Bringing A Guinea Pig Home
It is best to go and buy the guinea pig cage or hutch and equipment a day or two before buying the guinea pig(s). This then allows the cage or hutch to be fully prepared before the arrival of the guinea pig(s).
The seller of the guinea pig will often provide a container in which to take the guinea pig(s) home in. However, this is not always the case and so it is best to take a suitable carrying box in which to transport the guinea pig home when going to collect the guinea pig(s).
For short journeys a cardboard box with air holes may suffice although this is not ideal, and certainly not suitable for longer journeys, as guinea pigs can chew their way out and urine can soak through and weaken the bottom of the box causing it to break.
A plastic storage container with a wire top, or a carrying box specially for transporting guinea pigs are best used, particularly for longer journeys.
A layer of wooshavings should be placed inside the container to cover the floor and a couple of large handfuls of hay should also be placed inside. It is not practical to attach a water bottle to any carrying container as the motion of transporting the guinea pig will cause any water bottle to leak and so it is best instead to place a handful of fruit or vegetables in the box to provide the guinea pig with moisture whilst it is travelling.
On arrival home it is best to place the guinea pig immediately in the prepared cage or hutch and leave it to investigate its new home and give it time to settle. It will take the guinea pig a couple of days to get used to all the new smells and sounds of its new home and it may find this time a little stressful. Therefore although it can be tempting to get the guinea pig out and play with it, this temptation is best avoided for the first couple of days so that the guinea pig can first get used to its new surroundings and feel comfortable. This will help to keep its stress to a minimum.
After a couple of days the guinea pig will have become used to its new home and will generally seem more settled and this is then the ideal time to start to get to know the guinea pig better.