Picking up the pieces…

Layla of NEGPR sent this story in about a group of guinea pigs whose health had been compromised because a large number was being kept… A reputable rescue will keep guinea pigs until they are well enough to be rehomed both emotionally and physically.

 “They came into rescue about 5 weeks ago along with 40 other guineas. Their owner was unwell and could no longer cope with them. I think she had been struggling for a while as many had health issues.

The four girls are called Daisy, Twinkle, Sooty and Beauty. Beauty is the oldest and is Sooty’s mother. Beauty is about 5 years old. The others are over 3.5 years. Beauty, Sooty and Daisy all had very large bladder stones lodged in their urethras when they arrived. These had to be removed using episiotomies as the stones were so large. They have all recovered well and Xrays showed no further stones. We think that with a good diet and lots of water they will be fine now. Beauty also had a slight dental issue which appears to have resolved. They all required mite treatment. Twinkle had a large lump removed from her neck yesterday. We are awaiting the results of her biopsy. We will have a better idea of her prognosis then.

Despite all the health issues they arrives with, they are lively, inquisitive and friendly girls. They get on well together. They are small piggies – all weigh under 790 grams.”


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March 28, 2015   Posted in: March 4 Rescue Guineas  No Comments

Albie’s and Bradley’s Story

A peep into a boar bonding diary from Glyneath Guinea Pig Rescue who take in boars that are looking for friends to try them with their own rescue boars.

bradley n albie

Hay makes a good distraction, the two can retend to eat while secretly eyeing each other up.

“Bradley was born at the rescue (one of Prof. Lolipops’ 8 babies), sadly his beloved Colin has passed away so he has popped back for a visit and hopefully a new best friend.

Albie arrived in Oct as a very undersized, terrified 7 month old and has just blossomed. He’s such a happy lad now. 


 Day 1: Bradley’s first choice is Albie, a younger boy with a big personality. They spent the last 24 hrs in a divided cage with no signs of aggression but plenty of curiosity. They are now sharing the same space, busy munching at the moment.

    Some very mild dominance displays and a bit of mutual grooming. It’s going very well!

Day 2:  Not a peep from these two overnight and they are happily tucking into breakfast. I’ll monitor for the rest of the day to ensure there’s no intimidation and that Bradley is coping ok with a lively friend (Bradley was born with only one functioning eye). I don’t expect there to be any problems and they should be ready to come home tomorrow” 

house share bna

   Day 2


Day 2 sharing a house.

These two went home and are currently living happily together (March 2015). Thanks to Suzy for their story.




March 5, 2015   Posted in: for reputable guinea pig rescues.  No Comments

March, for reputable guinea pig rescues.



Currently just about anyone (in the UK) can set themselves up as a guinea pig rescue . Whilst the intention is to help the current situation (countless homeless guinea pigs) it can add to the problem sometimes or not do the good that it should do, ie provide the all the information needed to make the guinea pigs’ life one that they deserve.

During March Guinea Pig Welfare will be looking at why adopting from a guinea pig rescue should be (and in lots of cases is) a positive one,  firstly for the guinea pigs and for the humans too!


March 1, 2015  Tags: , ,   Posted in: for reputable guinea pig rescues.  No Comments

Love Is Not Enough

Guineas are very cute, lovable looking creatures but they need a whole lot more than just love. They need that love expressed in the correct way, ie their basic and specific needs must be met.


bags of love

Give them Bags of Fun as well as Bags of Love…

love is in the hair

Loveis in the hair, show your love by using Gorgeous Guineas’ shampoo.


February 14, 2015   Posted in: Planet Guinea  No Comments

Guinea Pig Welfare Wheek 2014



Venus has previously had digestive issues, this was discussed at her health check, demonstartaing that her previous history notes had been read.


A weigh in is part of the basic health check.


Not impressed at being interrupted with a health check…



As well as listening to the heart with the stethoscope the lungs can be listened to for evidence of any fluid present.







goody bags

Guinea Pig Friendly goody bags with products from The Hay Experts and Gorgeous Guineas.










2014 was our fifth Welfare Wheek, held at Active Vetcare . Guinea Pig Welfare Wheek is held in Reading so that local guinea pigs can benefit from a free health check with the added benefit of a free goody bag containg quality guinea pig supplies from The Hay Experts and Gorgeous Guineas.  This year there were two varieties of hay, a food product and some Perfect Paws ointment (with info and instructions).

During the extended Wheek over 19 guinea pigs were seen. As well as healthy guinea pigs there were a few issues that were picked up on sooner rather than later. The most common being skin issues (these can be parasitic, fungal or hormonal etc), one condition could only be monitored and advice was given on how to monitor it and when further intervention may be needed, another condition, which in its current state was potentially life threatening, is undergoing improvement from a lifestyle change.

As well as guinea pigs benefiting from the health checks a new vet at the surgery needed to step up because another, more experienced vet, was absent. Feedback says that clients were more than happy with her and look forward to her gaining more experience with guineas. Her health checks also demonstrated that information about guinea pigs has been shared within the surgery. So, thank you to everyone who had their appointment with Caroline for giving her the experience with guineas!

Thanks to Sally Ward and everyone at Active Vetcare Tilehurst for accommodating the wheek once again. I think its worth it, Guinea Pig Welfare Wheek may not save lives but it has saved guinea pigs some suffering by catching things earlier.

We look forward to Welfare Wheek 2015!



Display board by Guinea Pig Welfare


Companionship poster by Guinea Pig Welfare



December 4, 2014   Posted in: Planet Guinea  No Comments

Guinea Pig Welfare Wheek 2014



Guinea Pig Welfare Wheek 2014 will be the fifth one we have held. They were born at the end of a Piggy PM when we discussing how we could take things further, senior vet, Jenny Towers (now Brown) agreed that a welfare wheek, along the lines of the Rabbit Welfare Week, would be a good idea and was something she would be happy to support.

The time could not have been better as I was planning on giving up rescue soon but still wished to contribute something worthwhile to the guinea pig community, particularly Jo Public as basic information that is accurate can be difficult to find.

The Hay Experts and Gorgeous Guineas agreed at once to support me with goodies for goody bags and advertising for the event, so, Guinea Pig Welfare Wheek was born!

However this year has seen some changes at Active Vetcare with Jenny (Brown) on maternity leave but true to all things Active Vetcare Tilehurst the tradition of Welfare Wheek and sharing of information has continued. Sally Ward has been most helpful in helping with the organisation of this year’s Welfare Wheek.


November 10, 2014   Posted in: Guinea Pig Welfare Wheek  No Comments

Miss Gobby

2014-05-04 16.36.29

Plans were made for Mabel’s future wellbeing. It was agreed on adoption that she could return here when Cakey died as her humans wanted a break from keeping guineas and didnt want her to be on her own. However things dont always go to plan…

Read Miss Gobby’s story, part one

Queenie’s story part two

May 7, 2014   Posted in: One Is Not Enough, The Pig Issue  No Comments

March is for Rescue!

Guinea Pig Welfare is dedicating the month of March to the rescue cause. Somewhat timely as very recently a rescue needed to be “rescued” and the animals, including some guinea pigs, were relocated. This is by no means the first or last time this will happen and the public must decide whether they wish to rescue a guinea pig from such circumstances or support those who rescue responsibly and can be referred to as a reputable source. Reputable guinea pig rescues are working with their vets and guinea pig friendly businesses to try and promote quality care for guinea pigs. This is a massive step forward and it is good to see information being shared. It can only mean an improvement in the lives of our guinea pigs.  See www.guineapigrehome.org.uk for details of guinea pigs needing homes (UK).


There are also, of course, different schools of thought on what is “reputable”. Guinea Pig welfare believes that the majority of rescues, if not all, are doing a good deed by removing a guinea pig(s) from an inappropriate situation, it is what happens next that defines reputable….

* Is the rescue a guinea pig specific rescue? Being guinea pig specific doesnt make anyone reputable it does however show that there is likely to be a keen interest which should be backed up with experience in keeping guineas.

* Does the rescue have a sensible limit on how many guinea pigs they will take in? What is this limit based on? Amount of cages? How many guinea pigs can be rehomed to Animal Welfare Act friendly homes annually? Financial outlay?

* Does the rescue have a reliable income? In the real world guinea pigs are potentially expensive when they go wrong and whilst that rescue will be promoting vet care by providing lots of little customers and educating their vet, it all comes at quite a cost. It is heart wrenching to have to turn guinea pigs away that need your help but there comes a point when their quality of care declines as numbers increase.

* Does the rescue provide information for potential owners? A point of contact (email, Facebook page, etc) means that the guinea pig receives ongoing care for the rest of its life.

* Do the rescue homecheck you? This is a chance for you to ask questions and for the rescue to see where the guinea pigs are going to. You shouldn’t be told that you have “a lovely house and I’m sure you will look after them”. You should feel that you have earned the right to be responsible for these little lives and therefore you are proud to offer them a home knowing you have back up if needed.

* Will the rescue take back any guinea pigs should your circumstances change? What would happen if the rescue closed, could you still take them back? 

Maple, right, was born in rescue, one of 8 boars...

Maple, right, was born in rescue, one of 8 boars…

These are just a few points that can be considered. As the quantity of rescues varies greatly from area to area many people dont have the luxury of choice when going to a rescue…. Similarly the quantity of Animal Welfare Act compliant homes offered will vary  meaning, obviously, that rehoming figures will differ.


March 2, 2014   Posted in: March 4 Rescue Guineas, Planet Guinea  No Comments