Breeding guinea pigs can be a very frustrating task, although it is not a complicated one. There are a few easy steps to follow, and then it becomes a waiting game.
Here's how to breed your guinea pigs:
- First, make sure that your boar and your sow are both healthy. Do some research about guinea pig health to make sure the two pet guinea pigs aren't sick. Then make sure that you know your sow's age. You may wonder why this little bit of guinea pig information is so important. A sow has to be bred before she reaches ten months of age because her pelvic bones fuse together before she is a year old. If this happens, she will still become pregnant but she will not be able to give birth. This ultimately spells doom. For her safety, it's best to make sure that she is bred before six months of age.
- The second step in breeding your guinea pigs is to introduce them. When you breed them, they will be living together for about a month. Make sure that you have a cage big enough for the two to live comfortably. When you first introduce the sow to the boar he will most likely puff up his fur and make small purring noises to her. This is normal. You should take care of them as you normally would. Always watch your breeding pair to make sure they are not fighting.
- How do I know they have bred? Well, you don't always know that they have bred. They have to remain together for at least a month because the window when the sow will actually allow the boar to breed with her is small. The longer they are together the more likely they are to breed. It is very rare for an owner to actually see them breed. The sow may start to eat more, and if she is pregnant you will notice a few weeks after breeding her that her stomach will begin to get larger. If she is in fact pregnant, then during the last few weeks of her pregnancy she will get very large.
- What should I expect out of pregnancy? It will take around 68-72 days for the pregnant guinea pig to give birth. When the babies are born, they will be fully furred and should be running around within a few hours. There will most likely be only one or two; however, sometimes a sow can have up to four young. The sow only has two teats and it will be hard for her to nurse more than two, so if she does have additional babies you'll have to watch closely to be certain that they're all getting fed enough.
Good luck with breeding. Hopefully these guinea pig facts have helped you. The key is patience. Waiting is not fun, but it is the only thing to do while breeding piggies!