Like all animals, guinea pigs have different ways through which they can react to certain conditions.
Since they cannot talk, you have to be on the lookout for behavioral cues that may give you an idea of what your pet is going through.
Shaking is one of the nonverbal cues that is commonly used by guinea pigs, but the only problem is that most pet parents don’t know what it means.
As such, some guinea pig owners may rush their pets to the vet when there is really no cause for alarm.
However, some may also overlook it, thus putting the guinea pig at a greater risk of becoming sick or getting hurt.
For the safety and well-being of your cavy, we have thought it wise to explain to you some of the reasons why your guinea pig may be shaking.
Why Is my Guinea Pig Shaking?
Guinea pigs may shake due to several reasons. It could mean that they are cold, stressed, sick, or irritated by certain things in their environment. However, fear is the main cause of shaking in guinea pigs.
In some cases, guinea pigs may also shake when they are happy or excited, so ensure that you check for the root cause of the problem before coming up with an intervention.
As such, the fact that your guinea pig is shaking doesn’t necessarily mean that something is wrong with it.
With that said, you should make it your personal goal to know everything about your pet because this will give you an added advantage when dealing with the situation at hand.
What should I do when my Guinea Pig is Shaking?
As you have seen from the explanation above, several factors may cause a guinea pig to shake/shiver.
So, there are different ways through which you can deal with these factors to stop the guinea pig from shaking.
Fearful Guinea Pigs
When dealing with a guinea pig that is shaking as a result of fear, you need to check your pet’s environment for stressors or any other thing that may be frightening your furry friend.
Cats and dogs are known culprits in this regard, so ensure that your guinea pig is kept as far away from these pets as possible.
Nonetheless, this does not apply to all cavies since some guinea pigs get along with other pets without showing any signs of fear or stress.
Shaking as a result of an Illness
If you suspect that your guinea pig is shaking due to an underlying illness, the best thing that you can do is to rush the cavy to a veterinarian.
Such vibrations are often accompanied by loss of motility, meaning that the guinea pig will be unable to move the way he/she normally does.
Cold Guinea Pig
As stated, a guinea pig may also shake when the weather gets extremely cold. And since they are warm-blooded like humans, their body temperature does not change as the temperature varies.
Consequently, this may cause the guinea pig to shiver excessively. You can prevent this by keeping your pet warm throughout the cold season.
To protect your pet from the cold, you can consider placing pet-safe heating pads in your guinea pigs cage. Alternatively, you can use fleece blankets and other pieces of fabric that are soft.
You can also include hideouts that the guinea pig can snuggle in when the air temperature drops.
Guinea pigs can also feel cold immediately after taking a bath, and this may also cause them to shake. You can keep your cavy warm by simply wrapping him/her in a dry towel after each bath session.
Guinea pigs are delicate animals, so they can easily get stressed depending on the environment that they are in.
Fireworks and thunderstorms can startle guinea pigs, so the best that you can do in this case is to keep the piggies away from windows.
In as much as the sound may still affect them, they will feel safer compared to when they are exposed to the light that may be produced by the above factors.
As you can see, some of these factors are very easy to deal with, so you just have to pinpoint the cause of the problem. Nevertheless, if your intervention fails to work, you should take your pet to the vet.
Do Guinea Pigs shake when you pet them?
Guinea pigs respond differently when you pet them, so the cavies may shake because they are enjoying the petting experience, while others may shake to show discomfort or lack of interest.
As such, you may have a difficult time differentiating the two. Plus, guinea pigs also purr like cats, so some users may confuse this with shaking.
The fact that guinea pigs cannot talk does not mean that they cannot communicate how they feel about their surroundings.
As a pet parent, it is, therefore, your responsibility to decipher your pet’s body language. If you find that your cavy is shaking excessively, the first that you should do is to figure out what the problem could be.
Depending on the cause, ensure that you give your pet the adequate care that he/she needs to stay calm.
Shaking is a normal body reaction in guinea pigs, but at times it may come about as a result of an illness or an environmental stressor.
With that being said, ensure that you know all the things that may stress your guinea pig. When it comes to illnesses, the pet should be taken to see the vet so that you can get a clear explanation of the problem.
You can also visit the vet if you are not sure why your cavy is shaking. In addition to this, ensure that your pet is well protected from the elements, especially when the weather gets cold.
Now that you know some of the things that may be causing your guinea pig to shake, we hope that you will employ the right countermeasure to make your pet comfortable.
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