Break The Boredom! Time For Toys!

Like any animal, whee guinea pigs can get bored. Some signs of boredom include, not running around as much, overeating, barbering (chewing the hair of ourselves or another guinea pig) and biting cage bars. These things can be annoying and upsetting to your hoomans

Bar chewing naughtiness!

Our dear little Bingo was very badly behaved and like bar biting

There are things other than toys that can prevent boredom. The most important ones are:

– A fellow piggy as a furfriend. This is super important. Whee guinea pigs need companionship or whee can become very lonely.
– Hay, Hay, whee always love a bit of hay! Unlimited hay is not only needed for good health but also a great thing to play in
– Fresh fruits and vegetables. Try to change it up. You wouldn’t like eating the same thing efurryday and neither do whee.
– Regular floor time. Running in the garden in a run or inside the house in a piggy proof area gives us stimulation and keeps things interesting!
– Cuddles with hoomans  and interaction. Whee often squeak to our hoomans and have long conversations. Hoomans aren’t great at listening and don’t always seem to understand but with practice they improve!

Now onto the fun part! The toys! Firstly, the very best toy whee can suggest is a hidey place. Some hoomans say that you shouldn’t give us a hidey because whee will just hide and never get used to you but our Mummy found that letting us hide and slowly gaining our trust was a far better option and now if whee really don’t want cuddles or to talk to anyone whee can hide. In the wild whee are prey animals so whee run and hide when whee are afraid or want to be alone. Mummy says they make us feel more secure and that is true. Good hideys include:

Cardboard boxes, a favourite of ours. Shoe boxes are best!

– Shop bought ‘igloos’ fondly known as pigloos in the cavy world!

Wooden huts, also available from pet shops

– Fabric pet shelters such as tents or other animal bedsIMG_4234

This leads us neatly into snuggle toys such as:

– Flat cushions, these can be bought or hand made quite easily. The one Buddy models below was a first attempt by our hooman. She just used a fleece blanket and some pet safe wadding bought from an arts and crafts shop.

A Proud Prince Buddy refuses to admit to ear envy . . .

Blankets, most fabrics are ok but fleece is best

– Dog, cat or rabbit cosies and beds (or the little hoomans build a bear dog bed toy for their teddy!)

Cuddlecups which are essentially fleece snuggle pouches. You can make your own or buy them using online guides

(Even our Mummy has made them so it can’t be too hard!)

A baby Buddy enjoys cosy testing!

A baby Buddy enjoys cosy testing!

Fleece tunnels, also can be made or bought using online guides (relatively advanced though so not for your average can only just sew in a straight line hooman, like our hooman!)

Finally toys to chomp and chew and play with!

– Brown paper bags. Primark in the UK do some good one’s for this. Stuff them with hay and treats for good fun.

IMG_0670

– Screwed up balls of newspaper (sometimes hiding treats in there is fun as it makes us forage like whee would in the wild)

Kitchen and toilet roll tubes. Stuff them with hay and treats and you have hours of fun.

IMG_6103-1IMG_8085

– Tennis balls or other sports balls so long as they’re a good size and fun to push around.Nutty's On The Ball!

Plastic tunnels you can buy in most pet shops.

Wooden garland gnawing toys, available in most pet shops. If you have bar biting piggies hanging these across the affected areas can help deal with this by giving us something else to chew on.

IMG_0750

Willow twig balls and twigs to play with. Mummy uses the twigs to kebab veggies on for us as something fun to do sometimes. In hot weather, high water content veggies on a kebab are a fun way to keep cool.

– Slightly messier but still good fun, a plant pot or container, stuffed with shredded newspaper, hay, bedding and strip of fleece and fabrics. This works with most animals as a good toy, just adjust the size of your container to match your pet!

Maze of books and boxes. Our little hoomans love designing mazes for us to play in. They have a toy piggies which is the same weight as us and life size so they can be sure it is a safe. They hide treats and whee have great fun tracking them down!

– A wash cloth cut into strips (not completely, leave a 2cm gap uncut at one end) and hung across the cage can be fun to run under and play in.

Mirrors. Whee are slightly obsessed with our reflections so bird toy mirrors are really good fun.

There are plenty of fun things you can make or do for your piggies. Imagination is key! Mummy just spent fifteen minutes playing with Basil and a square of tissue he liked chasing and shredding. Whee don’t need you to spend money to have fun!

IMG_6431

An old pigture of Nutty who also love the tissue game!

Do you have any boredom busting tip? What are your favourite toys?

Happy Saturday

Nutty, Nacho, Buddy & Basil

xxxx

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About hutchagoodlife

Tales and adventures from the hutches of British blogging guinea pigs!

Posted on August 10, 2013, in Piggy Blogs and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 51 Comments.

  1. What a great enrichment program mummy has guys!! so many really clever ideas and fun things to do…you are so right boredom is not nice for humans let alone our furry friends..so it is up to us to get the ball rolling..literally!! enjoy your day and remember not too much mischief heheeh big hugs Fozziemum xx

  2. no tips from me but wow, they look cute

  3. Are you sure there is only hay in this brown Mc-Bag? If you find some crumbs of a cheeseburger, please send it to me :o)

    • Hehehe. Actually it was going to have a chocolate brownie in it but Mummy said could they hand them over separately. They sure gave her a funny look as she tucked the bag away and stood there with the melting brownie in her hand rummaging for the money to pay!

      xxxxx

  4. You guys are so lucky to have little hoomans and a Mum who try to keep you happy and having fun…..so many GREAT ideas too! Nothing worse than getting bored that’s for sure – – – not good for animals OR hoomans…..!

    Kitty Hugs and Fun, Sammy

  5. I can’t see you piggies getting bored with all that stuff!

  6. Those are some great tips. Ma takes our piggies outside to the pig pen (that is their playyard) everyday but if it is raining we let them play in the living room with us. I love this activity cause me and my fur siblings get to play with them too.Miss piggy likes to run under my feet and Cinnamon likes to cuddle with my sissy Jenny who is blind. Watching them piggies play follow the leader and hearing them wheek wheek in different tones are always a delight.
    Thank you for the great tips! Some of these we have tried but a lot of them we haven’t. I always learn so much from you all.
    Have a great Wheek!

  7. Wait? Does she pre-break your cardboard tubes?!?!?! It’s a tragedy if she does. You need to train her better. She probably owes you food reparations too for such ridiculous presentation. Also, I find short cardboard tubes are the best for my family’s martial arts training regimine. You can’t use a long cardboard tube to train to be a guinea ninja, you just can’t. Sophie is currently playing with our chew toy kabob. It has bell on the end. This is also useful to summon out mom to give us stuff, though she seems not to hear us summoning her while asleep.

    They keep a fur-pulling, drooling, piggy hitting MONSTER at our mom’s sister’s house (and people seem to like this thing, even our mom, which is straight-up crazy in my book!). Monsters do NOT make good toys. It even tried to put Frederick in its mouth!

    Have a great weekend,

    Annie Wigglewhiskers

    • Wow. Sounds like fun at your house. Yep, our hooman tears our tubes. It was all because of a morning where Nutty got his rather chubby head and one front paw stuck in one. It took a few minutes to catch him and she had to cut it off. Ever since whee has not been allowed undestroyed tubes! Sad, whee know!

      xxxxx

  8. Kismet, the parrot, likes the cardboard wrapping for the 12 can fridge-packs. Try one if you run our of shoe boxes.

  9. You know they make houses and hiding tunnels out of willow too, right guys? They are my most especial favorite (but I’m not allowed to have a house right now because my mom is afraid Benwick will get out. Nutty, we should for a support group, seriously. Baby pigs are wild. I wish I had a hiding house today, I have to take a very long car trip to go to the vet. I like the vet, but the car is awful.

    Moping,

    Wentworth

    • Whee used to have a willow tunnel but after a fungal piggy last year Mummy threw out every wooden toy and whee are slowly building our stocks back up but Mummy hasn’t found a replacement of my tunnel yet!

      And a support group would be a good idea. These whippersnappers!

      Nutty
      xxxx

      • Whippersnappers indeed!!! Saturday I had to go on a 100 mi. car ride to be petted and poked by the vet. I like him, but I DO NOT like the car. My mom let Benwick come so I would be less scared. Do you know what he did? He braced himself in the best non-jostley corner, cuddled under the water bottle, and would act like a biting dragony-monster every time I wanted a sip of water! My mama Eleanor used to complain because Annie used to always sleep under the water as a baby pig. My mom used to call Annie the water bottle dragon. I love Annie, but she clearly taught our kiddos a very bad habit. My mom says Harville and Sophie do this too.

        So I had to get jostled in the scary car all the thirsty way home 😦

        (Still, I was glad he was there to help with the scary part)

        Happy Sunday!

        Wentworth Wigglewhiskers

      • Nacho came with me to the vets yesterday because he gets frightened home alone and I get frightened there. Our vets isn’t very far (under a mile) so whee don’t have it too bad. Though I am not too well at the moment so the hoomans are thinking about taking me to the far away vets which is 30 miles each way. Mummy has told me I have to go back on Monday so they can take pigtures of my insides to check everything is doing what it should. Mummy is a bit worried though and so am I.

        Why did you have to go to the vets? Whee hope you are ok!

        Nutty
        xxxx

      • Dubsie’s eyes are a bit gooky, and the queston was whether it was conjunctivitis or a more comprehensive upper respiratory infection. He’s over 3 now, didn’t seem to be getting better, and seemed a little off. I’ve got some antibiotic ointment for his eyes that he hates, but hopefully it will do the trick. Very hot afternoons and drafts periodically from the air conditioning do no one any favors.

        The frightened home alone thing plus the frightened in the car thing is exactly why B. went along too, though car rides are never quite safe, and I always worry about taking more pigs than necessary so far on trecherous roads.

        Nutty, you need to get better, sir. Keeping you in my prayers little pig, I hope answers are found soon. It always makes me sad that what I thought was sadness on Eleanor’s part was actually terminal illness (possibly cancer). Annie helped make her last month bright and peaceful. Annie’s made every day since a joy, and the babies have multiplied that exponentially.

        Blessings for your week little pigs and Amy.

  10. Your mummy is super creative! My mommy clearly needs to take some lessons from her. I am going to tell my mommy about putting treats in the paper bag (the big ones we get from the grocery would be perfect for a dog) and hiding treats inside of wadded up newspaper. Those will both be good hot-weather doggy entertainment. Thanks so much for the tips!

    • Yep, a lot of the toys can be adapted for all sorts of animals and most a free. The most they cost you is time to make them and time to clean the up afterwards! Which the hoomans do for you anyway! ^_^

      xxxx

  11. hello hutchizens its dennis the vizsla dog hay dada sez that he and mama yoozd to hav a pet rat and she wood bite the bars wen she wuz bored so they wood tayk her owt and she wood ride arownd on there showlders maybe they shud hav invested in sum toys for there rat to keep her entertaynd!!! altho persunaly i think they just wanted an eksyoose to tayk her owt of the kage and play with her!!! ha ha ok bye

    • Whee chew the bars when whee want to come out too. But now with these wooden things in the way whee often get distracted, so the hoomans get peace and quiet and whee have a great game. Although Basil has worked out that pulling on the wooden chew and letting it go rattles the bars and gets the hoomans, and is great fun too. Whee are such naughty pets! Hehehe

      xxxx

  12. These ideas are so brilliant, I wish I could be a piggie. Cups, tunnels, fleece, balls, tubes, mazes, ugh! I’m kinda jealous…..

    Love and licks,
    Cupcake

  13. Our bunny wants to know what pet safe wadding is – 100% cotton?? Have any of you piggies actually eaten any (hope not!)? Thanks for the tips!

    • Whee haven’t eaten any, thankfully! But pet safe wadding can be something like vet bed. Or there is a non toxic wadding they sell in our shop for making pet toys will which is very good. Just non toxic, things really! Whee have had a straw filled cushion but they lack appropriate squidge!

      xxxx

      • Those are good ideas because our bunny sometimes chews onall sorts of things that he isn’t supposed to! Thanks!

  14. Well you are a cheeky lot aren’t you?and Spoilt too…just like me!hehe…mummy does some of those things for me too in my play pen,xx Speedy

  15. We need to see a Piggy circuit training course 😉

  16. Your pigtures do a great job of illustrating your points. Love them! Much love, the Scottie Mom.

  17. Great ideas!
    I have a treat ball which I love bashing around:-)

  18. What a great selection of boredom busters and extremely creative. At the moment whee are a little poorly as we are being treated for mice/lice. Peaches is the worse affected and the vet did a skin graft on her bald patch and her ears this Monday. He found 3 bugs but said in all of his 33 years as a vet, he has not seen that type before. They have small front legs and long back legs. He didn’t know whether they were lice or mites. Whee have to have baths and medication for the next 3 wheeks. Mummy has been waking up with bites on her legs and these bugs are most likely the culprits. She has spent hours hosing our cages and cleaning her own bedding and washing her king size duvet in the shower as mummy doesn’t have a bath and her washing machine is too small to fit the duvet in.

    • Whee would recommend looking at this page here for info on the different types of mites and lice and maybe see which matches best-

      http://www.gorgeousguineas.com/parasitic.html

      From the sound of them, whee would guess they are mange mites which whee have dealt with before. They are tough little things. This page has a good pigture of them which might help your vet –

      http://www.critterhub.com/small-animals/guinea-pig-mites/

      Hope you are all feeling better soon. Pigs and kisses.

      xxxx

      • Thanks for the advice. Whee didn’t see the bugs, only the vet did. Whee have had lice before and mites but the vet said these look different to anything he has seen before and he is a small animal specialist. Mummy had piggies before with mange and she would agree that the bald patch is a sign of mange. Whee hope it’s not as mange can be extremely bad and whee are eating at the moment and not constantly scratching.

      • Thanks for this information. Whee have looked at both sites and the picture is not like the vet described but we still think that it may be Mange. Thank you xxxx

  19. You’re lucky little piggies to have so many fun things to do!

  20. Bery guud bloggie…me wuud make a guud G-Piggie…me haz bedz n hidey placez n toyz galore…Wheek MOL
    Nylalbue xo

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