Can you use a dog carrier for a guinea pig?
If you find yourself in an emergency where you need to get your cavy to the vet asap and you don’t have a guinea pig carrier, yes, you can.
However, certain precautions need to be taken first.
Keep reading to find out what you need to know before a dog carrier is fully equipped to carry guinea pigs.
READ MORE: Best Travel Carrier for Guinea Pigs
Can You Use a Dog Carrier for a Guinea Pig?
The only thing common between guinea pigs and dogs is both can be excellent pets.
But other than that, the two species have VERY different requirements while traveling.
If you use a dog carrier for guinea pigs, you need to take extra care to make sure their temporary abode is comfortable and safe while traveling.
Let’s start with the most important thing to consider- the size.
Size of the Carrier
Dog carriers are generally designed to be spacious. But remember that guinea pigs are more fragile than dogs. A carrier that offers enough space to move and turn around is perfect.
A puppy carrier of size 12 inches high x 12 inches wide x 20 inches long is enough for two fully grown guinea pigs as it fulfills minimum space requirements.
Carriers designed for toy breeds, like chihuahuas, also work well.
Proper Ventilation and Controlled Temperature
To use a dog carrier for guinea pigs, choose one with inbuilt ventilation from the top and either side.
Remember, our little furry piggies cannot maintain their body temperature. So, throughout the travel, your foster guinea pigs need your assistance to balance their body temperature.
Anything between 65-75 degrees Fahrenheit is considered ideal for pet cavies.
Security and Hygiene
Guinea pigs get easily anxious with constant movement and change of surroundings.
In such situations, it’s not uncommon for them to go to the bathroom even more so than usual (and that’s saying a lot, since cavies are pooping machines).
To have safe travel a hard-sided pet store cage is preferred. As it’s easy to transport, clean and sanitize after your piggies are done with their business.
READ MORE: How Long Can Guinea Pigs Travel in a Car?
5 Tips for Using a Dog Carrier to Carry Guinea Pigs
Now that we know the basics, let’s talk about how to properly set up and use your dog carrier for your cavy.
#1 Best Way to Set the Dog Carriage
For bedding use paper or haystack and aspen. Puppy pads should be in the bottom to absorb the latrine.
Avoid crowding the inside of the dog carrier, as it can block airflow.
#2 Best Dog Carriages to use for a Guinea Pig
Use a small or medium size carriage for your guinea pigs. A dog carrier with firm walls is suggested. We do not want our little friends to be squashed between luggage.
Moreover, your piggies do not want to watch the surrounding, due to travel anxiety so avoid using guinea pig housing with transparent walls.
Your furry friend can easily escape or get stuck in a wired dog carriage. So, if you use one make sure the wires are closely bound and firm.
#3 Make the Carriage More Homely
Pet cavies find it hard to adapt to new surroundings, to make the dog carriage appear familiar add your pigs’ favorite hiding spot as well. But, don’t overdo it as it can prevent ventilation and your pet will overheat.
#4 Do Not Attach a Water Bottle
It’s better to take regular breaks to hydrate your pet cavies, instead of attaching a water bottle to your guinea pig travel cage.
Water bottles often leak and wet the carriage while traveling, which makes the pigs uncomfortable.
#5 Maintain Temperature With Ease
Depending upon the external temperature, you have to place your guinea pig carrier in direct sunlight or in front of AC vents.
To keep them cool in hot weather keep feeding them watery and green leafy veggies. Also, make sure there is adequate ventilation.
If you want to get some cool ideas, check this video:
What can I use as a guinea pig carrier?
Any pet carrier, measuring 12 inches high x 12 inches wide x 20 inches long, can be used to carry two adult guinea pigs. Also, make sure the guinea pig housing has proper ventilation.
Can you use a dog crate for a guinea pig cage?
Yes! But keep in mind that your pet cavies do not find a way to escape from in-between the bars or worst get stuck in it while you travel. A dog crate designed especially for small dogs is perfect.
Do guinea pigs need a carrier?
Yes, guinea pigs need a carrier to travel. Your furry friends are shy animals who do not enjoy travel. And to make them feel comfortable and secured while traveling a guinea pig carrier is a must!
A pet Guinea pig can be a great travel buddy if you choose the right guinea pig carrier options!
- “Guinea Pigs as Pets – Oklahoma State University.” 2020. May 4, 2020. https://news.okstate.edu/articles/communications/2020/guinea-pigs-as-pets.html.
- “Traveling with a Guinea Pig.” 2011. Mgpr.org. 2011. http://mgpr.org/newsite/GP_Info/Guinea%20Pig%20Travel.html#.
- Zipser, Benjamin, Anja Schleking, Sylvia Kaiser, and Norbert Sachser. 2014. “Effects of Domestication on Biobehavioural Profiles: A Comparison of Domestic Guinea Pigs and Wild Cavies from Early to Late Adolescence.” Frontiers in Zoology 11 (1): 30. https://doi.org/10.1186/1742-9994-11-30.
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Alina Hartley is a small-town girl with a ginormous love of bearded dragons. It all started with Winchester, a baby bearded who was abandoned at the shelter by his former owners because of a birth defect that caused one front leg to be shorter than the other. Alina originally went to the shelter looking for a guinea pig, but one look at Winchester and it was love at first sight. From that day on, Alina has dedicated her life to learning everything she can about bearded dragons. She loves helping new beardie parents start their incredible journey with these magnificent reptiles.
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