Guinea pig and hamster are active, interesting, and inquisitive fluffy animals that can bring joy and fun to young children.
The first representatives of the land are well suited for kids from 3 years old, the second will become good friends for older ages. Who is better: a hamster or guinea pig for a child? The material below will help you decide which rodent to start and make the right choice.
What you need to know about guinea pigs
The guinea pigs are easy to tame and do not require much care. With good care from the owner, the animal can live on average for 5 years.
The activity period of guinea pigs occurs in the daytime, falling in the evening. Unlike hamsters, at night they will sleep peacefully, without disturbing the owner’s activity.
Character and training
Guinea pigs are friendly, sociable, and calm. They can live peacefully next to cats and dogs, spending time in the same company without quarrels and discontent. They like to lounge in the hands of their owner, who they feel great affection for, substituting a fur coat for scratching. Noticing the presence of the owner, these animals start whistling, expressing their good feelings and joy.
The pigs are completely devoid of aggression: they will never attack or even defend themselves, preferring a quiet retreat. If desired, the animals can be trained to perform a variety of tricks, because they train easily and successfully than attract children’s attention. The trained mumps can follow the owner everywhere, stand on their hind legs, or ride a small ball with their face. Answering the question of who is smarter than the rodents, the advantage remains with the mumps.
A 6-year-old child can take care of the animal every day, but if you have an animal for a pre-schooler, an adult should take care of the creature. Also, it will be necessary to watch the baby so that he would not harm the pet by ignorance, otherwise, the affected mumps can lose confidence in the owner.
The guinea pig needs a spacious cage, in which it can lead an active life, freely moving inside the apartment. The condition is mandatory because a lack of mobility will lead to obesity and will not allow the legs of the animal to become strong.
The cage is located in a quiet place, protected from drafts and coolness so that the mumps do not catch a cold. There should be no wires near because the nature of the rodent will certainly show itself in the ability to chew hard objects. It is important to provide the cell with a special house where the mumps can sleep or hide.
Necessary accessories in the cage
For bedding, it is better to use ordinary sawdust because pigs are big fans of burrowing, and the material should be harmless. Periodically, it is necessary to clean the cage, because the sawdust will smell unpleasant. The cage must have a drinker with clean water and a bunk full of food, fresh weed, or hay. For the mumps to grind teeth and claws, offer them a mineral stone or a hard piece of wood bark.
The obligatory attribute of the cell should be a running wheel, giving way to mirrors and stairs. The daily guinea pig should be released for walks around the house, not forgetting to watch the animals, because it can please the hard to reach the place and get stuck.
Guinea pigs are not fastidious in food. They are delighted to eat different cereals, herbs, vegetables, and fruits. From the grass, they prefer salad leaves, parsley, and dill, fresh leaves of dandelion and spinach. From fruit and vegetable fruits they can be fed fresh cucumbers, sweet peppers, and carrots, apples, peaches, and strawberries. Unlike hamsters, the mumps can’t be fed with meat, potatoes, and cheese.
A distinctive feature of a pig is eating its own feces, which contain vitamins useful for its body. If the animal begins to eat untilled excrements in time, a very young child can repeat after the animal, thinking about evaluating for himself the “delicacy” of the mumps.
The advantages of guinea pig
The benefits of the guinea pig:
- They are easy to care for;
- you can train them;
- no aggression at all;
- they are very fond of being in the arms;
- they get along with other pets.
Another weighty argument to get the mumps is the opportunity to buy a bald beast of the Skinny breed if a child is allergic to wool. When choosing a guinea pig as a pet, you should remember to clean the cage regularly to avoid unpleasant smells in the house.
What you need to know about hamsters
Unlike pigs, hamsters are creatures with a finicky character. Only one animal should live in one cage, otherwise, the instincts of rodents, which tend to defend their territory, will lead to fights. It is not desirable to let the hamsters walk around the house, because the rodent can penetrate even the smallest hole from which it will be difficult to get it out.
Ordinary or Syrian hamster breed is distinguished by a share of aggressiveness and pugnacity, which may appear unexpectedly to the owner. If you touch a sleeping rodent, it may be frightened and, in case of emergency awakening, it may hurt to bite the owner. Following the basic rules of care and communication with the beast, unpleasant moments can be easily avoided, getting only positive emotions from the hamster.
Moment of activity in the animals comes at night, they rest quietly all day and sleep tightly. In the evening, the hamsters begin to rustle, rustle and in every way remind of their existence. Sometimes, they prevent the hosts from sleeping at night. For this reason, it is better to carry the cage away from the sleeping area, so that the animal would not be heard.
Communication with a hamster will have a specific character: he does not like long sittings on his hands, preferring unobtrusive attention in the form of short strokes on the wool. If a child is not prone to constant contact with the animal, it is better to have a hamster than a guinea pig.
I should place the cage of the animal in a quiet place, avoiding the proximity of heaters, the open sun, and drafts. The cage can be of medium size with a special house. Like guinea pigs, the hamster needs shelter and a secluded place to sleep. By the way, the cottage needs to be cleaned regularly, because the hamster tends to make food supplies.
Necessary accessories in the cage
It is necessary to install a running wheel on the territory of the cell so that the beast could lead an active life. Water in the drinker should be regularly changed, feeders should be filled with cereals, periodically feeding the pet with fruit and vegetable desserts, sometimes meat. As bedding, a special filler or sawdust will be suitable, but wood will not protect the house from smelling.
Hamsters are characteristic of determining the cell bathroom, so after cleaning he should provide a few paper napkins, so he could build a toilet corner. If you decide to have a hamster, you will need to clean the sanitary area every 3 days, conduct general cleaning once a week.
Since the rodent sleeps in the afternoon, it must be fed in the evening. Food can be applied once during the day, strictly watching to ensure that in the trough there are always grains. Every day the animal should be treated with salad leaves, carrots, or pieces of bananas. The diet of hamsters requires attention because there are products that will not benefit the rodent’s health. When in doubt, it is better to make sure that the food is acceptable to avoid unpleasant consequences.
The cage must have fresh branches of fruit trees like apple, pear, or mountain ash so that the hamster can grind its teeth and claws. Before offering the rodent cut branches, they must be thoroughly washed and dried. While caring for the hamster, you should regularly inspect its property for inventory. Hidden food often spoils, exposing the animal to food poisoning.
The pros of the hamster
About the advantages of hamsters:
- do not require much attention;
- do not take up much space;
- ease of maintenance;
- low cost.
The hamster will be a good company for a quiet schoolboy who will not impose his communication on the beast, contenting himself with watching the life of a funny rodent. Despite the isolation of the hamster, you can always try to make it by hand, by learning to sit on the owner’s shoulder.
Let us decide on the choice
Terrestrial animals are almost the same in the basic rules of care and nutrition. The difference can only be found in character and ability. The guinea pig is a pretty smart rodent, can be easily trained. With a hamster in this respect will be more difficult. Another important point that the hamster is different from the guinea pig is that the pig lives longer. With good care, it can live up to 6 years, while hamsters begin to age at the age of 1 year, and at the turn of 2-3 years, the animal dies.
All children tend to want to get a pet, with which they can play or watch the tricks of the animal, having fun in his company. If a baby likes to be groomed by the beast, the guinea pig will be very happy to be gentle to its owner. Hamsters prefer calm and freedom, so school-age children will be the ideal owners for them.