If you are planning on getting a pair of guinea pigs (they do well in pairs remember that!) you might be wondering do guinea pigs chew wires? The answer is an incredibly large yes they do! But with a little cable management and the tips in this article, you can avoid this problem entirely.
Why do guinea pigs chew wires?
First, understanding why guinea pigs chew wires is important because a large part of this strategy consists of understanding the behavior and motivations behind chewing.
Guinea pigs, like many other animals including humans, explore their environments with their mouths.
And like all rodents, the guinea pigs’ teeth continuously grow longer and longer and will be worn down naturally with plenty of chewing. (This is why we give them wood blocks and other guinea-safe chew toys).
This is totally natural and normal behavior for them. However, this can lead to some dangerous consequences if they start chewing on something they’re not supposed to like wires.
Another thing to note is not all guinea pigs will bother chewing on wires. It’s entirely based on their personality and the availability of the wire in question.
A guinea pig will be more likely to begin chewing your wires if they are just scattered all over the floor plentiful and easy to reach.
This lead’s to our first tip: Removing the wires from the floor and out of reach.
This one seems like a no-brainer but you’d be surprised how many people don’t do it. Many people think they can just try and catch their guinea pig before they get too interested in a cable.
You won’t. For as loud as they are, guinea pigs are master ninjas.
Get some wire ties or management tools and get those cords up off the floor and out of reach!
You should also take a look at your electrical outlets and make sure they have child-proof covers on them as well. It never hurts to go the extra mile to keep your guinea pigs safe!
Unfortunately not everything in life is optimal and you may have some words and wires that you simply can’t remove from the floor. This is where tip #2 comes in.
Second tip: Use wire guards
While these don’t completely chew proof in most cases, they do provide a good physical barrier between your guinea pig and the tempting wires.
There are a variety of these available on Amazon or your local hardware store. Just make sure you get something that is pet-safe and won’t hurt your guinea pigs if they do manage to chew through it!
Wire guards aren’t foolproof, but they will help.
If you have any wires that absolutely cannot be removed or put in a wire guard, then you should consider getting some heavy-duty electrical tape and wrapping it around the wire. This won’t look pretty, but it will provide another layer of protection.
Third tip: Use a bittering agent or white vinegar
Bittering sprays are great because they provide a nasty taste that guinea pigs will quickly associate with wires.
There are plenty of these on the market, but you can also make your own by mixing 1 part white vinegar with 1 parts water in a spray bottle.
Then just mist the wires lightly with the solution and let it dry.
Repeat this process every few days, or as the bottle instructions direct you to use it.
Bittering agents won’t last long, so re-application will be necessary, but it’s a great way to help your guinea pigs understand that wires are not something they should be chewing on.
Keep in mind this is not a permanent solution by any means and should not be solely relied on. It’s a temporary measure while you work out another way to keep the wires safely away from the pig.
On the bright side, The spray can also be used on any other surface your pig has a fondness for chewing that you’d rather they didn’t like baseboards, walls, furniture, etc.
The fourth and final tip is: Provide plenty of chewing options for your guinea pigs
Your biggest bet for keeping your guinea pigs away from your wires is a distraction and providing them with other options.
Gunia pigs have a genetic and predisposed need to chew. It’s written in their DNA and their constantly growing teeth.
So no matter what you do, they will find something to chew on, So your best bet is to provide them with plenty of other options.
If they have plenty of things to chew on that are safe, then they’re much less likely to go after something they shouldn’t.
- Hay racks
- Wooden blocks or logs
- Cardboard tubes (Paper towels, toilet paper, etc)
- Untreated wicker baskets
- Untreated natural grass mats
These are just a few ideas, but there are tons of other options out there. Just make sure whatever you get is safe for your guinea pigs and don’t forget to provide fresh hay on a daily basis!
So, do guinea pigs chew wires? Yes, most will if given the opportunity. Pick up your wires, Use wire guards and bittering spray, and in general keep them away from any type of cords that have electricity running threw them.
With a little effort, you can easily keep your guinea pigs away from those pesky wires and prevent any potential accidents.
Just remember to be patient, and persistent, and provide plenty of other chewing options for your guinea pigs to focus on.
Do you have any other tips or tricks for keeping guinea pigs away from wires? Share them in the comments below!