Teddy guinea pigs are one of the most popular breeds of guinea pigs with children due to them looking like a soft toy.
They have a thick, dense coat that stands on end, and are a curious breed of guinea pig that thrives on care and attention. They are usually soft and fluffy and make for low-maintenance pets.
The Teddy guinea pig is relatively new and came about due to a genetic mutation.
There is some uncertainty around whether or not the Teddy was discovered by mistake or accidentally but, either way; the result is a guinea pig that has a coat like no other. They are a great pet for adults and children of all ages.
READ MORE: All About the Texels Guinea Pigs
Teddy Guinea Pig Coat & Looks
Teddys are known for being soft and cuddly, and they come in two varieties, one of which is not as soft as the other.
The main variant has a plush coat that is soft to the touch, and the other variant has a coarser coat which is a little rougher (but still incredibly cute).
No matter the variant, they both have very dense and short hair which sticks straight up from the body. The coat is springy, and you will find that it springs back to place as you pet your guinea pig.
The length of the hair makes them look like a soft toy, but they are a lot more interactive. You can often find them with long hair on their bellies too.
The coat is springy, and you will find that it springs back to place as you pet your guinea pig.
Teddys come in a variety of solid colors, including white, black, brown, chestnut, gold, and grey. You will also find Roan Teddys of different shades and tricolor Teddys.
Some Teddys also have satin coats which are glossier than the standard coat.
How Do I Care for a Teddy Guinea Pig?
Due to their short and fluffy coat, they are easy guinea pigs to care for. Many long-haired guinea pigs require a lot of time and attention when it comes to grooming but Teddy’s do not, and this makes them easy to care for, for younger children.
You still need to groom them and brush through their hair, but you only need to do this once a week as opposed to every day.
When brushing the coat, you should also be checking the coat and the skin below. It is also a good idea to trim the nails during the weekly grooming.
A large cage will give your Teddy guinea pig a better quality of life. We always say that the larger the cage is, the better it is for your guinea pig, but we also understand that not everyone has an unlimited amount of space. Aim for a cage that is at least 20” x 20”, and add an extra 20% to that number for every additional guinea pig which you are keeping.
Once you have your cage set up, you should be cleaning it out at least once a week. Change all of the bedding, and the litter tray and switch it out for new material. You should also try to spot-clean the cage as often as you can.
READ MORE: How Much Does a Rex Guinea Pig Cost?
How Active Are Teddy Guinea Pigs?
Teddys are small and look like soft toys but, unlike soft toys, they need a lot of playtime (and not just the imaginary kind).
Guinea pig cages do not give them a lot of room to run around in so you will need to let your
Teddy out from time to time to exercise and play. The more room you can give them when they are out of their cages, the better it is for your guinea pig. A large run will give them ample space, and be sure to add in some toys and other interactive areas.
A large run will give them ample space, and be sure to add in some toys and other interactive areas.
While a pen will give them enough exercise, an entire room is the preferred option. If you can let them loose in a room, they will love you for it and will enjoy finding all of the places to hide.
Be sure to pig-proof your room before letting them loose, removing anything hazardous from the floor and anything which you do not want to be chewed.
When you let them out, be there with them. You are not going to have a lot of time with them through grooming so make yourself available when they are out playing.
Teddys also like to be outside, and we recommend taking them outside as long as you take some precautions.
They should only be outside in moderate heat and kept in the shade. You should also keep them in an enclosed area and always be with them in case a predator should approach.
READ MORE: Things You Need to Know About Baldwin Guinea Pig
What Should I Feed My Teddy Guinea Pig?
Hay is the most important part of your Teddy guinea pig’s diet, just as it is for all guinea pigs. A diet rich in hay is great for keeping their weight under control, aids their digestive system, and also wears down their teeth so that they do not become too long.
A guinea pig’s diet should be composed of 70% hay, but you can give them an unlimited amount if they are eating it.
Feed your Teddy 1/8 cup of pellets every day (or follow the guidelines on the packaging). It is important not to feed them too much as they can gain weight.
We recommend the most basic pellets you can find as the ones with pieces of fruit and veg can be picked through, and you may find that your pet is not eating all of the pellets as they should.
Supplement the pellets with lots of leafy greens (around a cup) and lots of clean, freshwater. Save the sweeter veg and fruit for treats. Make sure to top up the water dish if it ever becomes low, and change the water if it ever becomes soiled.
Healthcare for Teddy Guinea Pigs
The only thing to keep a close eye on is their ears. Earwax can build up and needs to be removed.
Teddy guineas pigs do not suffer from any major health problems other than what most other breeds suffer from. The only thing to keep a close eye on is their ears. Earwax can build up and needs to be removed. This can happen to any guinea pigs breeds but is something to especially look out for in Teddys.
When you are grooming them, check the ears to see if there is a build-up. If there is, remove the wax with a warm, damp towel. If you clean their ears regularly, then there will never be any problems.
The teeth can be an issue with all guinea pigs but are easily treated with the correct diet. If a guinea pig’s teeth are left unchecked, they can grow too long and cause discomfort, even stopping them from eating.
Thankfully, a diet rich in hay will combat this. The hay naturally wears down the teeth of a guinea pig.
Check from time to time, and offer more hay or a chew toy if you think that the teeth are growing too long.
The other main concern is the coat. Teddys have short coats, so you do not need to worry too much about parasites and mites, but they can still appear.
The best way to combat this is to groom them regularly and keep their cage clean. The cleaner the cage, the less likely they are going to have anything wrong with their coat.
If you are ever in doubt, consult your vet.
Teddy Guinea Pigs as Pets
The best thing about Teddy guinea pigs is how low maintenance they are. They are a great option for children, especially since they already look like small cuddly toys.
Children, even small children, will find it easy to care for them as they do not need to spend a lot of time grooming them. They can focus entirely on socializing and petting them, which is mostly what children want.
Teddys are smart guinea pigs, and you will be able to teach them some simple tricks
Their low maintenance also makes them great for adults who do not have a lot of time to spend with their pets.
Of course, you should still take as much time as possible to let your Teddy out of its cage to run around, and socialize with it when it does. The more time you can spend with your Teddy, the more of a bond you will create.
Teddys are smart guinea pigs, and you will be able to teach them some simple tricks with a lot of patience (and the occasional fruit treat).
They love company, so we would recommend buying them in pairs if you can. They are calm and friendly most of the time and will burst into life when they are let out to run around. They make wonderful pets for everyone.
Do you have a teddy guinea pig? Share your experiences with him/her below!