If you’ve currently got cats and dogs, then you’ll need to think twice about getting a guinea pig – do you have both an indoor and outdoor space that your cats and dogs don’t have access to? Even if your pets are the friendliest animals in the world, guinea pigs are prey to a lot of animals and so are nervous of larger species. Even if your dog or cat is small, they have a lot of smells and behaviours that can really frighten guinea pigs, even if they’re just trying to be friendly.
Cats, dogs and guinea pigs can accept one another, but any interaction, throughout their lives, needs to be firmly supervised. Guinea pigs move very fast, and you can’t blame a cat or dog for instinctively reacting to a guinea pig running away. Even a paw placed on a guinea pig to stop it running could be enough to seriously harm your guinea pig, as they’re quite fragile animals. You’ll want to be present at all times (and ideally holding your larger pet) so you can step in if your larger pet makes any fast movements towards your guinea pigs.
Guinea pigs are happiest and safest away from other pets like cats and dogs
If you’re a guinea pig lover and currently own a cat or a dog, then it will be difficult to keep guinea pigs properly unless you have a warm garden shed or room in the house that your cat or dog has no access to. Larger animals, especially cats, are often very interested in guinea pigs and many sit by the hutch staring in at guinea pigs curiously. This is an extremely stressful situation for a guinea pig, and you’ll want to avoid it if you want your guinea pigs to remain happy and healthy.