We know that you really worry about even a small change in your pets. If you are a guinea pig owner, you might have noticed that your little companion is twitching from time to time. Twitching is one of the most frequent problems in petting guinea pigs, and there are different facts involved in it.
Why does my guinea pig twitch? If you are suffering from this problem, join the discussion!
What is Guinea Pig Twitching?
Twitching is also known as muscle fasciculation in the body of a guinea pig. In short, what happens is the muscle fibers in the pig’s body start to twitch because of nerve stimulation or damage. These muscles contain fibers, and the nerves are responsible for regulating them.
When this issue exists in their body, they do sudden jerks or shaking. If you are unable to cure it for a long time, you will see some gashes in the pig’s body. Then, guinea pigs begin to itch the body crazily. In case they are not treated at the right time, this issue can lead to even death. Therefore, you need to concern if you notice such a difference.
But do not misunderstand their normal behavior with twitching. When the guinea pigs are excited, they do sudden jumps or shakes, and it is normal.
Why do Guinea Pigs Twitch?
These are the common things for the guinea pigs to twitch. Sometimes, you do not need to take it seriously. For example, when they are happy about some exciting things, they show it by twitching. But when it does not stop, it may be a sign of a serious thing like an illness.
Nervousness /Fear/ Excitement
This is something common for guinea pigs. When they become nervous or excited due to an unexpected circumstance, they run away to protect themselves. Then their body might twitch for a while to release the stress.
When their surrounding is uncomfortable, they can twitch. Sometimes, they might be in pain if you can also notice hunched posture or teeth grinding from them.
When the guinea pigs are sick, twitching is a sign to show their difficulty. If their nerves have become damaged rather than stimulation, there might be a serious health issue. Apart from twitching, they might suffer from lethargy, diarrhea, breathing problems etc.
When there is neurological damage due to injury, such as a fall, they tend to twitch. Therefore, you need to care when they get injured.
When is Guinea Pig Twitching a Cause for Concern?
If your guinea pig consistently twitches or you can see some other symptoms of a medical issue, you should take the animal to a vet for treatment.
First, you should determine whether the twitching is persistent or not. So, check the behavior of the pig for some time. If he/she cannot stop twitching, they might suffer from an illness.
And if they breathe heavily or they ignore food apart from twitching, it might be a sign of distress or any other medical issue. If they ignore the food, they will lose their weight as well.
When there are mites, guinea pigs twitch too. If you cannot treat the pig at the right time, it can develop seizures. Consequently, the pig might get an infection. Therefore, this is another cause that you should concern.
Some other symptoms that are accompanied by twitching are diarrhoea and lethargy. If you notice these signs, you should treat the pet through a vet.
What Should you do if your Guinea Pig is Twitching?
When the pig is twitching persistently, you need to take him or her to the vet immediately. Then the vet will diagnose the exact problem and provide the medicine for your pig. Make sure to repeat the treatments until the vet asks to discontinue.
When you notice twitching, you may extra care for the pet. But do not force him/her to do anything, even to eat some food. Mostly, they need some time to stay alone without doing anything. Provide him with the recommended food and medicine in the right amounts.
How can you Prevent Guinea Pig Twitching?
Mainly, you should prepare a good environment for the guinea pig to live in. Usually, they want a calm and quiet place where they can live without stress, fear, or nervousness. Provide proper ventilation to his or her cage as well. It would always be best to use a spacious cage.
And try to recognize what the pig is afraid of. Then remove it from the place of your pig. For example, if there is another nasty cage mate, separate him/her.
Moreover, they need proper nutrition and exercise to stay healthy. In general, fresh grass or low-calcium hay should be fed to guinea pigs. Besides, you can allow them to eat vitamin C-rich fresh vegetables and fruits. And if your vet recommends some other food or medicine for the pig, make sure to provide them. When it comes to exercise, let them run for a few hours a day. Then they will be happier and healthier. There are exercise wheels that are designed in their cages as well. And do not forget to provide them with some tiny toys to play with.
It would be better to go to the vet at least once a quarter to do a checkup for the pig.
Why are My Guinea Pigs Jumping and Twitching?
This is something you should not be afraid of. When the guinea pigs are playing, they are jumping and/ or twitching. This behavior is normal, and it indicates their happiness. Mostly, if there is more than one guinea pig in a cage, you will see this joyful behavior. And also, they love to play with some comfy toys. So, you can provide a toy to enhance their happiness. Indeed, jumping is a good exercise for their bodies.
VIDEO CREDITS: Little Adventures YouTube Channel
Why is my Guinea Pig Twitching and Squeaking?
If the guinea pig is squeaking and twitching, they are in discomfort due to a skin parasite. Most of the time, this situation is caused by mites. You will see that the pig itches the body intensely as well because the mites burrow through their skin. This is the common reason for squeaking. But if the pig is scared of another animal, it can squeak, too, apart from twitching.
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