If you are looking forward to adding a guinea pig to your family, you may have the question: “Male VS Female Guinea Pig Which Gender Is Better”. After all, the gender of a guinea pig can determine some of its behavior, habits, and care.
Many owners look for male vs female guinea pig which is better! I want to say that guinea pigs can be wonderful pets no matter if it is a boy or a girl, some consider male guinea pigs are better because they are less shy and get to establish an acute connection with you faster.
Some prefer the female’s guinea pig because tend to be neater. Nevertheless, there are pros and contras depending on gender.
If you already decided that you want to add one of these furry balls into your family it is best to know all the details beforehand and choose the one that best suits your tastes.
What is a male guinea pig called?
Did you know each guinea pig gender has a name? This may sound weird, but as an interesting fact, they do, in order to refer easily to each one, they have specific names: the female guinea pig is called “sow” whereas the male it’s called “boar”. With these names it’s much easier to refer to them, so keep them in mind.
Which are the differences between male and female guinea pigs?
When you compare male vs female guinea pig, you need to consider that no matter the sex, guinea pigs are lovely and quiet pets that need to be managed with care since these small fur balls can be really aware of their surroundings and stress easily if they don’t feel safe.
Now, when talking about differences you need to know first that one of the major differences present on both genders is of personality, and getting to know the general traits of each one can be useful if you are a first-time guinea pig owner.
According to experts, depending on the gender, guinea pigs can have different behaviors however remember that all animals, especially guinea pigs, can have their own strong personality and the characteristics mentioned below can sometimes change.
These are just general traits, each guinea pig have their own personality and may not follow the next list
Male guinea pigs (boars) behavior
- Male cavies are a big timeless shy than sows
In general male guinea pigs are more bold and confident in themselves, so it is easier to interact with them and establish a connection.
This trait can be especially good if it’s the first time you are trying to interact with a guinea pig or you are not used to dealing with animals. After all, the prey instinct is something to always consider in order not to scare a guinea pig.
- Male cavies are messier
You may not notice the difference if you are a first-time guinea pig owner, however, male guinea pigs can make big messes and won’t clean up afterward or won’t worry about their home order state. This implies that you probably will spend more time cleaning up the cage of a male guinea pig.
- Male guinea pigs can become aggressive sometimes
When it comes to animals, this personality trait its common and male guinea pigs are not the exception. Male guinea pigs can become very territorial and aggressive if they are kept in small cages and grouped with other male guinea pigs it can unleash battles for territory. They won’t become aggressive with you but they may hurt each other.
Female guinea pigs (Sows) behavior
- Sows are socially needy
A lady piggy loves to socialize and to be near you or other guinea pigs; they get along well and become friends quickly with other guinea pigs.
This can be really good if you want to have more guinea pigs living together. However, this is also a necessity and they can get really sad if left alone in their cage for a long time.
- Female cavies keep a cleaner house
In general, sows like to keep a clean house and will probably arrange the cage from time to time to keep it nice and clean. This will help you a little to keep less maintenance of the cage but remember that not all the guinea pigs are the same and some sows may not do this.
- Female cavies are timid
Even if they usually need more social interaction, some sows can be really shy and it can take more effort to establish a bond with them.
That means that you will need more patience, love, and dedication to establish the bond with them but think about it as a greater challenge with a more gratifying reward.
Do male and female guinea pigs look different?
Physically, the differences can be subtle. Sometimes the male cavies are bigger than the female ones but that depends on the breed. Another difference is that even though both have nipples, the nipples are bigger on the female piggy.
Other than those small differences, it takes a meticulous examination of the genitals in order to determine which the genre of the guinea pig is.
It is recommended to make the examination and determine the gender when the guinea pig is at least 2 weeks old, or else it can lead to confusion. You should determine the sex of a baby guinea pig before it is 3rd week old, especially if it is still with the mother because if it is a male it can lead to troubles like unwanted impregnation of the mother and the sisters.
How do I tell what gender my piggy is?
If you want to determine the gender of a guinea pig you need to keep in mind that these little rodents have big prey instincts and tend to feel vulnerable easily.
You need to manipulate it really carefully if you don’t want to stress them or to hurt them, especially if it is a baby guinea pig.
- If your guinea pig is 2 weeks old, you can handle it without any rejection afterward of the mother and it can even help to get them to use to humans.
- Wash your hands and use a low table or the floor to perform the exam, it is necessary to work at a low place in order to keep the guinea pig calm, comfortable and protected from the risk of high falls.
- You need to hold them around the chest and shoulder with one hand and on the back with the other hand, you need a firm but gentle grip since the guinea pig might get scared and try to move.
- Try to expose its belly and genitals; this position is especially awkward for these little creatures so try to examine quickly and to keep them happy with treats.
- Now, to discover the sex you need to determine the distance between the anus and the genitals. Male guinea pigs have a larger separation between the penis and the anus, approximately 2-3 inches. While the female guinea pig has almost no space between the anus and the vulva.
- Another difference is the genitals form. Female guinea pigs’ genital has “Y” form whereas the male guinea pigs’ genital looks like a small circle. This is kind of hard to see for some persons, especially in old cavies, so do not worry if you are not able to distinguish the form.
- If you are not sure still after trying the exam yourself, it is recommended to ask the experienced vet to confirm the gender of the guinea pig, since it is important to know the gender in case it needs some special care or if you have more cavies and need to separate males and females. To read more about male vs female guinea pigs pet just c
Do female guinea pigs live longer than males?
Guinea pigs are an exception among all the rodents because they live between 5 to 7 years (Some can live up to 8-10 years) whereas most rodents only live up to 3 years.
Additionally, in the case of guinea pigs, gender is also important, since boars (male guinea pigs) live longer than sows (female guinea pigs).
The lifespan of any beloved pet depends on the cares and alimentation. The guinea pigs are no exception to this. Both genders have different complications when the cavies get old, for example, males are more likely to get bladder stones and female can suffer reproductive problems which require hormone injections.
Do male guinea pigs smell more?
A common myth is that male guinea pigs stink too much and are not good companions because of this. The truth is that yes, they have scent glands that can make their smell stronger, but that can be managed easily.
These scent glands are no reason not to have a male guinea pig with you; the smell problem can be quickly solved by washing the oil built upon these glands from time to time. It takes a couple of minutes and mild soap and lukewarm water.
Why do male guinea pigs stink?
As I mentioned previously, male guinea pigs have scent glands located under their tails. The function of these glands is for male pigs to show dominance and mark their territory with the smell.
The gland will produce oil and secrete it constantly. As a result, their tail area can become greasy, sticky and really smelly in a short time.
It is important to take care of this, first of all, the smell can become really strong and if it is not cleaned it can produce irritation and infections on the piggy.
The smell of male guinea pigs is not something to worry too much; after all, guinea pigs usually require at least one deep cleaning of the cage once a week or else the smell of the pee and poop accumulated will be really bad and strong, so the ritual of cleaning constantly is already part of keeping guinea pigs.
Why are male guinea pigs aggressive?
In order to keep a guinea pig happy, it needs lots of space and a company of their own kind. This can be especially important to keep in mind if you have a male guinea pig since they can become possessive and start having fights between males.
If you keep your male guinea pigs happy and with all they need you won’t have any problem of aggressions. So if you keep your males with at least 2×5 ft. space for each, give each one the same items and offer them exercise activities, you will enjoy the best these cute, calm and content fellas.
Are male guinea pigs territorial?
You need to remember that guinea pigs should live with at least another one of the same kind and this is especially important when grouping male guinea pigs. That is because they can be very territorial.
A group of guinea pigs generally establish a hierarchy. With a bit of observation, you can establish who is the boss of the group and this becomes useful because by following and respecting this hierarchy you can prevent rivalries rising.
That means that the boss gets the food, the treats, groom, and attention first. It is especially important to follow this protocol with groups of young male guinea pigs because they can be really dominant and territorial.
This hierarchy among female guinea pigs is more flexible and they can adapt to changes without much problem. They usually don’t have as many territorial problems as males.
Can you desex a male guinea pig?
It is possible to desex male and female cavies. This can be useful if you want to avoid unwanted pregnancies and reduce problems associated with the hormones.
A male piggy can stop producing fishy smelly oil with its scent glands once it is neutered. This can be a great way to avoid infections and irritations that can take place there.
When you desex a male guinea pig can also help to avoid complications like testicular tumors when they get older.
Do male guinea pigs need to be neutered?
I have mentioned a couple of details to keep in mind when owning a male guinea pig; it has some pros and some contras. One common thought is that is the male needs to be neutered, in order to control aggressions problems and convert it into a calm piggy.
However, it is a great myth and the personality of the male piggy will not change when it is neutered. If there are territorial fights, they won’t end this way and the bickering will continue. So even if you are looking forward to improving the relationship of your guinea pigs, it won’t work this way.
On the other hand, if you are looking forward to group a male piggy and female guinea pigs, this can be a great way to avoid unwanted pregnancies.
Female guinea pigs usually feel calm when grouped with one neutered male so it should not be a problem. Do not place two neutered males together, since they will end up fighting a lot.
You must know that any surgical procedure is really dangerous for these small fluffy balls so please consider all the options before deciding to go on with the neutering.
If you are looking forward to neutering your male or female guinea pig, you must consult it with a specialized vet who is familiarized with the procedure.
Can male guinea pigs live alone?
If you doing this research about “male vs female guinea pig” to know if a male can live alone, I want to to tell you that cavies are really sociable creatures and need to be with another one of their kind, otherwise, they will get too lonely and this can have severe consequences on their behavior and the stress they face so they should not live alone if possible.
If you can only own one little guinea pig, then I highly recommend you pick a male guinea pig, since female cavies can suffer a lot more from loneliness.
Consider that in the wild, they create significant families and groups to survive; they have adapted to live that way. When cavies are in a loving family, their health can improve and the stress and aggression levels will reduce.
Do male guinea pigs get along?
There are different combinations suitable for keeping male guinea pigs happy. Male guinea pigs can get along with other male cavies. However, the number is important.
A pair of male guinea pigs should not be a problem as long as you follow the basic cohabitation rules mentioned previously.
Trios, quartet and bigger groups of male cavies can be quite a bigger challenge since it is harder to accomplish their individual necessities of each one and the quarrels will be common.
It is easier to bond a pair of males and keep them separated in case you want to increase the number of male cavies in your family.
Having a big age gap helps to improve the relationship between males because under this circumstance the hierarchy is not questionable. Additionally, if the cavies were together since birth, it is probable they will get along.
On the other hand, having male cavies that were not together from birth and are from the same age together can be harder to get along, especially if they are young since they are hormonally unsteady.
Male VS Female Guinea Pig, Which combinations of guinea pigs work?
Not all combinations of guinea pigs work that well since even if they are lovely creatures, these small rodents have complicated interactions.
Additionally, even if you are trying a proper combination of cavies, it can end up failing if the guinea pigs are not able to establish a bond.
First impressions are really important for humans, and also for guinea pigs. If two guinea pigs do not get along well from the start, it is really hard to improve that. That is why you need to introduce properly each piggy to each other in order to avoid troubles and create a proper bond.
These are some of the best combinations you can try if you want a happy group of guinea pigs:
– Female or male pairs of guinea pigs:
As said previously, the first impression will be crucial for this combination to work. Generally, female cavies are gentler and friendlier and will get along easily even if they are not together since birth.
– Any number of female cavies and just one neutered male piggy
It is important to never place together more than one neutered boy to this combination or any combination since it will produce fights for sure over the ladies.
– Female big groups
This can work very well if the hierarchy is clear. In order to keep it that way it is best to place together female cavies of different ages and if it is possible, avoid placing two alpha females together since that can bring divisions among the group.
– A pair with one of each
This combination is really stable; however, you must be aware that you may have babies soon. When one of them is desexed, it can be the most stable bond among all and you will avoid unwanted pregnancies.
Remember that if you are looking forward to the addition of a new piggy to your cute guinea pig family, it is best to introduce a new pair than a single piggy, since acceptance is more probable most of the time.
Additionally, please keep in mind that you must be prepared when introducing cavies to the group. It may not work and you need to have a plan B like a second cage or another companion for the rejected piggy.
There are ways to improve the bond between guinea pigs but it can take a lot of patience and dedication. Some specialized centers have bonding services that may do that for you, however, they are not common and usually have waiting lists since it is a really slow procedure.
I hope this article helped you to understand the way these furry balls interact with each other and their gender differences
With all this information in mind about male vs female guinea pig:
Have you decided which gender is better for you?
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