Winter Care Guide: What Should I Do To Keep My Guinea Pig Warm In The Winter?

 Guinea pigs get cold very quickly. You need to monitor the temperature in the area to make sure your guinea pigs are secure and comfortable. Due to excessive cold or heat, their health may be at risk.

Winter Care Guide: What Should I Do To Keep My Guinea Pig Warm In The Winter?
Winter Care Guide: What Should I Do To Keep My Guinea Pig Warm In The Winter?

 Guinea pigs' bodies can be put under stress if they are subjected to temperature changes too quickly, which can weaken their immune system and make them vulnerable to getting sick or contracting infections that can put them at risk. ! As parents of pigs we must do our best to keep them warm and their living environment friendly and comfortable so they feel safe and cared for!

 Fortunately, there are several things you can do to keep guinea pigs warm in cold weather. In this article, we look at the best ways to ensure guinea pigs stay warm during the winter months, whether they live in a hutch outside or in your home.

Do guinea pigs get cold?

 While guinea pigs can handle cold and cold temperatures much better than they can handle heat, being too cold can still be extremely uncomfortable and stressful for guinea pigs. They can get sick or even die if they are too cold for too long.

 According to the USDA, if you keep your guinea pigs indoors, try to keep your house temperature between 60-75°F to ensure your pigs are comfortable and warm! Try to keep their cage or enclosure away from areas that tend to get cold drafts, but make sure you have ventilation! The currents reach them at face level, while the ventilation is an up-and-down movement of air, which does not harm them.

 Be sure to pay attention to the condition of your guinea pig's litter box! Wet bedding that stays moist and gets cold can be uncomfortable for your pig. If the temperature of your guinea pig's living environment is outside the range shown above on either end, try to bring it back into the safe range as soon as possible to avoid getting too cold or overheating.

What signs of cold do guinea pigs exhibit?

 When you want to check if your guinea pig is cold, watch out for the following signs on our cold checklist:

Cold ears

 Body temperature is often indicated by cold ears, so if your guinea pig's ears feel cold to the touch, it may indicate that he needs more warmth.


 If you see your guinea pig curling up into a ball or making a makeshift blanket out of its bedding, it may be trying to keep warm.


 It's your body's way of triggering muscle movement to generate heat and it's not unique to humans. Guinea pigs also do this when they are cold.

9 tips to keep guinea pigs warm in winter

Here are our top 9 tips for keeping guinea pigs warm in winter:

  1. Avoid drafts.
  2. Put a heat source in the cage.
  3. Extra blankets and bedding.
  4. Keep the doors closed.
  5. Add a heat source to the room.
  6. Bring them inside.
  7. Have 2 or more guinea pigs.
  8. Increase the heat in the house.
  9. Take their cage off the ground.

 As you can see, there are several ways to keep your guinea pigs warm in cold weather. You'll want to take action now to keep your guinea pig well-fed, warm, and happy on those cold days! Let's start...

1. Avoid drafts

 Carefully choose the location of their cage. To keep your guinea pigs warm, you must ensure their cage is not in drafty areas. Additionally, drafts can make guinea pigs sick by causing common respiratory infections, which lead to guinea pig pneumonia, which can be fatal. The following are some considerations:

  • Do not place the cage near windows. The cold can even seep through closed windows.
  • Make sure nothing is blocking radiators or vents in the room where your piggies are. But do not place the cage directly near the heat source. Your guinea pigs can easily overheat and get heat stroke.
  • Block drafts with doorstops or towels. Try not to keep guinea pig cages in front of open or sliding glass doors.
  • If possible, place their enclosure near the center of your home, away from exterior doors and walls. This is usually the warmest place with a more stable temperature.
  • Even if your guinea pig's cage is not in a drafty area, make sure it is not in a cold place. For example, garages and basements tend to be quite cold.

 Pig cages should not be placed in places where there are drafts. Guinea pigs can get sick from drafts from windows or air vents. The cage should be centered in the house, away from exterior walls, as it will stay warmer there.

2. Provide the cage with a heat source.

 Bring warmth to your pigs by adding a heat source to the guinea pig cage. There are three basic ways to add a heat source to guinea pig cages and they include:

  • Heating Pad: This is a safe and popular way to keep a guinea pig's body temperature stable. Some microwave heating pads will stay hot for hours. Electric heating pads should be pet friendly with chew-resistant cords.
  • Hot Water Bottle: The simplest way to keep your guinea pig warm is to do this. Put water in a bottle, then cover it with a cloth. Put it in your guinea pig cage after that. It's fun for your guinea pigs, too!
  • Rice sock: You can prepare a microwave heating pad with a sock and rice. Place the rice in the sock and tie it closed. Put it in the microwave for 45 seconds to 1 minute, then see how hot it gets (it heats up VERY quickly). Sadly, rice socks don't stay warm for very long. You may need to reheat it once more!

 Make sure the guinea pig cage is large enough to allow the guinea pigs enough space to stay away from the heat source if needed. Guinea pigs can easily overheat (because they cannot sweat).

3. Extra blankets and bedding

 Your guinea pigs will probably enjoy burrowing in blankets and bedding. Give them one of the following if the temperature inside their enclosure is cold:

  • Cuddle Mugs, Cloth Huts, and Cuddle Bags: These little guys are good because they're usually made of fleece (a warm material). They come in wide varieties and colors, so you can find something that matches your guinea pig's enclosure wall.
  • Pile on the extra bedding: Although small pieces of fleece or shredded newspaper can be added, wood shavings are still the most popular kind of bedding. Hay is an excellent addition. The guinea pigs will have something to dig in for warmth as a result! (Add at least 3-5 inches, please.)
  • Extra Blankets: Blankets are an inexpensive alternative to warm guinea pig housing. Adding blankets can be an easy solution if you're ready to build your guinea pig enclosure.
  • Pajamas and hoodies: This is an economical option. If you have young children who have outgrown some of their clothes, you can give them to your guinea pigs to snuggle up to. But, be sure to remove any buttons or other dangerous little things from any clothing you give your guinea pigs for burrowing purposes.

 Make no warm sweaters or clothing for your pig! Because it keeps them from taking care of themselves, restrictive clothing is bad. Additionally, it stops your guinea pigs from consuming caecal poo, which is essential for their health. Additionally, guinea pigs occasionally chew on the clothing we put on them, which can result in gastrointestinal blockages that can be fatal.

4. Bring them inside

 I know a lot of people have to keep their guinea pigs outside in hutches or sheds. But it's much easier to keep an eye on your piggies if they're in the house with you. In most cases, you will have more control over their environment. And if something is wrong, you won't know it until the morning when you go to feed them and they are very sick.

 Some people keep their pigs inside during the night. In this manner, they are shielded from the cold nighttime air after the sun has set. You might be asking, Man, every single night? Really? Well, EVERY single night might be a little too much for some. Why don't we try this…

 If moving your pigs indoors every night is too much of a hassle (I'm not judging you, trust me), you may be able to move them indoors seasonally. Perhaps consider bringing them indoors when the outside temperature begins to drop below 60°F (15°C). That way you'll have time to plan a nice, safe enclosure to keep your guinea pigs comfortable in cold weather. But you won't have to worry about bringing them every night.

 Bring your pigs inside your house if you have room. They are generally safer around the house where you can keep an eye on them and have more control over their surroundings to keep them comfortable and safe.

5. Put a blanket over their cage

 This option is not the one normally presented to pet parents. But, it is easy, simple, and straightforward. Simply cover their cage with a thick blanket or towel to keep your little companions warm.

 You can drape it over the cage of your guinea pigs if the area is drafty to keep the drafts out. They will be shielded from the cold by this. Wash the blanket once (or twice) a week to keep it fresh if you're concerned about the guinea pig smell.

I recommend a thick fleece blanket – or something similar that insulates well.

Just a reminder: Ensure to leave a part of the cage exposed. To be able to breathe, guinea pigs require a cage with good ventilation. Thus, it is crucial.

 Do you have a radiator for heating? Is it attached to an exterior wall? If so, place aluminum foil behind it to redirect the heat back into the room rather than letting it escape through a wall. Your house will stay warm and your pigs will be happier.

6. Have 2 or more guinea pigs

 One thing you will notice is that friendly guinea pigs LOVE snuggling. Since guinea pigs are social animals, most of them like to have the company of other pigs (at least the ones they like).

 Living in a herd in the wild had benefits beyond just having company. To maintain body heat and to acclimate to one another, they huddled.

 Even after becoming domesticated, they still fall back on this behavior. Two guinea pigs are more likely to stay warm than a single furry friend alone.

7. Mount the thermostat

 It's not my favorite option, but it's easier. Simply raise the thermostat a few more degrees. Now, that can work if your home is well-insulated and draft-free (oh, if only everyone had a home like that).

 So if you do, make sure to use the heat with extreme caution. When it's too cold outside, raising indoor temperatures is a good idea. However, a good thing can be bad if it is overdone.

 Since guinea pigs are heat sensitive and tend to perform best in temperatures of 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit, you'll need to make sure it's not too hot for them. Also, it can be quite expensive to run your heater very high.

 A thermometer will help you monitor the temperature to make sure it stays within safe guinea pig temperatures.

8. Get an extra heat source

 Maybe you don't want an extra heat source in your furry friend's cage. Otherwise, you can try other portable heating methods in the room where you house your fur babies. Try some of these options:

  • Space Heater: This is an obvious choice, but it's also one of the most efficient options. Get one with a bunch of safety features like auto shut-off and temperature regulation, so it doesn't get too hot for your pigs. It blows hot air around, which can also trigger allergies - if you have them.
  • Radiant Panel (the ones you plug in): Space heaters are not the same as radiant panels. They do not blow hot air. Instead, they use electromagnetic waves to send heat to people and objects in the room. It is better because it does not produce dust or other allergens in the air when it heats the room.

 Both options require an initial investment and this will weigh a little on your electricity bill. But it's worth it if it keeps your piggies warm and comfortable. Additionally, make sure your pigs' cage is not close to the heat source. They will overheat easily and get very sick.

9. Lift their speaker off the ground

It is always colder on the ground than above. Hot air rises, so it's natural for guinea pigs lower in their enclosure to feel - and be - colder. They lose their body heat faster to the ground. If possible, place your guinea pigs' cage on a table or some sort of sturdy box. Even though it doesn't seem like much, it will make a difference.

 Choosing the box option requires caution. Make sure they aren't in any circumstances that could cause them to fall or topple over.

How to keep guinea pigs warm outside?

 Knowing how to keep guinea pigs warm in the winter is important for all owners, but it's especially true if you have a guinea pig outside. It is important to know how to keep them safe and warm during the winter.

 Unlike most of the year when they can stay outside safely without too many obstacles, these little animals need a few special accommodations to be healthy and active in the winter. Some of the best advice to put you on the right path is provided below:

  • Get water bottle covers. This will keep your water bottles from getting cold in the winter and also keep them cool in the summer.
  • Avoid using fleece in an outdoor hutch. Blankets can freeze if they get wet, which would be a disaster for your furry friends in this situation. Wet bedding and humidity can make them very sick, quite quickly. You need dry bedding – always. So, use hay (a lot) or paper bedding instead. But be prepared to replace it regularly if it gets wet to prevent mildew.
  • Cover the outside of the hutch with a protective and insulating material. A well-insulated hutch can make or break your pigs' performance during the winter. You can use carpet, landscape fabric, roofing felt, or tarp. This will help keep the hutch warm by blocking out drafts and cold during the winter months.
  • Add some warmth to the hutch. This is when heating pads come in handy. Prepare these microwave heating pads. And also fill a hot water bottle with warm water and wrap it in a cloth. Put both in your fur babies' cages for extra warmth.
  • Change the hutch location for the season. House your guinea pigs in a shed or garage for the winter as long as it is safe and of an appropriate size.

 If you get a new guinea pig in cold weather, please keep the animal indoors until at least spring before releasing it outside for the summer. This will give your boyfriend a chance to get used to being outdoors gradually - and it won't be such a shock to his system.