In hot weather guinea pigs need to be kept cool to prevent heat exhaustion which will likely lead to heatstroke if not spotted early enough. If immediate attention is not given when your guinea pig is overheating, it could be fatal for your pet.
In this article we explain what causes heatstroke, the symptoms, how to avoid it and the best treatment for a guinea pig who is suffering from heatstroke.
If the temperature rises to above 28 degrees celsius (82.4 degrees fahrenheit) or your guinea pig’s housing is around or above that temperature, heat stroke is likely to occur. Remember that even if the air temperature is lower than this, a hutch or shed can become much hotter on a warm day.
If your guinea pig has any of the following symptoms you need to take action to help them before they become fatally ill:
You may want to take your guinea pig to the vet to get professional advice but when your pet is this ill you need to take action yourself immediately. Having said that, if you are at all unsure of what to do, it is always best to call your vet.
Here are the steps you need to take to help your guinea pig recover from heat exhaustion or heatstroke:
If your guinea pig is outdoors, their hutch should always be positioned in the shade. Direct sunlight can make a hutch incredibly hot inside and your guinea pigs have no means of escape from these unbearable temperatures.
A shed that is used to house guinea pigs should have plenty of ventilation. In hot weather, you may also need to install fans but make sure they are not blowing directly into the cage. If it is still too hot, an air conditioning unit may be required.
If you need to take your guinea pig to the vet or are transporting guinea pigs for whatever reason in hot weather, make sure they are in a proper pet carrier and not a cardboard box. They need lots of ventilation and water to keep them hydrated.
As with a dog, never leave them in a hot car and don’t transport them in the boot of a car as it hasn’t enough fresh air and can become extremely hot.