 25%

"I have owned a pet rat before, and they do not make good pets:" 3%

Thank you, voters!

Oh, and...... HERE are the contestants!!!......

Spike, a rat, and Angel, a mouse! How does it feel to be on the show?

Spike: Great!

Angel: Very nice...

Peanut: Good! Get ready now, because it is time for the national Critter Debate!

Let's start with the rat. It says here that rats live 2-3 years. Is that right, Spike?

Spike: Yes.

Peanut: Good. But here it says that mice live only 1-2 years. Hmm...

(crowd cheers: Go rats!)

Peanut: What about size? In size here, it says that rats are easier for humans to handle than mice. Rats can sit on a shoulder, but mice are so small they can be easily squished. What about that, Angel?

Angel: Uh...

Peanut: Here it says rats need to be in groups of two or more, but mice need seven friends or more. You can't just get one of each. Oh, and on the wall a vote went up for the rat!

(crowd cheers: RAT! RAT! We want rat!)

Angel: Heh, heh....uh....

Spike: Yes! Thank you all!

Peanut: Its not over yet, Spike. It says that rats want to be with their owners often, but mice don't bond with owners, but they are still fun to watch in the cage.

Is that a drawback?

(crowd cheers louder and louder: RAT! RAT! WE WANT RATS! GO RATS! GO SPIKE! NO MICE! RATS! RATS! RATS!)

Peanut: Okay, let's not make our Angel feel bad.... On to the subject of daily time commitment. Rats want to be played with, but mice don't seem to care if their owner forgets a day or two. How do you answer to that?, Angel?

Angel: W-w-well.....

Peanut: EXACTLY. Here it says that rats do not need to have cage cleanings every day. They can be trained to use a litter-box. Mice will "go" wherever they go. They have a very musty smell to their waste, while rats have no smell at all! Talk about messy! 

Ooh, Spike, you might not win this one. It says rats need bigger cages than mice. Sorry Spik--

(crowd screams: WE WANT RATS!)

Peanut: Well, whadda you know?

Anyway, it says rats are better than mice because they do not bite or nip and they love to play. While a mouse would not tolerate squeezing from a child or "dress-up," a rat sure would!

That is all of the list of reasons why rats are better than mice. Of course, if you have mice, Critter Corner loves all critters, but if you are choosing between a rat or mouse for a pet, then you can determine the better pet. The votes will end soon, so cast your vote in on our poll NOW!
Thank you Spike and Angel!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Speak To Me

Although rabbits cannot talk vocally, they can show you many different body languages. Here are many of the body languages your rabbit may show you and what they mean.

Daisy tells us that she is resting now.

"What do you want to do?"

Daisy is curious and wants to play.
 Note that she now looks like a baby rabbit then when she
 was sitting and looked more mature.

Daisy is very comfortable.

It is a blur when she is digging in the blankets!

"Hmmm....What could be in here?"

The "periscope bunny."

Calm and open to petting.

Daisy is less friendly now. "I am about to go to sleep..."

Sniff sniff, "What's this camera thingie?"

A gesture for more petting. 

Rabbits will bump you on the leg to get your attention.

About to lay down.

Side view.

Front view.
Eating a carrot.

Shaking head back and forth with tissue paper in mouth.

Daisy sees something.

The Official Daisy Look (TM).

About to stand up.

"I have to use the litter box."

VERY FUNNY! Grooming paw while laying down!

"Hey! I didn't know there were grapes in here!"

An affectionate lick means I am a loved owner and Daisy
 has let me into her "group" of rabbits. Rabbits groom each other in the wild.

"Ooh....A hole to stick my head through." Rabbits use their litter boxes as
a place to sit, too.

Turning her head.

"Oh, hi there!"

This is Daisy's favorite place to sleep and groom.

Daisy likes to eat the hay and bedding out of the litter box before using it!

"Bye, Everyone!"

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The Best Home Ever

Your critter's home is not just a cage. It's a habitat that they live in most of the time. Whether it's your entire house, or just a cage, learn how to turn your pet's habitat into a great place to be!

Space It Out...

Like a house, your critter's cage or playpen has different places. Even if your pet lives in the house without a cage, you still need different areas that have the things you need. I am going to use a rabbit for an example, since rabbits are usually the only critters large enough to go without a cage. Your rabbit needs 4 main areas: Resting, playing, eating, and using the bathroom. Your rabbit's sleeping box or bed should go in the living room or the owner's bedroom. A litter-box goes in a bathroom. Food, water, and hay goes in a kitchen or dining room. Toys go just about anywhere. Harnesses and leashes go in a mudroom or a place by a door.
In a cage, you have to make sure that these places are evenly spread out. Cages should be long enough for 5 rabbits to stretch out comfortably, wide enough for 4 rabbits to sit down easily, and tall enough for 1 rabbit to stand up without bumping its head. Any bigger is fine, but any smaller is not good unless you will spend time with him 2 hours per day. (with other animals, like hamsters, this is different) Rabbits like at least one part of their cage covered, because it gives them protection and comfort.

What Type?

Depending on the kind of pet, the cage needs to...well, fit his needs. Still using the example of a rabbit, you need to know about cage items once you have mastered the size. Daisy's cage/playpen setup is very comfortable and practical. On one side, she has her food and water containers, along with hay and chewing blocks and/or salt licks. In the corner is her corner litter-box, the middle is dedicated to toys, and the whole other side has blankets and towels for her, along with some nice tissue paper or other bedding. Her one cage is smaller than the other, and that one is a little different. In the corner is her box, and on the other end of the cage is a food bowl and water bottle and her hay basket that hangs on the side. In the middle she has some toys and one stuffed animal, along with a blanket to sit on. The idea is to keep everything organized and not so mixed-up. Rabbits don't like food to be right under the water, or next to the litter-box. They don't want the water bowl to be sitting in their hay. Keeping things organized is important for any pet.

A good rabbit home gives a rabbit enough room to groom, play, eat, and rest.
Read "From Habitat to Home" in the Rabbits USA 2012 Magazine today! (Or go to "" to learn more about rabbit housing!)